Something they’d like to share with the class?
Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.—John 12:24.
TAKE a little black flower seed and sow it; after it has been planted some time, dig it up. If it is whole you know that it has no life; but if it has begun to decay, you know that life and fruitfulness will follow. There will be a resurrected life, and out of that little black seed will come a beautiful fragrant flower.
Here is a disgusting grub, crawling along the ground. By and by old age overtakes it, and it begins to spin its own shroud, to make its own sepulchre, and it lies as if in death. Look again, and it has shuffled off its shroud, it has burst its sepulchre open, and it comes forth a beautiful butterfly, with different form and habits.
So with our bodies. They die, but God will give us glorified bodies in their stead. This is the law of the new creation as well as of the old: light after darkness: life after death: fruitfulness and glory after corruption and decay.
 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. 162). East Northfield, MA: The Bookstore.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—CNN and other media outlets attacked President Trump and foreign leaders this week after footage emerged of Israeli and Arab leaders standing closer than six feet apart and embracing in a peace accord, clearly violating COVID social distancing protocol. Pictures and footage show Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the foreign ministers of UAE and Bahrain completely ignoring social distancing as they smile warmly and shake hands while signing historic peace accords between the three nations.
“This is simply beyond the pale,” said CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jim Acosta. “No one here is social distancing, no one is wearing masks. People are smiling and sitting next to each other. It’s a bloodbath here. It’s almost as if President Trump is trying to kill these Middle Eastern leaders. This man truly has no shame. Just when you thought this president couldn’t stoop any lower, he defies expectations and goes lower. This is truly a day of national embarrassment for this country.”
Many critics are questioning Trump’s wisdom in trying to negotiate peace in the Middle East during a global pandemic since there are probably way more productive things he could be doing like defunding the police or imposing a national mask mandate. Others are worried that peace in the Middle East could be some sort of a white supremacist dog whistle. Republicans, on the other hand, are pouncing on the critics, most likely because they are soulless jerks who want people to die.
No one really knows what the peace deal means except that it may make Trump look good, which of course means it’s bad.
Unfortunately, the ceremony erupted into chaos, and peace talks collapsed after an argument arose over the correct pronunciation of “gif.”
SACRAMENTO, CA—California is currently on fire, having also been plagued by darkness, earthquakes, and hippies. State leaders are claiming they have “no idea” why God keeps lighting them on fire, though they just voted to reduce penalties for pedophiles in the name of equality for the LGBTQ+ community.
“It’s unclear here what exactly we’re being punished for,” said Governor Gavin Newsom at a press conference as the state burned down around him. “We are a progressive utopia. We’re the other states in fast-forward. We pass amazing legislation that shows our love and inclusiveness of pedophiles of all sexual orientations. We are doing exactly what Socialist Jesus would want us to.”
“God should be thanking us. He or she didn’t build this land of progress.”
State legislators, trying to figure out why God keeps unleashing bowl after bowl of wrath upon California, cast lots and threw all the remaining Republicans in the state into the Pacific Ocean in hopes that the plagues would subside. Both men were swallowed by a great fish and are expected to survive.
The US drive to extradite and prosecute Julian Assange poses a grave threat to journalists everywhere, but the publisher’s opponents have placed politics over principle, and even their own interests, said whistleblower Ed Snowden.
“I think a lot of it comes down to people forgetting what principles are and why they’re important,” Snowden said in an interview with Joe Rogan on Tuesday. “You can hate Julian Assange, you can think he’s a puppet of Russia, you can think he’s the worst person on Earth – a reincarnation of Hitler or Stalin – and still realize that convicting him harms you.”
While Assange “fell out of favor” with a large segment of American society in 2016 over Wikileaks’ publication of emails belonging to then-Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton, his current extradition trial has “nothing to do with that,” Snowden said.
“The US government… is trying to extradite this guy and put him in prison for the rest of his life for the best work that Wikileaks ever did… which is the Iraq and Afghanistan War Logs, detainee records in Guantanamo Bay. Things that are about explicit war crimes and abuses of power,” the whistleblower went on, recalling that Assange’s work with Wikileaks has spared no political party.
Assange faces an 18-count indictment and up to 175 years in a US prison, with most charges linked to “espionage” over his role in securing classified leaks from Army analyst Chelsea Manning. But his case marks a clear break with American legal precedent, which has traditionally distinguished journalists and publishers from their sources, a “dangerous” development which Snowden said could impact the media as a whole.
“As abusive as these Espionage Act charges have run in the last 50 years, the government had a sort of quiet agreement. They never charged the press outlets… they charge their sources,” he said. “They are breaking that agreement with the Julian Assange case. Assange is not the source, he is merely a publisher. He runs a press organization.”
The Wikileaks publisher’s extradition hearing resumed last week in London after a lengthy hiatus due to the coronavirus outbreak. He remains in the maximum security Belmarsh Prison awaiting a decision, where he has spent some 16 months under conditions that UN Special Rapporteur Nils Melzer has described as “torture.”
“There is evidence left in the genome…”
Hours after her unceremonious Twitter ban for, we assume, presenting “smoking gun evidence” that SARS-CoV-2 was created in a Wuhan lab, Chinese virologist Dr. Li-Meng Yan appeared on “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” where she told the Fox News host that the virus is a “Frankenstein” which was designed to target humans which was intentionally released.
“It could never come from nature,” she Yan – an MD/PhD who worked with coronavirus at the University of Hong Kong
“There is evidence left in the genome” – which Yan detailed in a 26-page scientific paper co-written with three other Chinese scientists. “They don’t want people to know this truth. Also, that’s why I get suspended [from Twitter], I get suppression. I am the target that the Chinese Communist Party wants disappeared.”
When Carlson asked her why she believes the virus made it’s way out of the Wuhan lab, Dr. Yan said “I worked in the WHO reference lab, which is the top coronavirus lab in the world at the university of Hong Kong. And the things I got deeply into such investigation in secret from the early beginning of this outbreak – I had my intelligence through my network in China, involved in the hospitals, institutes and also government.“
“Together with my experience, I can tell you – this is created in a lab.“
Two days ago we asked “How long before the @LiMengYAN119 account is silenced.” The answer: two days.
On Sunday afternoon we asked how long before the twitter account of the “rogue” Chinese virologist, Dr. Li-Meng Yan, who yesterday “shocked” the world of establishment scientists and other China sycophants, by publishing a “smoking gun” scientific paper demonstrating that the Covid-19 virus was manmade, is “silenced.”
— zerohedge (@zerohedge) September 13, 2020
We now have the answer: less than two days. A cursory check of Dr Yan’s twitter page reveals that the account has been suspended as of this moment.
The suspension took place shortly after Dr Yan had accumulated roughly 60,000 followers in less than 48 hours. The snapshot below was taken earlier in the day precisely in anticipation of this suspension.
It was not immediately clear what justification Twitter had to suspend the scientist who, to the best of our knowledge, had just 4 tweets as of Tuesday morning none of which violated any stated Twitter policies, with the only relevant tweet being a link to her scientific paper co-written with three other Chinese scientists titled “Unusual Features of the SARS-CoV-2 Genome Suggesting Sophisticated Laboratory Modification Rather Than Natural Evolution and Delineation of Its Probable Synthetic Route” which laid out why the Wuhan Institute of Virology had created the covid-19 virus.
While we appreciate that Twitter may have experienced pressure from either China, or the established scientist community, to silence Dr Yan for proposing a theory that flies in the face of everything that has been accepted as undisputed gospel – after all Twitter did just that to us – we are confident that by suspending her account, Jack Dorsey has only added more fuel to the fire of speculations that the covid virus was indeed manmade (not to mention countless other tangential conspiracy theories).
If Yan was wrong, why not just let other scientists respond in the open to the all too valid arguments presented in Dr. Yan’s paper? Isn’t that what “science” is all about? Why just shut her up?
Because if we have already crossed the tipping point when anyone who proposes an “inconvenient” explanation for an established “truth” has to be immediately censored, then there is little that can be done to salvage the disintegration of a society that once held freedom of speech as paramount.
For those who missed it, here is our post breaking down Dr. Yan’s various allegations which twitter saw fit to immediately censor instead of allowing a healthy debate to emerge.
We hope Twitter will provide a very reasonable and sensible explanation for this unprecedented censorship.
For those who missed it, her paper is below:
“This day”, Benjamin Netanyahu said speaking of the Abraham Accord peace treaty signing at the White House today, “heralds a new dawn of peace.”
It was a beautiful ceremony, perfectly coordinated with a background track as lush and beautiful as a Disney movie. In fact, my daughter Kelsey got all excited and came running across the room because she thought it was a Disney movie. But this was no Hollywood fabrication, this was the Abraham Accord end times real deal moment of Israel beginning their short but intense journey into the coming time of Jacob’s trouble. So let’s talk for a moment about the coming Two State Solution that triggers the Battle of Armageddon at the end of the Tribulation, Joel gives us the heads-up on that one.
“For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.” Joel 3:1,2 (KJB)
Inside the language of the Abraham Accord, you will find wording that briefly but powerfully states that in order to gain a peace treaty with the UAE, Israel has to do two things. First, they have to give up any and all aspirations of annexing anything until at least 2024. Secondly, Israel must agree to work to create a Palestinian state from within the borders inside, outside and around the nation of Israel as it currently stands. You can read all about that here in the Jerusalem Post. What does Israel gain from signing the Abraham Accord? Enhanced global status, a powerful partner in the UAE, and billions of dollars in economic contracts and incentives now that trade relations are open. In other words, as your King James Bible has told would happen, they took the bait and are now on the hook of end times bible prophecy.
“For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.” 1 Thessalonians 5:3 (KJB)
Many concerned Christians have been messaging me all day, saying what a terrible thing it is that the Two State Solution is finally going to be accomplished, but I say different. In the early years of NTEB, I wrote articles of that nature as well, but as I grew and matured in my bible study, as we all should be doing regardless of how long we’ve been saved, I came to see it truly from the Lord’s perspective. Without the ‘parting of the land’, which God hates, the end times prophecies cannot proceed. For example, the falling away from 2 Thessalonians is a terrible thing, but without it, there is no Pretribulation Rapture of the Church. Likewise, the Two State Solution is a terrible thing, but in order for Joel’s prophecies to come to pass, it has to happen!
“For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 (KJB)
The born again Church is on one track, and the nation of Israel on another. We are travelling along a route that leads us up and into the clouds on Flight #777 in the Pretribulation Rapture. The unsaved nation of Israel is on a track that leads them into the false peace under Antichrist at the start of the time of Jacob’s trouble. The Pretribulation Rapture is the event which starts that time period. This is how close we really are. So do not fret over the coming Two State Solution, but rejoice and look up! We are getting ready to go Home very, very soon.
Israel Signs End Times Abraham Accord Peace Treaty At White House With UAE And Bahrain
WR2020-0915•The seeker sensitive movement.
•What is the Church intended to be?
•The Biblical Church is supposed to puzzle the world.
•You will grow more in a church less like you.
•What’s the difference between the Cross and ice cream?
•Pastor restoration after a moral failure seems to be happening quickly.
•How does 1 Timothy describe a real man of God?
Sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.
Father, what then? Shall I sin because I am not under law but under grace? Certainly not! I have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that I may be married to another—to Jesus who was raised from the dead, that I should bear fruit to God. I am not without Your law, Father, for I am under Christ’s law. The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But I thank You, Lord God, who give me the victory through my Lord Jesus Christ.
The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. Whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. If the Son makes me free, I shall be free indeed.
Therefore, I will stand fast in the liberty by which Christ has made me free, and not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage to sin.
May I never cheapen Your costly grace, Lord, by sinning intentionally knowing that You will forgive me. Instead, enable me to avoid sin and glorify You.
Romans 6:14; Romans 6:15; Romans 7:4; 1 Corinthians 9:21; 1 Corinthians 15:56–57; Romans 8:2; John 8:34, 36; Galatians 5:1
Isaiah 19:2 – From Enduring Word:
I will set Egyptians against Egyptians: Isaiah prophesies a coming civil war in Egypt, which was indirectly the hand of God’s judgment against them. “Not many years after this time it was divided into twelve several kingdoms, between whom there were many and cruel wars, as is related by the historians of those times.” (Poole)
“There would even be an altar erected unto Jehovah (Isaiah 19:19) in Egypt. Such an altar was erected by a Jewish high priest named Onias in the reign of Ptolemy VI; and this was an earnest of the later conversion of Egyptians to Christianity. And God here promised to send them a saviour (Isaiah 19:20). Historically, this was first fulfilled when Alexander the Great freed the oppressed peoples from their yoke of Persian submission; but in the higher dimension, it stands for the coming of the divine Saviour who would free them from their sins.”
Regarding thistemple (including an altar, of course) that Onias built in Alexandria, Josephus has this:
“This Onias resolved to send to king Ptolemy and queen Cleopatra, to ask leave of them that he might build a temple in Egypt like that in Jerusalem, and might order Levites and priests out of their own stock. The chief reason why he was so desirous to do this, was, that he relied upon the prophet Isaiah who lived about six hundred years earlier, and foretold that there was certainly to be a temple built to Almighty God in Egypt.”
Isaiah 19:25 – Israel was God’s chosen people. But here God is saying that Egypt is his people as well. Isaiah is foreshadowing when under the next dispensation God will be revealing his love for the world (John 3:16).
Isaiah 20:1 – At the University of Chicago you can see the giant lamassu (winged bulls) from Sargon’s palace. His famous son Sennacherib declared war on Hezekiah.
Isaiah 20:3 – Three years Isaiah walked naked? Does this mean that God repealed his recommendation of clothing (Genesis 2)? Pulpit Commentary lends some guidance:
The supposed “impropriety” of Isaiah’s having “gone naked and barefoot” for three years arises from a misconception of the word “naked.” which is not to be taken literally (see the comment on ver. 2). The costume adopted would be extraordinary, especially in one of Isaiah’s rank and position; but would not be in any degree “improper.” It would be simply that of working men during the greater part of the day (see Exodus 22:26, 27).
Isaiah 21:9 – We’ll read something similar in Revelation 18:2.
Isaiah 21:16 – Enduring Word: “Poole on according to the year of a hired man: “An exact year; for hirelings diligently observe and wait for the end of the year, when they are to receive their wages.”
Galatians 2:1 – We didn’t read about these fourteen years in Acts. Where do they fit? From Redeemer Church PCA:
Paul’s purpose in recalling the timeline is to defend himself against the accusations of the false teachers, which most likely sounded something like this: “Paul was a disciple of the Apostles, such that his gospel is dependent upon theirs – yet, he has changed it without their authorization! Therefore, Galatians, don’t listen to him… Listen to us instead – we are preserving the true gospel.” Against their charges of him preaching a gospel with a dependent origin on the Apostle’s, and divergent content from the apostles, Paul is establishing the independent origin of his gospel from the Jerusalem apostles (it came directly from Jesus), along with the consistent content of his gospel with theirs (when they finally examined his gospel they did not correct him or add anything to it). His gospel isn’t his gospel at all, nor a gospel from any human but directly and immediately from Jesus Christ. So, it must be held to as such.
Paul plants the churches of Galatia during his first missionary journey (Acts 13-14). False Teachers enter Galatian churches sometime after Paul’s departure. Paul writes the letter to the Galatians around 48 AD, prompted by this news of false teaching.
Flashback of Paul’s Story in the letter to the Galatians:
> Paul’s conversion (Galatians 1:12-17; Acts 9)
> Paul’s first visit to Jerusalem (Galatians 1:18-24; Acts 9:26-30)
> Paul’s second visit to Jerusalem (Galatians 2:1-10; Acts 11:27-30)
> Paul’s confrontation with Peter in Antioch (Galatians 2:11-14; not recorded in Acts)
Galatians 2:15 – Peter, regarded by some as the father of the Roman church, was confronted by Paul correctly. Because Peter got the gospel wrong and Paul had to remind him three different ways that it’s not by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ (Galatians 2:16).
Psalm 59:16-17 – Three times the Psalmist says he is going to sing. Let’s sing of God’s power!
Proverbs 23:13-14 – Solomon is not talking about child abuse (beating uncontrollably resulting in damage), but corporal punishment (“to sting the child with the spanking so as to administer a physical response to disobedience” CC-Jonesboro). Life BPC contrasts this command with Eli – the negative example.
The Bible also provides us with a negative example of father who did not discipline his sons at all. This is found in the account of Eli the high priest. Eli had two sons, Hophni and Phineas, who followed their father’s footsteps in serving as priests at the Tabernable in Shiloh. But both of them were evidently not disciplined when young and they grew up to be wicked priests, who abused their privileges and took advantage of worshippers who came to the Tabernacle to worship the Lord. The sad thing is that their father, Eli did not have the heart to stop his sons and discipline them, although he was grieved by their sins. The awful result is that God judged the house of Eli: 1 Samuel 3:13 ‘For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not.’
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7 The construction of the opening colon gives the essential point of the verse, which is then enlarged through the metaphor of the sheep. That point is made through the joining of the finite verb he was oppressed with the participle “he was being afflicted” or, better, he was humbling himself. The construction gives a sense of contemporaneous action: he was oppressed, while humbling himself.21 Thus Skinner suggests: “Though he was oppressed, he was submissive.…” oppressed carries with it the idea of harsh physical treatment at the hands of others (Exod. 3:7, “taskmasters”; see also Isa. 3:5, 12; 58:3). But the Servant does not fight against this fate; rather, he gives himself willingly to it. Thus he is not a victim caught in the great gears of a remorseless destiny, but a person of worth and dignity even in the most degrading of circumstances. One thinks of Jesus “setting his face” to go to a Jerusalem where even the densest of his disciples understood that death awaited him (Luke 9:51).
It is difficult to escape the conclusion that it is not accidental that the only extended metaphor in this poem involves sheep, the primary animals of sacrifice. The Servant is to be struck down on account of the rebellions of his people (v. 8), and he will go as a lamb to the slaughter. If the author did not intend his readers to think in terms of sacrifice, he certainly made a major blunder in his choice of metaphors. Many commentators (cf. C. K. Barrett; R. Schnakenburg) agree that this verse is a primary source of John’s ejaculation, “Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).
Interestingly, Jeremiah uses the metaphor of the lamb led to the slaughter to describe himself in 11:19, but there the context shows that the point is one of trusting naïveté in which the animal has no idea of what is about to happen to it. Here the issue being emphasized is not unknowingness, but willing submission to what lies ahead. The sheep that is to be slaughtered, the ewe that is to be shorn, does not protest what is about to take place. Israel has protested that God has forgotten her and is not doing right by her (40:27; 49:14; 63:15); but the Servant, who has much greater cause to protest, does not do so at all. This is entirely consistent with the picture of the Servant already presented (42:2–3; 50:5–7). Even when he is tempted to despair over the apparent failure of his mission (49:4), he takes heart in the certain purpose of God (49:5–9). It is also notably consistent with the demeanor of Christ when he was tried (Matt. 26:63; 27:12–14; Mark 15:5; Luke 23:9; John 19:9).
Ver. 7.—He was oppressed. As Israel under the Egyptian taskmasters (Exod. 3:7). The cruel ill usage in the high priest’s house, and before Herod is, perhaps, specially pointed at. He was afflicted; rather, he abased himself (comp. ch. 31:4 and Exod. 10:3). The position of the emphatic pronoun (hu’) between the first participle and the second detaches the second clause from the first and conjoins it with the third. Otherwise the rendering of the Authorized Version might stand. Translate, He was oppressed, but he abased himself and opened not his mouth. The silence of Jesus before his judges (Matt. 26:22, 23; 27:14), when he could so easily have vindicated himself from every charge, was a self-abasement. It seemed like an admission of guilt. He opened not his mouth (comp. Ps. 38:13, 14; 39:2, 9). The contrast of the Servant’s silence and passivity with men’s ordinary vehemence of self-assertion under ill usage is most striking. Who was ever silent but he under such extremity of provocation? (For a contrast, see the account of the Jewish martyrdoms in 2 Macc. 7) He is brought as a lamb; rather, as the lamb. The Paschal lamb is, perhaps, intended, or, at any rate, the lamb of sacrifice. The prophet has often seen the dumb, innocent lamb led in silence to the altar, to be slain there, and thinks of that touching sight. It was probably the use of this imagery here which caused the Baptist to term our Lord “the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). As a sheep before her shearers. A second image, a reflex of the first, somewhat weaker, as so often in Isaiah (ch. 1:22, 30; 5:18, 24; 8:14; 10:24, 27, 34; 11:8; 13:14; 24:13; 25:7, etc.).
7. He was punished. Here the Prophet applauds the obedience of Christ in suffering death; for if his death had not been voluntary, he would not have been regarded as having satisfied for our disobedience. “As by one man’s disobedience,” says Paul, “all became sinners, so by one man’s obedience many were made righteous. (Rom. 5:19.) And elsewhere, “He became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” (Philip. 2:8.) This was the reason of his silence at the judgment-seat of Pilate, though he had a just defence to offer; for, having become answerable for our guilt, he wished to submit silently to the sentence, that we might loudly glory in the righteousness of faith obtained through free grace.
As a lamb shall he be led to the slaughter. We are here exhorted to patience and meekness, that, following the example of Christ, we may be ready to endure reproaches and cruel assaults, distress and torture. In this sense Peter quotes this passage, shewing that we ought to become like Christ our Head, that we may imitate his patience and submissiveness. (1 Pet. 2:23.) In the word lamb there is probably an allusion to the sacrifices under the Law; and in this sense he is elsewhere called “the Lamb of God.” (John 1:29, 36.)
7. Oppressed: e.g. Exodus 3:7. Afflicted is the verb used in verse 4d, but what was imposed there is voluntarily accepted here. The verbal form here (reflexive niphal), with an emphatic pronoun, means ‘but he for his part submitted himself’. Did not open … silent … did not open: animals go as uncomprehending to slaughter as to shearing, but the Servant who knew all things beforehand (John 18:4) went to his death with a calm silence that reflected not an uncomprehending but a submitted mind and tongue. Lamb … sheep: the former was used in the sacrifices (Gen. 22:7–8, etc.), though not the latter, but this is of no significance. Verses 4–6 have already established that we are to think of the Servant’s death in terms laid down in the levitical sacrifices. The point here is the contrast between the silence of ignorance and the silence of deliberate self-submission. Yet a great principle of the sacrificial system is involved. Verses 4–6 first established our sinfulness (4–5), and then revealed it as our common folly (6a) and our individual culpable choice (6b). This is to say, sin involves the will. But this is precisely the point at which animals can only picture the substitute we require and cannot actually be that substitute: they have no consciousness of what is afoot nor of any deliberate, personal, self-submissive consent to it. Ultimately only a Person can substitute for people. This is the importance of the stress in verse 7 on the Servant’s voluntariness expressed in the acceptance of humiliation and the deliberately maintained silence.
7 The opening of the stanza focuses attention on the manner of harsh and unjust treatment given to the servant. His oppression is described by use of the verb that is employed in Exodus 3:7 to denote the harsh treatment measured out to Israel in Egypt (nâgas). It implies the use of physical violence. The next phrase is made emphatic by the use of the personal pronoun ‘he’, while the form of the Hebrew verb (‘ânâh, Nif.) certainly allows for a reflexive meaning: ‘and he allowed himself to be afflicted’ (cf. Jesus’ insistence that he gave his life freely for his sheep, John 10:14–18). The death of the servant is depicted in sacrificial terms, emphasising his silence in comparison to a lamb or adult sheep being slaughtered. The figure of a dumb sheep appears elsewhere in Jeremiah 11:19. The servant unresistingly stands before his persecutors, uttering not a word in his own defence. Peter seems to have this passage in mind when he speaks of the meek endurance of Christ (1 Pet. 2:23). While the servant is depicted as a lamb, it is only in the New Testament that the phrase ‘lamb of God’ appears (John 1:29; see also Acts 8:32–33, 35; 1 Pet. 1:18–19).
 Harman, A. (2005). Isaiah: A Covenant to Be Kept for the Sake of the Church (p. 366). Scotland: Christian Focus Publications.
When we conform to the world, we agree with it and walk in its ways. Anything not of God is of the world. The world is a human-made construct. Loving what is of God that happens to be in the world is different from loving the world itself.
It’s tempting to get sucked into all the good things this world seems to offer, from the people we love to the splendor before our eyes and think the world itself is good.
But be warned: The world is temporary, and those who chase after its finite pleasures and treasures can too easily fall prey to its illusion and turn from what really matters: God and His holy kingdom.
While many of us hold to his teachings, we often get confused about the Apostle Paul’s call for us to reject the world. In his letter to the early church in Rome, Paul writes,
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — his good, pleasing and perfect will (Romans 12:2).
But what does that really mean? And why is “the world” so bad?
Here, we explore why God calls us to cling to the transformative renewal found only in Him, and why Romans 12:2 is such a powerful verse to tuck close in our hearts.
What Is ‘The World’?
“The world” is a broad term that we can interpret to mean anything from creation to the people and pleasures found within it. But reading the full context of Paul’s words here indicates he’s referring to things not of the Lord — the philosophies and perspectives that run counter to the Kingdom of God.
God’s Kingdom calls us to put God first, to put others before ourselves, and to walk in honor, respect, and obedience to Him and His ways. But the world calls us to something different. It tells us to play the game of life, where we accumulate as many riches as we can and enjoy as many pleasures of the body and mind as we can.
Why Is it Wrong to Love the World?
While some things in the world are good — our spouse and children, our church and its people, the land and the innocent creatures in it — Scripture tells us repeatedly to turn away from the world and fix our eyes on Jesus. As the Apostle John writes, “Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them” (1 John 2:15).
That means setting aside not only selfish cravings but even strong family ties to put God above all.
Anything not of God is of the world. The world is a human-made construct. Loving what is of God that happens to be in the world is different from loving the world itself.
Jesus tells us in Matthew 6:33 to “seek first His kingdom and His righteousness” and not to worry about the concerns of the body, from what we will eat or drink to the clothes we wear. For, He says, if we set our sights on God’s Kingdom, the rest will be provided in turn.
Jesus also says we should not store up for ourselves temporary “treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal,” but rather store up treasures in heaven (Matthew 6:19-20). What He’s saying is to push aside the cares, passions, and concerns of this earthly and woefully limited life and focus on our eternal life in heaven with the Father.
We cannot focus on both. Jesus warns: “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money” (Matthew 6:24).
What Does it Mean to ‘Conform’ to the World?
The word “conform” comes from the Greek suschématizó, which means to fashion, pattern, or style after. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines it as “to be similar or identical, to be in agreement or harmony with,” and to “act in accordance with.”
When we conform to the world, we mimic it, agree with it, walk in its ways. We align our perspective with worldly things, such as fallible riches and bodies that eventually wither and die. In effect, we put the world above God in our grand hierarchy of importance.
That, in essence, is idolatry.
God calls us to love Him with the entirety of our hearts, souls, and minds as His greatest commandment (Matthew 22:37-38). He also puts that first on the Ten Commandments that He gave to His people, Israel, in the wilderness (Exodus 20:3).
In his letter to the early church in Corinth, the Apostle Paul urges us to “flee from idolatry” (1 Corinthians 10:14), for it is the path to destruction. Echoing Jesus’ warning that we cannot serve two masters, Paul elaborates, “You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of demons” (1 Corinthians 10:21).
That means not only participating in pagan festivals but also putting the world’s morals, people, or desires above or on the same level as God. It means staying as far away from these things or ideals as possible so we are not tempted to fall into their trap.
God tells us He is a jealous God (Exodus 20:5). Loving the world, conforming to the world, is idolatry and will incite His wrath.
Is it Important to Be Transformed in Jesus?
However, along with the “don’t” in Romans 12:2, Paul offers a “do.” Don’t conform to the world, don’t align yourself with the world, don’t mimic its styles and perspectives, and wanton ways, Paul says, but do be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Transformed comes from the Greek metamorphousthe, from the root words meta and morpho. Just like the scientific process of metamorphosis, metamorphousthe means to change form, to become something new.
Instead of conforming ourselves to the world, then, we are to go from the caterpillar to the butterfly — that is, we are to become a new creation in Christ. We are to renew our minds, pattern ourselves after Christ and our eternal home in heaven with God, our Father.
As Paul writes to the church in Corinth, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
What Are Some Examples in the Bible?
What is sometimes troubling for Christians is the example we are offered in Matthew 12 about Jesus’ mother and brothers.
In the passage, Jesus is teaching a large crowd, including some of the Pharisees and teachers of the law, when He is informed His mother and brothers were outside, wanting to speak to Him. His words in response might seem harsh to some: “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” Pointing to His disciples, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers” (Matthew 12:48-49).
But His larger point, what He says next in verse 50, is the crux: “For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”
The world tells us the bonds of blood and relationship between family members reigns supreme. But God transcends family ties and the blood bonds of mere DNA. As Christians, our true family members are our Christian brothers and sisters, with God as our heavenly and eternal parent.
These might also turn out to be our earthly descendants and relatives, but that is a worldly concern — entirely secondary. Our real priority, our main concern, should be our family in the Lord. That’s what Jesus appears to have been saying.
Another example is in Jesus’ choice to die on the cross to atone for the sins of the world. His disciples and others did not appear to understand His choice at first, for they were viewing His sacrifice through the lens of the world.
Even as Jesus carried His cross to the site of the crucifixion, He was taunted by the chief priests, teachers, elders, and others who watched: Save yourself if you really are the Christ. Let God rescue you if you are truly His son.
But Jesus set His eyes on heaven and chose for eternal good, not a temporary feel-good measure.
“Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life” (John 12:24-25).
We are to reject this worldly life, Jesus was saying, and instead, cling to what is to come.
“What shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name!” (John 12:27-28).
His words are clear: Let the will of God in heaven be done — not the will of humanity.
We Are Citizens of Heaven
Finally, if we still are not convinced and still believe we can love the world and God simultaneously, Jesus makes another point: Keep in mind even if you love the world, the world does not love you, as He says in John 15:18-19,
“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you.”
We are not orphans but rather citizens of another Kingdom: Heaven. And when the time is ripe, Paul writes, our Savior “will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body” (Philippians 3:20-21).
That is worth focusing on.
A door-keeper in the house of my God.—Psalm 84:10.
My soul! hast thou ever considered the blessedness of such an appointment, of such an office, when truly followed up? If Jesus indeed appoint, and both teach the nature of it, and give grace to the faithful discharge of it, then is it most honourable, and truly blessed. A door-keeper is supposed to know the several apartments of the house, and to be well acquainted with his Lord and Master, in whose service he ministers. He is supposed also to know who goeth out, and who cometh in; whether his Lord be at home, and how his fellow-servants are employed in their ministry. And if he be a faithful door-keeper, he will willingly open to none but such as his Lord approves, but most gladly show all that come in his Lord’s name, and are welcome to his Lord, the way to his Lord’s presence and his Lord’s table. What sayest thou, my soul, to such an office? Surely, to be “an hewer of wood, and a drawer of water, in the service of the sanctuary,” is an honourable employment; and how much more to be “a door-keeper in the house of God!” The man after God’s own heart was so much delighted with the thought of God’s house, that he seemed to grudge the constant abode of the birds that made their nests at the altar. Poor David, though a king in Israel, could only now and then go up to the house of God, but these birds rested there. And under the full impression of the happiness resulting from a constant residence, he broke out in a hymn of praise: “Blessed are they that dwell in thy house,” whose home, whose abode, whose constant employment is there; for “they will be still praising thee.” Pause, my soul! hast thou the same views as David? Consider wherein this blessedness consists: the servants of the Lord, who dwell in their Lord’s house, are blessed, not because they are in the receipt of wages; not because their bountiful Lord provides a table for them; but because they live in the constant enjoyment of his divine presence! and because the Lord gives them employment, and his praises are their meat and drink; “they will be still praising thee,” saith David. Yes! the house of God is then a heaven below, where the servants of the Lord find their joy and happiness from the everlasting praises of God and the Lamb! But alas! if the servants of the Lord’s house, in any or all of the departments, from the highest to the lowest, dwell there, not to glorify the Lord and promote his honour, but to serve their own bellies, and, like the fingerpost to the traveller, stand to direct him in his way, but move not a step themselves, so far from a blessedness, they will find in the end of their labours, that the heaviest of all condemnations will follow! Blessed Lord Jesus! thou wert a door-keeper indeed to thine own house, that in all things thou mightst have the preeminence! Thou, for the love thou hadst to thy Master, to thy church, thy wife, and thy children, didst, like the Jewish servant, submit to have thine ear bored at the door-post, to go out no more free, but to remain for ever. Oh! for grace to cry out, in the review of such love as passeth knowledge, “I had rather be a door-keeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.” (See Exod. 21:5, 6.)
Who is Jesus Christ? Our State of Theology survey reveals what American adults and evangelicals believe about Christianity, truth, and ethics. The results are now available from our 2020 survey, conducted in partnership with Lifeway Research.
The person and work of Christ is central to the Christian faith. While the Bible plainly declares that Christ is truly God and truly man, critics have often said that Jesus was a great teacher and nothing more. The State of Theology survey reveals that 52 percent of adults in the United States hold this view.
While it may be unsurprising that the majority of the general U.S. population rejects the deity of Christ, our 2020 survey results present an eye-opening reality: 30 percent of evangelicals* now agree with the statement, “Jesus was a great teacher, but he was not God.” We asked Ligonier Teaching Fellow Dr. Stephen Nichols to explain the significance of this finding.
If Jesus’ claim to be God is false, then He was either delusional or deceptive, but He could not have been a good teacher. Moreover, Christ can only be our Mediator and Redeemer if He is God and man. To negotiate the deity of Christ is to abandon the gospel.
These survey results suggest an urgent need for clear biblical teaching on the person and work of Jesus Christ. There is much work to be done in this age of confusion, but we hope the findings of this survey will serve the church in its calling to reach more people with the faithful proclamation of God’s Word.
* Evangelicals were defined by this survey as people who strongly agreed with the following four statements:
- The Bible is the highest authority for what I believe.
- It is very important for me personally to encourage non-Christians to trust Jesus Christ as their Savior.
- Jesus Christ’s death on the cross is the only sacrifice that could remove the penalty of my sin.
- Only those who trust in Jesus Christ alone as their Savior receive God’s free gift of eternal salvation.
Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving.
During World War I, the French decided to take one of the enemy’s strategic strongholds. But the enemy’s lines were so defended by trenches, parapets, and barbed wire that it was virtually impossible for the infantry to get through.
But the attacking general had amassed a large amount of powerful artillery. He began to fire round after round of the most explosive shells at them. With this excessive strength, a continuous fire was kept up for more than five hours, until all the trenches were covered, palisades thrown down, and wire entanglements blown to pieces. The infantry was then able to enter and capture the base with ease.
This incident is analogous to spiritual warfare. There are positions of the adversary that cannot be stormed or starved. There are defenses which seem impregnable. But with a barrage of constant prayer, the defenses can be lowered, and souls will be ready to surrender to the Lord. Let us be productive soldiers in the battle against sin and Satan.
 Jeremiah, D. (2002). Sanctuary: finding moments of refuge in the presence of God (p. 270). Nashville, TN: Integrity Publishers.
The CBO update also predicts that the federal debt will equal 104 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) next year and will reach 108 percent of GDP by 2030.
The CBO update also shows that the Social Security, Medicare, and highway trust funds will all be bankrupt by 2031. This will put pressure on Congress to bail out the trust funds thus further increasing the debt.
This year’s spike in federal spending was caused by the multi-trillion dollar coronavirus relief/economic stimulus bills passed by Congress and signed by the president. However, spending had already increased by $937 billion from the time President Trump was sworn in until the lockdown.
Federal spending is unlikely to be reduced no matter who wins the presidential election. Former Vice President Joe Biden has proposed increasing spending on everything from Obamacare to militarism to “green” cronyism. Yet some progressives are attacking Biden for being to “stingy” in his spending proposals. Even more distressing is how few progressives are critical of Biden’s support for increasing the military budget.
With some notable exceptions, such as his infrastructure plan, President Trump is not proposing any massive new spending programs. However, he Is not promising to stop increasing, much less cut, federal spending.
Most Republicans have abandoned their Obama-era opposition to deficit spending to support President Trump’s spending increases. This repeats a pattern where Republicans oppose deficit spending under a Democrat president but decide that “deficits don’t matter” when a Republican is sitting in the Oval Office. If Biden wins in November, Republicans will likely once again discover that deficits do matter, especially if Democrats also gain control of the Senate.
Government spending forcibly takes resources from the private sector, where they are used to produce goods and services desired by consumers, and puts them in the hands of politicians and bureaucrats. This distorts the market, reducing efficiency and lowering the people’s standard of living. This, combined with pressure to monetize the federal debt, causes the Federal Reserve to pump money into the economy leading to a boom-bust business cycle.
Unless Congress begins reducing spending, the coming economic crisis will be even worse. The logical place to start cutting spending is ending all unnecessary overseas commitments, corporate welfare, and shuttling down all unconstitutional federal agencies — starting with the Department of Education.
They are beloved on the right and ridiculed on the left. Now, in their new book called Uprising, sisters Lynnette Hardaway and Rochelle Richardson are speaking out and telling their truth in a passionate style that has made them famous.
You know them better as Diamond and Silk. They burst onto the scene five years ago with their entertaining and very political points of view. Since then they’ve turned into Internet sensations. Their blunt tell-it-like-it-is approach has won them a huge following. “We’re not politically correct, we’re politically direct.” Diamond tells CBN News. “You can say we’re two black chicks who are down with politics that love this country, love America.”
If you follow them, you also know they feel pretty good about Donald Trump, too. Their journey to supporting Trump and attaining fame is chronicled in their new book which is a look at how two regular working-class people made it big in America. As two preacher’s kids, their thankfulness starts at the top.
“We had no plans for any of this. None of it,” Diamond says. “It just all snowballed into what you see today. God is the author of our lives.” Silk chimes in with a life motto they live by. “We often say that God would not have brought us to it if he wasn’t going to see us through it. That’s why we say it’s a divine order. We were created for such a time as this.”
It’s been a long, wild ride for sure. Growing up with strict parents, they went through a rebellious stage and both got pregnant out of wedlock. Growing up black, politics was standard Democrat fare. Then over the years, the sisters began questioning the party’s policies. And during the Obama years, they made a change.
“As black people, we were conditioned to vote one way,” Diamond explained. “And that was for the Democrat Party, whoever was the head of the ticket, but we found that just because you’re black, it didn’t mean you have to vote Democrat. That’s what we did. We got off of what we call that, ‘Democrat Plantation.'” Then along came Donald Trump and they jumped on the bus. “The president is cleaning house up there and he’s draining the swamp,” says Diamond.
“Even the rats that are clogging the pipes have to go. The left do not like that. So what would they do? They will do everything in their power to try to destroy him and try to destroy him in the eyes of the American people, but it’s not going to work.” Silk, with her trademark expression pipes in with, “That’s right!”
The left has been trying to take down Diamond and Silk, too. As two outspoken conservative black women, they’ve been subjected to negative media treatment. This book pushes back against the media narrative about them. “The media is so nasty, especially the left-wing media,” Diamond says. “They are so nasty when you don’t go along with their narrative. You have to understand what they’ve done to black America is they depicted black America as to how they want them to be: as left-leaning liberals.”
They also faced censorship, such as bans on Facebook for posting supposedly “unsafe” content.” Facebook later “apologized” but to this day still puts fact-check warnings on Diamond and Silk content. They’ve had problems with Twitter and YouTube as well. During a congressional hearing on the matter, Democrats tried to question their complaints. The sisters weren’t having any of it saying, “You’re not going to brush us off and dismiss us that we don’t have merit here. These people censored us for no reason. They put limitations on our page for no reason, and that was wrong.”
Anyone, especially Democrats and liberals who are trying to put limits on the free speech of this dynamic duo, will be in for a rude awakening. “They wanted us to be a particular way in the eyes of everybody else because two black women, two black, strong conservative women, went against the narrative of the left,” Silk said.
The famous sisters from North Carolina spend part of their time working on a campaign called, “Ditch and Switch,” encouraging Americans to follow their lead and leave the Democrat Party. As you can imagine, Trump has invited them to spread the word at his rallies and they even got an exclusive private tour of the White House residence by the president and First Lady. Not bad for two sisters who could never have dreamed or imagined all this, fighting through the hurdles of childhood, stereotyping, and attacks on their character.
At times, you would think they feel like they have a target on their back but they don’t see it that way. “I don’t feel like it’s a target on my back, they got the chip on their shoulder,” Diamond says. “That’s right! Silk exclaims. Diamond continues. “You see, they don’t have any comeback for the truth that you’re spilling because then they talk about your skin, they talk about your hair, they talk about your skin color. Let me tell you something: that’s the chip on their shoulder. I don’t have to be what they want me to be. I can be what God created us to be. He created this boldness in us.”
America has surely taken notice of them and their powerful message.
“The Patriot Post” (https://patriotpost.us)