Daily Archives: September 2, 2020

Workers Keeping Americans Fed Are Going Hungry in the Heartland | Bloomberg

Hunger is surging in the heart of the breadbasket, showing just how dire the problem has become during the pandemic.

Jessica Traxler was surrounded by food that she couldn’t afford.

Sitting in a faded-out Chevy sedan one July morning in southern Minnesota, she looked out at corn stalks, lush green, as far as the eye could see. A few miles to the east, a mill was pumping out flour. Just beyond it, a farm grew peppers, beans and berries. To the north, there were dairies, one after the other. To the south, a huge pork plant. Grain elevators, poultry yards, cheese plants—all stood just a short drive away.

If one place underscores just how dire America’s hunger problem has become during the pandemic, it is here—in the middle of the breadbasket that supplies food from coast to coast. The ranks of Americans fighting hunger are projected to swell some 45% this year to more than 50 million. Traxler, her husband and six children are among them. She had come to this spot, an empty school parking lot in the town of Mankato, to collect free boxes of food staples: milk and apples and carrots. Hundreds of Minnesotans waited in line ahead of her for hours.

“It’s been hard,” she said. “We’ve had to dramatically change how we eat.”

Boxes of corn are sorted in the refrigerated unit at the headquarters of hunger-relief group Second Harvest Heartland in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, on July 23, 2020.

▲ Boxes of corn are sorted in the refrigerated unit at the headquarters of hunger-relief group Second Harvest Heartland in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota on July 23, 2020. 

Photographer: Ben Brewer/Bloomberg

Before the coronavirus shut down the U.S. economy and cost Traxler her job as a substitute teacher, she’d visited some community food shelves, but had never been to a large-scale food bank in her life. Now, at age 41, she is a regular. This is one of the most jarring aspects of the hunger crisis: About one-third of those relying on food shelves, large-scale and emergency food distributions now are doing so for the first time, according to Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger-relief organization. In parts of Minnesota, that number is closer to 70%.

With the nation pitched in a fierce debate over entrenched and systemic inequalities, the most basic divide—who eats well and who goes hungry—is becoming more acute every day. Even before the pandemic, the U.S. already had the highest number of people who couldn’t afford a basic energy-efficient diet among the world’s 63 high-income countries.

State of Food Security

The U.S. has the largest food-insecure population for the world’s high-income countries and is among the worst performers

Source: North American and European nations. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2020

“We are no longer projecting a surge—we are experiencing a surge in food insecurity,” said Allison O’Toole, the chief executive officer of Second Harvest Heartland, provides truckloads of food to distributions like the one in Mankato.

During the pandemic, about a 10th of American households reported they haven’t had enough food in a given week. That’s a shocking figure for the world’s richest country. It’s more than double pre-Covid figures and the highest since comparable government data starts in 1995.

In contrast to the Dust Bowl years of the Great Depression or the rationing of World War II, the crisis has nothing to do with food supplies. The U.S. is in a time of historic abundance, with plentiful grains, meat and dairy, so much so that farmers have been plowing over excess crops and dumping milk. But lockdowns have snarled supply chains, and food inflation is projected to rise at the fastest pace in almost a decade. Meanwhile, unemployment, low wages and reduced working hours are diminishing purchasing power—all of which are disproportionately impacting women and minorities, as is food insecurity.

▲ Volunteers unload and distribute food items at a pop-up grocery event at Prairie Winds Middle School in Mankato, Minnesota on July 23, 2020. 

Photographer: Ben Brewer/Bloomberg

Demand at Minnesota’s food banks is up 65% this year, and groups like Second Harvest Heartland say the peak has yet to come. The federal government’s $600 weekly supplement to unemployment insurance, which helped millions weather job losses and pay household bills, came to an end last month,and Congress can’t agree on a replacement. Donald Trump issued a stopgap measure to provide $300 a week in federal support to most jobless-benefit recipients, but the funds are only slowing moving into Americans’ wallets.

And there are people like Traxler, who didn’t work enough previously to qualify for unemployment benefits. Her husband works in a livestock feed mill, helping to process the grain that fattens the state’s hogs, poultry and other farm animals. Meanwhile, the family has had to give up eating meat.

Cost of Groceries Spikes During Pandemic

U.S. consumer price index for food at home (1982–1984=100)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

“We have our mortgage, and then we have all of our utilities,” she said. “We’ve really cut back—even the fruits and vegetables.”

“Food is one of the last things on our list.”

Americans are unlikely to be suffering from all-out starvation, which plagues parts of Asia and Africa. But many people in the U.S. cope with food insecurity by skipping meals, just not eating enough or eating the cheapest food available. That kind of diet can be calorie dense, but lead to malnutrition. For children, malnutrition can have lifelong consequences including stunted growth and even impaired cognitive development.

That’s all playing out right in the middle of abundant food production, even despite government and private aid.

Minnesota is home to beef giant Cargill Inc., Cheerio-maker General Mills Inc. and Spam-producer Hormel Foods Corp. All three companies have been donating to food banks. And the Trump administration just dedicated an additional $1 billion to its program known as “Farmers to Families Food Box Program,” which is buying surplus supplies to deliver to food banks and other organizations. The emergency pop-up that Traxler attended was held in partnership with that program.

Even then, much of the food waste on farms hasn’t been redirected because of limited logistics and infrastructure. And a Democratic lawmaker has launched an investigation into the food box program, citing a “failure to deliver food to many communities that need it most.”

Hunger in rural America isn’t new—even before the pandemic, some of the worst areas for food insecurity were in rural communities in the South. But this kind of massive spike in a place like Minnesota is a marker of how much the coronavirus has changed the landscape. In a pre-Covid world, it was among the most food-secure states. Now one in eight people in the state is projected to struggle with hunger.

U.S. Household Hunger Before and During Pandemic

Food-insufficient households, defined as often or sometimes not having enough to eat

Source: U.S. Census Bureau Household Pulse Survey

“We would view this as the most significant challenge that the charitable food system has ever faced” in the U.S., said Katie Fitzgerald, chief operating officer at Feeding America, which oversees a network of 200 food banks.

The deepening hardship could help to explain why Trump is starting to lose support in rural counties, where virus infections are also spreading fast. His job approval rate among rural residents has dropped over the summer to near the lowest this year, Gallup poll data show. Trump spent time in August traveling to Minnesota, along with other swing states like Wisconsin and Iowa—also major food producers.

Many of the people who work in the food industry are among the worst off.

In 2016, about 2.8 million, or 13% of America’s food workers were food insecure, relying on the government’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, known as food stamps. That’s about 2.2 times higher than other industries. During the Great Recession, the figure surged to 4.6 million people, and the situation could turn more dire now because of prolonged wage stagnation, with some food earnings even falling during the pandemic, according to Jose Oliva, the campaigns director at HEAL Food Alliance, a worker rights group.

Boxes of grapes are stacked on pallets at Second Harvest Heartland headquarters in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota on July 23, 2020.

▲ Boxes of grapes are stacked on pallets at Second Harvest Heartland headquarters in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota on July 23, 2020. 

Photographer: Ben Brewer/Bloomberg

Alicia Rojo Rocha is a farm worker in Idaho’s Canyon County, laboring in fields of carrots, onions, alfalfa and potatoes. She gets paid $12 an hour, and the last time her wage went up was about two years ago. When a co-worker on the farm got infected with coronavirus, operations shut down and she was out of work for two weeks in late June. Her husband, who drives trucks for nearby farms, was unemployed for about a month during the pandemic.

Expenses started to pile up, Rocha was late with rent payments and fell behind with other bills. While out of work, she started visiting a local food bank, where she got bread, meat, beans, rice and some produce. Now that she’s working again, she hasn’t returned to the food bank, because she says, other people need it more. An immigrant from Mexico, she obtained citizenship in 2012, but hasn’t applied for federal SNAP assistance because she says she doesn’t like “easy” money.

There are days Rocha eats nothing more than an apple, or maybe a single tortilla with beans throughout her almost 10-hour, physically demanding work day. When she returns home, she might have some eggs or potatoes. She sometimes feels helpless “being in abundance and not being able to have it,” she said.

A volunteer distributes corn masa flour to local residents during a pop-up grocery event at Powderhorn Park in Minneapolis, Minnesota on July 24, 2020.

▲ A volunteer distributes corn masa flour to local residents during a pop-up grocery event at Powderhorn Park in Minneapolis, Minnesota on July 24, 2020. 

Photographer: Ben Brewer/Bloomberg

“Sometimes it is more important to pay rent than to buy food.”

She was paid on a recent Friday, and by Saturday only had $3 left of her earnings after taking care of bills. Her employer on rare occasions lets her and other workers bring home a few potatoes or onions, but produce like carrots and alfalfa can’t be touched.

“You simply adapt. I don’t think about food, and I just suck it up,” she said.

Rocha sometimes forgoes spending on food for herself to instead send money to a daughter in Mexico—she wants to make sure her grandchildren get fed.

It’s not uncommon for women globally to eat less or even skip out on food in favor of feeding other family members. Eons of societal pressures have made it so that women are often tasked with buying, growing and preparing food and making sure a household’s children are fed. Women and girls make up 60% of the population facing chronic hunger across the world. The gender gap is even greater among people who are poorer, less educated, or unemployed, according to Care, a hunger relief and advocacy group. One in five U.S. households with children have experienced food insecurity during the pandemic.

“Women often eat last—they’re eating least if food is scarce,” said Tonya Rawe, a director at Care.

Food inequalities are also exacerbated along racial lines in the U.S. Black Americans are two-and-a half times as likely as their White counterparts to have low or very low access to enough food for an active and healthy life. For Latino Americans, the rate is double that of White people.

Allison O' Toole, CEO of Second Harvest Heartland, stands outside their headquarters in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota on July 23, 2020.

▲ Allison O’ Toole, CEO of Second Harvest Heartland, stands outside their headquarters in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota on July 23, 2020.

Photographer: Ben Brewer/Bloomberg

That’s a sharp reality in Minneapolis’ Powderhorn neighborhood, where George Floyd lived before he was killed by police in May.

About 20% of Powderhorn’s residents live below the poverty line in a state with the country’s largest gap in median income between White and Black people. Some of the grocery stores and restaurants that shuttered during the demonstrations against police brutality and systemic racism have yet to reopen. That’s leaving the area even further cut off from easy access to food, according to O’Toole of Second Harvest Heartland, which helps run emergency grocery pop-ups in the neighborhood.

People wait in line during a pop-up grocery event at Powderhorn Park in Minneapolis, Minnesota on July 24, 2020.

▲ People wait in line during a pop-up grocery event at Powderhorn Park in Minneapolis, Minnesota on July 24, 2020.

Photographer: Ben Brewer/Bloomberg

On a recent Friday, people started lining up for the pop-up in Powderhorn Park about three hours before the official 11 a.m. start. Some brought hand carts with wheels or empty baby strollers to help get food home. Shade from the towering trees helped provide some respite from the heat, while the day got increasingly muggy as the sun moved overhead. Many of the families were Latino, and among the rations being distributed was Maseca for making tortillas.

Need in the neighborhood is so great that the pop-ups, which were scheduled to end in August, will be extended through the fall. It’s part of the 350,000 pounds of food that Second Harvest distributes on a daily basis, up from pre-Covid demand of 180,000 pounds.

Mariano Espinoza distributes food to local residents during a pop-up grocery event at Powderhorn Park in Minneapolis on July 24, 2020.

▲ Mariano Espinoza distributes food to local residents during a pop-up grocery event at Powderhorn Park in Minneapolis on July 24, 2020. 

Photographer: Ben Brewer/Bloomberg

“To see this in Minneapolis—this is unreal. This is in the U.S. where we’re dealing with this,” said Mariano Espinoza, a Latino community specialist with the city government who’s working with Second Harvest to coordinate the pop-ups. “We’re all human and we all have the same right—to have food, to have nourishment.”

— Read on www.bloomberg.com/features/2020-hunger-minnesota-pandemic/

Non-Virtual: AG Barr SCHOOLS CNN on Racism, Antifa, Mail-in-Ballot Fraud | Newsbusters

In a wide-ranging and in-person interview on Wednesday with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, Attorney General William Barr turned the set of The Situation Roominto a classroom to school the network on everything from accusations of systemic racism in the justice system, to Antifa’s cross-country violence, to how people were “playing with fire” in the form of mail-in-ballots.

After shooting down Blitzer’s accusations about him just being a lapdog for President Trump, Barr was pressed from the left with allegations that the justice system was racist. Blitzer was actually confused when Barr point out the fact the Blake and Floyd cases were very different incidents and tried to argue Blake wasn’t armed (Click “expand”):

A.G. WILLIAM BARR: Well, I’m not going to talk about the Blake case.

BLITZER: Why not?

BARR: Because it’s different than the Floyd case.

BLITZER: What’s different?

BARR: Floyd was already subdued, incapacitated, in handcuffs, and was not armed. In the Jacob case, he was in the midst of committing a felony and he was armed. So, that’s a big difference.

BLITZER: His family says he wasn’t armed. There may have been a knife in the car, but he wasn’t armed when he was shot. That’s what his family and his lawyer said.

BARR: I stated what I believe is to be the difference. And that’s I don’t want to talk about him as if they’re interchangeable. Okay?

The Attorney General then moved on to refuting the idea that the justice system was inherently racist, whereas Blitzer insisted there were two different systems with different rules; one for whites and one for blacks.

“No. I don’t think there are two justice systems,” Barr refuted, pointing to how rare it was for a white officer to shoot a black man. “The fact of the matter is, it’s very rare for an unarmed African-American to be shot by a white police officer. There were ten cases last year, six of them the suspect was attacking the police officer physically. So, these are rare things compared to the 7 to 8,000 young black men who are killed every year.”

Despite those fact, Blitzer followed up by continuing to grilling Barr on the supposed racist nature of the system. But Barr defused the accusation by pointing out how far the country had come since the civils rights movement (Click “expand”)

BARR: No. To me, the word “Systemic” means that it’s built into the institution. And I don’t think that’s true. I think our institutions have been reformed in the past 60 years. And if anything has been built in, it’s a biased to nondiscrimination and safeguards against that. And so, that’s what I’m reacting to on systemic.

And also I think we have to be careful about throwing the idea of racism around. Racism usually means, you know, that I believe that because of your race you’re a lesser human being than me. And I think there are people in the United States that feel that way. But I don’t think it is as common as people suggest. And I think we have safeguards to ensure that it doesn’t really have an effect to someone’s future. I think we’ve made a lot of progress in the past 60 years.

“To listen to the American left nowadays, you’d think we’ve gotten nowhere,” Barr shot back.

He even paraphrased a Jesse Jackson quote about how he used stereotypes and argued that police were working to reform on that front and be conscious of that kind of bias. “There’s more progress being made and more reform and we’re going about that. But the demonization of the police and the idea that this is so widespread an epidemic is simply wrong,” he said.

A few minutes later when they shifted gears to discuss the violent riots across the country, Blitzer appeared almost skeptical that Antifa even existed, pressing Barr on how many had been arrested (click “expand”):

BLITZER: I know that you and the president have claimed Antifa, a far left group here in the United States for stirring up the violence in some of these cities. And I know you’ve set up a task force at the Justice Department to look into this. If Antifa is really behind what we’ve seen some of the looting, some of the burning, some of the violence, why haven’t there been any major arrests made of Antifa?

BARR: Well, there have been 300 arrests made across the country.

BLITZER:  But apparently not — 

BARR:  Being a member of Antifa — Antifa is a movement, as I’ve made clear. Okay? There’s not a group necessarily that is called Antifa and membership in a group does not necessarily mean you’ve committed a crime. The elements of a crime are things like throwing a Molotov cocktail.

BLITZER: But have any Antifa-related individuals been arrested?

BARR: Yes.

BLITZER: How many?

BARR: I couldn’t tell you that.

BLITZER: Because, based on the evidence we’ve seen, there aren’t many at all as far as Antifa directly related individuals.

BARR:  Some self-identify them as Antifa. Some refuse to provide even their identity when they’re arrested. I’ve talked to every police chief in every city where there’s been major violence, and they all have identified Antifa as the ramrod for the violence.

The AG explained the Justice Department was tracking individuals associated with Antifa and were monitoring what they were buying as they traveled across the country to take part in riots. And he seemed almost dumbfounded when Blitzer actually asked the following: “Is that illegal? Is that illegal what they’re doing?”

“Crossing state lines to engage in rioting is,” Barr informed him. “A federal offense.” He even gave credence to Trump’s recent claims that there were flights loaded with Antifa which flew to Washington, D.C. and other cities to cause destruction and violence.

The most animated Barr got during the interview was went he had to lay down the facts surrounding the problems with mail-in-voting. “Wolf, this is sort of cheap talk to get around a fundamental problem, which is the bipartisan commission chaired by Jimmy Carter and James Baker set back in 2009 that mail-in voting is fraught with the risk of fraud and coercion,” he said, elevating the volume of his voice as he battled with the CNN host, at one point warning people were “playing with fire.”

After Barr pointed to a case where one man committed fraud with 1,700 ballots in Texas, Blitzer downplayed that level of fraud (which could turn the tide in congressional elections), arguing such fraud had yet to happen on a wide scale. It’s safe to say Barr was incensed as he explained how absentee ballots were better (Click “expand”):

BLITZER: But they are individual cases, but far as widespread fraud, we haven’t see that since–

BARR: Well, we haven’t had the kind of widespread use of mail-in-ballots as is being proposed. We’ve had absentee ballots from people who request them to a specific address. Now, what we’re talking about is mailing them to everyone on the voter lists, when everyone knows those voter lists are inaccurate.

People who should get them don’t get them, which has been one of the major complaints in the states that have tried this in municipal elections. And people who get them are not the right people. They’re the people who replaced the previous occupants and they can make them out. Sometimes multiple ballots come to the same address with several generations of occupants. Do you think that’s a way to run a vote?!

BLITZER: Well, the only thing I’m saying is that so far we haven’t seen widespread fraud.

BARR: So far we haven’t tried it.

As they went back and forth a little longer, Blitzer condescendingly reminded the Attorney General that there was a pandemic going on and people were afraid to go to the polls. Barr responded by spelling out the simple solutions to those problems:

And the appropriate way to deal with that is, number one, arrangements at the polls that protect people, which can be done. And number two, people who have pre-existing conditions and are particularly vulnerable can get an absentee ballot. I have no problem with people — I voted by absentee ballot. Not by mail, I actually went to the office to cast my vote. But absentee ballots are fine.

Towards the end of the interview, Barr noted that since the idea was to just send out ballots all over the place, they could be reproduced and counterfeited. Blitzer didn’t really have a response to that concern. It was a schooling for the ages. This is CNN.

The transcript is below, click “expand” to read:

CNN’s The Situation Room
September 2, 2020
5:06:18 p.m. Eastern

(…)

WOLF BLITZER: So, you testified that you think you understand the conversations. This is when you were testifying before Congress, that black parents have with their children about racism in this country. How do you think African-American parents around the country explain to their kids what exactly happened to Jacob Blake, for example, and why that police officer had his knee on George Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes?

A.G. WILLIAM BARR: Well, I’m not going to talk about the Blake case.

BLITZER: Why not?

BARR: Because it’s different than the Floyd case.

BLITZER: What’s different?

BARR: Floyd was already subdued, incapacitated, in handcuffs, and was not armed. In the Jacob case, he was in the midst of committing a felony and he was armed. So, that’s a big difference.

BLITZER: His family says he wasn’t armed. There may have been a knife in the car, but he wasn’t armed when he was shot. That’s what his family and his lawyer said.

BARR: I stated what I believe is to be the difference. And that’s I don’t want to talk about him as if they’re interchangeable. Okay?

Now, I did say that I do think that there appears to be a phenomenon in the country where African-Americans feel that they’re treated, when they’re stopped by police, frequently as suspects before they are treated as citizens. I don’t think that that necessarily reflects some deep-seated racism in police departments or in most police officers. I think the same kind of behavior is done by African-American police officers.

I think there are stereotypes. I think people operate very frequently according to stereotypes and I think it takes extra precaution on the part of law enforcement to make sure we don’t reduce people to stereotypes, we treat them as individuals.

BLITZER: Because on this program, Jacob Blake Sr., the father said there were two justice systems in our country, one that shot his son seven times in the back and one that let the 17-year-old white gunman walk away after shooting and killing two people. Your reaction?

BARR: Well, I think the gunman escaped, and the government of Wisconsin is seeking his extradition.

BLITZER: But aren’t there two justice systems here in the United States?

BARR:  No. I don’t think there are two justice systems. I think the narrative that the police are on some, you know, epidemic of shooting unarmed black men is simply a false narrative, and also the narrative that that’s based on race. The fact of the matter is, it’s very rare for an unarmed African-American to be shot by a white police officer. There were ten cases last year, six of them the suspect was attacking the police officer physically. So, these are rare things compared to the 7 to 8,000 young black men who are killed every year.

BLITZER: Because you’ve said you don’t believe there is systemic racism in our justice system among the police. But you did say this. You did say, “I do think it is a widespread phenomenon that African-American males in particular are treated with extra suspicion and maybe not given the benefit of the doubt.”

BARR:  That’s what I just said.

BLITZER: But doesn’t that sound like systemic racism?

BARR:  No. To me the word “Systemic” means that it’s built into the institution. And I don’t think that’s true. I think our institutions have been reformed in the past 60 years. And if anything has been built in, it’s a biased to nondiscrimination and safeguards against that. And so, that’s what I’m reacting to on systemic.

And also I think we have to be careful about throwing the idea of racism around. Racism usually means, you know, that I believe that because of your race you’re a lesser human being than me. And I think there are people in the United States that feel that way. But I don’t think it is as common as people suggest. And I think we have safeguards to ensure that it doesn’t really have an effect to someone’s future. I think we’ve made a lot of progress in the past 60 years.

To listen to the American left nowadays, you’d think we’ve gotten nowhere.

BLITZER: There’s no doubt there’s been a lot of progress. But do you think black people are treated differently by law enforcement than white people?

BARR: I think there are some situations where statistics would suggest that they are treated differently. But I don’t think that that’s necessarily racism. Didn’t Jesse Jackson say, when he looks behind him and he sees a group of young black males walking behind him, he’s more scared than when he sees a group of white youths walking behind him. Does that make him a racist? Does that make him a racist?

BLITZER: It sounds like there are two systems, one for blacks, one for whites. That sounds like there is still racism in the justice system.

BARR:  Well, no. I think we have to make sure that stereotypes do not govern our actions in the justice system. And I think police departments do a pretty good job of trying to police against that. And I think progress — there’s more progress being made and more reform and we’re going about that. But the demonization of the police and the idea that this is so widespread an epidemic is simply wrong.

BLITZER: On Monday night, President Trump compared the police shootings, like Jacob Blake’s, for example, in his words to a golfer choking and missing a three-foot putt. Is that how you view police shootings, like a golfer missing a three-foot putt?

BARR: No. What I think what the President was saying there, and it’s something that I think should be said and has to be said, that in many of these shooting situations, it is not because of race. It’s because the officer is scared for his life and is in a situation where a half a second can mean the difference between his life and his death, and he’s wrestling with somebody, and they sometimes may do things that appear in hindsight to be excessive. It doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s racism.

(…)

5:13:32 p.m. Eastern

BLITZER: So, if he wanted to, he could send in federal troops tomorrow?

BARR: I was talking about law enforcement. And I know that news networks are fond of the word “Troop” when they’re referring to federal law enforcement. It’s the first time I’ve ever heard that.

(…)

5:14:12 p.m. Eastern

BLITZER: I know that you and the president have claimed Antifa, a far left group here in the United States for stirring up the violence in some of these cities. And I know you’ve set up a task force at the Justice Department to look into this. If Antifa is really behind what we’ve seen some of the looting, some of the burning, some of the violence, why haven’t there been any major arrests made of Antifa?

BARR: Well, there have been 300 arrests made across the country.

BLITZER:  But apparently not —  

BARR:  Being a member of Antifa — Antifa is a movement, as I’ve made clear. Okay? There’s not a group necessarily that is called Antifa and membership in a group does not necessarily mean you’ve committed a crime. The elements of a crime are things like throwing a Molotov cocktail.

BLITZER: But have any Antifa-related individuals been arrested?

BARR: Yes.

BLITZER: How many?

BARR: I couldn’t tell you that.

BLITZER: Because, based on the evidence we’ve seen, there aren’t many at all as far as Antifa directly related individuals.

BARR:  Some self-identify them as Antifa. Some refuse to provide even their identity when they’re arrested. I’ve talked to every police chief in every city where there’s been major violence, and they all have identified Antifa as the ramrod for the violence.

They are flying around the country. We know people who are flying around the country. We know where they’re going. We know – we see some of the purchases they’re making before the riots of weapons to use in those riots. So, we are following that.

BLITZER: Is that illegal? Is that illegal what they’re doing?

BARR: Crossing state lines to engage in rioting is.

BLITZER: In an interview —

BARR:  A federal offense.

BLITZER: In an interview this week, the President claimed that he heard about a plane, in his words, loaded with thugs wearing dark uniforms from a certain city that was headed to the Republican National Convention here in Washington, in his words, to do big damage. He didn’t offer any specifics. He later the next day changed the story. The plane wasn’t coming to Washington. It was leaving Washington. Have you asked the FBI to investigate this?

BARR: I don’t have to ask the FBI because we received numerous reports of individuals coming from Portland, Washington, Seattle, and several other cities to come into Washington for the specific purpose of causing a riot.

BLITZER: Were they wearing black uniforms, and were they loaded, if you will?

BARR: I think there were many on planes. We’ve received multiple reports on this topic.

BLITZER: So, what the President was talking about was information that you provided to the President?

BARR: I don’t know what the President was specifically referring to.

BLITZER: Because it was widely reported on Facebook there was some conspiracy that was reported weeks ago about this sort of thing.

BARR: I don’t know what the President was referring to. But I will say that we are trying to follow these things and we received numerous reports of people coming from other cities into Washington. As we received many reports of people going into Kenosha from various states.

BLITZER: But you’re saying you don’t know specifically what the President was referring to?

BARR: No, I don’t know what the president was referring to.

BLITZER: When he spoke about this?

BARR: He seemed to be speaking in general terms. I don’t know what he was referring to.

(…)

5:18:50 p.m. Eastern

BLITZER: He doesn’t believe in the mail-in voting and you’re the attorney general of the United States. He said if you expand mail-in voting it’s reckless.

BARR: Wolf, this is sort of cheap talk to get around a fundamental problem, which is the bipartisan commission chaired by Jimmy Carter and James Baker set back in 2009 that mail-in voting is fraught with the risk of fraud and coercion.

[Crosstalk]

BARR: Let me talk.

BLITZER: Please.

BARR: And since that time, there have been in the newspapers, in networks, academic studies saying it is open to fraud and coercion. The only time the narrative changed is after this administration came in. But elections that have been held with mail have found substantial fraud and coercion. For example, we indicted someone in Texas, 1,700 ballots collected from people who could vote. He made them out and voted for the person he wanted to. That kind of thing happens with main-in-ballots and everyone ones it.

BLITZER: But they are individual cases, but far as widespread fraud, we haven’t see that since–

BARR: Well, we haven’t had the kind of widespread use of mail-in-ballots as is being proposed. We’ve had absentee ballots from people who request them to a specific address. Now, what we’re talking about is mailing them to everyone on the voter lists, when everyone knows those voter lists are inaccurate.

People who should get them don’t get them, which has been one of the major complaints in the states that have tried this in municipal elections. And people who get them are not the right people. They’re the people who replaced the previous occupants and they can make them out. Sometimes multiple ballots come to the same address with several generations of occupants. Do you think that’s a way to run a vote?!

BLITZER: Well, the only thing I’m saying is that so far we haven’t seen widespread fraud.

BARR: So far we haven’t tried it.

BLITZER: There are several states that only have mail-in voting, including a Republican state–

BARR: This is playing with fire. This is playing with fire. We’re a very closely divided country here. And if people have to have confidence in the results of the election and the legitimacy of the government, and people trying to change the rules to this methodology, which, as a matter of logic, is very open to fraud and coercion, is reckless and dangerous. And people are playing with fire.

BLITZER: I will point out there are five states that only have mail-in voting including Utah and Colorado, Washington State, Oregon, Hawaii. And they’ve reported over the years they’ve had virtually no problems. But who’s trying to change the rules right now?

BARR: I would say the people who want to go to mass mail-in ballots.

BLITZER: But you understand why. There is a coronavirus pandemic, and there are a lot of people potentially if they waited along the lines when they go to the polls, they could get sick, especially older people or people with underlying conditions. As a result, a lot of people want to change the rules so they don’t have to go wait in long lines, that don’t have to touch all this equipment.

BARR: And the appropriate way to deal with that is, number one, arrangements at the polls that protect people, which can be done. And number two, people who have pre-existing conditions and are particularly vulnerable can get an absentee ballot. I have no problem with people — I voted by absentee ballot. Not by mail, I actually went to the office to cast my vote. But absentee ballots are fine.

(…)

— Read on www.newsbusters.org/blogs/nb/nicholas-fondacaro/2020/09/03/non-virtual-ag-barr-schools-cnn-racism-antifa-mail-ballot

Snowden did nothing wrong? Court rules NSA spying on Americans’ phones was illegal all along — RT USA News

Snowden did nothing wrong? Court rules NSA spying on Americans’ phones was illegal all along

A federal appeals court has ruled that the telephone metadata collection program used by the National Security Agency to spy on Americans was illegal, just as NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden said seven years ago.

The metadata “bulk collection” program violated the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on Wednesday. The opinion delivered by Judge Marsha Berzon reportedly contained multiple references to Snowden and his role in disclosing the program to the public – for which he became a wanted fugitive. 

Snowden himself commented on the verdict, saying he never imagined he would see the courts condemn the NSA and give him credit for exposing the program, “and yet that day has arrived.” He was initially trapped in Hong Kong when the US canceled his passport in 2013, and ended up getting political asylum in Russia, where he has lived ever since.

While the ruling might pave the way for Snowden seeing charges against him dropped, or perhaps receiving a presidential pardon, its significance was otherwise symbolic. The people on whose behalf the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) brought the case – four Somali immigrants convicted on charges of financing the terrorist group Al-Shabaab – will remain unaffected, as the Ninth Circuit said the NSA program played a role so minor it did not undermine their convictions.

The case of Basaaly Moalin and his three co-defendants was the sole instance acknowledged by the US government in which data collected under Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act was used to secure a conviction for terrorism.

Nor does the verdict have any bearing on the surveillance program, as it was replaced in 2015 by provisions of the USA FREEDOM Act, which were in turn allowed to expire at the end of 2019. The modified program had the phone companies collecting the data and providing it to the government upon request, which was controversial enough.

 Also on rt.com

Clapper claims he ‘didn’t lie’ about NSA spying on Americans, but ‘didn’t understand’ the question

Snowden’s revelations were a bombshell because earlier that year, NSA Director James Clapper outright told a Senate panel the agency was “not wittingly” collecting “any type of data at all on millions of Americans.”

Clapper has since offered a litany of excuses as to why that wasn’t perjury, initially saying he was trying to answer a “complicated” question that should have stayed classified, only to later claim he had been referring to data collection under a different provision of the PATRIOT Act.

He later became the Director of National Intelligence in charge of the so-called intelligence assessment about “Russian meddling” in US elections, joining CNN as a pundit after the election of President Donald Trump.

— Read on www.rt.com/usa/499742-nsa-spying-illegal-snowden/

‘Absolutely false’: Salon owner denies Pelosi’s claim of a ‘set up’ | WND

Nancy Pelosi (DNC video screenshot)

Responding to being caught on a surveillance video at a San Francisco hair salon violating coronavirus restrictions, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi claimed Wednesday she was “set up” by her stylist.

Her hairdresser “owes” her an “apology” she said told reporters amid backlash from  a Fox News’ report that she visited a ESalonSF in San Francisco on Monday afternoon for a wash and blow-out despite local ordinances in place since March.

“I take responsibility for trusting the word of the neighborhood salon that I have been to many times,” Pelosi told reporters Wednesday. “When they said they could accommodate people one at a time, and we can set up that time, I trusted that.”

She said that as “it turns out, it was a set up.”

“So I take responsibility for falling for a set up,” the Democrat said.

“The salon owes me an apology for setting me up.”

Pelosi downplayed the fact she was seen in the video not wearing a mask.

“I just had my hair washed. I don’t wear my mask when I’m washing my hair,” she said. “Do you wear one when you wash your hair?”

Security video shows House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., secretly getting her hair styled in a salon closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. (Video screenshot)

In a Fox News interview Tuesday, salon owner Erica Kious called out Pelosi’s double standard.

“It was a slap in the face that she went in, you know, that she feels that she can just go and get her stuff done while no one else can go in, and I can’t work,” Kious said.

“We’re supposed to look up to this woman, right?” Kious said. “It is just disturbing.”

Sacramento Bee: ‘Dumb salon visit’

President Trump on Wednesday slammed House Pelosi for “constantly lecturing everyone else.”

“Crazy Nancy Pelosi is being decimated for having a beauty parlor opened, when all others are closed, and for not wearing a Mask–despite constantly lecturing everyone else,” the president tweeted. “We will almost certainly take back the House, and send Nancy packing!”

Some Pelosi supporters, including Politico’s Carla Marinucci, tried to defend her by suggesting it’s against local law to distribute a surveillance camera video without the subject’s permission.

Pelosi has harshly criticized Trump for his handling of the coronavirus.

“From the start, President Trump has denied the facts about how to best fight the coronavirus,” she previously wrote on Twitter. “Now, he wants Americans to put loyalty to him ahead of the health of their children, parents, and siblings.”

The Sacramento Bee editorial board said the “dumb salon visit” is a blow to to Pelosi’s credibility.

“Shame on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for forcing us to agree with Fox News on something,” the board said.

“Pelosi’s apparent violation was caught on camera. Yet her office claims that she thought her indoor shampoo treatment and blow-dry was allowed under local rules,” the Bee said. “Does Pelosi, one of the nation’s most experienced and powerful lawmakers, really expect people to believe she didn’t know she was violating public health rules? Is she so out of touch that she didn’t realize that California salon owners have been protesting against Gov. Gavin Newsom’s necessary shutdown of their industry for months?”

The paper said Pelosi “has handed Trump and Fox terrific ammunition in their quest to depict the COVID-19 pandemic as an overblown hoax perpetuated by Democrats seeking political gain.”

“The idea that this powerful Democratic leader would sneak into a salon for a wash and a blow-dry against public health rules — and during a month when COVID-19 killed 3,745 people in California — is so ridiculous that it seems like some fictional right-wing conspiracy theory spread by Russian misinformation operatives on Facebook. But it happened,” the paper said.

“This seems like a particularly bad time for dumb mistakes. Was Speaker Pelosi’s blow-out worth the blow that the Democratic Party’s credibility just took in the middle of both a deadly pandemic and a high-stakes presidential election?”

The Guardian of London noted Pelosi has regularly told U.S. citizens to wear masks and follow guidelines intended to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

Talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh said the “real story here is why aren’t these people worried.”

“They set up two sets of rules. One for them, and one for us. … The rules they set up for us are basically about controlling us,” he said.

“They know, or at least they are acting like there is nothing to worry about.”

— Read on www.wnd.com/2020/09/4850423/

Karl Marx vs Charles Spurgeon: An Epic Struggle for the Souls of Men in 19th-Century London – Founders Ministries

Karl Marx, an apostle of evil, and Charles Spurgeon, the “Prince of Preachers,” were evangelists with messages that couldn’t have been more different—and they lived in the same city at the same time.

My next book (after this one) will focus on two men whose graves I have visited many times. The first lies in North London at Highgate Cemetery. Among the fifty-three thousand graves there, one finds a few notables: Michael Faraday, inventor of the electric motor, and Adam Worth, the real-life basis for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s evil Moriarty in the Sherlock Holmes stories, are two. Most notable of all is the resting place, a monument really, of Karl Marx. Though Prussian, Marx lived in London the last thirty-four years of his life. There he refined his radical secular ideology and produced Das Kapital, setting loose upon the world ideas that have wrecked half of it and now threaten to wreck the other half.

The second lies in South London at West Norwood Cemetery. Among the forty-two thousand graves there, one also finds a few men of renown: Paul Julius Baron von Reuter, founder of the global news organization of the same name, and Hiram Maxim, inventor of the first portable fully automatic machine gun, are interred here. Perhaps more illustrious than either of these is the grave of Charles Spurgeon. The “Prince of Preachers,” Spurgeon was the nineteenth-century’s British equivalent of Billy Graham. He pastored what was allegedly the largest church congregation in the world.

It is extraordinary to me that both Karl Marx (1818-1883) and Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892) lived and worked in the same city at the same time. Both were, in a sense, evangelists contending for the souls of men with their competing visions of humanity. Moreover, each was at the height of his powers at the same time as the other. While Marx was preaching salvation through bloody revolution, Spurgeon, on the other side of the city, was preaching salvation through the blood and grace of Jesus Christ.

The London of Marx and Spurgeon was the center of world governance and epoch-defining ideas. With Queen Victoria’s missionaries to civilize it and her ministers, armies, and navy to rule it, the British Empire was at its zenith so that the sun literally never set upon it. Whether it was David Livingstone searching for the source of the Nile or Charles Darwin penning On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, Britain was at the forefront of all that was considered progress.

But the Britain of this era convulsed with the problems endemic to massive social change. So much so, that an air of revolution lingered like some ominous storm gathering on the horizon, threatening to engulf this peaceful kingdom as it had intermittently done on the continent since the French Revolution in 1789.

The island nation was in the throes of the bare-knuckled phase of the Industrial Revolution which brought with it a special kind of human degradation. The urban poor crowded the slums and populated the novels of Charles Dickens. Child labor laws were in their infancy. Black factory smoke choked the air and coal dust filled lungs.

It was into this combustible atmosphere that Karl Marx stepped. The man with a beard so wild that it might have landed him on a Kansas album cover were he born a century later, had revolution on his mind when he moved from Paris to London in 1849. Of course, revolution had always been on his mind. Marx had sought the overthrow of governments throughout Europe, and in the ensuing turmoil of 1848, he was forced to flee the continent.

Once in London, Marx spent his days at the British Museum preparing his magnum opus, Das Kapital, a critique of capitalism that could fill a sizable pothole. Although he fashioned himself as a scholar, he was more of a dilettante, a dabbler in scholarly activity. A scholar begins with a tentative thesis and allows the facts to dictate his conclusions. He is, in other words, committed to the truth. In sharp contrast to this methodology, Marx—like “woke” media and “woke” policies and “woke” academia—began with a conclusion and worked backward from it, facts be damned.

“Communism abolishes eternal truths,” he declared openly in The Communist Manifesto (1848). “It abolishes all religion, and all morality, instead of constituting them on a new basis …”

In another passage of that dangerous little book, he says:

Abolish the family! The bourgeois family will vanish as a matter of course when its complement vanishes, and both will vanish with the vanishing of capital…. The bourgeois clap-trap about the family and education, about the hallowed co-relation of parent and child, becomes all the more disgusting, the more, by the action of Modern Industry, all family ties among the proletarians are torn asunder, and their children transformed into simple articles of commerce and instruments of labour.

Much as Mein Kampf (1925) would be a bald statement of Hitler’s intentions should he ever attain power, The Communist Manifesto is likewise clear in stating the objectives of communists (i.e., socialists) should they ever attain power. No one could justly say he was not forewarned. (So, it is, too, with Black Lives Matter, where one finds all of this restated in oblique terms on their website.)

Lazy and like socialists of any era, Marx did not mind accepting monetary handouts from wealthy capitalists while criticizing the means by which they had acquired the wealth. (Black Lives Matter, a Marxist organization, has received almost $2 billion in corporate contributions.) Marx was allergic to work, it seems, and never held a steady job. Even as he extolled the evils of capitalist industry, there is no evidence he ever visited a factory at any point in his miserable life. His mother bitterly complained that she wished that her son would “accumulate capital instead of just writing about it.”

In the spirit of other would-be revolutionaries before and since, Marx was a Manichean who divided the world into two camps: the Revolution and its enemies. These were simply identified as those who agreed with this dogmatic Prussian and those who did not. The former were considered intelligent and enlightened; the latter were berated in racist and anti-Semitic rants. Marx attacked one opponent as a “Jewish nigger.” One can well imagine Marx fitting right in with the modern “cancel culture” Twitterati. He saw capitalism as a poison perpetrated on humanity by Jews and he hated them for it, though it seems anti-Semitism came naturally to him. To read Marx’s personal letters or published works is to encounter a bitter, evil mind concealing a hate in what he (and others) promoted as a noble vision of humanity.

But a noble vision it is not.

That vision of human dignity and salvation found expression in the preaching of Charles Spurgeon who burst upon the London scene in 1853. Spurgeon was merely 20 years old when he was appointed pastor of a congregation at the New Park Street Chapel in south central London. Soon, his earnest, passionate messages were attracting enormous crowds, requiring services to be moved to the largest public gathering space in London, the Royal Surrey Gardens Music Hall. A letter published in The Times describes what would become a familiar occurrence for the next three decades:

Fancy a congregation consisting of 10,000 souls, streaming into the hall, mounting the galleries…. Mr. Spurgeon ascended his tribune. To the hum, and rush, and trampling of men, succeeded a low, concentrated thrill and murmur, of devotion, which seemed to run at once, like an electric current, through the breast of every one present, and by this magnetic chain the preacher held us fast bound for about two hours. It is not my purpose to give a summary of his discourse. It is enough to say of his voice, that its power and volume are sufficient to reach everyone in that vast assembly; of his language that it is neither high-flown nor homely; of his style, that it is at times familiar, at times declamatory, but always happy, and often eloquent; of his doctrine, that neither the ‘Calvinist’ nor the ‘Baptist’ appears in the forefront of the battle which is waged by Mr. Spurgeon with relentless animosity, and with Gospel weapons, against irreligion, cant, hypocrisy, pride, and those secret bosom-sins which so easily beset a man in daily life; and to sum up all in a word, it is enough to say of the man himself, that he impresses you with a perfect conviction of his sincerity.

So popular was he that in 1857, at the request of Queen Victoria, the twenty-three-year-old Spurgeon electrified a crowd of twenty-four thousand at the Crystal Palace with his sermon about the first day of creation.

Although there is no indication that Marx and Spurgeon ever met, one was almost certainly aware of the other and the irreconcilable nature of the messages each proclaimed. Both achieved fame in his own lifetime, and while Spurgeon’s fame eclipsed that of Marx during the 1850s and 1860s, Marx’s message of secular salvation gained in prominence after the publication of the first volume of Das Kapital in 1867, and especially after the failure of the Paris Commune in 1871. And it is in this post-Paris Commune period that Spurgeon begins to take note of Marx’s philosophy if not the man himself.

It would be wrong to say—as many preachers do—that addressing matters of politics falls outside of the purview of the clergy. Of no other sphere of life do they say it. Regardless, Spurgeon certainly didn’t agree with this sentiment. Christianity isn’t merely an accessory to a man’s life; it should define it. Thus, a man’s politics are simply the outward manifestation of the convictions of his heart. Socialism, Spurgeon knew, was much more than an economic or political question. It is a spiritual question, if only because it denies the very existence of the spiritual. It is, as I have written elsewhere, atheism masquerading as political philosophy.

Spurgeon had, in fact, noted the dangers of socialism remarkably early in his ministry. In 1855 he warned of communists who wanted nothing less than “the real disruption of all society as at present established.” He asked the gathered, “Would you desire reigns of terror here, as they had in France? Do you wish to see all society shattered and men wandering like monster icebergs on the sea, dashing against each other and being at last utterly destroyed?”

But it is in the post-1871 period that he speaks more frequently and with greater urgency on the subject of socialism. In a sermon on Psalm 118 in June 1878, Spurgeon made a tentative prediction to his congregation:

German rationalism which has ripened into Socialism may yet pollute the mass of mankind and lead them to overturn the foundations of society. Then “advanced principles” will hold carnival and free thought [i.e., atheism] will riot with the vice and blood which were years ago the insignia of “the age of reason.” I say not that it will be so, but I should not wonder if it came to pass, for deadly principles are abroad and certain ministers are spreading them. 

In a sermon on Isaiah 66 in April 1889, Spurgeon, recognizing that many had confused the Gospel of Jesus Christ with the cheap, secular knock-off proclaimed by Marx and his ilk, thundered from his pulpit:

For many a year, by the grand old truths of the gospel, sinners were converted, and saints were edified, and the world was made to know that there is a God in Israel. But these are too antiquated for the present cultured race of superior beings! They are going to regenerate the world by Democratic Socialism, and set up a kingdom for Christ without the new birth or the pardon of sin. Truly the Lord has not taken away the seven thousand that have not bowed the knee to Baal …
The latter-day gospel is not the gospel by which we were saved. To me it seems a tangle of ever-changing dreams. It is, by the confession of its inventors, the outcome of the period—the monstrous birth of a boasted “progress”—the scum from the cauldron of conceit. It has not been given by the infallible revelation of God—it does not pretend to have been. It is not divine—it has no inspired Scripture at its back. It is, when it touches the Cross, an enemy! When it speaks of Him who died thereon, it is a deceitful friend. Many are its sneers at the truth of substitution—it is irate at the mention of the precious blood. Many a pulpit, where Christ was once lifted high in all the glory of His atoning death, is now profaned by those who laugh at justification by faith. In fact, men are not now to be saved by faith but by doubt. Those who love the Church of God feel heavy at heart because the teachers of the people cause them to err. Even from a national point of view, men of foresight see cause for grave concern. 

The reference to bowing knees is prescient given the events of our own time. But it must be noted where Spurgeon lays blame for the state of things. Like Francis Schaeffer a century later, he places it squarely on the men of his own vocation. As if to assail the heresy that would infect the pulpits of the Western world, Spurgeon speaks directly to the political climate. Indeed, if there were lines proscribing the lane in which he as a clergyman was to remain, he refused to acknowledge them. Like a charioteer in the Circus Maximus, he thrashed the fleet-footed horses carrying the Gospel he preached right across every lane of human endeavor, especially those that presumed to exalt themselves above God as socialism surely does.

Apart from Kim Jong-un, I have met and engaged the most famous atheists of this age. Like every one of them, Marx belonged to that category of men that Romans 1 calls “haters of God.” One simply does not set up idols and altars if he is anything else, and that is precisely what socialism is: a false god set up against the one true God in a great act of defiance, offering men a counterfeit version of salvation. Marx himself was not unaware of how easily some confuse the authentic for the false, and he sought to exploit it. “Nothing,” he wrote in The Communist Manifesto, “is easier than to give Christian asceticism a Socialist tinge.”

For this reason, Spurgeon combated Marx and his ideas just as the Apostle John had once opposed Cerinthus and Augustine had used his formidable intellect to confront Pelagius.

“Great schemes of socialism have been tried and found lacking,” Spurgeon inveighed in another sermon. “Let us look to regeneration by the Son of God, and we shall not look in vain.”

It is very likely that the preaching of Spurgeon, and others like him, prevented the violent Revolution in Britain that Marx sought. Ironically, that revolution would come in the unindustrialized Russia of 1917, when Vladimir Lenin would, at the cost of millions of lives, implement Marx’s unworkable ideas. That is in no small measure due to the fact that there was no viable church to critique the undeliverable promises of socialism.

According to Russian historian Orlando Figes, when Marx’s Das Kapital was approved for publication in Russia by the censors who forbade almost any political expression, the ideas therein were released into an ideological vacuum. By contrast, those same ideas were (rightly) subjected to withering attacks in Britain by those who saw them for what they were. In this sense, Christianity served as a bulwark against the barbarism that has accompanied Marxism everywhere—everywhere—it has been implemented.

Today the battle continues, but the battlefield has expanded to the entire world. Marxism morphs as it goes, disguising itself until it reaches our own time in the sheep’s clothing of racial equality and so-called “social justice.”

The Gospel, however, remains remarkably unchanged. Its power to transform societies is one of the most underrated benefits of Christian belief. Through the inward transformation of the individual, there is a corresponding outward transformation of society. This is what I call “The Grace Effect.

No greater scam has been perpetrated on so many for so long than the lie that socialism, once adopted, will reorganize society along the lines of a utopia for all. Such political solutions have always failed, and this one has nothing but a history of catastrophic failure.

As Spurgeon so eloquently put it: “To attempt national regeneration without personal regeneration is to dream of erecting a house without separate bricks.”


This article was originally posted on www.larryalextaunton.com and is posted here with the Author’s permission.

— Read on founders.org/2020/09/02/karl-marx-vs-charles-spurgeon-an-epic-struggle-for-the-souls-of-men-in-19th-century-london/

John MacArthur says ‘true believers’ will vote for Trump, can’t affirm abortion and trans activism – The Christian Post

Grace Community Church Pastor John MacArthur has recently argued that “any real” Christian will vote for Republican President Donald Trump in November.

COVID death stats … inaccurate or just misleading?

New information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says 94% of reported coronavirus-related deaths had underlying medical conditions – meaning that for the other 6%, COVID-19 was the only cause mentioned.

— Read on onenewsnow.com/science-tech/2020/09/02/covid-death-stats-inaccurate-or-just-misleading

“It Was A Setup”: Pelosi Blames Hair Salon For Covert Blow-Out, Demands Apology | Zero Hedge

“I take responsibility for trusting the word of a neighborhood salon that I’ve been to over the years many times…it was a setup.”

Despite the desperate efforts of the mainstream media and the left’s propaganda artists to suppress the story exposing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s “blow-outs for me, but not for thee” caught-in-the-act hair salon visit, she has been forced to make a public statement and face the media this afternoon to “explain.”

Pelosi began in typical politician manner by blaming someone else – the salon owner – for the so-called “set-up” and then “apologized” for being caught in a set-up

“I take responsibility for trusting the word of a neighborhood salon that I’ve been to over the years many times,” Pelosi told reporters on Wednesday.

“When they said they were able to accommodate people one person at a time, I trusted that. As it turns out, it was a setup.” 

And she’s demanding an apology from the salon owner. Does Mrs. Pelosi mean she was lured to get her hair done against her will?

She then slurred out some anti-Trump “but but but Trump killed hundreds of thousands” talking points that were handed her to on a paper note from an assistant before an intrepid reporter pressed the matter to which she angrily snapped:

“I said, I said I’m not gonna answer. That’s all I’m gonna do! Do you have any questions about the fact that people are dying?!”

Pelosi even had the audacity to claim that she had “been inundated by calls from people who work in the hair industry who have ‘thanked me for bringing attention to this issue’.”

The full, brief presser is below:

Social media lit up as one might imagine with this disingenuous garbage.

San Francisco Mayor Breed quickly ran to Pelosi’s defense… “Did Nancy Pelosi violate San Francisco’s health order?” the mayor was asked.

“So look, Nancy Pelosi has done so much for this city and even this country and in the midst of this pandemic and all the stuff that’s happening amidst this election, she is in Washington D.C. fighting against a tyrant every single day,” Breed said.

“We need to be focused on the issues and the fact that over 180,000 people have died in this country and we have a president that continues to divide us.

“That’s what we should be talking about.”

As The WSJ Editorial Board (bravely) proclaimed:

“What is offensive, however, is our liberal glitterati’s let-them-eat-cake indifference to the nation’s shop owners and wage earners. Do they remember what it means to work for a living?”

Finally, and most typically disgusting for the new normal,  Erica Kious, a single mother of two and owner of eSalon the owner of the salon has been forced to shut down and relocate her business and family due to outrage and threats she is receiving.

A GoFundMe page has been created to help.

We hope the ‘compassionate’ and ‘tolerant’ Pelosi will disavow this action being taken by her followers.

Dinesh D’Souza gets the last word as he sums the whole farcical situation up rather succinctly:

— Read on www.zerohedge.com/political/it-was-setup-pelosi-blames-salon-covert-blow-out-demands-apology

Jack Cashill Discusses Flynn Targeting Contrast Against Obama’s Agenda and Current Challenge For DOJ and AG Bill Barr… — The Last Refuge

Author Jack Cashill shares a great perspective on the current political dynamics as contrast against a history of DOJ, FBI and CIA operations.  In the fist eight minutes of the interview Cashill outlines the challenge to AG Bill Barr considering that 96 percent of the DC population supported Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Cashill surmises that any actual evidence against the officials who were involved in operations against Donald Trump will likely have to wait until after the election due to the overall DC sentiment to diminish any outcome as politically motivated.   Additionally, the entire functional apparatus of the DOJ is “entirely loaded with operatives” who protect the administrative state.  [Cashill Website Here]

Jack Cashill Discusses Flynn Targeting Contrast Against Obama’s Agenda and Current Challenge For DOJ and AG Bill Barr… — The Last Refuge

Salon Owner Denies Setting Up Nancy Pelosi and Says her Business is ‘Done’ After Receiving Death Threats Over Footage of the ‘Hypocrite’ Democrat Breaking Coronavirus Rules to Get her Hair Done — BCNN1 – Black Christian News Network

Erica Kious, right, the owner of the e Salon SF, told Tucker Carlson, left, she has received death threats in the wake of exposing the House Speaker’s trip to her business on Monday

The owner of the salon where Nancy Pelosi was filmed getting a blow dry without a mask in defiance of COVID lockdown rules has denied setting the Democrat up.

Erica Kious, the owner of the e Salon SF, told Tucker Carlson she has received death threats in the wake of exposing the House Speaker’s trip to her business on Monday.

She said: ‘[Pelosi] had called the stylist, or her assistant did, and had made the appointment so the appointment was already booked so there was no way I could have set that up.

‘And I’ve had a camera system in there for five years, I mean I didn’t go in there and turn cameras on as soon as she walked in and set her up so that’s absolutely false.’

Speaker Pelosi said Wednesday that she fell for a ‘set up’ by the salon and added the salon owes her an apology.

San Francisco beauty parlors weren’t supposed to open until September 1, the day after the speaker had her treatment. Additionally, the California Department of Public Health requires face masks to be worn in public indoor places.https://platform.twitter.com/embed/index.html?dnt=false&embedId=twitter-widget-0&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1301313661768814592&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwordpress.com%2Fread%2Ffeeds%2F71614844%2Fposts%2F2892519750&theme=light&widgetsVersion=219d021%3A1598982042171&width=550px

Speaking Wednesday Kious added: ‘For the past six months, we are pretty much done. We have lost at least 60 per cent of our clients, I’ve lost the majority of my staff. So six months is a long time to be closed down.

‘Just to see her come in, especially her not wearing a mask, that’s what really got to me. This isn’t political, it’s the fact she came in and didn’t have a mask on.

‘If she is in there comfortably then why are we shut down?’

Kious, who rents out chairs to different stylists, said since the release of the footage Tuesday evening she has received threats to burn down her salon.

The eSalon in San Francisco where the speaker had her hair washed and blown dry
Fox News broke the story Tuesday that the House speaker had infuriated a salon owner for getting her hair done inside by one of the stylists who’s an independent contractor

Pelosi held a press conference in San Francisco on Wednesday to address her controversial visit after a report from Fox News revealed she had visited the e Salon SF in her district on Monday for a wash and blow-out.

She was seen on the salon’s security footage walking around without a mask, an image that went viral on social media and resulted in her getting mocked by many people, including President Donald Trump.

‘I take responsibility for trusting the word of a neighborhood salon I’ve been to over the years many times, and when they said we’re able to accommodate people, one person at a time, and that we can set up that time, I trusted that. As it turns out, it was a setup,’ she said.

‘It was a set up, and I take responsibility for falling for a setup,’ she added.

Trump tweeted: ‘Crazy Nancy Pelosi is being decimated for having a beauty parlor opened, when all others are closed, and for not wearing a Mask–despite constantly lecturing everyone else.

‘We will almost certainly take back the House, and send Nancy packing!’

‘The Beauty Parlor owner must really dislike Crazy Nancy Pelosi. Turning her in, on tape, is a really big deal,’ Trump added. ‘She probably treats him like she treats everyone else…And she strongly supported a Kennedy who just lost in, of all places, Massachusetts!’

But Pelosi threatened there could be more to the situation than the camera revealed.

‘There’s more to this that I’m not going to ask to the motivation for a salon to say to me, ‘Yes, come in’ and then they go for me. It was clearly a set up,’ she said.

‘I think that this salon owes me an apology, for setting me up,’ she added.

And she said she wasn’t wearing a face mask because she just had her hair washed, asking the reporters questioning her if they wore a face mask when washing their hair.

‘I just had my hair washed. I don’t wear a mask when I’m washing my hair. Do you wear a mask when you’re washing your hair? I always wear a mask,’ she said. ‘And that picture is when I just came out of the bowl.’

 New restrictions in San Francisco allow hair salons to operate outdoors, but certain procedures – such as shampooing, color and chemical treatments – are still not allowed.

Ian Smith fought to keep his New Jersey gym open after Gov. Phil Murphy shuttered non essential businesses there. He told The Washington Examiner: ‘This is not about public health. It’s about control and power.

‘These people think they are above the law. These people need to be put in their place. They are out of control. They think that they are rulers. They forget that they are elected public servants. Things need to change, and now.’

Smith Salon owner Wendy Diaz told Fox News: ‘I just found it so hypocritical because we have been told that if we open prior to us being able to open in Lodi, that we would get our license revoked. It was pretty much pure shock.’

Shayana Flick, who owns ReWAXation, added: ‘To see Nancy Pelosi getting her hair done indoors was absolutely a slap in the face to every single person in our personal care industry throughout California that has been struggling and fighting to work inside for the last six months.

‘Not only that, it was a slap in the face to every single small business owner in our industry that has been forced to close down businesses for good over the last six months because of the arbitrary guidelines put in place by the California elected officials.’

Pelosi’s office hinted there was more to the story than originally appeared when the footage from inside the salon was revealed on Fox News.

Her Deputy Chief of Staff Drew Hammill said in a statement Tuesday that ‘the speaker always wears a mask and complies with local COVID requirements.’

He added that the speaker followed the rules as they were presented to her by the stylist.

‘This business offered for the speaker to come in on Monday and told her they were allowed by the city to have one customer at a time in the business,’ Hammill told Fox News. ‘The speaker complies with the rules as presented to her by this establishment.’

Her staff told CNN that the speaker has a regular stylist who typically goes to Pelosi’s house to do her hair. But that person was not available on Monday so referred Pelosi’s staff to a stylist at eSalon because it is where Pelosi’s regular stylist used to work.

SOURCE: Daily Mail, Lauren Fruen

Salon Owner Denies Setting Up Nancy Pelosi and Says her Business is ‘Done’ After Receiving Death Threats Over Footage of the ‘Hypocrite’ Democrat Breaking Coronavirus Rules to Get her Hair Done — BCNN1 – Black Christian News Network

FINAL COUNTDOWN: CDC Tells Nation’s Governors To Be Ready To Open ‘Vaccine Distribution Sites’ That Will Be ‘Fully Operational’ By November 1 — Now The End Begins

Delivery firms have received guidance from Trump administration officials to prepare freezer farms in the heartland and get ready to load vaccines onto trucks no later than Nov. 1.

I told you months ago to be ready for the time when the vaccines begin to roll out, because there will be many, many companies and organizations pushing one and the pressure for you to begin receiving the shots will be intense. Just think how much pressure has been applied to get you to wear a mask everywhere you go, multiply that by a factor of 100, and you will be just about there. Now we have a time frame, the beginning of November. Isn’t it funny how the real driver of science always seems to be politics? But I digress.

We were told in the beginning that everyone on earth will need to receive a vaccination in order to ‘beat COVID’, then after they let us chew on that for awhile, they told us that a single shot was suddenly not enough. (Imagine that, no vaccine yet available and already they determined that one won’t do the trick.) They say we now need to receive multiple shots, and the CDC has ordered the nation’s governor’s to begin creating Vaccine Distribution Sites. Will the biometric digital identification be done in the same location, I wonder? So many questions, so little time, and it gets worse.

Add to that the fact that the Pentagon has said the military will ‘assist in the delivery of the vaccinations‘, and what do you wind up with? I think you know, even if you’re too afraid to say it out loud. Remember when Melinda Gates appeared on that talk show talking about the need for mandated global vaccinations while wearing an upside cross? Yep, that’s it, you got it now. Everything we’ve told you has either happened already or is in the process of happening, if you’ve paid attention, you will know what to do when the time comes. And that time is almost here. Are you ready for what comes next?

THIS IS A GOOD TIME FOR A QUICK VISIT TO THE NTEB BILL GATES ARTICLE ARCHIVE

‘Urgent’ request sent to states in push for coronavirus vaccine delivery by Nov. 1

FROM CENTRE DAILY TIMES: Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, sent a letter last week to the nation’s governors with an urgent request. The Trump administration wanted them to do everything in their power to eliminate hurdles for vaccine distribution sites to be fully operational by Nov. 1.

The Aug. 27 letter, obtained by McClatchy, asked governors to fast-track permits and licenses for new distribution sites. “The normal time required to obtain these permits presents a significant barrier to the success of this urgent public health program,” Redfield wrote.

“CDC urgently requests your assistance in expediting applications for these distribution facilities,” he continued, “and, if necessary, asks that you consider waiving requirements that would prevent these facilities from becoming fully operational by November 1, 2020.”

“The requirements you may be asked to waive in order to expedite vaccine distribution will not compromise the safety or integrity of the products being distributed,” he added.

It was the latest hurried federal request of state governments to prepare for the arrival of a vaccine for COVID-19, the pandemic disease that has killed roughly 185,000 Americans.

Last month,Dr.Nancy Messonnier, a top CDC official working on the federal coronavirus response, warned that state public health departments are “running out of time” to draft plans for the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines – and requested states submit proposals by Oct. 1.

The success of the Trump administration’s messaging campaign around the launch of a vaccine could determine whether millions of doses of vaccine that are purchased and dispersed around the country are actually used – or sit unused, and possibly wasted.

Trust in the process appears to be declining.

Only 42 percent of Americans surveyed by Yahoo News and YouGov in late July said they plan to get the COVID-19 vaccine, down from 55 percent in May. Politico reported that HHS was bidding out a $250 million contract to a communications firm for a messaging campaign to “defeat despair and inspire hope” of a coronavirus vaccine. The HHS document said the vast majority of the contract would be spent before January.

Some experts are concernedthat the Trump administration’s approach, which has frequently been in conflict with scientists and regulators, has sown distrust in whatever vaccine emerges.

“We need a lot of outreach and encouragement for people to take this vaccine, which many consider to be having been rushed,” said Tonerof Johns Hopkins. “That’s the message over and over again – this is ‘warp speed.’ Well, that’s not necessarily a reassuring message when you’re talking about something that’s being injected into your body.” READ MORE

COVID-1984 From A Two Week Lockdown To Mandatory Vaccination & Life In Prison

Unfortunately COVID-1984 continues to escalate. We were initially told that we would need to have a temporary two week lockdown to ‘flatten the curve’ Six months later, we are still in lockdown and now mandatory vaccination policies are being rolled out in addition to severe penalties for violating mandates which include life in prison! We have seen cases where people have been forcibly removed from there home by the police, in front of their families and have been forced into quarantine. All of this in response to a virus with a 99+% survival rate which multiple world renowned experts believe this virus originated in a laboratory funded by the US government. 

FINAL COUNTDOWN: CDC Tells Nation’s Governors To Be Ready To Open ‘Vaccine Distribution Sites’ That Will Be ‘Fully Operational’ By November 1 — Now The End Begins

It Is Being Projected That More Than 50 Million Americans Will Be Fighting Hunger By The End Of This Year — The Economic Collapse

Has there ever been a time in your life when you haven’t had enough food to make it through the week?  If you have never experienced this, you are extremely fortunate.  Even during the best of times, millions of Americans struggle with hunger, and these definitely are not the best of times.  Because of all the crazy things that have happened so far in 2020, large numbers of people have been forced into dramatic lifestyle changes.  Many Americans have deeply cut their food budgets due to a lack of income, others are now only eating one or two meals a day, and we are seeing more demand at food banks around the country than we ever have before.  It is quite obvious that massive numbers of people are really hurting, and Bloomberg is reporting that it is being projected that the number of Americans that are “fighting hunger” will rise to “more than 50 million” by the end of this calendar year…

The ranks of Americans fighting hunger are projected to swell some 45% this year to more than 50 million.

To me, that is an absolutely staggering figure.

Right now, the U.S. has a total population of about 328 million people, and so that figure that Bloomberg quoted represents a sizable chunk of the country.

And we certainly don’t have to wait until the end of the year for the numbers to get really, really bad.  In fact, it is being reported that one recent survey found that approximately one-tenth of all U.S. households “haven’t had enough food in a given week”

During the pandemic, about a 10th of American households reported they haven’t had enough food in a given week. That’s a shocking figure for the world’s richest country. It’s more than double pre-Covid figures and the highest since comparable government data starts in 1995.

I feel especially bad for the children that are going hungry.

Can you imagine how bad parents must feel when their children tell them that they are hungry and the parents have nothing to provide?

And this is just the beginning.  Food prices are going to continue skyrocketing over the coming year, and that is just going to stretch family budgets even more.

A few days ago, I strongly urged my readers to stockpile food for the chaotic times that are ahead.  Food prices are only going to go higher, and economic conditions are going to continue to deteriorate.

In fact, some more major job cuts were just announced.  For example, Ford just announced that it will be eliminating “1,400 white collar jobs”

Ford is looking to cut 1,400 white collar jobs in a cost-savings move.

The automaker sent out letters to employees Wednesday saying that salaried staff eligible for retirement would be getting early retirement offers next week. Those who take the offer by October 23 would be leaving the company by the end of the year.

And United Airlines just announced that they will be furloughing more than 16,000 workers

With no air travel rebound or new federal help in sight, United Airlines says it will furlough about 20% of its frontline employees in less than a month’s time.

In a new memo to its employees, United (UAL) says that 16,370 employees will be furloughed when payroll restrictions attached to a federal bailout expire October 1.

Because most Americans live paycheck to paycheck, a job loss can plunge a family into dire straits very rapidly.  All over the U.S., we are seeing long lines of people driving very nice vehicles waiting for up to six hours to get food at local food banks.

Over the past 23 weeks, more than 58 million Americans have filed initial claims for unemployment benefits, and many of them have “suddenly” found themselves in need of food.  For a lot of them, it is the first time something like this has ever happened to them.

And so many people that I talk to believe that what we have experienced so far is just the tip of the iceberg and that much worse is coming.  There is such a sense of urgency in the air, and gun sales just keep setting record after record.  In fact, we just learned that gun sales during the month of August were 57 percent higher than last year

The Washington Free Beacon reported Tuesday that the U.S. saw more gun sales in August 2020 than any other August since the FBI has been logging data on the subject. According to the outlet’s analysis of FBI background check data, there were at least 1.6 million firearm purchases during the past month, a 57% increase compared to August of last year.

Other Americans are responding to our current circumstances by wallowing in depression and despair.  According to the Daily Mail, the number of Americans reporting symptoms of depression has “tripled over the last eight months”…

Researchers found that the percentage of US adults reporting mild, moderate or severe symptoms tripled over the last eight months.

And as things get even worse, a ton of people out there simply are not going to be able to handle what is happening.

That is why I really wanted my new book to be a book of hope.  Yes, we are entering a chapter of history that is going to be far more horrible than most people would dare to imagine.  But I believe that there is hope in understanding what is happening, there is hope in getting prepared, and there is hope in trusting that God has everything in His hands.

So many people out there still have so much faith in the system, but when things really get crazy the government is not going to be delivering big baskets of food to your door for you and your family.

Tonight, millions upon millions of American families do not have enough food to eat, and more jobs are being lost with each passing day.

You might think that your job is safe, and hopefully that is true, but millions of others also thought their jobs were secure right before they were let go.

Recently, I have had a lot of people ask me about gold and silver, and I have always thought very highly of precious metals.

But you can’t eat gold or silver.  Before you ever focus on precious metals, make sure that you have enough food stored up for yourself, your family, your friends and your neighbors, because having enough food is going to be absolutely critical during the times that we are moving into.

It Is Being Projected That More Than 50 Million Americans Will Be Fighting Hunger By The End Of This Year — The Economic Collapse

Watchmen Missing In Action — CultureWatch

Why are so few speaking out and standing up for what is right?

On the social media recently I suggested that concerned individuals write to the three MPs who had helped to pass a terrible bill in Victoria. I urged people to let them know their thoughts about this. One gal wrote back and asked, “Do you think they’ll listen?” I replied: “Probably not – but we must always speak truth even if it is rejected, and we must always hold our MPs to account!”

Whether people want to hear the truths we must share is really beside the point. We are obliged to proclaim that which people need to hear, not what they want to hear. Christians should know this to be the case, but sadly far too many are refusing to act like Christians.

Instead of being salt and light and sharing much-needed truth, they remain silent, and allow great evil to go unchecked. They are just like all the false prophets and false shepherds that the real prophets of God had warned about. They not only refuse to act as watchmen on the wall, but they often will condemn those who do.

I have written often about the need for watchmen. I have spoken frequently about the call of Ezekiel to be a watchman for ancient Israel. We see his calling in Ezekiel 3 and 33. The first may have been his personal call, and the second his public call. Or ch. 33 may just be a renewal of his calling, but either way, these are important chapters indeed that we all need to pay careful attention to.

 In ch. 33:1-20 you can read about his divine commissioning. I especially want to examine verses 7-9 which read:

Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. When I say to the wicked, ‘You wicked person, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak out to dissuade them from their ways, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. But if you do warn the wicked person to turn from their ways and they do not do so, they will die for their sin, though you yourself will be saved.

He was ordered to speak to God’s people about their sin and disobedience, and he also had to warn them of coming divine judgment if they refused to repent. If Ezekiel failed to carry out this task, he would have blood on his hands. Thankfully he did just what God asked of him.

But how many believers today refuse to warn, refuse to sound the alarm, refuse to confront sin, and refuse to speak out against evil? They will never say a word about great public evils such as the murder of the unborn or the war on marriage and family.

Some of them might try to argue that we have nothing to say to non-believers, and that Ezekiel here was speaking to the Israelites. Um, these folks need to actually read the entire book of Ezekiel. While this chapter is indeed speaking of his responsibilities to Israel, it is surrounded by chapters where he speaks similar sorts of words of rebuke and warning to the pagan nations. Check out Ezekiel 25-32; 35; 38, and 39 to see this ministry to the foreign nations.

So we need to proclaim truth to one and all. Sure, the household of God is especially in need of the prophetic word, but evil and unrighteousness should be challenged wherever they are found. In his commentary on Ezekiel, Chris Wright offers three dimensions to this matter of God and the nations in the prophetic books:

First, they unquestionably affirm the sovereignty of Yahweh as God in the midst of the ebb and flow of international affairs. Secondly, they equally clearly portray the transience of all human power and glory, whether political, military or economic. And thirdly, they repeatedly affirm that the goal of all God’s action is that the nations will know him, Yahweh, to be God. Ezekiel would have endorsed Habakkuk’s famous vision that ‘the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea’.

As to his first point, he says this in part:

Ezekiel, along with all the other prophets, affirms that Yahweh is universally sovereign over the affairs of the nations of the world in general. Yahweh is not a local god whose power extends over his own people. Nor is he merely a local god who happens to be the neighbourhood bully – that is, capable of pushing his weight around among the nations that had dealings with Israel. The prophets declare that the whole world of international history and exchange is actually under the sovereign direction of Yahweh the God of Israel. His reign is universal.

As mentioned, while all peoples are subject to God’s rule and judgment, God’s own people are especially so. Says Wright:

In Ezekiel the sins for which the nations fall under God’s judgment are similar to those frequently listed for Israel – pride, violence, dishonesty, and blasphemous self-aggrandizement (e.g. 28:5, 16-18; 29:3, 9; 31:10). But if anything, the judgment on Israel was all the more severe, and the description of their sin all the more specific, because of the immense privilege they had of being the beneficiaries of Yahweh’s saving power, and of being entrusted with the revelation of Yahweh’s covenant demands.

Image of The Book of Ezekiel, Chapters 25–48 (NEW INTERNATIONAL COMMENTARY ON THE OLD TESTAMENT)
The Book of Ezekiel, Chapters 25–48 (NEW INTERNATIONAL COMMENTARY ON THE OLD TESTAMENT) by Array

As to the actual responsibilities and activities of a watchman, Daniel Block says this:

A responsible watchman would blow the trumpet at first sight of danger, calling the warriors to take up defensive positions at strategic points of the wall, while the women and children retreated to refuges within the city. If the citizens failed to respond to his warning and were slaughtered in the attack, the watchman was absolved of responsibility for the lives of the victims. He had fulfilled his duty; their blood would be upon their own hands. But if they heeded the warning, they would escape with their lives. V. 6 reverses the situation. Failure on the part of the watchman to sound the warning renders him liable for the deaths of those who fall to the enemy.

As mentioned, we all can learn some lessons from Ezekiel. While we all may not have been called to a specific watchman on the wall sort of ministry, we all have a biblical obligation to proclaim truth, to offer warnings when needed, and to seek to be the salt and light we are commanded to be.

This will be both within and without the churches. Standing against evil, tyranny and injustice – wherever it is found – is part of the Christian’s calling. We dare not remain silent. And we need to speak up for that which is right in all circumstances.

We are not just to rally around fellow Christians. We should be keen to defend things like freedom of speech for those outside of the Christian community as well. When we see gross government overreach and dictatorial powers being wielded, we should speak up, before it is too late.

As one example of this, earlier today I posted about the arrest of a pregnant mother in her pyjamas here in Victoria. Right in front of her own children she was dragged away by the police. See here: billmuehlenberg.com/2020/09/03/is-this-really-australia/

And yet I have had some ‘Christians’ who were all hot and bothered, saying we should have nothing to do with her. Why? It seems somewhere – maybe on her Facebook page – she had spoken of being a witch. Um, guess what? I am NOT in favour of witchcraft. That should go without saying.

But one can still stand up for freedom and stand against dictatorial police states. One can still see this as a terrible miscarriage of justice and police overkill. In the same way millions of us Christians rightly stood up for Israel Folau, even though he belonged to an anti-trinitarian sect. When I supported Folau, I was NOT supporting his heterodox theology, but his right to free speech and the like. So we need to start thinking clearly here.

In this regard what we have is simply a recent application of the old Martin Niemoller quote: “In Germany they came first for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me, and by that time no one was left to speak up.”

We all can be watchmen in our own circles of influence. If we do not speak up now when we can and should have, then it will probably soon be too late. And worse yet, we will have blood on our hands.

Watchmen Missing In Action — CultureWatch

September 2 Emptying the Nest

 

Genesis 2:24

Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

As our kids become older, we notice that we are losing control, little by little. That’s what parenting is all about: the gradual losing of control. That’s when we find out how well we’ve done.

Ultimately all of us must say good-bye to our kids. Yet sometimes I find myself thinking angry thoughts about the process of emptying the nest. It just doesn’t seem fair to invest twenty prime years—the best years of my life—in four kids, only to see them walk away one by one and leave me for their own lives.

Whose idea was this anyway?

Let me answer that question from Genesis 2:24: “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” The Bible makes it clear that this whole leaving thing was God’s idea. As sad as we sometimes feel, as much as we grieve, as often as dread sneaks into our lives when our kids move into their high school years, we need to remember this: The empty nest was God’s idea.[1]

 

[1] Jeremiah, D. (2002). Sanctuary: finding moments of refuge in the presence of God (p. 257). Nashville, TN: Integrity Publishers.

What May Be Next for Humanity? — Study – Grow – Know


You may have a difficult time believing what I’m including in this article. As I continue to present videos and information from folks who are doing their best to warn us of things that appear to be coming our way, I want to be sure that these articles do not cause fear in Christians. Understandably, they have the capacity to do that because of their nature, but I would like it to be understood that in referring to these types of articles or videos, the intent is simply to highlight the possibilities of how Scripture itself may be coming to fruition.

My intent is not to cause fear anymore than warning someone about an area that is overrun by rattlesnakes would do that. Knowing the fact that many rattlesnakes live and breed in a particular area helps keep people safe and alive, by either avoiding the area altogether or being aware of the dangers when needing to venture into that area. The person who is completely unaware of the presence of snakes as he or she tromps through that rattlesnake-infested area is seriously in danger but doesn’t realize it.

In our area of the country, there have been reports of diamondback rattlesnakes. I’ve never seen one though I’ve seen other non-venomous snakes. However, when we go for walks, I try to be as prepared as possible in case we encounter a venomous snake so that we are not overcome and our lives put in danger.

With these articles, I think I’ve been diligent enough to stay away from simply generating fear for fear’s sake, but in case my intents have not been clear, I’d like to state without equivocation that we Christians have absolutely nothing to fear! Biblical knowledge is power and creates awareness. It helps us to move through society as gently as doves and as wisely as serpents. Paul made this clear in 2 Corinthians 2:11 about being aware of Satan’s tactics. We also need to be aware.

We know that life is filled with difficulties and problems – the Bible calls them trials, tribulations and even persecutions (Romans 5:3; 12:12; 1 Corinthians 10:13; Hebrews 12:4; James 1:2-8, etc.). To think otherwise is to deny the truth of Scripture and reality of life. It doesn’t mean we go through life looking for problems, but neither does it mean that we live our lives completely in the dark either as to what is happening within society. What we should not do is obsess about these things.

While things appear to be clearly moving toward the arrival of the final empire first noted in Daniel 2 (the Revised Roman Empire), God’s protective hand is not being removed from His people. This is really no different from the first century and later when Rome deliberately chose to begin attacking Christians and Christianity. They did this of course because they seemed to believe that Christianity itself was an affront to the Roman panoply of gods. Those Christians who refused to bow down to the altar of Roman paganism were seen as suspect and likely part of a plot to overthrow the Roman Empire. This is likely one of the reasons Paul wrote what he wrote in Romans 13. In the least, Christians were seen as offending the Roman gods through their refusal to worship those idols. Because of this, Roman authorities felt the need to deal with it so that the gods would not take it out on the great Roman Empire.

Here in the United States, we are watching our rights evaporate before us. The lock downs, the social mandates and masks are all imposed on us without our consent and with notable consequences for those failing to observe them. For those who are unfortunate enough to live in either states or cities where lock downs and mask mandates continue, it has become very unpalatable to live in those areas due to the constant reminders of the loss of our rights.

But beyond all of the social distancing that is being imposed and enforced, one of the larger things that many have noticed has to do with the coming vaccine that is specifically stated as being for the purpose of “ending” CV-19 and helping society return to some sense of “normalcy.”

Dr. Carrie Medej, a doctor who practices in Georgia and whose videos I’ve highlighted before, has more to say about this coming vaccine. The slightly over 21 minute video highlighted above is worth the watch. In it, she explores the parameters of this coming vaccine, the company producing it, and the potential problems associated with it. I’d strongly suggest viewing.

One of the things she notes has to to with the Emergency Preparedness Act (EPA). According to Dr. Medej, the government cannot impose or force people to take a vaccine if another cure is available. If we consider Hydroxychloroquine (HQC) and how quickly it was vilified and even banned by several governors, it all seems to make sense if we consider that just maybe they are trying to get it out of the way as a potential cure for CV-19 so that the only remaining “solution” is the upcoming vaccine. Possible? Dr. Madej appears to think so.

Several other interesting factors are brought out in the video. Moderna, the front-runner in the race to produce an effective CV-19 vaccine has an interesting history. Moderna Therapeutics is a start-up company based in Cambridge, MA. Of course, Moderna is not without controversy as this article details from 2016. In spite of this, Moderna is pushing through in the hopes of bringing a new, “warp speed” vaccine to the public as quickly as possible.

Moderna is an Cambridge, Massachusetts-based biotechnology company focused on drug discovery, drug development, and vaccine technologies based exclusively on messenger RNA. [1]

and…

The Moderna technology platform is to insert synthetic mRNA into living cells that would reprogram the cells to develop immune responses, rather than being created externally and injected as with conventional medicines. It is a novel technique abandoned by several large pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies that were unable to overcome the side effects of inserting RNA into cells. As of May 2020, no mRNA drug has been approved for human use. [2]

According to Dr. Medej, this sounds more like creating genetically modified organisms (GMOs), than simply vaccinating people against a particular disease. She also points out that companies like Monsanto, who are able to change through genetic modification, the properties of a fruit, animal or vegetable and can then patent that “new creation” because of it, seem to be taking the same route with this upcoming vaccine.

Will human DNA be changed because of the CV-19 vaccine coming down the pike? What I appreciate about Dr. Medej is that, while she herself, is not an alarmist, the information she shares is a bit alarming by its nature.

I’d like to emphasize that I do not believe this CV-19 vaccine is the coming mark of the beast as outlined in Revelation 17. However, I do believe that the technology being developed today will ultimately lead to that mark.

Will we be forced to receive this coming vaccine? It’s very possible and if things continue along the path that they are moving, it’s also possible that this vaccine may have the capabilities of altering human DNA, in spite of what the “fact-checkers” on social networks would like us to think.

But on a related note (thanks Greg!), look what the Dept of Defense (DOD) and Bill Gates Foundation (having partnered with Silicon Valley company, Profusa), are doing:

A permanent chip made of an advanced material called hydrogel irreversibly ties humans to the Internet ‘cloud.’ The chip, about the size of a grain of rice, provides feedback to a database on changes in body chemistry and other biometrics. The company says technology will be used to detect COVID in the general population, before symptoms show. [3] [4]

The article notes that this implant could receive FDA approval in 2021. The article also notes that “The hydrogel chip, which is injected with a syringe, could be injected along with any COVID vaccination. Mandatory vaccination would be the key to any widespread deployment of the project.” (emphasis added)

In the final analysis, we appear to be approaching a point of no return (if we have not yet reached it), and if you have not taken the time to get and remain close to our Lord, now is the time to do so. It will help to remember that in spite of these difficult and trying times, God has not forsaken or forgotten us. He is with us and will guide us through these times as only He can.

Remove yourself from all fear. Be and remain strong in the Lord as you cling to Him, the only real hope we have. Our hope is not in people, who can and will fail us. Our hope is not even in ourselves. Our hope is in Jesus, who paid the price that we might have life eternal. That process starts now, in this life and is perfected in the next.

Join other believers in a solid, Bible teaching church. If you cannot find one, try to find other believers with whom you can fellowship with in their home or yours. This is the Acts model of the Christian church.

I really have no idea how dark things will become as we continue to move forward. There may be false starts and then stops, who knows? I wish I could instill all of us with perfect faith in God and His ability to protect us. Unfortunately, like physically working out, that faith is only built as we exercise it and are guided by God through the problems of life. We can only learn how to handle them as we learn to lean on Him.

I know of no other way to gain the victory. While we are becoming more aware of just how dark things are becoming in society, we have not yet had to deal with the shedding of our own blood in these trials.

In Australia, I note that people are being arrested for daring to post on social networks their desire to have a public protest against social distancing and mask mandates. Just watched a video of a young woman who was arrested in her home by police officers for making that post. She was incredulous as she broke into tears while holding her young child, with her husband looking on. She was being arrested for daring to resist the tyranny and fascism of Australia’s leaders. This is nuts but certainly, it is proof that Paul’s words about these last days of 2 Timothy 3:1-5 are certainly true.

Pray to God without ceasing. Trust Him. Lean heavily on Him. Seek His will and always remember that our job is to fulfill the Great Commission. I believe those who follow this prescription will be mightily blessed by God to forge ahead and know that God is with them.

I know of no other option that guarantees our victory in Christ.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go – Joshua 1:9 ESV

[1] https://www.statnews.com/2016/09/13/moderna-therapeutics-biotech-mrna/

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moderna#History

[3] https://steemit.com/covid/@munkle/permanent-injectable-biochip-covid-sensors-near-fda-approval

[4] https://www.defenseone.com/technology/2020/03/military-funded-biosensor-could-be-future-pandemic-detection/163497/

What May Be Next for Humanity? — Study – Grow – Know

WATCH ‘Outbreak’: CBN Documentary Examines Origin of COVID-19 and China’s Role in It All — CBN News feeds

The COVID-19 pandemic has rocked the world, causing hundreds of thousands of deaths and lockdowns that have inflicted severe economic and emotional pain globally. 

Seven months into this pandemic, many questions remain, including, did it really begin in a wet market in Wuhan, China? Or did it escape from a nearby laboratory? And what were the lies that allowed it to spread so far, so fast?

Stonewalling by the communist regime in China was at the heart of the crisis. The World Health Organization publicly praised China for its speedy response to the coronavirus in January. But behind the scenes, WHO officials were frustrated over not getting the information they needed to fight the spread of the deadly virus.

The AP found that China sat on releasing the genetic map of the virus for more than a week, and stalled for at least another two weeks on providing detailed data on patients and cases. All of this came at a time when the outbreak might have been dramatically slowed down.

CBN Producer Wes Rickards said one thing that surprised him while doing research for the documentary was the level of the cover-up by Chinese officials. 

“Some of the decisions that were made by the communist Chinese government in early January, they are frankly mind-boggling,” he told CBN News. “It’s a big reason why the virus spread so far so fast.”

“Another thing that I found to be chilling was we were warned. I’m not talking about in December of 2019 when we had whistle-blowers saying that there was another coronavirus on-hand. I’m talking about for the last 15 years since SARS1, there were people out there who said that we were at-risk for another global pandemic and unfortunately we did very little to heed that warning.” 

Watch the complete version of the CBN Films documentary “Outbreak” below:

https://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/2020/september/watch-outbreak-documentary-examines-origin-of-covid-19-and-chinas-role-in-it-all

AG Bill Barr Warns The National Mail-In Ballot Effort Will De-legitimize The U.S. Government… — The Last Refuge

…and he is correct.  That is exactly why the leftists within the Democrat party are pushing for it.  The extreme left know they can destroy the republican form of government by forcing a fraudulent election result on the American people.  That is the purpose.

AG Bill Barr Warns The National Mail-In Ballot Effort Will De-legitimize The U.S. Government… — The Last Refuge

Civil Rights Attorney: Trump Will Get Highest Number of Black Votes in Modern History of GOP | The Western Journal

Will Donald Trump get the highest number of black votes for president in the history of the GOP? A black civil rights attorney who also does podcasting and radio thinks so.

Leo Terrell, a frequent Fox News contributor, has been an outspoken critic of Trump in the past, but has also said he’ll be voting Republican for the first time in his life. In an appearance on Sean Hannity’s Fox News program on Monday, he said a lot of other black voters will be doing the same.

“I brought over 300,000 black Democrats to vote for Trump. I’m bringing more and more and more,” he said.

“Trump is going to get the highest number of black votes ever in modern-day history for a Republican. Black voters are voting for Trump,” he added.

TRENDING: As Trump Gains on Biden, Rasmussen Uncovers Massive ‘Suppression’ of National Polls

It’s unclear where that 300,000 mark comes from; perhaps he’s talking about his black listeners. Republicans would certainly welcome the influx, either way.

The thing is that President Trump doesn’t need a tremendous swing in black voters for it to be a game-changer in swing states — particularly in places like Michigan and Wisconsin, where Democrats depend on people of color turning out for them in Detroit and Milwaukee.

While Leo Terrell’s listenership — if that is where the 300,000 number is coming from — isn’t necessarily a representative polling sample, pollsters have seen a bump in support for Trump in the black community.

Will Donald Trump get strong black support this election?

Yes No

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A survey by The Hill and HarrisX, conducted Aug. 22-25, found that 24 percent of black voters approved of President Trump. The sample period included the first two days of the Republican National Convention.

“That is up 9 points from the previous survey conducted Aug. 8-11, where the President received 15 percent support among this group,” the poll reported.

It’s not the only poll that has seen some movement in the black vote.

 

PollWatch is a Republican-run Twitter account and it’s worth noting the U.K. Express/Democracy Institute poll PollWatch refers to is considered an outlier, having consistently shown Trump in the lead nationally.

RELATED: Herschel Walker’s Son: BLM Is ‘the KKK in Blackface,’ ‘It’s a Terrorist Organization’

Emerson definitely isn’t, however, and its poll shows Trump within the margin of error of Democratic nominee Joe Biden nationally, trailing him 49 percent to 47 percent.  Biden takes 77 percent of the black vote compared to 19 percent for President Trump. The landline phone poll of 1,567 likely voters was taken Aug. 30-31.

Considering Trump only garnered 8 percent of the black vote in 2016, that would be huge for the campaign.

Meanwhile, Rasmussen’s daily tracking poll has consistently found Trump approval among likely black voters at over 30 percent.

 

 

 

There was, of course, significant outreach to the black community during the Republican National Convention.

Speakers like South Carolina GOP Sen. Tim Scott, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, former NFL star Herschel Walker, Georgia state Rep. Vernon Jones, a Democrat, and criminal justice reformer Alice Johnson, who was granted clemency by Trump, all took aim at Biden’s record on race while putting the spotlight on minority conservatives.

And then there’s Biden himself, who’s compiled a particularly wretched record with black Americans yet somehow managed to win enough of their support to carry him over the line in the Democratic primaries. Biden, of course, is counting on black votes.

Remember the immortal line: “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black,” as he said during a May interview.

In an opinion piece for Fox News published Aug. 17, Terrell took aim at the arrogance of those comments.

“In case you don’t know, I AM Black, and I did not know that the color of my skin also came with a mandate that I vote for the old White guy who’s been in politics for 47 years (without a discernible record of accomplishments on behalf of Black people),” he wrote.

“I didn’t know that Black Americans were expected to form a monolithic voting bloc, one in which we bow down to the almighty Democrats, and do whatever they say. Again, I ask, what has Biden done for Black America?”

That’s a question, if polling is any indication, that black voters are asking.

Source: Civil Rights Attorney: Trump Will Get Highest Number of Black Votes in Modern History of GOP

September 2d The D. L. Moody Year Book

 

Son, be of good cheer; thy sins are forgiven thee.—Matthew 9:2.

THAT was more than his friends expected; they only thought of his body being made whole. So let us bring our friends to Christ, and we shall get more than we expect.

The Lord met this man’s deepest need first. It may be his sins had brought on the palsy, so the Lord forgave the man’s sin first of all.[1]

 

[1] Moody, D. L. (1900). The D. L. Moody Year Book: A Living Daily Message from the Words of D. L. Moody. (E. M. Fitt, Ed.) (p. 154). East Northfield, MA: The Bookstore.

September 2, 2020 Evening Verse Of The Day

17:10 / So you also: The parable (vv. 7–9) is applied to the disciples (or apostles). In another context the parable may have been applied to others, such as the Pharisees.

we have only done our duty: This is apparently a common theme in Jewish piety. Lachs (p. 318) and Tiede (pp. 294–95) cite a saying attributed to Yohanan ben Zakkai: “If you have achieved much in the Law, claim not merit for yourself; for this purpose you were created” (m. Pirqe Aboth 2.8).[1]


10. We have done what we were bound to do. That is, “we have brought nothing of our own, but have only done what we were bound by the law to do.” Christ speaks here of an entire observance of the law, which is nowhere to be found; for the most perfect of all men is still at a great distance from that righteousness which the law demands. The present question is not, Are we justified by works? but, Is the observance of the law meritorious of any reward from God? This latter question is answered in the negative; for God holds us for his slaves, and therefore reckons all that can proceed from us to be his just right. Nay, though it were true, that a reward is due to the observance of the law in respect of merit, it will not therefore follow that any man is justified by the merits of works; for we all fail: and not only is our obedience imperfect, but there is not a single part of it that corresponds exactly to the judgment of God.[2]


17:10 Is this text saying (1) that the slave, after his long day in the field, should go and eat first before serving the owner’s meal (TEV, NJB); (2) that he should sit down with the owner and eat (NASB, NKJV, NRSV, NIV); or (3) even that he should be served by the owner (cf. 12:37, which would be another dramatic reversal of roles so characteristic of Luke)? There is surely ambiguity here, but the intent of the paragraph is clear.

The very opposite of this is found in 12:37. Eastern literature often approaches truth by presenting the opposites! Modern western interpreters often miss the significant differences between eastern and western literary forms.[3]


10. So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants. The word ‘unprofitable’ [ἀχρεῖοι], though in modern English denoting the opposite of profit, is here used in its proper negative sense, ‘We have not profited’ or ‘benefited God at all by our services.’ The connection of this with the subject discoursed of may be thus expressed—‘But when your faith has been so increased as both to avoid and forgive offences, and do things impossible to all but faith—even then, be not puffed up as though you had laid the Lord under any obligations to you.’ (Compare Job 22:2, 3; Rom. 11:35.)[4]


17:10. Finally, Jesus drove the point home to his disciples. You have gone out on mission for me, he told them. You have preached and healed and exorcised. You follow me each day surrendering normal home life. You have done much, but remember that what you have done is simply what God expects you to do. Do not expect to get some great prize for what you do in faith. Realize God is actually the one at work, doing what you prayed for. So having done all you know to do, simply sit down and say to God, We are worthless slaves. All we have done is the task assigned us to do. Faith is accepting the role of an obedient servant without expecting great gratitude and reward. Faith trusts Jesus and so follows Jesus.

In summary, verses 1–10 depict the life of mature faith in Jesus. It is a life of forgiveness, faith, and humility. Forgiveness is unlimited. Nothing should prevent a disciple from forgiving. The true disciple realizes how difficult this is for humans, so the request is made for more faith.

Jesus rejected such a request. Increased faith is not the answer. Faith is not something measured and compared to see who wins the faith championship. Faith is either true or false. The smallest amount of faith can do the impossible. Forgiving is not the impossible; it is the normal act of faith. Jesus’ followers, trusting him in faith and seeking to do the Father’s will, naturally forgive people without keeping score.

How can we have such faith and offer such forgiveness? We must live in humility, knowing our place in the stream of life. God is master and we are slaves. We should not look upon a life of ongoing forgiveness as a great accomplishment. We should see it as the normal act of the life of faith. Forgiveness is what Jesus expects of us. As his slaves, we do what he expects. If we refuse to forgive or think we cannot forgive, we have the wrong opinion of ourselves. We think we are something greater and better than a servant. Do not ask for increased faith, Jesus said. Ask for the true faith that makes you a slave of Jesus who normally practices forgiveness as a faithful way of life.[5]


Vs. 10. So likewise ye.—The Saviour will have His disciples, even after their work is faithfully accomplished, not esteem themselves higher than such servants.—Which are commanded you.—As well in the field as in the house. Everything, even the hardest not excepted. They have even in this case, instead of expecting special thanks, to say in deep humility: we are unprofitable servants, ἀχρεῖοι, not “poor, insignificant” (Rosenmüller), and as little in the unfavorable sense in which this word is used, Matt. 25:30, but simply such as have done nothing more than might be expected from δοῦλοι. If they had accomplished less they would have been even the cause of loss; had they accomplished more than what they were charged with, they would then have been χρεῖοι; but now they could, as ἀχρεῖοι, expect, it is true, the food and drink which was the servant’s portion after his day’s work was done, but no reward such as was conceded only to an extraordinary service. The Saviour does not demand that His people shall despise and reprobate themselves; He says still less that He Himself is disposed to view them as unprofitable servants; He disputes least of all that a rich reward awaits them, such as He had promised, ch. 12:31; but here only every meritum e condigno is denied, and they are expressly reminded that whatever reward they may at any time receive, it is always a reward of grace, which they are in no case to demand. How very especially this instruction was adapted to the case of the Twelve, and how their faith would increase in the measure in which humility grew in their hearts, they have perhaps even at once felt, and certainly afterwards experienced.[6]


17:10 So disciples are bondslaves of the Lord Jesus Christ. They belong to Him—spirit, soul, and body. In the light of Calvary, nothing they can ever do for the Savior is sufficient to recompense Him for what He has done. So after the disciple has done everything that he has been commanded in the NT, he must still admit that he is an unprofitable servant who has only done what was his duty to do.

According to Roy Hession, the five marks of a bondservant are:

  1. He must be willing to have one thing on top of another put upon him, without any consideration being given him.
  2. In doing this, he must be willing not to be thanked for it.
  3. Having done all this, he must not charge the master with selfishness.
  4. He must confess that he is an unprofitable servant.
  5. He must admit that doing and bearing what he has in the way of meekness and humility, he has not done one stitch more than it was his duty to do.[7]

17:10. This story indicates that the apostles required no greater faith than the one they possessed already in order to carry out the Lord’s commands regarding rebuking and forgiveness (cf. vv 3–5). Forgiveness represented an essential duty of God’s servants. The illustration does not negate the Lord Jesus’ teaching on eternal rewards for faithful believers (e.g. 19:11–26).[8]


17:10 — “So likewise you, when you have done all those things which you are commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants. We have done what was our duty to do.’ ”

Jesus does not want us to grow proud over the things He enables us to accomplish by His Spirit. So Paul writes, “For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for necessity is laid upon me” (1 Cor. 9:16).[9]


17:10 We are unworthy slaves Jesus encourages His disciples to conduct themselves as humble slaves to God, in contrast to the self-aggrandizing Pharisees (16:14–15).[10]


17:10 The point of the parable is that the nature of a master-servant relationship allows the master to make such demands on his servant. Since this is the case, how much more can God expect of His servants in His kingdom. God’s servant must recognize that whatever he does in God’s service is still inadequate.[11]


17:10 See note on 12:37. The focus is not on God’s attitude toward our obedience (as an ungrateful taskmaster) or on the character of discipleship as a cold, thankless endeavor, but on the humble attitude of the disciple, who recognizes that he or she is unworthy of honor for merely fulfilling a duty.[12]


[1] Evans, C. A. (1990). Luke (p. 257). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[2] Calvin, J., & Pringle, W. (2010). Commentary on a Harmony of the Evangelists Matthew, Mark, and Luke (Vol. 2, p. 197). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[3] Utley, R. J. (2004). The Gospel according to Luke (Vol. Volume 3A, Lk 17:10). Marshall, TX: Bible Lessons International.

[4] Brown, D., Fausset, A. R., & Jamieson, R. (n.d.). A Commentary, Critical, Experimental, and Practical, on the Old and New Testaments: Matthew–John (Vol. V, p. 298). London; Glasgow: William Collins, Sons, & Company, Limited.

[5] Butler, T. C. (2000). Luke (Vol. 3, p. 280). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.

[6] Lange, J. P., & van Oosterzee, J. J. (2008). A commentary on the Holy Scriptures: Luke. (P. Schaff & C. C. Starbuck, Trans.) (pp. 260–261). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[7] MacDonald, W. (1995). Believer’s Bible Commentary: Old and New Testaments. (A. Farstad, Ed.) (p. 1435). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[8] Valdés, A. S. (2010). The Gospel according to Luke. In R. N. Wilkin (Ed.), The Grace New Testament Commentary (p. 313). Denton, TX: Grace Evangelical Society.

[9] Stanley, C. F. (2005). The Charles F. Stanley life principles Bible: New King James Version (Lk 17:10). Nashville, TN: Nelson Bibles.

[10] Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., … Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (Lk 17:10). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

[11] Criswell, W. A., Patterson, P., Clendenen, E. R., Akin, D. L., Chamberlin, M., Patterson, D. K., & Pogue, J. (Eds.). (1991). Believer’s Study Bible (electronic ed., Lk 17:10). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[12] Cabal, T., Brand, C. O., Clendenen, E. R., Copan, P., Moreland, J. P., & Powell, D. (2007). The Apologetics Study Bible: Real Questions, Straight Answers, Stronger Faith (p. 1548). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.