Daily Archives: February 23, 2021

Greenwald: House Dems Demand To Know Why Cable Outlets Aren’t Censoring Right-Wing News | ZeroHedge

Authored by Glenn Greenwald via greenwald.substack.com,

Not even two months into their reign as the majority party that controls the White House and both houses of Congress, key Democrats have made clear that one of their top priorities is censorship of divergent voices. On Saturday, I detailed how their escalating official campaign to coerce and threaten social media companies into more aggressively censoring views that they dislike — including by summoning social media CEOs to appear before them for the third time in less than five months — is implicating, if not already violating, core First Amendment rights of free speech.

Now they are going further — much further. The same Democratic House Committee that is demanding greater online censorship from social media companies now has its sights set on the removal of conservative cable outlets, including Fox News, from the airwaves.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee on Monday announced a February 24 hearing, convened by one of its sub-committees, entitled “Fanning the Flames: Disinformation and Extremism in the Media.” Claiming that “the spread of disinformation and extremism by traditional news media presents a tangible and destabilizing threat,” the Committee argues: “Some broadcasters’ and cable networks’ increasing reliance on conspiracy theories and misleading or patently false information raises questions about their devotion to journalistic integrity.”

Since when is it the role of the U.S. Government to arbitrate and enforce precepts of “journalistic integrity”? Unless you believe in the right of the government to regulate and control what the press says — a power which the First Amendment explicitly prohibits — how can anyone be comfortable with members of Congress arrogating unto themselves the power to dictate what media outlets are permitted to report and control how they discuss and analyze the news of the day?

But what House Democrats are doing here is far more insidious than what is revealed by that creepy official announcement. Two senior members of that Committee, Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Silicon-Valley) and Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-CA) also sent their own letters to seven of the nation’s largest cable providers — Comcast, AT&T, Spectrum, Dish, Verizon, Cox and Altice — as well as to digital distributors of cable news (Roku, Amazon, Apple, Google and Hulu) demanding to know, among other things, what those cable distributors did to prevent conservative “disinformation” prior to the election and after — disinformation, they said, that just so happened to be spread by the only conservative cable outlets: Fox, Newsmax and OANN.

In case there was any doubt about their true goal — coercing these cable providers to remove all cable networks that feature conservative voices, including Fox (just as their counterparts on that Committee want to ban right-wing voices from social media) — the House Democrats in their letter said explicitly what they are after: namely, removal of those conservative outlets by these cable providers:

Congresswoman Eshoo boasted on her official site about these efforts, lauding herself and McNerney for “urging 12 cable, satellite, and streaming TV companies to combat the spread of misinformation and requesting more information about their actions to address misinformation, disinformation, conspiracy theories, and lies spread through channels they host.”

For the last four years, we were inundated with media messaging that Trump posed an unprecedented threat to press freedoms. The Washington Post even flamboyantly adopted a new motto to implicitly ratify that accusation (while claiming it was not Trump-specific). Other than the indictment of Julian Assange — which most Washington Democrats cheered — what did the Trump administration do in the way of attacking press freedoms that remotely compares to Democrats abusing their majoritarian power to force the removal of conservative cable outlets from the airwaves, just days after doing the same with dissident voices online?

There is not a peep of protest from any liberal journalists. Do any of the people who spent four years pretending to care so deeply about the vital role of press freedom have anything to say about this full frontal attack by the majority party in Washington on news outlets opposed to their political agenda and ideology?

Evidently not. While many conservative outlets are covering this story, it is difficult to find any liberal outlets writing about it at all. An articlefrom The New York Times was one exception, though it largely attempted to justify these censorship efforts, with paragraph after paragraph purporting to demonstrate the dangerous misinformation spread by these channels. The only nods to the dangers of press freedoms in the article came from statements by Fox News and a GOP member of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

Revealingly, these same two members of Congress who sent this threatening letter to cable providers said during the Trump years that freedom of the press must be safeguarded at all costs. “The First Amendment prohibits Congress from making laws that abridge the freedom of the press, and we cherish our country’s culture of free expression,” they intoned when writing to the FCC in 2019 to complain that Russian news outlets were concealing their affiliation with the Kremlin. “We’re not requesting any press censorship,” they assured the FCC under Trump. Yet they are clearly doing exactly that now.

In a statement he emailed to me and publicly posted, FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr denounced the Democrats’ actions as a “marked departure from First Amendment norms.” He said “it is a chilling transgression of the free speech rights that every media outlet in this country enjoys.” In response to my inquiries, Commissioner Carr added in a separate statement to me:

The greatest threat to free speech in America today is not any law passed by the government—the First Amendment stands as a strong bulwark against that form of censorship by state action.  The threat comes in the form of legislating by letterhead.  Politicians have realized that they can silence the speech of those with different political viewpoints by public bullying.  The letter sent by two senior Democrats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee to cable companies and other regulated entities, and the Committee’s own hearing this week on “disinformation in the media,” are the latest examples.  They are singling out selected newsrooms for their coverage of political events and sending a clear message that these media outlets will pay a price if they do not align their viewpoints with Democrat orthodoxy.  That is a chilling transgression of free speech and journalistic freedom.  No government official has any business inquiring about the ‘moral principles’ that guide a private entity’s decision about what news to carry.

Carr’s GOP colleague on the FCC, Commissioner Nathan Simington, similarly accused House Democrats of seeking to “intimidate into silence those who would distribute on their platforms disfavored points of view.”

The way Democrats justify this to themselves is important to consider. They do not, of course, explicitly acknowledge that they are engaged in authoritarian assaults on free speech and a free press. Not even the most despotic tyrants like to think of themselves in that way. All tyrants concoct theories and excuses to justify their censorship as noble and necessary.

Indeed, the justifying script Democrats are using here is the one most commonly employed by autocrats around the world to silence their critics. Those they seek to silence are not merely expressing a different view, but are dangerous. They are not merely advocating alternative ideologies but are destabilizing society with lies, fake news, and speech that deliberately incites violence, subversion and domestic terrorism.

In her boastful posting, Rep. Eshoo says her efforts targeting these cable outlets are necessary because “misinformation on TV has led to our current polluted information environment that radicalizes individuals to commit seditious acts and rejects public health best practices, among other issues in our public discourse.” This is the rationale invoked by virtually every repressive state to imprison journalists and ban media outlets.

The Democrats sound a great deal like the Egyptian regime of Gen. Abdel el-Sisi. Just two weeks ago, Sisi’s regime finally released an Al Jazeera journalist who had been imprisoned for four years based on accusations that he had “spread false news” and was guilty of “incitement against state institutions and broadcasting false news with the aim of spreading chaos.” Sound familiar? It should, since that is precisely what House Democrats are saying to ennoble their multi-pronged assault on free expression.

Accusing one’s domestic opponents of being subversives and domestic terrorists is by far the most common way that despots on every continent justify their censorship and silencing campaigns of oppositional media outlets. In 2014, the French journalist Valeria Costa-Kostritsky warnedin the Index on Censorship that anti-terrorism laws and accusations of promoting subversion were becoming the primary means which authoritarian states from Turkey and Jordan to Russia and the UAE use to justify the silencing of journalists:

Anti-terror legislation seems to be the perfect tool for a state seeking to crack down on opposition. “It’s so elusive. You can [see] anything as terrorist propaganda. There needn’t be any evidence of violence, any praise of violence. Plus, if you blame someone for having a connection with the [Kurdistan Workers’ Party] the public buys that argument easily, especially in a country that is suffering from terrorism, as Turkey is,” said Sevgi Akarçeşme, former editor-in-chief of Turkey’s Today’s Zaman (the English-language edition of daily Zaman), who had her newspaper taken over by the government in March 2016.

A similar means used by repressive governments to silence disfavored media outlets is to claim they are promoting “extremism.” As Costa-Kostritsky detailed:

There’s another word one can use to browse through reports published on the [Mapping Media Freedom] map: “extremism”. Anti-extremism legislation is used to intimidate journalists in post-Soviet countries, particularly in Russia. On the map, of the 35 incidents flagged with “extremism”, 11 took place in Russia, and seven in Crimea, others include Belgium, Italy, Hungary, France and Spain. Five reports connecting the media to “extremism” took place during the first half of 2016. They include website closures and journalists being put on a list of extremists. In Russia, most cases using anti-extremism legislations against journalists happen via Roskomnadzor, the national media regulator.

When China arrests journalists it typically justifies its actions by accusing them of fomenting extremism that jeopardizes national security.

And accusing journalists of spreading “fake news” — always a dangerously vague term from its inception — is equally commonplace when government authorities want to silence media outlets. The Washington Post reported that “as 2019 draws to a close, there are 30 journalists in jail worldwide on charges of ‘false news’ — or, as it’s also called these days, ‘fake news.’” In sum:

It has now become commonplace to throw around fake-news accusations in the United States. But in other countries around the world — like Egypt, Turkey, Somalia and Cameroon — such charges can have very chilling and stifling impacts on the press, according to an annual report by the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists.

In Egypt — where General-turned-President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi has been overseeing a crackdown that human rights groups say is harsher than any before — there are 21 journalists in jail for allegedly publishing “false news,” according to the CPJ’s data. In practice, press freedom advocates say, these charges stem from a simple fact: The journalists published news that Sisi didn’t like.

In a passage that the Post would only publish about foreign countries but never about House Democrats, even though it now applies equally, they observed: “There is a serious global problem of disinformation spreading online and sowing distrust and sectarianism. The problem, say press advocates, is that the laws regulating fake news all too often are a means of stifling the media rather than fostering a more transparent environment online.”

This framework is hardly rare in the west either. When the Obama administration collaborated with the UK Government in 2013 to detain my husband David Miranda at Heathrow Airport in connection with the work he was doing in the Snowden reporting, they cited an anti-terrorism law to justify his detention, and repeatedly threatened to prosecute him for terrorism if he did not cooperate by providing all of his passwords to them. He ultimately prevailed in his lawsuit against the U.K. Government on the ground that it constitutes an illegal assault on press freedoms and human rights to abuse anti-terrorism frameworks to intimidate or silence journalists.

Justifying the silencing of journalists by accusing them of inciting domestic terrorism and extremism is now the most common means used globally for censoring the press. The Committee to Protect Journalists in 2013 said they had “tracked a significant rise in journalist imprisonments.” The culprit, said the group, was “the expansion of anti-terrorism and national security laws worldwide” after the 9/11 attack, which had been repeatedly abused to criminalize media outlets. “The number of journalists jailed worldwide hit 232 in 2012, 132 of whom were held on anti-terror or other national security charges.” In sum: “CPJ’s analysis has found that governments have exploited these laws to silence critical journalists.”

Are there conspiracy theories and disinformation sometimes found on the conservative cable outlets which House Democrats want taken off the air? Of course there are: all media outlets disseminate conspiracy theories and fake news at times. MSNBC and CNN spent four years endorsing the most deranged conspiracy theory imaginable, one with very toxic roots in the Cold War: namely, the McCarthyite script that the Kremlin had taken over control of key U.S. institutions through sexual blackmail over the President, invasions into the nation’s heating systemand electric grid, and criminal conspiracy between Moscow and the Trump campaign to hack into Democrats’ emails.

All of that was false, just as the one-month tale told over and over by the media about a pro-Trump mob murdering Brian Sicknick by bludgeoning him to death with a fire extinguisher was false — a story which remains unretracted or corrected by most who spread it.

Just imagine if, during the Trump years, the GOP Senate had abused its power to bully cable outlets into removing MSNBC from their platforms, or banning liberal journalists and activists from using social media platforms, on the grounds that they were spreading conspiracy theories and fake news. It is hard to overstate how extreme the rhetoric would have been that Trump and the Republicans were engaged in authoritarian measures to destroy free speech and a free press.

And I would have joined in those denunciations (as I did with the Assange prosecution): as much as I loathe so much of what those outlets do, it is not the role of the government to regulate let alone silence them. The corrective is for journalists to rebuild trust and faith with the public by exposing their misinformation and proving to the public that they will do accurate and reliable reporting regardless of which faction is aggrandized or angered.

But corporate media outlets and Democrats (excuse the redundancy) who spent the last four years posturing as virulent defenders of press freedoms never meant it. Like so much of what they claimed to believe, it was fraudulent. The proof is that they are now mute, if not supportive, as Democrats use their status as majority party to launch an assault against press freedoms far more egregious than anything Trump got close to doing.

— Read on www.zerohedge.com/political/greenwald-house-democrats-targeting-right-wing-cable-outlets-are-assaulting-core-press

Here’s How Much Wasteful Spending Is In The New $1.9 Trillion Stimulus Bill | ZeroHedge

By Adam Andrzejewski, CEO/Founder of OpenTheBooks.com, first published in Forbes

Over the weekend, the U.S. House posted a first draft version of the “American Rescue Plan Act of 2021” – a $1.9 trillion emergency aid package to help America recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Previous legislation has already provided at least $4 trillion in funds for testing, paid family leave, small business relief, direct payments to individuals and families, the Kennedy Center, and a plethora of non-related COVID “relief.”

Since House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s leadership team essentially wrote the bill, our auditors at OpenTheBooks.com found what House Democrats consider coronavirus-recovery “essential” spending:

  • $1.5 million earmarked for the Seaway International Bridge, which connects New York to Canada. Senate Leader Chuck Schumer hails from New York.

  • $50 million for “family planning” – going to non-profits, i.e. Planned Parenthood, or public entities, including for “services for adolescents[.]”

  • $852 million for AmeriCorps, AmeriCorps Vista, and the National Senior Service Corps – the Corporation for National and Community Service – civic volunteer agencies. This includes $9 million for the AmeriCorp inspector general to conduct oversight and audits of the largess. AmeriCorps received a $1.1 billion FY2020 appropriation.

People of goodwill can debate each of these goals, but is it truly emergency spending or funding related to COVID?

For example, what is the public purpose for a hike in the minimum wage to $15 per hour – which the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) says will cost the economy 1.4 million jobs?

Certainly, the coronavirus stimulus bill does provide $473 billion in payments to individuals, $75 billion in cash for vaccines, $26 billion to restaurants, $15 billion to help fund airline payrolls, and another $7.2 billion in Paycheck Protection Program funding for small businesses.

However, The Wall Street Journal editorial board estimated that only $825 billion was directly related to COVID-relief and $1 trillion was “expansions of progressive programs, pork, and unrelated policy changes.”

For example, separately, our auditors found that $470 million in the bill doubles the budgets of The Institute of Museum and Library Services and the National Endowment of the Arts and the Humanities.

  • $200 million in the bill to The Institute of Museum and Library Services (FY2019 budget: $230 million). This agency is so small that it doesn’t even employ an inspector general.

  • $270 million funds the National Endowment of the Arts and the Humanities (FY2019 budget: $253 million) – In 2017, our study showed eighty-percent of all non-profit grant making flowed to well-heeled organizations with over $1 million in assets.

A quick spotlight on agencies and entities receiving “coronavirus recovery” money in the bill includes:

  • $350 billion to bailout the 50 States and the District of Columbia. The allocation formula uses the unemployment rate in the fourth quarter of 2020. Therefore, states like New York and California –who had strict economic lockdown policies and high unemployment– will get bailout money. States like Florida and South Dakota – who were open for business – will get less.

  • $128.5 billion to fund K-12 education. The CBO determined that most of the money in education will be distributed in 2022 through 2028, when the pandemic is over.

  • $86 billion to save nearly 200 pension plans insured by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. There are no reforms mandated while these badly managed pensions are bailed-out. Many of these pension plans are co-managed by unions.

  • $50 billion goes to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). A portion of these funds is earmarked to reimburse up to $7,000 for funeral and burial costs related to COVID deaths.

  • $39.6 billion to higher education. This amount is three times the money – $12.5 billion – that higher ed received with the massive CARES Act funding from last March.  

  • $1.5 billion for Amtrak – the National Railroad Passenger Corporation. In FY2020, Congress appropriated $3 billion for Amtrak ($2 billion in annual appropriations, plus an additional $1 billion in the CARES Act COVID relief bill). In the three years before the pandemic, AMTRAK lost $392 million – even after a $5 billion taxpayer subsidy (FY2017-FY2019).

We reached out to Speaker Pelosi for comment and will update the piece if there is a response.

During the past three years, Republicans and Democrats have helped drain the U.S. Treasury from the left and the right. Our national debt increased from $10 trillion (2008) to $19.6 trillion (2016) to $23.6 trillion (2020) and stands at $28 trillion today.

Continuing coronavirus responses and bloated legislation will drive the national debt much higher.

— Read on www.zerohedge.com/political/heres-how-much-wasteful-spending-new-19-trillion-stimulus-bill

Texas Power, Green New Deal, Paris Climate Accord & Agenda 2030 — VCY America

Date:  February 23, 2021  
Host: Jim Schneider   
​Guest: Tom DeWeese 
MP3  ​​​| Order

https://embed.sermonaudio.com/player/a/223212213257785/

Many of you are aware of the major winter storm that knocked out power to millions in Texas.  While some say that global warming experts were too busy predicting warmer winters for Texas to see the snow, others like Senator Chuck Schumer are blaming the power outage on the state’s failure to address climate change.  While some say the Green New Deal needs to be more actively pursued, the governor of Texas is warning that this is what the entire country will go through if we accept the Green New Deal.

Tom DeWeese is the president of American Policy Center.  He’s one of the nation’s leading advocates of individual liberty, free enterprise, private property rights, personal privacy, back-to-basics education and American sovereignty and independence, and protecting our Constitutionally-guaranteed rights.  Tom is author of Sustainable: The War on Free Enterprise, Private Property and Individuals and Erase, a political novel.

Chuck Schumer communicated that Texas thought they could ‘go it alone’ while building a system that ignored climate change.  Tom called that ‘incredible spin’ because Texas has put a large amount of their energy on the grid through solar and wind power which is what the Green New Deal calls for.  It’s been proven time and again that these two power sources do not provide enough energy to rely completely upon them alone.  With wind turbines frozen and solar panels covered in snow, they couldn’t provide the needed energy.

President Biden has the U.S. back in the Paris Climate Accord.  Jim provided audio of climate czar John Kerry as he addressed the Munich Security Conference and told them that largely because of President Trump, 3 of the 12 years that scientists said the earth had left to mitigate this problem, were wasted.  According to Tom, Kerry’s comments basically amounted to using the tactic of fear via climate change for increasing government control.

Tom then had listeners consider the Green New Deal that’s the driving force behind what’s called, Agenda 2030.  He noted that this deal has 4 pillars.  The first pillar is its economic bill of rights that guarantees full employment, guaranteeing a living wage, medical care for all, tuition free education, and affordable housing.  

Tom then told the audience, ‘What does any of that have to do with protecting the environment?  Nothing.  It is an economic control from the top and the word we used to use was, communism.’   

Other aspects of this topic that were examined included: HR-1, the Keystone XL pipeline, Bill Gates, and Article V, along with comments from callers around the nation.

More Information

americanpolicy.org

Texas Power, Green New Deal, Paris Climate Accord & Agenda 2030 — VCY America

February 23 Evening Quotes of The Day

Delays Are Not Denials
Psalm 27:14; 33:20; 37:34; 40:1; 130:5–6; 20:22; Isaiah 8:17; 25:9

You must distinguish between delays and denials. God may delay us, when he does not deny us; he may defer the giving of a mercy, and yet at last give the very mercy begged.

THOMAS BROOKS

Ritzema, E., & Vince, E. (Eds.). (2013). 300 Quotations for Preachers from the Puritans. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

Why Sacraments Are Visible Signs
1 Corinthians 10:16; 1 Peter 3:21

The truest and most proper cause why sacraments are instituted under visible signs seems partly to be God’s goodness, and partly also man’s weakness. For very hardly do we reach unto the knowledge of heavenly things if, without visible form (as they are in their own nature pure and excellent), they are laid before our eyes. But they are better and more easily understood if they are represented unto us under the figure of earthly things, that is to say, under signs familiarly known unto us.

HEINRICH BULLINGER

Ritzema, E. (2013). 300 Quotations for Preachers from the Reformation. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

February 23 Evening Verse of The Day

8:31 If God is for us expresses not a hypothetical scenario, but a sure reality: God really is for us. OT believers had the same assurance: “I fear no danger, for you are with me” (Ps 23:4; cp. Ps 27:1). “This I know: God is for me” (Ps 56:9). Who is against us? The opposition seems like a lot sometimes—the world, the flesh, Satan, secularists, false religions, our enemies—but God loves us and is sovereign. The Lord is our Shepherd, Maker of heaven and earth![1]


8:31 What then shall we say to these things. Vv. 28–30 may be primarily in view here, but they should not be separated from 1:16–8:27, and especially not from 8:1–27. “These things” embraces the whole display of free grace to lost sinners in the letter thus far.

who can be against us. There will certainly be opposition, but Paul’s point is that it lacks the ability to destroy faith. Since “God is for us,” victorious spiritual survival is assured. “For us” expresses the eternal commitment of almighty love that is spelled out in vv. 38, 39.[2]


8:31 who can be against us Up to this point in the letter Paul has repeatedly emphasized the opposition of the flesh, sin, and even the law to believers. Here Paul declares that what matters is not what is against them, but who is for them—God Himself.[3]


8:31 — If God is for us, who can be against us?

All kinds of people can “be against us,” causing us trouble and pain and sorrow. But nothing can ultimately triumph over us. God wins, and in Christ, we win with Him.[4]


8:31 Paul now asks a series of four rhetorical questions in relation to the eternal purpose of God. What then shall we say to these things? In essence, this verse is the conclusion Paul draws to the first eight chapters of Romans. What will our response be to what has been said? If God is for us, who can be against us? This is not one of the four rhetorical questions but rather the answer to the first question. Paul’s only response is he has complete assurance that the eternal purpose of God will come to fruition because God is God. Who can be against us? does not mean that we have no adversaries. Verses 35 and 36 list a great number of adversaries. By this Paul means that there is no adversary too great to thwart the eternal purpose of God.[5]


8:31 When we consider these unbreakable links in the golden chain of redemption, the conclusion is inevitable! If God is for us, in the sense that He has marked us out for Himself, then no one can be successful against us. If Omnipotence is working on our behalf, no lesser power can defeat His program.[6]


8:31 “What then shall we say to these things” This was a favorite phrase with Paul which reflects his diatribe form of presentation (cf. 3:5; 4:1; 6:1; 7:7; 9:14, 30). This question relates to the previously given truths. It is uncertain how far back it refers. It could refer to 3:21–31 or 8:1 or 8:18. Because of the use of “therefore” in 8:1 and the context, 8:18 is probably a good guess.

© “If” This is a FIRST CLASS CONDITIONAL SENTENCE which is assumed to be true from the author’s perspective or for his literary purposes. Amazing, amidst all our struggles with sin, God is for us!

© “who is against us” The pronoun “who” is repeated in vv. 33, 34 & 35. It refers to Satan. This paragraph from 31–39 is using the OT literary technique of the Prophets, a court case (cf. Micah 1 & 6). YHWH takes His people to court for spiritual adultery. It is an allusion to Isa. 50:8–9.

Notice the legal terms: “against” v. 31; “a charge” v. 33; “justifies” v. 33; “condemns” v. 34; and “intercedes” v. 34. God is the Judge. Christ is the defense lawyer. Satan is the prosecuting attorney (but he is silent.) Angels fill the courtroom as observers (cf. 1 Cor. 4:9; Eph. 2:7; 3:10).[7]


31. What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who is against us?

What Paul means is, “To what conclusion do these things lead us?” The expression “these things” probably refers not only to the matters mentioned in verses 28–30, or even 18–30, but to everything the apostle has so far written in this epistle. What, then, is the summary of that which Paul has been saying in this letter?

He has pointed out that the one thing a sinner needs above all else is right standing with God, and that this right standing is not obtainable by human exertion or merit. That inestimable blessing is God’s free gift, and there is only one way to obtain it, namely, by faith. See 1:17; 3:24, 28, 30; 4:1, 2, 7, 8; 5:1, 8, 9; 7:24, 25; 8:1. The blessing of salvation has been earned for everyone, whether Jew or Gentile, who will, by God’s power and grace, repose his trust in the Savior. It was he who earned salvation for his people by the shedding of his blood. They are saved by his substitutionary death, his resurrection, and his intercession (1:4, 5; 3:21–26; 4:25–5:1, 2, 8–21; 6:23; 7:24; 8:1–4; and see also 8:34).

If, then, God is on our side, as he clearly proved by what he did and does for us, who is against us? Not as if all the enemies have already been swept away, but what is any enemy able to achieve against us. God being for us?

When Paul says, “If God is for us,” he is not calling in doubt God’s protecting care, love, and promises. On the contrary, this “if” means, “If … as he certainly is!”

In light of all this the opening question, “What, then, shall we say in response to these things?” will have to be answered with a very strong, “We have nothing to fear. Victory is certainly on our side.”[8]


Ver. 31. What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

If God be for us none can be effectually against us:—First, here’s the supposition “If God be for us.” This “if” is not an if of doubting or ambiguity, but rather of certainty and assurance. That God is, indeed, for all true believers, cannot be denied (Psa. 46:7; 124:1; 118:6, 7). There are two manner of ways especially wherein God may be said to be for His servants: First, by way of allowance, God is so far said to be with His people, as He does own them and approve of them. And this again extends itself to three particulars more, wherein it is considerable: First, the persons of His servants, God is for them (Psa. 147:10, 11; Mal 3:16). Secondly, He is for them in their principles; the doctrines, and truths, and graces which are eminent in them, and whereby they are acted and moved. These God does own them in and approve them for; whatever is of God’s planting, it is of God’s owning; He will maintain His own work. Thirdly, He is for them also in their practices and actions. The ways of good men as good, and as living in the power of religion, are so far forth allowed of by God. He that in these things serveth Christ is acceptable to God and approved of men, as the apostle speaks in chap. 14:18. Secondly, God is for all true believers, not only by way of allowance, but also by way of assistance; not only to own them, but to help them, and to be useful to them for their greatest advantage. The ground hereof is laid in two particulars: First, in regard of His interest which He has in them, as they do belong unto Him; interest it does engage affection, and so consequently endeavour and assistance. Secondly, there is not only his relation, but also His covenant; persons who are confederates, they are assistant one to another. For answer hereunto we must say thus much, that God is indeed with His servants, but with these qualifications:—First, in His own time. Secondly, in His own manner. Thirdly, upon His own terms and conditions we must take in that also. And that is of faith, and repentance, and new obedience, and close walking with Him, as we may see (2 Chron. 15:2). It holds also as to engagement; if God be with us it concerns us to be with Him, and to carry ourselves answerably towards Him we should own Him, and all that is His; it is that which He both requires and expects from us. There are two things in the world which God is especially interested in, and whatever is done for them He counts as done to Himself, His truth, and His children; goodness itself, and those who are good. Now, therefore, when we own these, and are for them, we own Him, and shall have the reward of it bestowed upon us. The second is the inference, or that which is deduced from it, in these words, “Who can be against us?” Who can be against us? What a strange question is this? Who rather cannot be against? There’s none who are so likely or ready to have any against them than those who are most for God, or God for them. Let any men look after religion, and they shall be sure to have enough against them. First, who can be against us? That is, who can be rationally against us? It is not so much what any are de facto, but what they are de jure, not what they are in the thing itself, but what they ought to be, and what is fitting for them. Secondly, who can be against us? That is, who can be against us effectually. All the enmity of men, it is a limited and confined enmity, because their hearts, and hands, and affections, and endeavours, are all at God’s disposing. First, Satan, the great and grand enemy of all, he shall not prevail against us. Secondly, evil men who are subservient and instrumental to Satan, they shall not prevail neither in all their attempts and endeavours in the Church. Now there is a threefold ground whereupon this truth does proceed and may be made good to us: First, from God’s omnipotency. Secondly, from God’s immutability; therefore those whom God is for can have none to prevail against them, because those whom He is truly for He is for them for ever. Thirdly, from God’s eternity; He is one who ever continues, therefore those whom He is for, they are sure to have none against them. The third and last may be this, Who can be against us? That is, who can be safely against us? who can be against us with any convenience, or peace, or comfort, or contentment to themselves. (Thos. Horton, D.D.)

God for us:—“These things.” The only question as to the meaning of this expression is, whether it covers the whole Epistle, or is to be confined to this chapter or to the immediately preceding verses. In any case the emphasis of the appeal must be chiefly on the last—things which are so much above the reach of the carnal mind, and so likely to produce a feeling of wonder or revolt. There the things are; they cannot be reasoned away. “We can do nothing against the truth, but for the truth.

  1. The Fact. The world will have much to say against the doctrines of grace. “But if God be for us,” then we can afford to have the world against us. The plan of mercy which determines the way of salvation may surpass all human wisdom and experience, but if it be God’s plan it will take effect. The method of grace by which the sinner’s heart is renewed may surpass the carnal judgment. Yet if it be God’s method it will work His purpose in spite of man’s ridicule and unbelief. The subserviency of Providence to the purposes of redemption will work itself out, though men may be blind to the issue. Now let us apply this to our—1. Doctrinal opinions. God is for us when our views are in accordance with the Scripture. Reason, experience, received opinions, learning and wisdom, may seem to be against us, but God is more than all. “Let God be true and every man a liar.” 2. The interest and safety of attainments and privileges of the believer’s state. The world has much to say upon the subject of the work of grace. There are some who resolve the facts of Christian experience into disease or deception. According to our view this work of grace is God’s most beautiful and costly work. Now, if we are indeed God’s workmanship, if what we call the work of grace be indeed the work of the Holy Spirit, then we may say in the view of the world’s contumely and scorn, “If God be for us, who then can be against us?” 3. The believer’s safety. The text does not imply the absence of danger and opposition. Both Scripture and experience teach us the contrary. The meaning is that nothing shall prevail against us (2 Chron. 32:7, 8). 4. The interest which believers have in the plan of Providence. According to the teaching of the apostle, the entire administration of this present world is determined in the interest of Christ and His Church. Yet how strangely does it appear to be contradicted by the facts around us. How often is the cause of slavery and tyranny seen to triumph over the cause of freedom or piety! But faith, when asked, What shall we say to these things? is still ready with its reply, “If God be for us, who can be against us?”
  2. Its influence. It will produce—1. An independence, in matters of conscience and religion, of human authority. Independence of man is necessary to a thorough dependence on God (Acts 4:19). Thus Luther, “Here I stand, I cannot recant; I rest on the Word of God. Let God see to it.” 2. A spirit of patience under the pressure of trial. If God is with us, on our side, why should we faint in our minds? 3. Confidence of the final triumph of the Christian’s interest, and the clearing up of all the dark clouds that rest upon the ways of God. Iniquity shall not always prevail. (P. Strutt.)

God is for us:

  1. The question supposes the existence of a combined and powerful hostility to the Christian. The Bible declares this, observation confirms it, and experience demonstrates it. The believer may be compares to an individual who has thrown off allegiance to his king, has disowned his country, and refuses obedience to its laws, yet continues to dwell in the land he had renounced, and hard by the sovereign he has foresworn. 1. Satan is against us. All his force, malice, subtlety, and skill, and all his myrmidons are marshalled in opposition to the interests of the child of God. 2. The world, too, is against us. It will never forgive the act by which we broke from it. Nor can it forget that the life of the Christian is a constant and solemn rebuke of it (John 15:18, 19). 3. Our own heart is against us.
  2. But God is for us. It was this assurance that calmed the fears and strengthened the faith of Abraham (Gen. 15:1); Isaac (Gen. 26:24); Elisha’s servant (2 Kings 6:15, 16); David (Psa. 27:1); Jeremiah (Jer. 1:17–19); and Paul (Acts 18:9, 10). And Christ’s last words were, “Lo, I am with you alway; even unto the end.” 1. God must be on the side of His people since He has, in an everlasting covenant, made Himself over to be their God. There is nothing in God, in His dealings, or in His providences, but what is on the side of His people. 2. Not the Father only, but the Son of God is also on our side. Has He not amply proved it? Who, when there was no eye to pity, and no arm to Save, undertook our cause, and embarked all His grace and glory in our salvation? 3. And so of the Holy Spirit. Who quickened us when we were dead; taught us when we were ignorant, comforted us when we were distressed? III. It may then well be asked, “Who can be against us?” The law cannot, for the Law-fulfiller has magnified and made it honourable. Justice cannot, for Jesus has met its demands, and His resurrection is a full discharge of all its claims; nor sin, nor Satan, nor men, nor suffering, nor death, since the condemnation of sin is removed, and Satan is vanquished, and the ungodly are restrained, and suffering works for good, and the sting of death is taken away. We will fear nothing, therefore, but the disobedience that grieves and the sin that offends God. Fearing this, we need fear nothing else (Isa. 41:10). Conclusion: 1. The subject, if most consolatory to the Christian, is, in its converse, a solemn one to the unregenerate. It is an awful thing not to have God for us. And if God is not for us there is no neutral course—He must be against us. 2. Would we always have God for us? then let us aim to be for God. God deals with us His creatures by an equitable rule (Lev. 26:27, 28). (O. Winslow, D.D.)

God for us:

  1. How God is for us. 1. Because He hath predestinated His people to be conformed to the image of His own dear Son. “No weapon which is formed against thee shall prosper,” &c. 2. He has called us. When Abraham left the land of his forefathers and went forth, not knowing whither he went, he was quite safe, because God had called him. 3. He has justified us. All the people of God are wrapped about with the righteousness of Christ, and God regards them with the same affection as that wherewith He loves His only-begotten Son. 4. He hath also glorified us, “for He hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.” He will also glorify us, for He hath prepared a kingdom for us from the foundation of the world. But though this brings in the context, I cannot bring out the depth of the meaning of how God is for us. He was for us before the worlds; He was for us, or else He would never have given His Son. He has been for us in many struggles—how could we have held on until now had it not been so? He is for us with all the omnipotence of His love and with all His boundless wisdom.
  2. Who are against us? 1. Man. How man has struggled against man! We do not in this age feel the cruelty of man to the same extent as the Reformers did, but in many cases we are misrepresented, slandered, abused, ridiculed for truth’s sake. Well did Jesus say, “Beware of men.” “Behold I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves.” But what are they all? Suppose every man were against you, you might say, as Athanasius did, “I have truth on my side, and therefore against the world I stand.” Of what use was the malice of men against Martin Luther? Men are only puppets moved by God’s hand; therefore be not afraid of them. Latimer greatly displeased Henry VIII. by his boldness in a sermon, and was ordered to make an apology on the following Sabbath. After reading his text he began:—“Hugh Latimer, dost thou know before whom thou art this day to speak? To the king’s most excellent majesty, who can take away thy life; therefore, take heed that thou speakest not a word that may displease; but then consider well, Hugh, from whence thou comest; upon whose message thou art sent! Even by the mighty God! who is all-present, and who beholdeth all thy ways, and who is able to cast thy soul into hell! Therefore, take care that thou deliverest thy message faithfully.” He then proceeded with the same sermon, but with more energy. Such courage should all God’s children show when they have to do with man. Modesty is very becoming, but an ambassador of God must recollect there are other virtues besides modesty. 2. The world. This world is like a great field covered with brambles and thorns and thistles, and the Christian is continually in danger of rending his garments or cutting his feet. Luther used to say there was no love lost between him and the world, for the world hated him and he hated it no less. Care little for this world, but think much of the world to come. This poor quicksand, get off it lest it swallow thee up; but yonder rock of ages, build thou on it, and thou shalt never suffer loss. 3. The flesh, the worst of the three. We should never need to fear man nor the world if we had not this to contend with. Some have an irritable temper, others a covetous disposition. Some have to fight against levity, others against pride or despondency. But despite all this we shall one day be found without fault before the throne of God. 4. The devil. He knows our weak points, he understands how to cover up the hook with the bait; and how to take one this way and the other the opposite. But what matters the devil when we have this text. The devil is mighty, but God is almighty.

III. Who are not against us. 1. God the Father. He cannot be against His own children. 2. God the Son. How sweetly He has been for us! The Cross says, “Christ is for you,” and to-day the tenor of His plea before the throne is, “I am for you.” When He shall come a second time the trumpet will ring out, “Christ is for you.” 3. The Holy Spirit as the Comforter, the Illuminator, the giver of life. 4. The holy angels, who are our ministers. 5. The law of God, once our enemy, is now our friend. Conclusion:—1. There is an opposite to all this. If God be against you, who can be for you? 2. But if God be for you, you ought to be for God. If God has espoused your cause, ought you not to espouse His? (C. H. Spurgeon.)

With God enough:—The inscription on the front of Downing Hall, North Wales, translated, runs thus, “Without God, without all; with God, enough.”

The apostle’s challenge:

  1. Its strength. This consists in the grounds on which it rests. 1. The all-sufficiency of God. 2. The covenant relationship of God to His people. “If God be for us.” 3. The demonstrations of love which God has already given (ver. 32). 4. God’s acquittal and acceptance of His people, as the moral Governor of men (ver. 33). 5. The completeness of Christ’s mediatorial work (ver. 34).
  2. Its spirit. This will be illustrated if we contemplate—1. The circumstances under which the words are uttered. This is the language of a man who says, “For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” 2. The boldness of his defiance (vers. 38, 39). 3. The objects of his defiance. Death, life, angels, &c. 4. The influence it exerts.—It leads to patience in suffering, and cheerfulness in doing, the will of God. (T. Ely.)

The safety of the saints:—There are two ways in which a man may be deprived, against his will, of his privileges and possessions—by the lawless violence of the oppressor, or by legal forfeiture for his offences. And, if these two ways are effectually provided against, there is nothing to fear. Our apostle seems to have an eye to this, and shows us that the child of God has nothing to fear from—

  1. Violence. Let us look at—1. The premises of his argument. From which we gather—(1) That God is a Friend. “If God be for us.” It is something to have a friend at all, i.e. one who would help us if he could: but the believer’s friend is the mighty God. (2) What sort of a friend God has been. “He spared not His own Son,” &c. See what a length His friendship carried Him! (3) What sort of a friend God will be. The future may be judged of from the past. “He spared not His own Son; how then shall He not with Him also freely give as all things!” 2. The conclusion—“Who can be against us?” But here occurs a difficulty. “God is for us.” Most true. “None can be against us.” Is that a necessary consequence? Then, again, a conclusion, though illogical, might yet be a truth. Is that the case here? “None can be against us.” Why, our apostle himself speaks of “many adversaries.” The seeming difficulty is unreal. (1) The true idea is that the friendship of God shall so completely protect us from all our enemies, that our interests shall be as secure as if our enemies had no existence. You know what desperate attempts were made by Satan to ruin Job; but God was for Job, and he was not ruined. For the same reason he was foiled in the case of Peter, and his messenger in the case of Paul. (2) But sometimes the mere tone of a denial implies an affirmation of the contrary. Had we heard the apostle, his exulting tone would have conveyed the meaning (ver. 28). “Who can help being for us, when God is for us?” God was for Joseph, and so were his unnatural brethren. God was for the Church; and so were the princes of the world when they slew the Lord of glory! God is for the believer; and so is Satan, who but tries his faith. God is for the dying saint; and so is death, which hastens his translation to Paradise.
  2. Legal process before the bar of God. 1. The first step in a legal process is to produce a charge; and so the apostle inquires, “Who shall lay anything,” &c. What! have not many things, in all ages, been alleged against the righteous? No doubt. But—(1) Irrelevant charges will not do. Sometimes, e.g., the accusation has been that they have kept God’s laws and proclaimed His truth. But such charges are irrelevant. They make that an offence which is a duty. (2) Nor will false charges do. Elijah was called a troubler of Israel. But the troubler of Israel was the prophet’s accuser. Drunkenness was imputed to the apostles, when they were under the influence of the Holy Ghost. Disloyalty and sedition are hackneyed imputations. And so is hypocrisy. Such charges may be safely despised by the Christian. They are relevant, indeed; but they are false, and God will not listen to them. (3) Has the child of God, then, no sins? Ah, he will never deny it. What then becomes of the text? Stay; it asks, “Who” is to bring the charge? Is a fellow-sinner competent to undertake the task? No. There must be clean hands, in the first place, and a commission and warrant, in the second; and a fellow-sinner has neither the one nor the other. None but God can do it, and He never will; for they are God’s elect. Their names would not have been written in heaven if God was going to appear against them. 2. The next stage is that of the verdict—Guilty, or not guilty. The apostle has already shown that there can be no charge; but, if there were one, the believer will not be convicted of it. “It is God that justifieth: who is he that condemneth?” &c. “There is no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus.” (1) They cannot be condemned, when nothing is laid to their charge. But then God is just, and justice demands the punishment of sin. The charge was made, but Christ bore it. For God made Him to be sin for us who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him. (2) But what if no punishment followed? Was God to turn His wrath upon His own Son? Yes, “it is Christ that died”—died in thy room to expiate thy sins. (3) But was the punishment adequate—the expiation complete? If not, the believer may tremble still—he is not beyond the reach of condemnation. Christ “is risen again.” But He would not be risen if He had not given justice every jot and tittle of its due. (4) But can we be sure that the sacrifice of Christ was accepted? The circumstance that the Son acted by the Father’s commandment, shows that the sacrifice, if in itself complete and sufficient, must have been well-pleasing and acceptable; and to prove it beyond all doubt, Paul says, “Who is even at the right hand of God.” (5) But we have not yet reached the end of the believer’s guarantees. “Who also maketh intercession for us.” We must all appear before the judgment-seat of Christ. And if we are ever condemned, it is Christ that will do it. But an advocate never condemns his own clients. And the apostle announces the happy issue of his advocacy when he tells us,” It is God that justifieth.” 3. When a criminal process succeeds there is execution. Suppose the believer condemned, all that remained would be to inflict the punishment. Yes: but there would be an insurmountable obstacle. “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?” The believer’s confidence has no cause to be shaken, unless he can be separated from Christ’s love. In order to this—(1) You must prove that love to be nothing but a dream. But surely Christ’s death is sufficient to prove its reality. (2) That love must be made to cease. It is not uncommon for the human love to fade. But Christ’s love is everlasting. “Can a woman forget her sucking child,” &c. (3) One way remains. Who shall prevail against the believer in spite of Christ’s love? Love can do little, however great it may be in itself, if it has not corresponding power at its back. But the love of Christ has omnipotence at its command. “Shall tribulation, or distress,” &c., separate? Nay. For (a) They are temporary evils. (b) The worst they can do is to separate the body from the soul for a season; but that is the indispensable and immediate preliminary to the full enjoying of the benefits of Christ’s love, and therefore not a step towards our separation from it! Like the puny insects which mutilate themselves by striking with their stings, they are incapable of hurting us again. (c) The whole action and influence of these evils will be overruled for our good. Therefore, “in all these things we are more than conquerors, through Him that loved us.” (Andrew Gray.)

The presence of God a source of courage:—Why should I fear? Is man stronger than God? I go up to the Soudan alone, with an infinite Almighty God to direct and guide me, and am glad to so trust Him as to fear nothing; and indeed to feel sure of success. (General Gordon.)

Christian courage:—Chrysostom before the Roman emperor was a beautiful example of Christian courage. The emperor threatened him with banishment if he still remained a Christian. Chrysostom replied, “Thou canst not, for the world is my Father’s house; thou canst not banish me.” “But I will slay thee,” said the emperor. “Nay, but thou canst not,” said the noble champion of the faith again; “for my life is hid with Christ in God.” “I will take away thy treasures.” “Nay, but thou canst not,” was the retort; “for, in the first place, I have none that thou knowest of. My treasure is in heaven, and my heart is there.” “But I will drive thee away from man, and thou shalt have no friend left.” “Nay, and that thou canst not,” once more said the faithful witness; “for I have a Friend in heaven, from whom thou canst not separate me. I defy thee; there is nothing thou canst do to hurt me.”

The mightiness of God:—When the army of Antigonus went into battle his soldiers were very much discouraged, and they rushed up to the general and said to him, “Don’t you see we have few forces, and they have so many more?” and the soldiers were affrighted at the smallness of their number and the greatness of the enemy. Antigonus, their commander, straightened himself up and said with indignation and vehemence, “How many do you reckon me to be?” And when we see the vast armies arrayed against the cause of sobriety, it may sometimes be very discouraging, but I ask you, in making up your estimate of the forces of righteousness, I ask you how many do you reckon the Lord God Almighty to be? He is our Commander. The Lord of Hosts is His name. I have the best authority for saying that the chariots of God are twenty thousand, and the mountains are full of them.[9]


8:31 What, then, shall we say … If God is for us, who can be against us? Paul begins this section with two questions. First, “What, then, shall we say in response to these things?” Here, “these things” (tauta) refers to all that Paul has been saying since chapter 5 with regard to the blessings of the new covenant. Second, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” “For us” translates hyper hēmōn (“on our behalf”), which Paul regularly uses to depict the vicarious atonement of Christ (see especially 5:6–8). Here hyper applies to God’s work on behalf of Christians. No matter who the enemies of Christians are, God is on his children’s side and will protect them.[10]


31 As we have seen, Paul uses the rhetorical question “What, then, shall we say?” frequently in Romans to advance his argument. Here, however, as in 3:1 and 4:1 (and see the variant in 9:19), these words do not stand alone but are part of a substantive question: “What shall we say in view of these things?” “These things,” as I suggested above, should not be confined to what Paul has just said in vv. 28–30, or even in chap. 8 as a whole, but embrace all the blessings ascribed to Christians in chaps. 5–8. All this Paul sums up in the simple statement, “if God be for us.” The preposition I translate “for” could also be translated “on behalf of.” Paul uses it frequently to depict the vicarious work of Christ (see especially 5:6–8); here it suggests that God is on our side, that he is working for us. If this is so, Paul asks, “who is against us?” Obviously, Paul does not mean that nobody will, in fact, oppose us; as Paul knows from his own experience (to which he alludes in v. 35), opposition to believers is both varied and intense. What Paul is suggesting by this rhetorical question is that nobody—and no “thing”—can ultimately harm, or stand in the way of, the one whom God is “for.” This is how Chrysostom put it:

Yet those that be against us, so far are they from thwarting us at all, that even without their will they become to us the causes of crowns, and procurers of countless blessings, in that God’s wisdom turneth their plots unto our salvation and glory. See how really no one is against us![11]


31 “What then shall we say to these things?” has the force of “what is the inference to be drawn from these things?” What is to be our response? The answer is in the form of another question, a question obviously rhetorical, to the effect that, if God is for us, all opposition from others is of no account. When it is said “if God is for us”, there is no suggestion of doubt; this clause simply states the basis of the confident assurance implied in the succeeding question. “Who is against us?” does not mean that there are no adversaries. Verses 35, 36 refer to the most violent kinds of opposition. The thought is simply that no adversary is of any account when God is for us. In reality, in terms of verse 28, nothing is against us so as to work ultimately for evil: if God is for us, all things work together for our good. In the last analysis there is no against within the orbit of the interests of the people of God. It is this truth that is enunciated in verse 31 in respect of all personal adversaries, satanic, demonic, and human.[12]


[1] Patterson, P. (2017). Salvation in the Old Testament. In E. A. Blum & T. Wax (Eds.), CSB Study Bible: Notes (pp. 1794–1795). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

[2] Sproul, R. C. (Ed.). (2005). The Reformation Study Bible: English Standard Version (p. 1628). Orlando, FL; Lake Mary, FL: Ligonier Ministries.

[3] Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., … Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (Ro 8:31). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

[4] Stanley, C. F. (2005). The Charles F. Stanley life principles Bible: New King James Version (Ro 8:31). Nashville, TN: Nelson Bibles.

[5] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson’s new illustrated Bible commentary (p. 1441). Nashville: T. Nelson Publishers.

[6] MacDonald, W. (1995). Believer’s Bible Commentary: Old and New Testaments. (A. Farstad, Ed.) (p. 1713). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[7] Utley, R. J. (1998). The Gospel according to Paul: Romans (Vol. Volume 5, Ro 8:31). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

[8] Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953–2001). Exposition of Paul’s Epistle to the Romans (Vol. 12–13, pp. 286–287). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

[9] Exell, J. S. (n.d.). The Biblical Illustrator: Romans (Vol. 2, pp. 196–201). New York; Chicago; Toronto; London; Edinburgh: Fleming H. Revell Company.

[10] Pate, C. M. (2013). Romans. (M. L. Strauss & J. H. Walton, Eds.) (p. 178). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

[11] Moo, D. J. (2018). The Letter to the Romans. (N. B. Stonehouse, F. F. Bruce, G. D. Fee, & J. B. Green, Eds.) (Second Edition, pp. 560–561). Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

[12] Murray, J. (1968). The Epistle to the Romans (Vol. 1, pp. 322–323). Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, U.K.: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

Dear Church: Jesus Is God, So Please Don’t Call Him the First and Greatest Created Being — Southern Equip

Dear Evangelical Church,

Scripture speaks to us on many issues, but none so important, glorious, and central than our Lord Jesus Christ—and that is an understatement! Given who Jesus is and what he has done, he is the very heart and substance of the gospel, indeed all of Scripture, and thus the most important person in all of human history. Just think about three examples that demonstrate this point.

First, it’s almost a truism to say that our triune God is central to everything as the glorious all-sufficient One who alone is Creator and Lord (Rom. 11:33–36). Yet, how we come to know God as triune is largely due to the incarnation of the divine Son and his work. As John reminds us, Jesus is “the Word made flesh” (John 1:14), yet from eternity he was the divine Son who was “with God” and “was God,” thus revealing the triune relation of persons within God (John 1:1). Apart from Christ’s incarnation, we would not know fully how he, as the divine Son, eternally shared the one undivided divine nature with the Father and Holy Spirit in perfect love and communion. And significantly for us, we would not have a Redeemer to save us from our sins (Matt. 1:21).

Second, to understand Scripture right, we must also see that it’s our Lord Jesus Christ who is central to it. Despite numerous authors and books, Scripture has one main message: what our triune God has planned in eternity and accomplished in time to bring all of his purposes and plans to fulfillment in Christ Jesus. Scripture repeatedly reminds us of this truth. In Christ alone, God’s plan finds its fulfillment (Heb. 1:1–4). In Christ, God has planned to bring “all things in heaven and on earth” under his headship (Eph. 1:9–10), since it’s not only through the Son that the Father has created (with the Spirit), but the very purpose of creation is “for him” (Col. 1:16). No wonder our Lord taught us to read all of Scripture in terms of himself (Luke 24:26–27; John 5:39–40) since he is the main character in the story and the central figure of all of human history (Matt. 5:17–20; 11:11–13).

Third, we cannot understand the gospel apart from Christ (1 Cor. 15:1–3). Central to the gospel is what our triune God has done to redeem his people and to establish a new creation. This is why “eternal life” is found only in Christ (John 17:3). By assuming a human nature, the divine Son became the first man of the new creation, perfectly qualified to be our new covenant head. In his work, Jesus reversed the work of Adam (Rom. 5:12–21; Heb. 2:5–18) and secured our eternal salvation (Heb. 5:8-10) by his life, death, and resurrection. In fact, it’s only because Christ is truly God and truly human that he was able to redeem us. As the divine Son, he alone is able to satisfy God’s own judgment against our sin, and as the incarnate Son, he alone is able to identify with us as our representative and substitute (Heb. 5:1). For this reason, Christ is central to the gospel, and apart from him there is no salvation (John 14:6; Acts 4:11).

Why is this important to state? Because it not only reminds us that Jesus is in a category all by himself, but also that knowing Christ is no minor issue. In life we can be confused about many issues and not know many things, but to be confused about who Jesus is and what he has done and to not know him as Lord and Savior is a life and death issue.
For this reason, it’s alarming to discover that within the evangelical church there is rampant confusion regarding the person and work of Christ. If our world is confused, we are not surprised. But when confusion about Christ is within the church, this is a serious matter!

Since 2014, “The State of Theology Poll”1 has been conducted, which has revealed beliefs of self-identified “evangelicals.” In 2020, the latest version of the poll was released and the results were disturbing. We discovered that of 573 self-identified “evangelicals,” 96% believed in the Trinity, but 65% agreed that “Jesus is the first and greatest being created by God” (a heretical view held by the Arians and Jehovah’s Witnesses). We also discovered that 30% believed that “Jesus was a great teacher, but he was not God,” and 42% that “God accepts the worship of all religions, including Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.”

When one thinks through these “evangelical” responses, it sadly reveals that what is most central to the Christian faith is either denied, misunderstood, or that the current state of evangelicalism is one of huge biblical and theological illiteracy. But as noted above, this kind of confusion is not minor as with so many other areas in life. Instead, this confusion has eternal life and death consequences, given who Jesus is.

This should be a wake-up call for the evangelical church. But instead of bemoaning the situation, it should move us to action by calling us back again to the faithful exposition of God’s Word, the teaching of sound doctrine, and renewing our commitment to proclaim Christ. For too long the evangelical church has gone soft on sound exposition of Scripture and the faithful teaching of systematic theology and replaced it with the felt needs of people and joining various social causes. But given the life and death importance of who Christ is, and given where the evangelical church is, our greatest need is to think rightly about Christ—biblically and theologically. The life and health of the church depends on a correct preaching and teaching of Christ—a teaching that leads us, by God’s grace, to faith and confidence in our Lord Jesus, and an entire life lived in adoration, praise, and obedience to him.

But a question needs to be asked: Why, generally speaking, have so many evangelicals drifted from the “first things” of the gospel centered in Christ? Probably many answers could be given to this question, but years ago Francis Schaeffer offered a potential answer.

In thinking about generations of Christians and churches, Schaeffer contrasted the difference between a living orthodoxy, a dead orthodoxy, and liberalism. He suggested that a “living orthodoxy” was reflected by people who were born of the Spirit, who gladly embraced the doctrinal truths of the gospel, and who found their central identity in Christ and his people. From this center in Christ, a lifestyle resulted that aimed to please God and to impact the culture for Christ. A “dead orthodoxy,” on the other hand, was characterized by people who affirmed the truths of the gospel, but their central identity was in the moral/social entailments of the gospel.

Their first concern was not the glory of Christ but more about transforming the culture for Christ. What the apostle John criticized the Ephesian church for was true of them: they were sound in doctrine, but they had lost their first love (Rev. 2:1–7). And then from a dead orthodoxy, “liberalism” soon followed. Liberalism denied the truths of Christian theology, and all that remained of historic Christianity were its moral/social entailments—a “social gospel”—that attempted to transform society by political revolution but not by the truth of the gospel.

If we apply Schaeffer’s analysis to our current state of evangelicalism, I’m concerned that “dead orthodoxy” describes many parts of it. Most evangelicals “affirm” historic Christianity, but as the polls reveal, this “affirmation” is quite confused. What too many evangelical churches are consumed with is not the “first things” of the gospel centered in Christ, but more the cultural implications of the gospel. Sadly, if social media is any indicator, we are more passionate about debates over social justice than discussions over Christology, penal substitution, and the implications of Christ’s exclusive and all-sufficient work for missions, etc. No doubt, these “social” debates are important, but they must never replace our “first love.”

Indeed, what must captivate evangelicals again is the objective truth of the gospel—indeed Christ himself! The only remedy to our current situation is to pray that our triune God will revive his church by the powerful proclamation of Christ (Col. 1:28). The only remedy to our lethargy, confusion, and drift is to return to Scripture and to teach God’s people to know and glory in Christ. For it’s only when we do so, by God’s grace, that we will be revived and strengthened by the Spirit to rightly confess, proclaim, and glory in Christ Jesus our Lord.

After all, given who Jesus is and what he has done for us as our exclusive and all-sufficient Redeemer, our only reasonable response to him is correct doctrinal belief, complete trust, and total devotion. But if this is going to happen, the Spirit will again have to convict us of our sin and remind us that apart from Christ we stand guilty and condemned. Christianity is rightly called a “sinner’s religion,” which means that it’s not until, by God’s grace, we first know something of our own sin and guilt before God that we glory in the unspeakable gift of our Lord Jesus Christ. For such a people who know of their deep need of a Savior, Jesus is more than a doctrine to state; he is the only Lord to be embraced, loved, adored, and obeyed.

Notes: 1. See “The State of Theology” Poll at thestateoftheology.com.

Editors’ note: This article was originally published at The Crossway blog.

Dear Church: Jesus Is God, So Please Don’t Call Him the First and Greatest Created Being — Southern Equip

February 23 Afternoon Quotes of The Day

“Grief Should Be the Instructor of the Wise”
Ecclesiastes 1:18

Grief should be the instructor of the wise;
Sorrow is knowledge: they who know the most
Must mourn the deepest o’er the fatal truth,
The Tree of Knowledge is not that of Life.

LORD BYRON

Ritzema, E. (Ed.). (2012). 300 Quotations for Preachers. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

Christ Came to Take Our Pain and Shame
Isaiah 53:5; Hebrews 12:2; 1 Peter 2:24

There are two things from which our weak human nature shrinks—pain and shame. Christ came to take both from us, and this He did by accepting both in His own person—when, for instance, not to mention other occasions, He was condemned to death, and to a most shameful death, by wicked men.

BERNARD OF CLAIRVAUX

Ritzema, E., & Brant, R. (Eds.). (2013). 300 quotations for preachers from the Medieval church. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

23 Feb 2021 News Briefing

‘Progressive’ church claims: Parts of the Bible are wrong because it isn’t the ‘Word of God’
A Tennessee “church” which calls itself “progressive” told members of its congregation that the Holy Bible is not “infallible,” nor even “the Word of God,” during a recent service and then it repeated those lies on social media. Nashville’s GracePointe Church and its pastor Josh Scott used a Feb. 7 virtual service to go after the Bible. The service preceded a Facebook post which claimed, among other things, the Bible is merely a “human response to God.”

The first black hole discovered is much more massive than we thought
New observations have shown that Cygnus X-1, the first black hole ever discovered, is much more massive than previously estimated. By making a more precise measurement of its distance from the Earth, a team led by the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) has concluded that the black hole is the most massive ever detected without using gravitational waves.

800-Year-Old Prophecy and Hidden Torah Codes: Gog and Magog Before Pandemic Ends
An esoteric source based on 800-year-old sources uses precise methods to reveal a Torah code claiming that this month before the pandemic fades, war, involving the US, will break out between Saudi Arabia and Iran. This pan-global conflict will bring great strife and darkness into the world but through the darkness, the “candle of the Messiah” will be revealed.

Biden Slow in Helping Storm-Battered Texas
Joe Biden dragged his feet to help Texas cope with a crippling severe winter storm, according to Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., on Newsmax TV. Biden engaged the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Friday, days after millions of Texans went without electricity, heat, and access to food and water.

For The First Time, We’ve Detected a ‘Ghost Particle’ Coming From a Shredded Star
A star completely torn apart when it ventured too close to a black hole has given science a rare gift. For the first time, scientists have detected a high-energy neutrino that was flung out into space during one of these violent events.

A record-breaking late winter heatwave sets new all-time February records across China and South Korea this weekend
A large part of eastern Asia has set all-time records this weekend as an impressive early-season warmth sweept across central Asia, reaching China and the Korean peninsula. This incredible warm spell started near the Black Sea and the Middle East earlier and spread across Central Asia into the eastern parts of the Asian continent over the weekend. Strongly anomalous weather across the globe has no end it seems.

Coca Cola Confirms Training Employees To “Try To Be Less White”
When I first saw this story I was highly skeptical. However, the training course is available online and Coca Cola is doing its best to try to back down from the course.
“Try to be less white” Coca-Cola, facing mounting backlash from conservatives online, has responded to allegations of anti-white rhetoric after an internal whistleblower leaked screenshots of diversity training materials that encourages staff to “try to be less white.”

Chinese Spies Reportedly Used Code Developed By NSA For Hacking Operations
Chinese hackers employed code originally created by the National Security Agency (NSA) for different hacking campaigns, an Israeli technology company said in a new report Monday, according to Reuters. The report, which was released by Check Point Software Technologies in Tel Aviv, remarked on the similarities between China-linked malware and the NSA’s break-in tools, which were leaked to the internet in 2017, and concluded that the code must have been stolen from the NSA, Reuters reported.

WILL WAR OF WORDS SPARK THIRD LEBANON WAR?
A war of words has erupted between Hezbollah terrorist leaders and Israel’s most senior defense officials. The big question: Will the threats and counter threats trigger an actual shooting war?

Iran threatens ‘60% enrichment’ as US repeats readiness for talks
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said on Monday Iran might enrich uranium up to 60% purity if the country needed it and would never yield to US pressure over its nuclear activity, state television reported.

UAE tells Israeli conference it uses AI for space travel
Sumaya al-Hajeri, UAE’s Head of Governance and Data at the Office of the Minister of Artificial Intelligence gave a detailed explanation of her country’s AI initiatives, including assisting with the UAE’s recent successful voyage to Mars. Its Hope orbiter launched last July reached Mars two weeks ago, ahead of NASA’s Perseverance.

Biden’s Climate Czar says World will end in Nine Years: Is it anti-God?
The Biden administration is moving the doomsday clock forward, giving the Earth less than a decade before the ecological scales tip towards an irreversible apocalypse. In a decidedly counterintuitive manner, Kerry blamed the record-breaking cold that is blasting the center of the country on “global warming.”

Samaria: River turns ‘Blood’ Red as Arabs bring ‘Plague of Egypt’ upon themselves
Wadi al-Nabaa, a river adjacent to the Arab village of Qarawat Bani Zaid in Shomron (Samaria),turned vivid red and though the image was undeniably Biblical, one rabbi ascribed a modern political message to the phenomenon.

Pompeo says Biden repeating ‘Chinese propaganda line’ calling Uyghur abuses ‘different norms’
former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused President Joe Biden of repeating a Chinese propaganda talking point during a Tuesday town hall discussion that compared human rights abuses to cultural norms. I said, and… He said… He gets it. Culturally, there are different norms at each country and their leaders are expected to follow.” “That language that it’s just a set of different norms, that’s the Chinese propaganda line,” Pompeo said.

Top Biden diplomats held secret talks with Iran to undermine Trump agenda say new sources
As President Donald Trump’s administration was carrying on a pressure campaign of sanctions and restrictions on Iran, some of the top diplomats now serving President Joe Biden’s administration were holding talks with Iranian officials in what may have been a move to undermine Trump’s efforts. the underlying goal was “to devise a political strategy to undermine the Trump administration” and to bolster support for the Iran nuclear deal despite Trump leaving the deal.

Netanyahu after Iran strategy meeting: Nuclear agreement is worthless
Israel will not rely on efforts to return to a nuclear deal with Iran, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday. “Israel isn’t pinning its hopes on an agreement with an extremist regime like [Iran]. We already saw what these agreements are worth…with North Korea,” Netanyahu said at a memorial service for the 1920 Battle of Tel Hai.

US pledges support for two-state solution to Arab-Israeli conflict
The Biden administration is committed to a two-state resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken told Foreign Affairs Minister Gabi Ashkenazi when the two men spoke on Monday night. “The Secretary addressed the US approach towards a more peaceful, secure and prosperous future for Israelis, Palestinians and the greater Middle East,” Blinken’s office said.

Rocket attack strikes near US Embassy in Baghdad
Three rockets struck near the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq’s Green Zone on Monday, just one week after the deadly rocket attack that killed and injured civilian contractors, as well as a U.S. service member. Iraqi Security Forces confirmed that three rockets landed in the Green Zone, destroying four vehicles, but did not result in casualties.

Biden admin plan would effectively abolish ICE
The Biden administration’s new Homeland Security plan would effectively abolish U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) via administrative…During a remote meeting with agency personnel in Texas, several individuals familiar with the plans said Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas proposed converting some of the 4,000 ICE agents to criminal investigators…

New Jersey governor signs laws to legalize marijuana use, decriminalize possession
Legislation to set up a recreational marijuana marketplace, decriminalize cannabis and loosen penalties for underage possession of the drug and alcohol was signed into law Monday by New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, more than three months after voters overwhelmingly approved a ballot question to legalize adult use of the drug.

Biden Energy Department used environmental regulations to block Texas from increasing available power before storm
An order issued by the Biden Administration’s Acting Secretary of Energy David Huizenga reveals that the Department of Energy limited the amount of power Texas could use to combat the power crisis the state is facing. Biden administration blocked Texas from increasing power as Texas begged for help a week before catastrophic polar vortex.

Clear-up of Israel’s coastline after oil spill continues
Large globs of tar have washed up on much of Israel’s Mediterranean coastline in what officials are calling one of the worst environmental disasters to hit the country. Thousands of volunteers and soldiers are helping to remove the sticky substance. Israel is trying to track the source of the spill, which is thought to have come from a vessel out at sea.

IDF sinks suspicious vessel near Gaza shore
Israeli military on Monday reported it sank a suspicious naval vessel near the Gaza Strip shore, which the IDF said posed a potential threat to navy ships in the area. A navy patrol boats spotted the Gazan vessel approaching it in the morning hours, prompting the troops to open fire and sink it. No one appeared to have been hurt in the incident.

UAE and Qatar officials hold first meeting since Gulf detente
Official delegations from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Qatar have met in Kuwait for the first time since an agreement last month to end a bitter dispute of more than three years..Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain, along with Egypt, severed economic and diplomatic ties with…Qatar in June 2017 and imposed a land, sea, and air blockade, accusing it…of supporting “terrorism”.

Ethiopia tells Sudan to pull back from borders before talks
Ethiopia called on Sudan to pull back its army troops on Tuesday from the borders before any dialogue could begin amid heightened tensions between the two countries. The ministry of foreign affairs spokesperson, Dina Mufti, said in his weekly press conference that Ethiopia does not wish to enter into a conflict with Sudan.

Record flooding affects more than 100 000 people in Acre, northwestern Brazil
More than 100 000 people have been affected by severe flooding in Acre, northwestern Brazil, after multiple rivers overflowed and reached record levels around Friday, February 19, 2021. Authorities have declared the situation an emergency, saying the state is facing one of its most challenging times in history.

More than 59 000 people flee as Dujuan brings widespread flooding and disruption to Philippines
More than 59 000 people have evacuated their homes as Tropical Storm “Dujuan” — locally known as Auring, brought widespread flooding and disruption to the Philippines on Monday, February 22, 2021. As of 03:00 UTC (11:00 LT), the storm has weakened into a Low-Pressure Area (LPA) prior to crossing the Rapu-Rapu Islands in Albay and is forecast to traverse the central region in the next 24 hours.

Israel hit by worst environmental disaster in decades
Although the exact cause of the disaster is still under investigation, the head of the Israel Nature and Parks association said the incident is the country’s worst environmental disaster in decades. The cleanup of over 170 km (106 miles) of affected coastline will take a long time and consequences will be felt for years.

CPAC cancels speaker who said Judaism is a ‘complete lie’
CPAC, the conservative political conference, has canceled the appearance of a speaker who has made several derogatory comments about Jews on social media.

One Week After Jews Cry Out For Antichrist, Pope Francis Will Hold A Chrislam One World Religion Prayer Meeting In Ur Where Abraham Was Born
Pope Francis is sending another shot across the bow as he continues to work assembling the One World Religion of Chrislam foretold in bible prophecy. This time he is bringing his end times road show to the birthplace of Abraham in Iraq at Ur of the Chaldees. Abraham in the bible is at the head of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, and he will retain his ‘top of the pyramid’ status as his name is claimed for the Abraham Accords, the Abrahamic Family House and the Abrahamic Faiths Initiative.

Israel Launches ‘Green Pass’ QR Code Digital Vaccination Passport As Jews Hold Day Of Prayer For Antichrist
Monumental prophetical events took place in Israel over the weekend, and they point directly to the covenant with ‘death and hell’ that Isaiah and the prophets say that the Jews will make with Antichrist in the end times. Not only did Israel launch a Mark of the Beast prototype, Jews around the world cried out for ‘messiah now!’, but you and I both know who’s going to answer that call, and why. The bible is quite clear, the Jews will receive Antichrist, they will rebuild the Temple, and that process has now officially begun.

Rabbi Gives Incredible Eulogy for Rush Limbaugh and Prayer for America’s Future
The death of conservative talk radio icon Rush Limbaugh on Wednesday was a tragedy for our nation. Limbaugh was a strong advocate for the importance of traditional American values, and he impacted countless lives with his radio programming.

NY Mag admits Fauci “hot-wired” coronavirus with gain-of-function engineering
After a year of denial, the mainstream media is finally coming to terms with the fact that Anthony Fauci is responsible for “hot-wiring” the Wuhan coronavirus (Covid-19) with experimental gain-of-function technology, which ultimately turned it into a global “pandemic.”

Biden Admin Refused Texas Governor’s Request to Run Power at Full Capacity
Now that the dust has cleared, it’s becoming obvious the Texas energy crisis was preventable. And one guy has his fingerprints all over this scandal: President Joe Biden.

U.S. Government diligently working with big tech to censor anything that could cause “vaccine hesitancy”
The ruling class desperately needs as many people as possible to take the COVID-19 vaccine.  This push to get an mRNA vaccine in the veins of everyone is resulting in a diligent effort to censor ANYTHING that could cause “vaccine hesitancy.”

Pope’s visit to put Iraqi ziggurat back on tourist map
The ancient Mesopotamian site of Ur in Iraq will be the stage for an inter-religious prayer service held by Pope Francis next week.An event local archeologists hope will draw renewed attention to the place revered as the birthplace of Abraham.Popular with Western visitors in the 1970s and 1980s, Ur is scarcely visited today after decades of war and political instability shattered Iraq’s international tourism industry.

Source: 23 Feb 2021 – Rapture Ready


Headlines – 2/23/2021

Blinken speaks to Ashkenazi, touts Biden support for 2-state solution

Evidence stage of Netanyahu’s trial postponed until after elections

Sa’ar slams Netanyahu over reported Likud outreach to PLO ahead of election

Hundreds of foreign cyber-attack units are targeting US and Israel, says former IDF intel officer

Khamenei: If we wanted nukes, nobody, including ‘Zionist clown,’ could stop us

Iran’s nuclear weapons program never really slowed down

Iran’s Khamenei says nation will enrich uranium to “whatever level the country needs”

Khamenei threatens to enrich uranium up to 60%

Iran: Temporary deal limiting IAEA access to sites is ‘significant achievement’

Former defense officials back US return to Iran deal, urge new long-term pact

A U.S.-Iran deal is ultimately possible because Iran needs money, analyst says

Pompeo: Biden Admin About to ‘Throw Away’ Success in Iran

Italian Ambassador To DRC Is Killed In Attack On Food Aid Convoy

7 Poll Workers Killed By Landmine Amid Historic Niger Vote

7 Dead In Nigerian Air Force Crash After Reported Engine Failure

Huge demonstrations across Myanmar despite military’s warning that protesters could ‘suffer loss of life’

US Sanctions 2 Burmese Generals Over Violence Against Protesters: Treasury Department

China rejects genocide charge in Xinjiang, says door open to U.N

China Boasts of Military Buildup While Pushing ‘Dialogue’ with U.S.

Biden’s AG Pick Says He Has Not Spoken to President About Hunter Biden Probe

AG Nominee Garland Says ‘No Reason’ Why Durham Shouldn’t Be Left in Place

Merrick Garland May Hide Durham Report From Public

Nominee Garland Says Politics Won’t Influence DOJ Criminal Probes

Dominion Sues MyPillow, CEO Mike Lindell Over Election Claims – Seeks More Than $1.3 Billion in Damages

Nolte: Only 17% of Trump Supporters Believe Joe Biden Legitimately Elected

Supreme Court Dismisses Slew of 2020 Presidential Election Lawsuits

Justice Clarence Thomas Dissents From Supreme Court on Election Case: ‘We Need to Make It Clear’

US Supreme Court says it won’t halt turnover of Trump’s tax records

Trump Fires Back at Supreme Court Decision on Taxes, Claiming to Be Victim of ‘Fascism’

Supreme Court Rejects Stormy Daniels’s Defamation Lawsuit Against Trump

House Democrats Target Newsmax, Fox News for De-platforming From Cable

Democrats question TV carriers’ decisions to host Fox, OAN and Newsmax, citing ‘misinformation’

Treasury Watchdog Warns of Government’s Use of Cellphone Data Without Warrants

White Supremacy a ‘Transnational Threat’, U.N. Chief Warns

Coca-Cola Has Employees Train on How to ‘Be Less White’: Whistleblower

Yellen Signals Interest in Backing Digital-Dollar Research

These warning signs suggest stocks are heading toward a correction

FAA Releases Remote ID, the Largest Regulatory Change for Drones In Years

A solar filament eruption produces partial-halo CME, glancing blow expected

New research suggests a polar flip could be catastrophic

5.8 magnitude earthquake hits near Gorontalo, Indonesia

5.4 magnitude earthquake hits near Kermadec Islands region

5.4 magnitude earthquake hits southeast of the Loyalty Islands

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near the coast of Chiapas, Mexico

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Tobelo, Indonesia

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Riverton, New Zealand

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Hihifo, Tonga

Second earthquake this month rattles Tennessee-North Carolina border, geologists say

Mt Etna in Italy erupts to 30,000ft

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 24,000ft

Fuego volcano in Guatemala erupts to 15,000ft

Raung volcano in Indonesia erupts 14,000ft

Pacaya volcano in Guatemala erupts to 11,000ft

Beijing records warmest February day since 1951, China

Saharan dust turns skies red in French Pyrenees

More than 59,000 people flee as Dujuan brings widespread flooding and disruption to Philippines

Record flooding affects more than 100,000 people in Acre, northwestern Brazil

Anger toward Texas governor grows in deadly storm’s wake

Texas bans utilities from turning off power in wake of disastrous winter weather

Quadriplegic Texas man hit with $3G power bill after winter storm: ‘I don’t know how I’m gonna pay this’

Demands grow for Texas to ‘forgive all utility bills’ as price gouging by energy companies sparks outrage

Oil spill leads Israel to close beaches as it faces one of its ‘most severe ecological disasters’

‘It’ll take decades to clean’: oil spill ravages east Mediterranean

NYU ‘anti-racist’ survey asks students to identify as one or more of at least 30 genders

School district says email urging staff, students to lobby for pro-LGBT proposal ‘not appropriate’

Amazon deplatforms book on transgenderism by conservative author without explanation

Christians get behind Northern Ireland Bill to end abortion up to birth for disabilities

Babies were aborted alive, placed in fridge to harvest cell lines used in some vaccines: researcher

Horowitz: Fauci flip: In 2014, Fauci opposed quarantine of Ebola health care workers – Why do we listen to this man?

Meghan McCain: Replace Dr. Fauci With Someone Who ‘Understands Science’

Meghan McCain calls for Biden to replace Dr. Fauci over ‘inconsistent’ coronavirus vaccine messaging

US passes grim milestone of 500,000 COVID deaths, more than toll of 3 wars

Chinese Regime Turned to Military for CCP Virus Cover-Up: Former Trump Adviser

Chinese state-owned media use Times Square video screen for ads on coronavirus response

Travel’s Covid-19 Blues Are Likely Here to Stay – ‘People Will Go Out of Business’

Los Angeles parents organize ‘Zoom blackout’ to protest school closures: ‘Enough is enough’

Democrat Ron Kim calls for Cuomo to be impeached over nursing home scandal

Megachurch raises $2M to provide counseling to those battling depression during COVID-19

Pastor imprisoned for violating lockdown: Are government officials ‘picking on’ Christians? Why are we letting criminals out of prison while putting pastors in?

Source: Tracking the Birth Pangs – News and Links (trackingbibleprophecy.org)


Apostasy Watch Tuesday 2-23-21

Gary Demar – The First Church of Christian Gnosticism

Doxing for God: Organizations Expose Christian Journalists’ Personal Info

Hybels’ Daughter, Shauna Niequist, Apologizes for Silence about Father’s “Actions”

JD Greear Says He’d Rather Unite With Those Who Pervert the Gospel Than Those Who Defend It

Jory Micah Ditches the Bible, Now Trusts her own ‘Inner Guidance System’

Babies were aborted alive, placed in fridge to harvest cell lines used in some vaccines: researcher

Joshua’s forgotten biblical altar is now at the heart of a land battle

Source: Daily News and Commentary (apostasywatch.com)

Mid-Day Snapshot · Feb. 23, 2021

THE FOUNDATION

“The great principles of right and wrong are legible to every reader; to pursue them requires not the aid of many counselors.” —Thomas Jefferson (1775)

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IN TODAY’S DIGEST

FEATURED ANALYSIS

Merrick Garland Gets a Grilling

Douglas Andrews

It’s a consolation prize, and we get the feeling Merrick Garland knows it.

Joe Biden’s 68-year-old attorney general nominee was, just five years ago, nominated by Barack Obama to replace the late Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court — an appointment that would’ve swung the High Court’s then-delicate 5-4 balance from right to left. Thankfully, then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had other ideas. He refused to hold hearings for Garland prior to the 2016 presidential election, and his bold gamble paid off: Donald Trump won the election and ultimately tabbed Neil Gorsuch to replace Scalia.

Because of this, and because at 68 his chances of ever being appointed to the Supreme Court have all but vanished, we can understand if the man feels some bitterness toward McConnell and his fellow Republicans. And this might help explain Judge Garland’s apparent zeal when he responded to a question about the January 6 Capitol riot. As The Wall Street Journal reports, Garland “promised to combat the threat of domestic extremism, saying that a sprawling federal investigation … would be his first priority if confirmed for the job.”

“‘I think this was the most heinous attack on the democratic processes that I’ve ever seen, and one that I never expected to see in my lifetime,’ Judge Garland told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday. He added that the current investigation into the riot by former President Donald Trump’s supporters — which has led to around 250 people facing criminal charges to date — appeared to be ‘extremely aggressive and perfectly appropriate.’”

Setting aside the strong likelihood of a rigged investigation, we wonder: When was the last time an attorney general nominee — or any sitting judge, for that matter — used the terms “extremely aggressive” and “perfectly appropriate” in the same sentence?

Missouri Republican Senator Josh Hawley tried to drill down into Garland’s definition of domestic extremism. “Let me ask you about assaults on federal property in places other than Washington, DC — Portland, for instance, Seattle. Do you regard assaults on federal courthouses or other federal property as acts of domestic extremism, domestic terrorism?”

Credit to Matt Margolis at PJ Media for capturing the, uh, nuance in Garland’s response: “An attack on a courthouse while in operation — trying to prevent judges from actually deciding cases — that plainly is domestic uh uh um um uh uh extremism uh uh um um uh uh um domestic terrorism. An attack simply on government property at night, or under any other kind of circumstances, is a clear crime and a serious one, and should be punished.”

Then came the equivocation: “I don’t mean — I don’t know enough of the facts of the example you were talking about, but that’s where I draw the line. One is, uh, both are criminal, um uh uh, but one is, uh, a core attack on our democratic institutions.”

So when a 60-year-old Trump supporter with no priors puts his foot on a desk in Nancy Pelosi’s office as a tit-for-tat show of disrespect for her having torn up President Trump’s State of the Union speech, let’s deny him bail and hold him in a federal prison 1,000 miles from home. But when antifa thugs try to burn down a federal courthouse in Portland, well, that’s not “a core attack on our democratic institutions.”

Got it.

“It is disturbing,” writes Miranda Devine in the New York Post, “that Garland is embracing the rancid lie that the Capitol riot was racially motivated, an uprising by white supremacists’ which rivaled the Islamist terror attack of 9/11 in which 3,000 people were slaughtered. This is Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s narrative, which she has driven with escalating hyperbole until it no longer resembles anything that happened on January 6.”

Too bad Ms. Devine wasn’t able to question Judge Garland. Maybe she’d have grilled him about our two-tier justice system — one for the Left and one for the Right. Maybe she’d have asked him why almost everyone arrested for their role in the January 6 riot remains in jail — even nonviolent offenders, even those without criminal records, even those with stable jobs, even retirees and mother-son duos.

Everyone. Still in jail. More than six weeks after the riot. Everyone, that is, except an anti-Trump leftist named John Sullivan, “who prosecutors say encouraged the violence that day” yet who “was rewarded with $75,000 by CNN and NBC for his video footage.”

There were plenty of other uncomfortable moments for Judge Garland yesterday; plenty of moments like the one where Hawley asked him about whether illegal border crossings should remain, well, illegal. “I haven’t thought about that question. I just haven’t thought about that question,” Garland said. “The president has made clear that we are a nation with borders, with national security. I don’t know of a proposal to decriminalize but still make it unlawful to answer. I just haven’t thought about it.”

Garland also dodged questions about John Durham’s probe, the Hunter Biden probe, and whether biological males should be allowed to compete against our daughters in sports — among many other things.

Unfortunately for us, there are a lot of important things that Merrick Garland just hasn’t thought about.

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How Biden Is Using 500,000 COVID Deaths

Nate Jackson

America marked a sad milestone yesterday: 500,000 COVID deaths. The surge that began in the fall brought more than half of the deaths since the coronavirus pandemic began — 100,000 in the last five weeks alone. The victims have been our loved ones and our neighbors, and all of us will remember the impact for the rest of our lives.

In a press conference and ceremony yesterday to mark the milestone, President Joe Biden aimed for somber reflection on the pain Americans have endured in losing loved ones, even speaking of his own tragic family losses of his wife and daughter (which he has disgracefully lied about) and then later his son (whom he disgracefully used in another lie). He once again spoke of the need to “fight this together” as the “United States of America.”

The problem is that his speech was badly written and delivered worse, and his administration and the Democrat-controlled Congress have done nothing to unify the country. They have only politicized COVID deaths, first using them to hang around the neck of Donald Trump and now to spend gargantuan amounts of money on their favored constituents.

Indeed, what Biden was really doing was setting up the passage of the Democrats’ latest larded-up “COVID relief” bill. Earlier in the day, Biden took a totally different tone, noting, “My critics say the [$1.9 trillion bill] is too big. Let me ask them a rhetorical question: What would you have me cut? What would you have me leave out?” Well, for starters, how about the $1.075 trillion that isn’t related to the pandemic at all?

Stiff Republicans opposition is due both to the deficit spending itself and to a huge factor that Biden didn’t mention at all: The trajectory of COVID is on a major downward swing. Cases are plummeting, deaths (a lagging indicator) are declining, and millions upon millions of Americans have received one of the vaccines.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell declared that the Dems’ package “looks like something you’d pass to blunt another year of shutdowns, not to help guide a smart and proactive recovery.”

But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, almost literally espousing the same “We’re from the government and we’re here to help” tone of the president, said, “Members of Congress join Americans in prayer for the lives lost or devastated by this vicious virus. As we pray, we must act swiftly to put an end to this pandemic and to stem the suffering felt by so many millions. With the passage of President Biden’s American Rescue Plan this week, the American people will know that help is on the way.”

Help is on the way, courtesy of former President Trump’s Operation Warp Speed that delivered multiple vaccines in record time. Some say COVID cases are dropping too quickly to be attributable to the vaccines. But daily cases reached an all-time high of nearly 300,000 on January 8 and dropped to less than 65,000 yesterday. Over that same span, we’ve gone from eight million vaccines to more than 64 million. If it’s not causation yet, it’s one heck of a correlation.

Even better news on the vaccines comes from The Dispatch: “One study found that Pfizer’s two-dose vaccine is up to 85 percent effective after a single jab, and that it doesn’t actually need to be stored in burdensome, ultra-cold freezers as previously believed.” And another study found it “to be 89.4 percent effective at preventing infections, meaning the vaccine limits most asymptomatic transmission of the virus as well.”

By the end of March, Pfizer and Moderna are likely to have distributed 220 million doses, with another 20 million coming from the new Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Between these vaccines and natural antibodies, one Johns Hopkins professor thinks we’ll reach herd immunity by April.

But by all means, Democrats absolutely must spend another $2 trillion, and they’ll use whatever milestones and emotions necessary to do it.

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Big Tech Censors Remove Book Questioning ‘Transgender’ Dogma

Thomas Gallatin

A quick search on Amazon’s website for the popular 2018 book by Ryan T. Anderson, When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment, will turn up no such title. Instead, one will be presented with the horribly unscientific rebuttal book Let Harry Become Sally: Responding to the Anti-Transgender Moment. This was not the case before last Sunday, when Anderson’s book was trending on Amazon as a bestseller on “transgender” issues. Then suddenly and without any explanation, Anderson’s book was memory-holed, as if it had never been available on Amazon in the first place. It’s yet another instance of Big Tech censorship.

When the abusive censorship practices of Big Tech are repeatedly exposed, the response often raised is dismissive: Why does this matter, since there are other book stores? Well, as The Washington Free Beacon reports, “The removal of Anderson’s book also calls attention to Amazon’s oversized impact on book sales. In a 2019 letter to the House Antitrust Subcommittee, three major publishing associations wrote that Amazon controls 50 percent or more of the print book market, although some estimates put the number closer to 80 percent. Analyst Ben Evans estimates Amazon controls over 75 percent of the e-book market.”

If Amazon didn’t control huge swaths of the book market, then “the other stores” dismissal might be merited. However, with Amazon fast gaining near monopolistic control of the market, increasing censorship concerns are not merely cries over spilt milk. Making matters worse is the fact that many Democrats have jumped aboard the censorship train, demanding that Big Tech move faster and harder in efforts to squelch conservative views.

As the Wall Street Journal editorial board observes, “Corporate media censorship, such as Amazon’s scrubbing of a heretical book, is accelerating. And government is right alongside, pushing for censorship with increasing force.”

What’s especially striking about this latest incident of Big Tech censorship is that it came with absolutely no warning or explanation. Anderson said that he was only alerted to Amazon’s removal of his book after someone who sought to buy it contacted him and told him it was unavailable on the platform. It’s clear that since his book challenges the Left’s “transgender” dogma, Anderson has essentially been deemed a “heretic.” Therefore, his work must be expunged lest it gives the American public license to question the dubious claims of the Rainbow Mafia’s heterophobic gender deniers.

Oh, and a hat tip once again to The Babylon Bee for this headline: “Amazon Introduces ‘Kindle Bonfire’ Feature That Lets You Burn Digital Books.”

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Waking Up to the Free Speech Threat

Douglas Andrews

Redlining is a little-understood term with a sorry history in this country. According to Wikipedia, it involves “the systematic denial of various services or goods … either directly or through the selective raising of prices.”

So when you think “traditional redlining,” think “keeping blacks out of certain neighborhoods by denying them mortgages or home improvement loans.”

But when you think “political redlining,” think “keeping conservatives from expressing themselves in the marketplace of ideas by denying them access to social media platforms and financial services.”

Our Mark Alexander wrote about this modern-day form of redlining last month, but few others, even in conservative circles, have picked up on it. That’s a mistake, because it’s a powerful weapon being used for the worst of purposes — the denial of our right to speak freely.

“When Americans are targeted because of their constitutionally protected political and/or religious views,” Alexander writes, “leading to coordinated efforts to deplatform and then defund those individuals and businesses when financial institutions selectively refuse services, it constitutes a new form of ‘redlining’ in violation of their most fundamental civil rights. Without a Republican gauntlet, there will be a considerable surge in the systemic redline suppression of fundamental civil rights.”

And we’re mistaken if we think political redlining begins and ends with free speech. There’s another civil right — the right to defend oneself — that’s also being targeted by the Left. The Biden administration is planning to revive Barack Obama’s infamous Operation Choke Point, a 2013 scheme by which the Department of Justice investigated U.S. banks and the business they did with firearm dealers and other inconvenient businesses, ostensibly because they were believed to be at a high risk for fraud and money laundering. Essentially, the Obama administration was trying to deny several legal industries even basic access to the banking system.

As the American Enterprise Institute’s Benjamin Zycher writes, “That is why Choke Point and similar gameplaying in the capital market is ideal for the political left: No formal rule is being violated, the banks are in no position to resist, and the borrowers have no recourse. Equality under the law is thrown out the window because the left fundamentally believes in nothing as much as its own political power, while the bureaucracy — much ignored in the reality that it is an important interest group — is left to enhance its own powers at the expense of market forces.”

“Restriction of free thought and free speech,” said liberal Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas, “is the most dangerous of all subversions. It is the one un-American act that could most easily defeat us.”

Douglas, an FDR appointee, served for 36 years on the High Court. And he served back in an era when the term “liberal” was used in the classical sense; when it stood for the protection of civil liberties and limitations on central government power. Where, you ask, are today’s classical liberals? They’re called constitutional conservatives.

Today’s Big Tech censors and their speech-suppressing brethren on the Left would do well to consider Justice Douglas’s warning. Where free speech is concerned, we’re heading off a cliff.

As Brendan O’Neill writes in the UK publication Spiked, “It is undeniable that we live in a society where freedom of expression is in crisis. Whether we are being censored by the state, by self-styled guardians of correct-thinking, by mobs or by ourselves, we are being censored. And this matters. It matters because, at both the individual level and the social level, freedom of speech is essential to human flourishing. Freedom of speech gives real power to the individual. It liberates us not only to express our own views — which is of course incredibly important — but also to listen to the views of everyone else and to use our mental and moral muscles to decide for ourselves if what they are saying is right or wrong. … Censorship, by contrast, infantilizes us, weakening our mental and moral muscles by inviting us to rely instead on the judgments of our superiors.”

Big Tech and the Left are indeed weakening our mental and moral muscles — by way of censorship, deplatforming, and political redlining. The question is: Do good and decent people across the political spectrum have the guts to say Enough! before it’s too late?

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Reparations in the Age of ‘Unity’

Thomas Gallatin

If this is how Unity™ is going to be, we’ll take a hard pass.

Democrat Texas Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee recently submitted HR 40, a bill that would advance the dubious reparations racket that the woke Left has been ballyhooing about for years. Couching her language in tiresome leftist tropes, Jackson Lee asserted, “We believe in determination, and we believe in overcoming the many bad balls that we have been thrown; we’ve caught them, and we’ve kept on going. That is not the point of H.R. 40. Now more than ever, the facts and circumstances facing our nation demonstrate the importance of H.R. 40 and the necessity of placing our nation on the path to reparative justice.”

If HR 40 were to be passed, it would open the door for the eventual payment of race-based reparations by funding a study of “slavery and discrimination in the colonies and the United States from 1619 to the present and recommend appropriate remedies.” (Hmm, 1619 … where have we heard that date before?) Efforts to have Congress fund a “study” of slavery and discrimination have been ongoing for over three decades, but Congress has never taken up a vote on the obviously racist and divisive issue.

Even now while offering tepid support for the reparations movement, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said, “[Joe Biden] supported a study of reparations, which I believe is what is being discussed and studying the continued impacts of slavery, which is being discussed in this hearing.” But as to whether Biden would actually back a reparations bill, she hedged, “We will see what happens through the legislative process.” In other words, Biden is content to wait and lead from behind.

Republicans, meanwhile, have been quick to accurately blast HR 40 as “divisive.” Representative Burgess Owens (R-UT), who is himself black, declared, “Reparations are not the way to right our country’s wrong. It is impractical and a nonstarter for the United States government to pay reparations. It is also unfair and heartless to give black Americans the hope that this is a reality.”

Owens further observed, “The reality is that black American history is not one of a hapless, hopeless race oppressed by a more powerful white race.” Rather, it is “a history of millions of middle and wealthy class black Americans throughout the early 20th century achieving the American dream.” It also effectively erases the history of impressive racial progress in the U.S. over the generations since the end of slavery and Jim Crow.

“You can’t demand or beg for respect,” Owens noted. “You can only command respect through meritocracy.” He later asserted that politics is really behind the Democrats’ reparations push, arguing, “Reparations are not about helping the black community, it’s about getting votes. Want to help the black community (& everyone else)? Let us get back to work, let our kids go back to school, let our parents decide which school, and get Planned Parenthood out of our inner cities!”

Those are wise words, and blacks exploited by Democrats for generations would be wise to heed them.

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Who Wouldn’t Lose Faith After the Establishment’s Track Record?

Harold Hutchison

There’s a disturbing cluelessness among a lot of Republican and conservative leaders in the pundit and political class. We see outlets like National Review asking whether Donald Trump fans have lost faith in institutions and democracy. That’s really the wrong question. The right one is, “Who wouldn’t lose faith after the track record the establishment has posted?”

Here’s one case in point: We rebutted David French (formerly of National Review) in January over his claims that many who advocated electing and reelecting President Trump were lying about left-wing hatred for grassroots Patriots and the stakes involving our First Amendment rights. Since that two-part fact-check, something even more disturbing emerged.

On February 18, The Root published an article in which several national security “experts” compared the Republican Party to a terrorist cell. In a quote later “clarified” (with a note about the clarification at the bottom of the article), Kyle Bibby said, “If they were in Afghanistan, we would’ve hit them. Either a raid, drop a bomb on them, whatever it is.” Bibby went on to say that outlets like Fox News, Breitbart, OANN, and the Republican Party would be sanctioned. The article also quoted Malcolm Nance, a frequent MSNBC contributor, and Pam Keith, a failed congressional candidate who sought professional retaliation against those who were backing President Trump’s legal efforts in the wake of the 2020 election.

The silence from so-called “Never-Trump” types has been deafening. So is that of the Republican/conservative establishment. While National Review’s Dan McLaughlin did call it out on Twitter, outside of Breitbart News, there was precious little coverage. The big conservative names responding to this were Dinesh D’SouzaNick Searcy, and Kurt Schlichter.

The weasel-worded clarification that The Root hastily added doesn’t hide the fact that a good-sized portion of the Left has viewed Republicans as the next incarnation of the Nazis — and did so long before Trump ran. It was being said during the 2016 campaign as well, but there is a lengthy history of such rhetoric from the Left, including:

Given that pattern of rhetoric and abuse, many grassroots Patriots in 2016 came to rightfully fear what Hillary Clinton would do, and their votes for Trump were aimed at stopping Hillary — with any policy gains seen as gravy. In 2020, it was about putting a check on an administrative state and stopping a Democrat Party that was increasingly embracing totalitarian tactics. Lest you think this sounds paranoid, remember: The “national security experts” consulted by The Root were fine with dropping bombs on the Republican Party they freely likened to al-Qaida. Compared to that, what’s Silicon Valley censorship, IRS targeting, leaning on financial service companies to boycott the NRA, or sending out a flood of mail-in ballots while dismantling any of the guardrails to ensure the integrity of the vote?

The failure over the years to push back meaningfully against this rhetoric had consequences, as Dennis Prager and a certain Time magazine article illustrate. Furthermore, since challenging the irregularities of the 2020 election was “fundamentally wicked,” might the Left resort to further abuses of power against those it views as evil? Yet too many in the establishment treat these genuinely concerned grassroots Patriots as being crazy for simply believing leftists when they are telling us what they would do if they had the power.

Worse, when the track record of lying has apparently motivated abuses, the establishment has failed to act. Loyalty cannot be a one-way street. Political leaders — whether pundits or politicians — owe loyalty to those whose support they accepted, and part of that is defending their supporters when they are unfairly maligned or abused. Failure to do so is a justifiable reason for those at the grassroots level to lose faith in the establishment.

By contrast, Trump has shown that sort of loyalty and earned the support of many grassroots Patriots, for good or ill. Will establishment folks listen, learn, and do the work to regain as much of that faith as possible, or will they drive grassroots Patriots to seek another Trump?

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Censored, Bashed, and Banned: The Assault on Young Conservatives

Paige McCullough

I recently had a conversation with one of my teachers about how mass access to social media and technology allows for the corruption of truth. One of the main points this teacher made was that years ago there were only a few resources for news. Today, thousands of news outlets can post their interpretation of the news and, instantly, hundreds of thousands of people can see it. But there are a few major well-funded Leftmedia platforms — print media like The New York Times and The Washington Post, and cable media like CNN and MSNBC — and their perspective is propagated by thousands of news outlets downstream.

Many “Fake News” lies are spread through social media, where they are picked up and believed by many of my peers, and those lies shape their own beliefs. Sites like TikTok, Twitter, and Instagram are filled with information that vilifies and dehumanizes conservatives. And our ability to rebut those perspectives is increasingly restricted or banned by the Big Tech First Amendment suppressors.

Young conservative activists, articulate protagonists like Candace Owens and The Patriot Post’s Patrick Hampton, as well as other conservative influencers, have had their views suppressed and their social media accounts suspended. This also happens to those of us sharing our grassroots perspective, as happened to one of my peers.

A few weeks ago as I was scrolling through Instagram, I came across a few posts on a friend’s profile that discussed the importance of free speech as expressed by Candace Owens. Ironically, my friend was banned from using the app for 24 hours due to his posts about First Amendment freedom of speech.

As young conservatives, we’re both discouraged and worried about what this means for our generation. Social media plays a large part in many young people’s lives, influencing what we think and stand for — and the Left knows that. With the censorship of conservative thought and the outpouring of leftist ideas, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for my generation to differentiate between real and fake news, and to know what to believe in.

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The Few, the Proud — Iwo Jima

On February 23, 1945, six Marines with the 5th Division raised the American flag atop Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima. Three of them, Sergeant Michael Strank, Corporal Harlon Block, and Private First Class Franklin Sousley, were killed in action before the battle was over.

Joe Rosenthal’s iconic image was the inspiration for the Marine Corps War Memorial outside the Ord-Weitzel Gate to Arlington National Cemetery. That flag can now be seen in the National Museum of the Marine Corps near MCB Quantico.

The major conflicts against 20th-century tyrants cost 616,124 American lives and 1,120,283 wounded in bloody theaters of warfare — one battle at a time. Too many have no idea what has been sacrificed for their Liberty — for the freedom many arrogantly squander today. Ignorance is bliss — until it is not…

As Winston Churchill once said, “Never was so much owed by so many to so few.”

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EXECUTIVE NEWS SUMMARY

Jordan Candler

Judicial Benchmarks

  • Supreme Court refuses to hear GOP election case from Pennsylvania (LA Times)
  • Supreme Court to review “public charge” rule (Reuters)

Government & Politics

  • AG nominee Merrick Garland may hide John Durham report from the public (The Federalist)
  • Dominion Voting Systems files defamation suit against Mike Lindell and MyPillow (Dominionvoting.com)

National Security

Around the Nation

  • California approves $600 stimulus payments for 5.7 million people (Fox News)
  • San Francisco school board puts hold on renaming its 44 schools (KGO)

Annals of the “Social Justice” Caliphate

  • Chief of Cherokee Nation says “it’s time” for Jeep to stop using name (Car and Driver)
  • College offers free tuition — for black and American Indian students (RedState)
  • Seattle-backed homeless shelter provides heroin how-to guide and paraphernalia (PJ Media)
  • University professor fired for class illustration deemed “transphobic” (Disrn)

Odds & Ends

  • Daily COVID deaths fall to 1,235 — the lowest since before the holiday season (Daily Mail)
  • Canada laudably joins the U.S. by declaring China’s treatment of Uighurs “genocide” (UPI)
  • Mom of Capitol Officer Brian Sicknick believes he died of a stroke (Daily Mail)
  • States set for clash with Biden administration over transgender athletes (Examiner)
  • Illinois becomes first state to fecklessly eliminate cash bail (NPR)
  • Kelly Loeffler starts Georgia voter group to rival Stacey Abrams (NY Post)

We’re Shocked — Shocked!

  • Wife of “El Chapo” arrested in the U.S. … on drug charges (NPR)

Closing Arguments

  • Policy: Democrats are setting up a massive immigration crisis (The Federalist)
  • Policy: Before rejoining UN Human Rights Council, U.S. should commit to authentic human rights (Daily Signal)
  • Humor: Coca-Cola now requiring employees to “be less white” by wearing blackface (Genesius Times)

For more of today’s editors’ choice headlines, visit Headline Report.

The Patriot Post is a certified ad-free news service, unlike third-party commercial news sites linked on this page, which may also require a paid subscription.

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READER COMMENTS

Editor’s Note: Each week we receive hundreds of comments and correspondences — and we read every one of them. What follows are a few though-provoking comments about specific articles. The views expressed herein don’t necessarily reflect those of The Patriot Post.

Re: “The McConnell v. Trump Dustup

“Exactly right. And many of us who deeply appreciate Donald Trump’s policy achievements (for which Mitch McConnell shares credit) hope he will not let his oversized ego ruin the GOP’s chances in 2022 and 2024. His reprehensible treatment of Mike Pence and now Mitch McConnell does not bode well.” —Kenneth from Illinois

“Very well-reasoned analysis. Like you, I always vote policy, not personality, and fully supported President Trump’s policies. But tragically, DJT was his own worst enemy as a communicator. That, coupled with his narcissism and consequent lack of loyalty to other conservative leaders no matter how much he owed them, helped to cause his downfall. He seems never to have grasped (1) that there were not enough voters in his base to prevail in 2020, and, thus, (2) that when he failed to reach the ‘undecideds’ (almost all of whom vote based on personality and image), he sealed his electoral defeat. This was his failure, not that of Mike Pence, Mitch McConnell, Lindsey Graham, John Kelly, Jim Mattis, or anyone else.” —Robert from Minnesota

“I really enjoy your commentary and find agreement with you much greater than 99% of the time. However, one point on which I feel that you are wrong: It was indeed a witch hunt, and without evidence. The problem is that Trump offered them the excuse, as you point out so well. The impeachment charade was unconstitutional as well, as numerous people including Mark Levin have observed. I think the entire farce was designed to convince and condition uninformed lemmings that kangaroo courts without evidence are perfectly legitimate, further undermining the Rule of Law in favor of the
 rule of men.” —Rod from Michigan

Re: “A Fond Farewell to Rush Limbaugh

“At some point early in the ‘90s I realized that Rush Limbaugh and I had grown up in the ’50s and ’60s less than a hundred miles apart near the Mississippi River, each of us coming of age in modest, middle-class homes. At the same time, I became increasingly aware of those Midwestern values that we shared and that I believe were at the heart of his winsome connection with so many Americans: a simple respect for other people (rarely did Rush put down anyone, including his detractors) coupled with a basic egalitarianism which judged that every person, regardless of status, ‘puts on his pants one leg at a time.’ All people deserve respect; no one is worthy of adulation.” —Gary from Georgia

Re: “Three Lessons Conservatives Can Learn From Rush

“I loved Rush Limbaugh and consider him one of the more clear minds of our time. I arrived at this country at 52 years old from Cuba and know very well socialism and its consequences. I haven’t found a clearer mind than the one Rush had with regard to the real understanding of the strategy and tactics of communism and the unwavering defense of the American set of values. I am missing him every day and feel his departure as if it was of a close member of my family.” —Lazaro from Florida

Re: “Leftmedia Smears Rush After His Passing

“The contrast could not be more stark. When Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died, conservatives gave her accolades even though they disagreed with virtually every ruling she made. Some even presented her as entering the joys of Heaven. When Billy Graham and Rush Limbaugh passed away, the Left danced with glee and wished them the miseries of hell. Conservatives can distinguish between moral character and bankrupt philosophies. Even more importantly, most understand that people are created in the image of God and are intrinsically of infinite value. To the Left, character does not matter — only toeing the party line. Leftists have no absolute truth and thus judge others by their own depraved selves. Which side actually spews forth hate?” —David from Arkansas

Re: “Ted’s Not-So-Excellent Adventure

“Ted Cruz didn’t do anything any one of us wouldn’t have done. Realistically, what was Ted going to do if he stayed in Texas? Go around to all the wind turbines with a Zippo lighter and try to melt the ice? Magically change the grid structure to use more natural gas? Come on folks, this is a media frenzy just because he’s a conservative Republican. Nothing more. When Governor Gavin Newsom pulled a boneheaded move with his cronies in a restaurant, it got 30 seconds of coverage. Governor Andrew Cuomo is likely responsible for the deaths of thousands in nursing homes. So what’s his deal? The media covers him. Cruz is fine, and this nonsense is a smokescreen by the Left.” —Peter from New Jersey

Re: “Saving Keystone From Joe Biden’s Pen

“Instead of 800,000 barrels of oil flowing harmlessly through the Keystone pipeline, they now must use 4,400 semi-trucks and 1,300 train cars (owned by Warren Buffett) every day to move the oil. Still think this was all about the environment? Both rail and pipelines are quite safe, but pipelines are without a doubt the safest way to transport oil and gas. In every year from 2003 to 2013, pipelines experienced fewer incidents per million barrels of oil equivalent transported than did rail.” —David from California

Re: “Is It Finally Time for a Real Third Party?

“If Mr. Weber wishes to know why a third party will not work, have him contact me. As the former head of the Constitution Party in Ohio, I can explain it to him in spades. President Trump was finding out some of those reasons when he first began to run for president in 2016. I was hoping he would address those, but once he broke through and upset the Republican mainstream, he no longer concerned himself with those roadblocks established by the mainstream two-party system, which is designed to ensure the establishment retains control of the voting process — more so in some states than others. Of course, the Republican mainstream is now working to ensure there are no more Donald Trumps who can upset its applecart again. As to the Democrat mainstream, who put Scranton Joe in the White House?” —Donald from Arizona

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VIDEOS

The Truth About Bill Gates — Exposing Bill’s environmental hypocrisy. It’s okay when Bill does it.

California Dem Says the Quiet Part About Minimum Wage Out Loud — Ro Khanna says that if a business cannot afford to pay a minimum wage of at least $15 per hour, then they shouldn’t be in business.

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

 

 

For more of today’s columns, visit Right Opinion.

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “Concentrated power is not rendered harmless by the good intentions of those who create it.” —Milton Friedman (1912-2006)

Upright I: “This is some of the most horrific human activity that we have seen since the last century, and the administration has a responsibility … to convince the Chinese Communist Party not to behave in this way [and] to impose costs on them when they don’t. So to pawn this off as just a different norm or a different set of behaviors, that’s what the Chinese Communist Party says. That’s how they talk about this.” — former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo

Upright II: “To hear an American president talk about it in such a way that doesn’t connote all the seriousness with which this must be taken is disheartening, and I hope the administration will take it seriously in the same way that we did when we were in office.” —Mike Pompeo

Canaries in a coal mine: “[Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer] continue to treat the January 6 … criminal riot as an excuse to seize power, to control more power, to step on people’s Second Amendment rights, to take away their First Amendment rights. Now we’re hearing about a domestic war on terror. I mean, what’s that going to be? An excuse to go rifle through the emails and bank statements and personal messages of law-abiding Americans?” —Senator Josh Hawley

For the record: “I was so disgusted that Biden, on the anniversary of my daughter getting murdered, announced they were going to put all these gun control measures in place. [None] of those would have made a difference in my daughter getting murdered in Parkland.” —Andrew Pollack

Friendly fire: “That’s classic Andrew Cuomo. … You know, the bullying is nothing new. I believe Ron Kim and it’s very, very sad. No public servant, no person who’s telling the truth, should be treated that way. But yeah, the threats, the belittling, the demand that someone change their statement right that moment? Many, many times I’ve heard that and I know a lot of other people in this state have heard that.” —Mayor Bill de Blasio

A blind squirrel finds a nut: “I think at some point [Trump] probably will be allowed back on [social media] and probably should be allowed back on.” —Bill Gates

Actually, he dropped the nut: “I am offsetting my carbon emissions by buying clean aviation fuel and funding carbon capture and funding low-cost housing projects to use electricity instead of a natural gas. And so I’ve — I have been able to eliminate it, and it was amazing to me how expensive that was.” —Bill Gates justifying his hypocrisy

Braying jackass: “The bottom line is, Texas thought it could go it alone and built a system that ignored climate change. It was not what’s called resilient, and now Texas is paying the price. I hope they learned a lesson.” —Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer

Non compos mentis: “We don’t want low wage businesses. I think most successful small businesses can pay a fair wage. … I love small businesses — I’m all for it — but I don’t want small businesses that underpay employees.” —Rep. Ro Khanna

Non sequitur: “Some of the comments I’m seeing on social media from lefties who hate Rush, saying they hope the cancer takes him away as fast as possible — it’s revolting to me. As much as we talk about Trump and misinformation, there is a strain of contempt on the left that also worries me. Why can’t people just say, ‘We hope that Rush gets better quickly’?” —CNN’s Brian Stelter a year ago (And who does he think fueled that hate, then and now?)

And last… “Let’s see a conversation between the people insisting ‘teachers just want to be safe!’ and the grocery store clerks who’ve shown up for work without fail for 12 months — including when we thought the pandemic was far deadlier. Ah, but they don’t have powerful Democrat unions.” —Buck Sexton

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White House Defends Putting Migrant Kids In Shipping Container Cages Because COVID

White House press secretary Jen Psaki defended the Biden administration’s decision to reopen a detention center for unaccompanied migrant children in Texas by claiming it is necessary due to COVID-19.

Source: White House Defends Putting Migrant Kids In Shipping Container Cages Because COVID

Watch: WH Press Sec Blames Pandemic After Being Asked About ‘Kids In Cages’ | ZeroHedge News

On Monday, we noted that child-shelter facilities run by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) used to house unaccompanied minors are 93% full – causing the Biden administration to reopen an emergency shelter in Carrizo Springs, Texas, in order to house 700 additional children.

Emergency overflow facility, Carrizo Springs, TX

The facility, converted in 2019 during the Trump administration to manage the surge of other children, was widely criticized by Democrats at the time as yet another example of keeping ‘kids in cages‘ – despite the fact that the Carrizo Springs facility has no cages (yet was still described by The Guardian as “still a jail”).

In fact, two weeks after the Carrizo Springs facility made headlines in 2019, then-candidate Kamala Harris said: “You look at the fact that this is a president who has pushed policies that’s been about putting babies in cages at the border in the name of security when in fact what it is, is a human rights abuse being committed by the United States government.”

On Tuesday, Fox News’ Peter Doocy asked White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki struggled to reconcile past comments by Biden and Harris, including the ‘babies in cages’ statement.

Watch (heats up around 1:25):

Source: Watch: WH Press Sec Blames Pandemic After Being Asked About ‘Kids In Cages’

Stop Smearing Christians As ‘Christian Nationalists’ Just Because They Value Both Faith And Freedom

Don’t confuse true believers who rightly fight for both faith and freedom as Christian nationalists. That’s just the Christian life.

Source: Stop Smearing Christians As ‘Christian Nationalists’ Just Because They Value Both Faith And Freedom

Anti-1A ‘Equality Act’ Likely to Pass with House GOP Support

House Democrats are poised to pass the Equality Act again, claiming it will merely amend federal civil rights law to ensure sexual orientation and gender identity are included among protected classes — without protection for religious objections.

Source: Anti-1A ‘Equality Act’ Likely to Pass with House GOP Support

Biden Faces Crisis as Waves of Unaccompanied Migrant Children Cross Border into U.S.

The Biden Administration faces a growing crisis as waves of unaccompanied minors cross the U.S.-Mexico Border in increasing numbers. Shelters are filling fast and are now estimated to be 93 percent occupied.

Source: Biden Faces Crisis as Waves of Unaccompanied Migrant Children Cross Border into U.S.

Dangerous Conspiracy Theorist Doesn’t Believe Vaccines Work — The Babylon Bee

WASHINGTON, D.C.—A dangerous conspiracy theorist based in Washington doesn’t believe vaccines work, concerned sources reported Tuesday. He spouted his deadly rhetoric in a speech today, going on about how even if Americans get two doses of the vaccine, they should keep triple-masking, avoid going outside, and stay in their homes and die alone.

Reports indicate that the conspiracy theorist isn’t just a no-name cult leader on YouTube or something, but is incredibly popular, with millions of people hanging on his every word.

“It’s really scary how many people are listening to this dangerous, anti-science conspiracy theorist,” said one scientist. “We’re trying to get people to get vaccinated, and this guy comes along and starts spewing his nonsense about how vaccinated people could still get the virus and so can’t go to theatres, baseball games, or restaurants for at least a year or two. He’s really harming public discourse on the issue.”

“Dangerous, extremist, fringe rhetoric like this is really harmful to our efforts to vaccinate a large portion of the population and get back to normal. Be really careful of wackos like this guy.”

What’s more, the conspiracy theory-pushing extremist is clearly a grifter, as images surfaced of him going to a baseball game and taking his mask off throughout last year.

Dangerous Conspiracy Theorist Doesn’t Believe Vaccines Work — The Babylon Bee

Take The Babylon Bee’s Anti-Racism Corporate Training — The Babylon Bee

There are many anti-racism corporate training presentations out there, but it’s hard to know which one to use for your business. You want one that doesn’t take too much company time and yet distills all the information your people need to know to be anti-racist into a brief, memorable presentation.

Well, look no further. The Babylon Bee’s anti-racism corporate training is here. We’re so good at being anti-racist, in fact, that we’ve managed to condense everything we know about fighting racism into one slide. You can complete our course in seconds.

Pour yourself a cup of coffee and prepare to become an anti-racist:

Congratulations! You’re an anti-racist!

Feel free to use this helpful presentation for your business. Together we can fight dangerous racist ideas.

Take The Babylon Bee’s Anti-Racism Corporate Training — The Babylon Bee

Kids in Cages: Biden Opens Gated Compound for Illegal Immigrant Children — Democrats and AOC Silent | The Gateway Pundit


It’s just like the good ol’ days under Barack Obama.

The Biden administration opened a gated migrant facility for illegal immigrant children this past weekend in Carrizo Springs, Texas.
The camp will hold up to 700 illegal immigrant children.

The facility was open for one month during the Trump years and then it was shut down. Democrats were very, very upset about caged kids during Trump’s tenure. They completely ignored it under Obama.

The need to hold illegal alien children in compounds is the direct result of reversing President Trump’s highly successful border policies, which they described as “hardline.”

 

And now, here we are again.

 

USA Today has more on the facility.

The facility in Carrizo Springs, Texas, will house up to 700 migrant children within the next two weeks, according to a statement Tuesday from the Office of Refugee Resettlement, the agency within the Department of Health and Human Services that is responsible for migrant children. The temporary Influx Care Facility will be used for children ages 13 and older who have been medically cleared of COVID-19, the statement said.

The move came after President Joe Biden signed a raft of executive orders aimed at unwinding the Trump administration’s hardline immigration policies, including establishing a task force to reunify children separated from their parents or guardians at the border under former President Donald Trump’s “zero tolerance” policy.

As he seeks to fulfill his campaign promise to swiftly undo Trump’s immigration actions, Biden is facing hurdles because of the rise in migrant apprehensions at the Southwest border and reduced capacity at facilities over COVID-19 concerns.

Democrats lied over and over about the kids in cages meme during the Trump years.
Now they’ll just ignore it.

House Democrats Use Obama-Era Photo to Promote ‘Kids in Cages’ Hearing, Delete Tweet When They Get Called Out

More…

Obama’s Immigration Chief: It Was OBAMA, Not Trump, Who Was Responsible For So-Called ‘Cages’

Dummy AOC took the lie to new heights.

WACKO: Ocasio-Cortez Claims United States ‘Cages Children’ And ‘Injects Them With Drugs’ (VIDEO)

It’s not an issue when Democrats are in charge.

 

Source: Kids in Cages: Biden Opens Gated Compound for Illegal Immigrant Children — Democrats and AOC Silent

Another Hazardous Covid Vaccine Approved | Stephen Lendman

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)

On February 15, the WHO approved AstraZeneca’s experimental, inadequately tested, hazardous to health covid vaccine for emergency use when no emergency exist.

Ordinary people in the West and elsewhere are being manipulated to believe that what doesn’t protect and risks serious harm to health is OK to use.

During trials, major safety concerns were revealed. Bill Gates is heavily invested in what’s too hazardous for human use.

His Global Alliance for Vaccine Initiative (GAVI) intends widespread distribution of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

After adverse events occurred, virologist John Jacob called for halting trials straightaway, what didn’t happen.

Now it’ll likely be used by people in developing countries unwitting of its hazards. Mass casualties are highly likely, including debilitating neurological and other serious disorders.

According to reported information last fall, over half of AstraZeneca’s Phase I and II trial participants experienced adverse events, including serious ones.

If the company’s vaccine gets emergency use authorization in the US, a March 2020 HHS declaration under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act for Medical Countermeasures Against COVID-19 provides liability immunity for the company and others involved in the covid mass-jabbing sweepstakes.

The same policy is followed by the EU and Australia — serving Pharma’s interests, ignoring public health concerns.

What’s going on has nothing to do with protecting health, everything to do with maximizing Pharma profits at the expense of health and well-being.

According to Children’s Health Defense (CHD), WHO emergency use approval of AstraZeneca’s controversial covid vaccine “paves the way for 300 million doses…to reach 145 countries in the first half of 2021 through Bill Gates’ COVAX program.”

He stands to make billions of dollars by mass-jabbing toxins into the veins of unwitting victims.

So far in the US, the FDA hasn’t given an emergency OK for mass-jabbing Americans with Astra-Zeneca toxins because of “manufacturing concerns,” ineffectiveness of the drug, and wanting US companies to have a leg up on foreign competition.

South Africa backed off from distributing AstraZeneca vaccines because they don’t work as claimed.

Germany withheld authorization for individuals over age-65 for the same reason.

Yet the European Medicines Agency OK’d it for anyone over age-18.

France and other European countries are hesitant about approving its use because of adverse reactions among trial participants.

The company’s medical director Andreas Heddini admitted that a greater number of adverse reactions occurred than expected.

Some happen straightaway, other days, weeks or months later.

Everyone jabbed with hazardous covid drug toxins risks near-term or later harm to health including possible death.

Unlike Pfizer and Moderna mRNA gene altering technologies, AstraZeneca’s vaccine “is based on the virus’ genetic instructions for building the spike protein — proteins on the SARS-CoV-2 virus that it uses to enter human cells,” said CHD.

It’s unclear how this works because the so-called SARS-Cov-2 virus was never found — which begs the question:

Does it exist? If not, how can mRNA technology or vaccines be produced to protect against it? Draw your own conclusion.

Nothing permitted by the US and other governments for seasonal flu-renamed covid is safe or effective for human use as falsely claimed.

Avoid them or risk possible irreversible harm to health that for the elderly, others with weakened immune systems, individuals with allergies and or other health issues could be fatal.

Source: Another Hazardous Covid Vaccine Approved