Daily Archives: February 24, 2021

Living Up to Christian Principles in a Fallen World — The Aquila Report

A central tenet of Christianity is that we are sinful creatures, prone to do wrong and then cover it up for our own benefit. That is why we need salvation. So, it is profoundly strange that so many Christian institutions seem to be deliberately set up to insulate their leadership, which often wields immense power over its members, from any private or public criticism, and designed to keep bad news from seeping out. This creates a perverse world where ordinary Christians are supposed to recognize their problems while simultaneously predators can be propped up on pedestals.

And it has terrible long-term effects.

Ravi Zacharias was the head of an international, $40-million-a-year apologetics ministry devoted to explaining and justifying Christianity to a watching world. The position brought him international fame and fortune. When he died there were an outpouring of hagiographies of him from Christian circles.

But increasingly, evidence shows that Ravi Zacharias was guilty of significant levels of adultery and sexual abuse, and lying.

Ravi lied about his academic credentials, claiming degrees from Oxford and Cambridge, along with a fake doctorate. Worse was his years-long sexting scandal with a married woman that he repeatedly lied about and, more recently, the discovery that he was a part owner of a number of “massage clinics” where he sexually abused women.

Zacharias and his ministry apparently spent years denying, obfuscating, and covering up piles of evidence of his misconduct. Finally, after Ravi’s death, the executive committee of the board of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries has admitted that there is credible evidence that he engaged in sexual misconduct for many years. In a statement clearly designed to claim a show of transparency, the board noted: “We are heartbroken at learning this but feel it necessary to be transparent and to inform our staff, donors, and supporters at this time, even while the investigation continues.”

In truth, the board seems to have been far from transparent. Only now, almost a year after Ravi’s death, and after years of obfuscation, has the board finally admitted that the stories about Ravi are true. To its credit, the board hired a law firm that has already investigated and authenticated many of the allegations and has engaged victim-advocate Rachael Denhollander as a consultant and a separate compliance firm to evaluate RZIM’s board. But frankly, for many, this comes far too late.

Sadly, Ravi’s story is not unique among Christian ministries. It is increasingly obvious that the abuse scandal some thought was only in the Catholic Church is widespread in Protestant and evangelical churches. In the last two years, numerous pastors, from James McDonald to Carl Lentz and John Ortberg, have been publicly fired from large megachurches for financial or sexual abuse, or both. Moreover, Christian colleges are not immune. Jerry Falwell Jr. was ousted from Liberty University this summer for sexual misconduct, along with a litany of allegations of financial abuse. Thomas White was reinstated as president of Cedarville University after it came out that he had knowingly hired a sexual voyeur as a professor and basketball coach.

At one level, none of this should be a surprise to Christians. Christianity, after all, begins with the story of God’s creation of the world and everything in it and of original sin: man’s rebellion against God.

No, the surprising thing is not that Christian leaders commit error; that pastors and ministry leaders abuse their authority. The astonishing problem is how many Christian institutions almost seem to be set up with the implicit assumption that leaders never commit gross misconduct. Even worse, often Christian institutions actively hide abuse while gaslighting and blaming victims. And in many Christian circles, a culture of shame and sin is used to silence victims.

There are common threads in many of these abuse cases: leadership should always be trusted and obeyed, women are not trustworthy, and outsiders, like the media, should never be told of allegations. Moreover, as watchdog groups such as MinistryWatch and the Roys Report have extensively noted, many Christian ministries are run like family businesses. Ravi Zacharias’ ministry was a family affair: it was named after him, and his wife and several daughters were on the board or employed by the ministry at six-figure salaries. The same is true at Liberty University, where Jerry Falwell Jr. followed in his father’s footsteps and his son is a vice president.

A central tenet of Christianity is that we are sinful creatures, prone to do wrong and then cover it up for our own benefit. That is why we need salvation. So, it is profoundly strange that so many Christian institutions seem to be deliberately set up to insulate their leadership, which often wields immense power over its members, from any private or public criticism, and designed to keep bad news from seeping out.

This creates a perverse world where ordinary Christians are supposed to recognize their problems while simultaneously predators can be propped up on pedestals.

The Christian, of course, should recognize that we are all hypocrites, that none of us live up to our principles, which is why we need Christ. But it is past time for our institutions and our institutional leaders to act in ways that demonstrate they recognize and believe that our sinful nature applies to them as well to ordinary people.

Dr. Caleb Verbois is an assistant professor of political science at Grove City College and an affiliated scholar at the John Jay Institute. He teaches American Politics and Political Theory and specializes in American constitutional thought. Used with permission.

Living Up to Christian Principles in a Fallen World — The Aquila Report

The Impossibility of Reconciliation — The Aquila Report

God the Father sent God the Son, His only Begotten, to reconcile God to man; to ransom His elect to Himself, redeeming them from the penalty of sin and purchasing them from the bondage to sin (Mark 10:45).  He paid the ransom with His precious blood (1 Peter 1:18-19).

“Be reconciled to God.” II Corinthians 5:20

There is so much hatred and violence in the world today. There are some who have expressly stated they don’t want justice; they want revenge. Even politicians are at odds as to how to handle the rioting, looting and destruction of public property. Even if the political environment does uphold the rule of law to protect the citizens of the country and outward behavior corrected, true reconciliation will never be achieved.  In fact, the truth is it is impossible for any of us to be truly reconciled on our own, either with God or with other people.

The reality is that all mankind is born at odds with one another. The baby throws an angry fit to get his or her own way – no one teaches a 2-year-old to say “no” to his or her parents, or to keep doing something when told not to do it.  You don’t need to teach a child to rebel against his or her parents, it just comes naturally. As adults, our natural inclination is to hate our neighbor, not love him or her in the same way we love ourselves.  Many people are, in fact, too busy putting their neighbors down to really care about their welfare, much less their spiritual well-being, their spiritual state that is being exhibited in how they conduct their lives.

Our Conflicts are a Result of Being at Odds with God

For the unbeliever, being at odds and in conflict with another person is a result of being at odds with God, our Creator. In God’s assessment of mankind’s state in Romans Chapter 3, He tells us that there is “none righteous, no, not one” . . . “there is none who seeks after God” . . . and that “there is no fear of God before their eyes.” And then later in that same Epistle we are told mankind’s mind in its natural state is at“. . . enmity against God . . .” (Romans 8:7).  In other words, the mindset of mankind is by nature inclined to an active hatred or ill will towards God. This, in turn, means that his natural inclination is to hate his neighbor, no matter what.  This estrangement of fellowship between us and God has dire consequences. And we must give an account to the only holy and righteous God, our Creator, of all our evil works, of all our rebellious attitudes, and of all our lustful and self-glorifying thoughts against God and our neighbor. The consequences of this estrangement from God means being separated from God and His blessings of peace, comfort, and the blessedness of being in His presence forever. Being separated from God in eternity means living in body and soul in the eternal torment of hell, where a person’s hatred and evil desires will run so deep and passionate that there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, because their lusts and passions will never be satisfied; their torment will be forever.

Strife, rebellion, hatred, and stubbornness against God and His word begins at birth and don’t end until a person dies . . . unless something changes; a change that is so radical that it changes the way a person thinks, changes the person’s attitude, changes the desires of the heart; that is, a radical change to his or her heart and mind. In other words, it is a change that is impossible for him or her to make; a change that begins with reconciliation. Without a radical change in a person there will always be lying, envy, hatred, division, malice, and murder. The rioting and mayhem we see is the outward expression of the inner character of the person that is overcome with hatred and evil desires of the flesh.

Furthermore, there will always be in this world people seeking to exert power over others who are different from them or differ in their worldview, or their view of reality.  Pride and arrogance will move one person or people group to claim superiority over another person or people group; whether the reason is based on economic differences, nationalities, gender, or skin tone. These characteristics come natural to mankind and are evidenced in the way one person or people group treats another person or people group.

Reconciliation Impossible for Man

The change that is necessary for reconciliation will not/cannot be accomplished by mankind’s efforts. The Bible teaches us that the very best man can do is to add to his guilt before God, our Creator, as it says in Romans 3:19-20:

“Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin” (NKJV).

No amount of good works by sinners can ever bring about reconciliation between God and man because we are but filthy rags in the eyes of the Lord God, according to Isaiah 64:6. Our works are only suitable for burning as they are tainted by an incurable affliction, sin. So is it okay for man to continue to live in a state of sin that keeps him from standing in the presence of God, forever estrange from God? Not at all!

The desperation of man’s estranged state before God cannot be overstated! Our need to be reconciled with God becomes glaringly apparent when we consider the perilous state we find ourselves in.  You see, because our sin has separated us from God and He cannot be in the presence of sin no human can ever live in God’s presence without being reconciled (Psalm 101:7; Habakkuk 1:13). God said that He cannot dwell in the presence of sin (Psalm 5:4), and the punishment for sin is death (Romans 6:23). Death here is not only physical death that is the result of the disobedience of our first parents, Adam and Eve; it is also spiritual death. Death is the state of being separated. Physical death is the separation of the body and soul, until Christ comes again, and our bodies and souls are reunited when the general resurrection takes place. Spiritual death is the separation of man from God, a separation that will continue for all eternity, unless God and man are reconciled by the redemptive work of Christ.

It is because of our sinful state that we are in need of being reconciled, with God first, and then with one another. Without first being reconciled with God no one will ever be fully reconciled other people. Because the ground of reconciliation with one another is our reconciliation with God, our Creator and Judge. We are not able to be reconciled on our own with our Creator; it is impossible for us but not for God.

Reconciliation Only Possible Through Jesus Christ

God the Father sent God the Son, His only Begotten, to reconcile God to man; to ransom His elect to Himself, redeeming them from the penalty of sin and purchasing them from the bondage to sin (Mark 10:45).  He paid the ransom with His precious blood (1 Peter 1:18-19).

Through Christ’s death on the cross He reconciled us to the Father resulting in full forgiveness of sins, righteousness, salvation; and everlasting life. “Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ . . . that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them . . .”; therefore, “. . . be reconciled to God” (2 Corinthians 5:18-20, NKJV).

Be Reconciled to God By Grace Alone Through Faith Alone In Christ Alone

By His grace, God calls is to be reconciled to Him. By grace alone through faith alone we come in Christ alone and are restored to a relationship with God. The gospel calls us to place our trust in the atoning sacrifice of Christ on the cross for our salvation. The result is eternal life secured by Christ’s resurrection, and a restored relationship with the Father and with those who also have been redeemed.

“Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:31-32 NKJ).

Richard Stetler is a Minister in the Reformed Church, US and is the CEO of Reformation Gospel Ministries.

The Impossibility of Reconciliation — The Aquila Report

Open Forum on Islam — VCY America

Date:  February 24, 2021  
Host: Jim Schneider   
​Guest: Usama Dakdok 
MP3  ​​​| Order

https://embed.sermonaudio.com/player/a/22421229451396/

Usama Dakdok is the founder of the Straight Way of Grace Ministry.  He’s the speaker on the daily radio broadcast, Revealing the Truth About Islam.  He speaks fluent Arabic and has translated the Qur’an into English.  He’s the author of Exposing the Truth About the Qur’an and Exposing the Truth About Jihad.

The format of this program consisted of an open forum discussion on the topic of Islam and featured various questions from listeners including:

  • Is the wearing of the hijab by women a suggestion or a command by Islam?
  • Why do so many liberals and progressives defend Islam when these two worldviews are antithetical to one another in so many ways?
  • What is the relationship between Islam and Roman Catholicism?
  • Can the term, ‘Allah’ be used to identify the God of the Bible?
  • How can Christians greet Muslims in a way that is significant?
  • Islamic believers claim that Christians corrupted the New Testament.  What’s their evidence for that?

Usama provided answers to others as well utilizing Islam’s very own teachings and writings.  Hear them all when you review this edition of Crosstalk.

More Information

thestraightway.org

Open Forum on Islam — VCY America

An Analysis of Celebrate Recovery Addictions Program – Part 2 | The Cripplegate

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celebraterecoveryindiana.org

In yesterday’s post, we began an analysis of the packaged addiction program, Celebrate Recovery (CR). CR is founded on eight principles, taken from the Beatitudes, similar to the twelve steps of Alcoholic’s Anonymous (AA).

Created by John Baker and Rick Warren of Saddleback Church, CR claims to be a Christ-centered, biblically-based program. CR will be examined according to those claims, using the Leader’s Guide, by John Baker, as cited in yesterday’s post.

As stated yesterday, this review (completed with the help of Matthew Mumma, pastor of biblical counseling at Cornerstone Church) will demonstrate that CR contains two major problems: (1) Though claiming to be biblically based, its teachings are often constructed from a misuse of Scripture and an erroneous hermeneutic. (2) Though claiming to be Christian based, its theology often clashes with sound Christian theology. In today’s post, the second problem will be addressed.

2. Much of CR’s theology clashes with sound Christian theology.

Several examples will be examined here.

— Read on thecripplegate.com/an-analysis-of-celebrate-recovery-addictions-program-part-2/

An Analysis of Celebrate Recovery Addictions Program – Part 1 | The Cripplegate

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Enslaving behaviors are as old, and common to humanity, as sin itself. Since our fall at the dawn of time, we have been naturally enslavement to every destructive behavior possible. In response, various efforts have been made to deal with the problem.

One such effort is a packaged addictions program called Celebrate Recovery(CR). John Baker and Rick Warren of Saddleback Church created the program in 1991 to help people with various addictions. Rick Warren writes, “[D]uring the ten-week series that I preached to kick off this program, our attendance grew by over 1500!” (John Baker, Celebrate Recovery Leader’s Guide, 12). During the past 25 years, some 20,000 churches in the United States have reportedly used CR, with some 2.5 million people having completed the program. Needless to say, CR has had a major influence on the church.

CR’s stated purpose is “to encourage fellowship and to celebrate God’s healing power in our lives as we work our way along the road to recovery” (21). Further, Warren claims that CR is “more effective in helping people change than anything else I’ve seen or heard of” (12).

Generally, the program runs on a one-year repeating schedule. Participants are taken through the material in 25 lessons and testimonies, meeting once per week for 52 weeks. Rick Warren writes that CR was born when “I began an intense study of the Scriptures to discover what God had to say about ‘recovery.’ To my amazement, I found the principles of recovery—in their logical order—given by Christ in His most famous message, the Sermon on the Mount” (12). More specifically, CR teaches that the Beatitudes (Matt. 5:3-12), which are said to be “eight ways to be happy,” contain the progressive path to addiction recovery.

The eight principles upon which CR is derived are as follows (the principle is stated, followed by the corresponding Beatitude):

— Read on thecripplegate.com/should-recovery-be-celebrated-a-review-of-celebrate-recovery/

February 24 Evening Quotes of The Day

Destroyed by the World’s Smiles
Proverbs 23:1–3; 2 Samuel 3:27; Matthew 26:48–49; Mark 14:44–45; Luke 22:47–48

Where one thousand are destroyed by the world’s frowns, ten thousand are destroyed by the world’s smiles. The world, siren-like, sings us and sinks us. It kisses us and betrays us, like Judas; it kisses us and smites us under the fifth rib, like Joab. The honors, splendor, and all the glory of this world, are but sweet poisons that will much endanger us if they do not eternally destroy us.

THOMAS BROOKS

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

A Natural Desire to Be Deceived
Psalm 52:3; 101:7; Jeremiah 17:9; Matthew 7:15; 2 Timothy 3:13

We know what a strong propensity men have to falsehood, so that they not only have a natural desire to be deceived, but each individual appears to be ingenious in deceiving himself.

JOHN CALVIN

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

February 24 Evening Verse of The Day

10:4 Christ is the end of the law in being both its fulfillment and its termination. Any system of salvation based on performance is excluded.[1]


10:4 Christ is the end of the law. The interpretation followed here is that Christ is the goal or purpose of the law (Gal. 3:24). Another interpretation is that for believers Christ makes the law obsolete because they no longer strive to establish their own righteousness by it.[2]


10:4 is the end The Greek word used here, telos, often translated “end,” could refer to a goal, result, or termination. Thus, Christ can be understood as the law’s fulfillment, in the sense that His death and resurrection achieved God’s purpose for the law.

of the law for righteousness Paul typically uses the Greek word nomos (“law”) to refer to the law of Moses. Paul’s point about the relationship between righteousness and the end of the law can be read in several ways, depending on how the Greek grammar is translated.[3]


10:4 End probably includes the idea of both goal and termination. The Mosaic law has reached its goal in Christ (it looked forward to and anticipated him), and the law is no longer binding upon Christians (the old covenant has ended). Since Christ is the goal and end of the law, righteousness belongs to all who trust in Christ.[4]


10:4 Christ is the end of the law. Although the Gr. word translated “end” can mean either “fulfillment” or “termination,” this is not a reference to Christ’s having perfectly fulfilled the law through His teaching (Mt 5:17, 18) or through His sinless life (2Co 5:21). Instead, as the second half of the verse shows, Paul means that belief in Christ as Lord and Savior ends the sinner’s futile quest for righteousness through his imperfect attempts to save himself by efforts to obey the law (cf. 3:20–22; Is 64:6; Col 2:13, 14).[5]


10:4 — For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.

When we place our faith in Christ, God looks at us just as He looks at Jesus, who completely obeyed the whole law, without exception and without fault. The perfect record of Christ becomes ours through faith.[6]


10:4 End can mean “fulfillment”; that is, Christ fulfilled all the requirements of the law. It can also mean “goal,” to say that Christ was the object to which the law led. The point is that Israel was ignorant of God’s righteousness because they failed to comprehend what the law was intended to do. The law revealed sin and showed that people could not hope to keep the law. Christ came and fulfilled it, then offered us His righteousness through faith in Him.[7]


10:4 If they had only believed on Christ, they would have seen that He is the end of the law for righteousness. The purpose of the law is to reveal sin, to convict and condemn transgressors. It can never impart righteousness. The penalty of the broken law is death. In His death, Christ paid the penalty of the law which men had broken. When a sinner receives the Lord Jesus Christ as his Savior, the law has nothing more to say to him. Through the death of his Substitute, he has died to the law. He is through with the law and with the futile attempt to achieve righteousness through it.[8]


10:4

 

NASB, NKJV, NRSV

 

“for Christ is the end of the law”

 

TEV

 

“for Christ has brought the law to an end”

 

JB

 

“but now the law has come to an end with Christ”

 

This statement is in line with Matt. 5:17–48. The purpose, goal or end (telos) of the Law was not salvation, but conviction of sin, and that purpose continues (cf. 3:10–20 and especially Gal. 3:24–25). The classical NT text on this subject is Gal. 3:1–29.

When discussing this issue, context is crucial. Paul uses the OT in several different ways. When discussing the Christian life, the OT is God’s revelation (cf. Rom. 15:4; 1 Cor. 10:6, 11), but when discussing salvation it is void and has passed away (cf. Heb. 8:13). This is because it is a metaphor for the old age. The gospel of faith in Jesus is the new age of the Spirit. The Law’s time is up!

©

 

NASB, NKJV

 

“for righteousness to everyone who believes”

 

NRSV

 

“so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes”

 

TEV

 

“so that everyone who believes is put right with God”

 

NJB

 

“so that all who have faith will be justified”

 

Chapters 9–11 must be interpreted together. The emphasis on God’s sovereignty stated so strongly in chapter 9 must be held in tension with the call for all to believe in chapter 10 (cf. vv. 4, 9, 11, 13; 3:22; 4:11, 16).

The universality of God’s love and redemptive purpose was stated in Gen. 3:15 and strongly implied in Gen. 12:3 and Exod. 19:5–6. The prophets often spoke of God’s universal love and plan to unite all mankind. The fact that there is one God and that He made all humans in His image provides a universal invitation to all to be saved. However, the mystery is that no one can respond without the agency of the Spirit (cf. John 6:44, 65). Then the question becomes, “Does God draw all humans to salvation?” The answer must be, “Yes!” (cf. John 3:16; 4:42; 1 John 2:2; 4:14; 1 Tim. 2:4; 2 Pet. 3:9). The haunting paradox of sin, the fall, and Satan is that some say “No.” When Paul preached, some Jews responded, some did not; some Gentiles responded, some did not!

The term “believe” (pisteuō) is translated by three English terms, “believe,” “faith,” and “trust.” It is PRESENT TENSE, which speaks of continuing belief. It is not the acknowledgment of facts (theology, historical details, gospel information) that receives the gift of God’s grace through Christ. The NT is a covenant; God sets the agenda and initiates the necessary response, but the individual must respond in initial faith and repentance and ongoing faith and repentance. Obedience and perseverance are crucial. Christlikeness and ministry are the goal![9]


4. For Christ is the goal of the law, so that there is righteousness for everyone who puts his trust (in him).

Does one wish to understand the goal, the meaning and substance, of the Old Testament law? Then study Christ. Is not the very purpose of the law the establishment of love? See Deut. 6:5; Lev. 19:18 (in that order); cf. Matt. 22:37–39. Is not Christ the very embodiment of that love, both in his life and in his death? And is it not true that because of this love which caused him to suffer and die in his people’s stead, there now is right standing with God for everyone who reposes his trust in the Savior? Is not this the very theme of Romans?

Since verse 4 refers to Christ, as the law’s goal, in the sense explained, it would seem to be logical, in the present case, to refer to Christ also in the next verse.[10]


Righteousness for those who believe (v. 4)

Paul’s words are the more potent for their brevity.

For Christ is the ‘end’ of the Law

for righteousness

for all who believe.

The introductory ‘For’ ties verse 4 back into the preceding passage (9:30–10:3) and summarizes that passage. Paul describes Israel’s futile attempt to establish ‘righteousness’ based on Law.

9:31      Israel pursued the Law to attain righteousness …

9:32      [Israel] pursued righteousness based on works …

10:3      They seek to establish their own righteousness …

Israel pursued Law for righteousness based on works. But Christ is ‘the end’ of ‘the Law’.

What does Paul intend us to understand by ‘end’, ‘righteousness’ and ‘believe’?

By his word ‘end’ (telos) Paul has in mind several layers of meaning. First, ‘end’ means ‘end point’ or ‘goal’. In this sense Christ is the ‘fulfilment’ of all the hopes, promises and ‘visions’ of the ‘Law’, that is, the entire corpus of the Old Testament. But ‘end’ also means ‘that which terminates’. Understood like this, Christ crucified and risen brings Law to an ‘end’. In this second layer of meaning, ‘Law’ is the covenant God gave the people through Moses at Mt. Sinai. As promised by the prophets, however, God established a ‘new covenant’ based not on Law, but on the promised Christ who died for sins, and on the Spirit who changes the hearts. But this way of ‘righteousness’ Israel has rejected.

‘Righteousness,’ the keyword of the entire letter (see on 1:17), was reintroduced in the previous chapter (see on 9:30–31). By ‘righteousness’ Paul means God’s own ‘righteousness’ that he shares with sinful man (as in v. 3). But on what terms does God give his ‘righteousness’ to man?

The answer is provided in the words, ‘to all who believe’ (see on 1:16–17; 3:22–5:1), which in context can mean only one thing, namely, ‘all who believe’ in ‘Christ’ who is ‘the end of the Law’. ‘Christ’ has fulfilled the ‘promises’ of the Law and the Prophets as the Davidic Messiah Jesus, crucified and risen. Thus ‘Christ’ is the One in whom man is to believe, whether Jew or Gentile, to enjoy the gift of God’s righteousness.

Earlier Paul had demonstrated that no one—Jew or Gentile—is capable of achieving his own ‘righteousness’ (see on 1:18–3:20). This teaching is rejected by most Jews who seek to attain the ‘righteousness of God’ by the ‘works’ of the ‘Law’. Thus throughout Romans Paul sets ‘Christ’ against ‘works’ and ‘Law’ as the means to the ‘righteousness of God’. Paul is insisting that only God can declare sinful people ‘righteous,’ which he does by way of ‘gift’ or ‘donation’ to those who ‘believe’ in Jesus, the son of David and the Son of God, crucified and raised.

‘All who believe’ has a precise meaning. It is not a vague ‘believing’, a misty religiosity but a personal trust informed by the apostolic gospel that is intentionally directed towards the Son of God and away from any kind of self-effort hoping for acceptance by God.[11]


Ver. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

Christ the end of the law:

  1. In what sense? 1. As its great antitype. 2. Its only sacrifice. 3. The source of its moral power.
  2. For what end? To secure—1. Pardon of sin. 2. Holiness of life.

III. Unto whom? 1. Every one. 2. That believeth. (J. Lyth, D.D.)

Christ the end of the law for righteousness:

  1. The end of all law is righteousness—the production of the most perfect results. 1. In the natural world the use of the law is to perpetuate results essential to its well-being, e.g., the circulation of the atmosphere, ebb and flow of tide, alteration of seasons, motions and influence of planets, &c. 2. The great aim of law in the moral world is to regulate conduct so as to produce a righteous character. The aim of the law of Moses was to lead to a higher life (chap. 7:10). (1) The ethical element in the Mosaic law discovered to man the havoc made by sin (chap. 7:7, 11, 13). (2) The ceremonial element shadowed forth the remedy. The sacrifices and festivals were intended to show the necessity for the expiation of sin, by the atonement of Christ.
  2. In Christ we have the grand end of both the ethical and ceremonial law—righteousness and holiness. Law depends for its authority upon the personal character of the lawgiver. The character of Christ was like His law—holy, just, and good. 1. From Christ proceeds the moral law by which sin is discovered to us. His character is a constant reproof to us. His words bring home the consciousness of violated law. 2. In Christ is the only remedy for sin. The arrangements of the ceremonial law terminated in Him—the shadow retired when the substance appeared. In His life and death He fulfilled the duties and endured the penalties of the law, thus vindicating the righteousness of God and providing a complete righteousness for sinful man.

III. Faith in Christ is accepted as a perfect obedience to the law. Law is powerless punitively when the end for which it exists is attained. We disarm the law by obeying it. All our unaided efforts to obey law—while in a state of lawless unnature—are futile. It is like running alongside a parallel pathway into which we are vainly trying to turn ourselves. Faith, and faith only, is the means of junction. This puts us into the position in which law would place us. The end of all law being the production of the most perfect results, this very end is answered when we believe in Jesus. For Christ, and all He has, becomes our own. “He is made unto us, of God, wisdom and righteousness, and sanctification and redemption.” “The law and the gospel are evidenced in man’s moral nature. The law the ideal of its life, the gospel the life of its ideal.” Lessons: 1. It is hopeless to attempt to attain righteousness by law, because of our moral inability to obey all its requirements. 2. Faith in Christ is the only and universal way of obedience. (J. S. Exell, M.A.)

Christ the end of the law for righteousness:

  1. What is implied in these words. 1. That the law of God has been universally broken (chap. 3:10, 12). 2. That, therefore, every man is under the curse of that law (Gal. 3:13; Rom. 2:8, 11). 3. That, in order to be saved, this curse must be removed and sins remitted. 4. That no man of himself can remove this curse or obtain this remission of his sins. 5. That notwithstanding God cannot recede from His claims, nor abate one jot or tittle of what His holy law demands, either in penalty or precept. 6. That every person who would obtain salvation must look out for such a righteousness as shall be answerable to all the claims of the law, be perfectly satisfactory to God, and therefore available for his justification and peace.
  2. In what way is “Christ the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth”? Consider—1. The general purport of Christ’s coming (Psa. 40:6, 10; Heb. 10:1, 14; Isa. 42:6, 7, 21; Dan. 9:24; Jer. 23:5, 6; 33:15, 16; Isa. 53:6, cf. 1 Pet. 2:24; 2 Cor. 5:21). 2. The special character of His mediation. We must consider it as substitutional. We must behold Him rendering unto God, for those whom He represented, a perfect obedience to the law which they have broken, and suffering to its full and utmost extent the curse which they have incurred. Christ is the end of the law for righteousness—not by abrogating its authority, or lowering its requisitions, to meet the exigencies of our lapsed condition—but rather by asserting its full obligation and satisfying all its equitable claims. This is the great glory of the gospel—that God can be just—in exacting every claim of the law and in punishing every sin of those whom He saves to its full desert—and yet the justifier of them that believe in Jesus.

III. To whom is this provision available, or who are benefited thereby. “Every one that believeth,” and no more. But we must ascertain—1. The testimony given in Scripture to this truth. We are again and again told that faith alone is the means appointed by God for granting the efficacy of this provision to the souls of men. 2. Why we can be benefited in this way of faith, and in no other? It is enough to say that God hath declared it. But we need not let the subject rest here. Man is utterly lost, helpless, and undone. Nothing that we can do can avail for our salvation. Our help and hope are based upon One, who only is mighty to save. It is therefore evident that the only way in which we can be benefited by what another has done for our salvation, must be by believing in Him for the execution of such an interposition, and for the advantage of the blessing procured thereby. 3. What is the nature of that faith by which we become interested in this righteousness. It is the act of a soul made willing in the day of God’s power, under a clear discovery of its lost condition, and a clear perception of the mediation of Jesus, by which it is brought to rely on that mediation, and to plead that righteousness with God for its pardon and peace (chap. 10:10; Heb. 11:1). 4. To what extent is this truth to be carried in the justification of the sinner before God? To the full extent for which it is designed for that purpose. It takes in the sinner’s whole case—sins, guilt, condemnation, and deserved wrath. It brings him a full and complete deliverance and justification from all. Nay, more, it invests him with the perfect righteousness of Christ, as a perfect fulfilment of the law by which he stands accepted with God.

  1. What are the importance and advantages arising therefrom. Hereby—1. The law is established in all its authority, obligations, and claims. 2. God is honoured and exalted in the possession and exercise of all His perfections. 3. A sure and certain way of life and salvation, of pardon and peace, is opened for guilty men. 4. A sure provision is made for a loving, devoted, and delightful obedience to the will of God. 5. There is afforded to the soul a sure rock for its present safety and a firm foundation for its future security, even for ever. 6. The Church of God is provided with an unerring test by which to try every doctrine proposed for her acceptance, and an indomitable weapon by which to conquer every antichristian foe. (R. Shittler.)

Christ the end of the law for righteousness:

  1. The proposition. “Christ is the end of the law.” The end of a thing is either mathematical or moral. The mathematical end is the utmost part of a thing, in which the length or continuance is determined; as a point is the end of a line, death the end of life, the day of judgment the end of this world. The moral end of a thing is the scope and perfection of it. Now Christ is the end of the law both ways. 1. The mathematical end of the ceremonial and moral. Of the ceremonial by a direct signification, of the moral by an accidental direction. The ceremonies signified Christ and ended at Him. Properly, the moral law leads sinners to the curse, but by account to Christ, as the disease leads to the medicine or physician. 2. He is also the moral end of both. For He is the body of those ceremonies and shadows, and He perfectly fulfilled the Decalogue for us, and that three ways. (1) In His pure conception. (2) In His godly life. (3) In His holy and obedient sufferings, and all for us. For whatsoever the law required that we should be, do, or suffer, He hath performed in our behalf. Therefore one wittily saith that Christ is Telos, the end, or tribute, and we, by His payment, Ateleis, tribute-free, we are discharged by Him before God. Christ is both these ends, but principally the last is here understood.
  2. The amplification “for righteousness.” When thou art come to Christ thou must not cast away the law, but use it still to make thee more to cling unto Christ and as a rule of righteous living. Christ is the end of the law, not the killing, but fulfilling end; not to end, but to urge thy obedience. When the merchant is come aboard his ship by boat, he drowns not his boat, but hoists it up into his ship; he may have use of it another time. Or as a nobleman neglects not his schoolmaster when he is come to his lands, but prefers him. So certainly, if the law (though sharp) hath brought thee to Christ, thou canst not but love it for this office; if thou doest not, thou hast not Christ. Yea, it will be the delight of a man to be then doing, when Christ is with him, as Peter then willingly and with success cast out his net. Without Christ the law is an uncomfortable study; but with Him, nothing more delightful. (Elnathan Parr, B.D.)

Christ the end of the law:—Consider—

  1. Christ in connection with the law. The law is that which we have cause to dread; for the sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. “Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things that are written in the book of the law to do them.” Yet, like the fascination which attracts the gnat to the candle, men by nature fly to the law for salvation. Now, what has our Lord to do with the law? 1. He is its purpose and object. The law is our schoolmaster, or rather our attendant to conduct us to the school of Jesus; the great net in which the fish are enclosed that they may be drawn out of the element of sin; the stormy wind which drives souls into the harbour of refuge; the sheriff’s officer to shut men up in prison for their sin, concluding them all under condemnation in order that they may look to the free grace of God alone for deliverance. It empties that grace may fill, wounds that mercy may heal. Had man never fallen, the law would have been most helpful to show him the way in which he should walk: and by keeping it he would have lived (ver. 5). But since man has fallen, a way of salvation by works has become impossible. The law is meant to lead the sinner to faith in Christ, by showing the impossibility of any other way. It is the dog to fetch the sheep to the shepherd, the burning heat which drives the traveller to the shadow of the great rock in a weary land. The law is adapted to this; for—(1) It shows man his sin. Who can lay his own character side by side with it without seeing how far he has fallen short of the standard? When the law comes home to the soul it is like light in a dark room revealing the dust and the dirt which else had been unperceived. It is the test which detects the presence of the poison of sin in the soul. A true balance discovers short weight, and such is the first effect of the law upon the conscience of man. (2) It shows the result and mischief of sin. The types were intended to lead men to Christ by making them see their unclean condition and their need of such cleansing as only He can give. Men put apart because of disease or uncleanness were made to see how sin separated them from God; and when they were brought back and purified with mystic rites, they were made to see how they can only be restored by Christ, the great High Priest. “Without shedding of blood is no remission.” (3) It teaches men their utter helplessness. Such holiness as the law demands no man can reach of himself. “Thy commandment is exceeding broad.” “Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? Not one.” “How can he be clean that is born of a woman?” In grace there is hope, but as a matter of debt there is none, for we do not merit anything but wrath. The law tells us this, and the sooner we know it to be so the better, for the sooner we shall fly to Christ. (4) It shows us our great need. The law is the surgeon’s knife which cuts out the proud flesh that the wound may heal. The law by itself only sweeps and raises the dust, but the gospel sprinkles clean water upon the dust. The law kills, the gospel makes alive; the law strips, and then Jesus Christ robes the soul in beauty. 2. Christ is the law’s fulfilment. (1) God by immutable necessity demands righteousness of His creatures, and the law is not compelled to lower its terms, as though it had originally asked too much; but Christ gives the law all it requires. The law claims complete obedience, and Christ has brought in such a righteousness as that, and gives it to His people. Only as righteous ones can we be saved, but Christ makes us righteous, and therefore we are saved. (2) Jesus has thus fulfilled the original demands of the law, but since we have broken it there are other demands. God “will by no means clear the guilty,” but every transgression shall have its just punishment. Here, then, Christ is the end of the law as to penalty. The claims of the law both as broken and unbroken Christ has met: both the positive and the penal demands are satisfied in Him. (3) Not only has the penalty been paid, but Christ has put great honour upon the law in so doing. If the whole race had kept the law it would not stand in so splendid a position as it does now that the Son of God has paid obeisance to it. Who shall say a word against the law to which the Lawgiver Himself submits? (4) The law’s stability also has been secured by Christ. That alone can remain which is proved to be just, and Jesus has proved the law to be so, magnifying it and making it honourable. He says, “I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.” As to the settlement of the eternal principles of right and wrong, Christ’s life and death have achieved this for ever. “We establish the law, we do not make void the law through faith.” 3. Christ is the end of the law in that He is the termination of it in two senses. (1) His people are not under it as a covenant of life. “We are not under the law, but under grace.” (2) We are no longer under its curse. Jesus has given us all the righteousness it demands, and the law is bound to bless. “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.”
  2. Ourselves in connection with Christ—for “to every one that believeth.” To believe is not merely to accept a set of doctrines but to trust, to confide, to rest in. Dost thou believe that Christ stood in the sinner’s stead and suffered the just for the unjust, and that He is able to save to the uttermost? And dost thou therefore lay the whole weight of thy soul’s salvation upon Him alone? Then Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to thee, and thou art righteous. It is of no use to bring forward anything else if you are not believing, for nothing will avail—sacraments, prayers, &c. Observe—1. There is no question raised about the previous character, for it is written, “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.” But, Lord, this man before he believed was a persecutor and injurious. Yes, and that is the very man who wrote these words. So if I address one who is defiled with every sin, yet I say if thou believest thine iniquities are blotted out, for the blood of Christ cleanseth us from all sin. 2. There is nothing said by way of qualification as to the strength of the faith. He is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth, whether he is Little Faith or Greatheart. The link may be very like a film, a spider’s line of trembling faith, but, if it runs all the way from the heart to Christ, Divine grace can and will flow along the most slender thread. It is marvellous how fine the wire may be that will carry the electric flash. If thy faith be of the mustard-seed kind, if it be only such as tremblingly touches the garment’s hem, if it be but the faith of sinking Peter, or weeping Mary, yet Christ will be the end of the law for righteousness to thee as well as to the chief of the apostles. 3. If this be so then all of us who believe are righteous. We are not completely sanctified, but still, in the sight of God, we are righteous, and being justified by faith we have peace with Him. 4. The connection of our text assures us that being righteous we are saved (ver. 9). Conclusion: 1. If any one thinks he can save himself, and that his own righteousness will suffice before God, I would ask, if your righteousness sufficeth, why did Christ come here to work one out? 2. For any to reject the righteousness of Christ must be to perish everlastingly, because it cannot be that God will accept you or your pretended righteousness when you have refused the real and Divine righteousness which He sets before you in His Son. (C. H. Spurgeon.)

Christ the end of the law for righteousness:

  1. What that righteousness is, spoken of in the text. Evidently that which is necessary in order to eternal life, and which infallibly leads to it (chap. 5:17, 21). It is termed “The righteousness of God” (ver. 3; chap. 1:17), and said to be by faith (chap. 3:21, 22; Phil. 3:9). It implies—1. Justification (chap. 3:24; Tit. 3:7); without which, as guilty condemned sinners, we can have no title to eternal life. 2. Regeneration or sanctification (see Phil. 3:9); spoken of Eph. 4:17–24; Tit. 3:5, 6; John 3:5, 6; without which we are not in Christ (2 Cor. 5:17; Gal. 6:15), and have no fitness for heaven. 3. Practical obedience (Eph. 2:10); the grand evidence that we are righteous (Luke 1:6; 1 John 3:7). As to the necessity of this, see chap. 2:6, 7; Rev. 22:14; and especially Matt. 7:20, 21.
  2. Where and how this righteousness is to be found. 1. Not in, or by, the law. (1) The moral law (chap. 8:3) which requires perfect obedience. This we have not paid, do not, and cannot in future, pay. Hence it finds us guilty, and has no pardon to give us; it finds us depraved, and has no new nature for us; it finds us helpless, and has no supernatural aid to impart. (2) The ceremonial law. Its sacrifices could not remove sin (Heb. 9:23; 10:4). Its purifications could only impart a ceremonial cleanness, or remove “the filth of the flesh” (Heb. 9:13; 1 Pet. 3:21). Its institutions respecting meats, days, &c. As they did not make the tree good, of course the fruit could not be good (Matt. 12:16–19). 2. But wherefore, then, serveth the law? In Christ was the end for which the law was instituted; the moral law being chiefly to convince men of sin (chap. 3:19, 20; 7:7, 8), and thus to be a “schoolmaster to bring them to Christ” (Gal. 3:19–24), and the ceremonial law to shadow forth His sacrifice and grace. The end may mean—(1) The scope; the law continually points to Christ; the moral law directs the sinner to Him who fulfilled and removed the curse of it, for that justification which itself cannot give; and the ceremonial law directs him to look from its sacrifices and purifications to the atonement and Spirit of Christ. (2) The perfection, or completion (1 Tim. 1:5). Christ fulfilled the moral law in fully explaining its meaning, and freeing it from the glosses of the Scribes; in obeying it, in suffering its penalty, and in providing that it may be written in our hearts; He also answered in His person all the types and shadows of the ceremonial law. (3) The period or termination (chap. 6:21). Thus the whole Mosaic dispensation gives way to the gospel (2 Cor. 3:11), and its ceremonies are taken out of the way by Christ (Col. 2:14). 3. “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness.” (1) For justification, or righteousness imputed, is only to be found in His obedience unto death (chap. 3:24; 1 Cor. 1:30; 2 Cor. 5:21). (2) Regeneration, a new creation, and entire sanctification are only to be found in Christ, by His Spirit and grace, who is made of God to us sanctification (John 1:14, 16; 2 Cor. 5:17; 1 Cor. 1:30). (3) Practical righteousness is likewise to be had in Him; His laws direct us how to walk; His promises and threatenings enforce His laws; His example allures us; and His grace enables us to walk in His ways (2 Cor. 12:9; Heb. 4:14–16).

III. By whom this righteousness is to be found. By “every one that believeth” (vers. 5–10). 1. Its object is that God hath raised Christ from the dead. This—(1) Demonstrated Him to be the Son of God (chap. 1:3, 4), and, therefore, the only Saviour able and willing to save to the uttermost. Of this faith is persuaded, and, therefore, trusts in Him for salvation. (2) Was the broad seal of heaven set to His doctrine, of which faith is so thoroughly persuaded as to lay it to heart and walk according to it. (3) Was to show that His atonement was sufficient and accepted; of this faith is also persuaded and, therefore, relies solely on the propitiation in His blood for justification (chap. 3:23, &c.; Gal. 2:16–20). (4) Was that He might ascend, and intercede, and receive for us “the promise of the Father,” for which faith thirsts and comes to Him (John 7:37, 38). (5) He rose and ascended as our Forerunner. This faith believes, and, consequently, anticipates immortality and glory. He rose to give evidence that He will judge all mankind (Acts 17:31). Faith is persuaded of this, and prepares to meet Him. 2. Our faith, in these respects, must be such as will enable us to “make confession with our mouth,” therefore it must be “with the heart man believeth unto righteousness” (ver. 10). As to the faith that does not part with sin, and give up everything that stands in competition with Christ, it is dead (James 2:20–26). 3. As to the origin of this faith (see vers. 11–17). It arises from the Word and Spirit of God (Acts 16:14; Eph. 2:8, 9; Col. 2:12). Therefore, hearing, reading, and prayer, are the important means. And in the exercise of that measure of faith we have received, however small, it will be increased. (Joseph Benson.)

Christ the end of the law for righteousness:

  1. The immutability of the law is a fundamental truth. This rests on its nature and the immutability of God. The evidence is found in nature and conscience. 1. This the Jews believed, and it lay at the foundation of their error, which was twofold. (1) That the law was to be fulfilled by their own righteousness. (2) That the form in which the law was immutable was Mosaism. 2. This error led—(1) To the effort to establish their own righteousness. (2) To their making righteousness consist in ceremonial obedience. 3. Paul taught—(1) That the law is immutable. (2) That it cannot be satisfied by our righteousness, but only by the righteousness of God. (3) That Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth. (4) Consequently the immutability of the law is consistent with its abrogation, because its abrogation is effected by its fulfilment. The law is immutable so far as it demands righteousness as an indispensable condition of justification. But it is abrogated so far as it says, “Do this and live,” i.e., so far as it requires our own righteousness.
  2. In what sense is Christ the end of the law. 1. Not in the sense of its completion. Telos never occurs in the sense of pleroma. 2. But in the sense of having made an end of it, abolished it. This He has done—(1) In so satisfying its demands that it ceases to require our own personal righteousness as a condition of justification. (2) In putting an end to the Mosaic institutions, so that obedience to that law is no longer necessary to salvation. 3. In the sense of being its aim or object. This means either—(1) That the end of the law is righteousness. Christ is the end of the law because He is our righteousness; its design is secured in Him. So that it is by faith, not works, that the end of the law is to be attained. (2) Or, Christ is the object aimed at in the law. It was designed to bring us to Christ.

III. Consequences. 1. Out of Christ we are exposed—(1) To the inexorable demands of the law. (2) To its awful curse. (3) To its slavish spirit. 2. In Him we are righteous. (1) We meet all the demands of the law by pleading what He has done. (2) We are free from its curse as He was made a curse for us. (3) We are delivered from the spirit of bondage again to fear and are filled with the Spirit of adoption. Conclusion: As a result of faith in Christ our righteousness we have—1. Peace with God, and peace of conscience. 2. Assurance of eternal life, as no one can condemn those whom God justifies. 3. A principle of obedience, for until we are reconciled there can be no holiness. 4. All the benefits of Christ’s triumph. Having obeyed and suffered for us as our representative, we share in all the blessings promised as His reward. (C. Hodge, D.D.)

Christ the end of the law:—Christ was revealed to abrogate, to annihilate, utterly to abolish sin. Now, we all know what it is to have a thing abrogated. Certain laws have held good up to the first of January of this year with regard to the hiring of public carriages, but now are under a new law. Suppose a driver complies with the new law, gets his license, puts up his flag, gives the passenger his card of prices, and afterwards the passenger summons him before the magistrate for asking a fare not authorised by the old law; the magistrate would say, “You are out of court, there is no such law. You cannot bring the man here, he has not broken the old law, for he is not under it. He has complied with the requisition of the new law, by which he declares himself no longer under the old rules, and I have no power over him.” So he that believeth in Christ Jesus may be summoned by conscience when misinformed before the bar of God, but the answer of peace to his conscience is, “Ye are not under the law, but under grace.” “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.” (C. H. Spurgeon.) The relation of the law to the gospel (text and 1 Tim. 1:5):—The law of God may be viewed in a twofold aspect, to distinguish between which is to prove a safeguard against both the errors of legality and the errors of antinomianism. We must regard the law—

  1. In relation to the righteousness which constitutes the title to its rewards. 1. When we strive to make this out by our own obedience, the aim is to possess ourselves of a legal right to heaven. We proceed on the imagination of a contract between God and man—whereof the counterpart terms are a fulfilment of the law’s requisitions upon the one side, and a bestowment of the law’s rewards upon the other. The one is the purchase-money—the other is the payment. They stand related to each other, as work does to wages. Now this spirit of legality, as it is called, is nearly the universal spirit of humanity. They are not the Israelites only who go about to establish a righteousness of their own. There is, in fact, a legal disposition in the heart, and, long after the utter shortness of human virtue has been demonstrated, yet will man, as if by the bias of a constitutional necessity, recur to the old legal imagination, of this virtue being a thing of desert, and of heaven being the reward which is due to it. 2. Now, for man to establish a right by his righteousness, is in the face of all jurisprudence. Both the law and the gospel alike disown man’s legal right to the rewards of eternity; and if he be too proud to disown it himself, he remains both a victim of condemnation by the one, and a helpless, hopeless outcast from the mercy of the other. If man will persist in seeking to make out a title-deed to heaven by his own obedience, then that obedience must be perfect. Even if he have but committed one sin—there is the barrier of a moral necessity in his way, which it is impossible to force. The God who cannot lie, cannot recall His curse upon every one who continueth not in all the words of the book of His law to do them. And one of two things must happen. Either, with a just conception of the standard of the law, he will sink into despair; or, with a low conception of that standard, he, though but grovelling among the mere decencies of civil life or the barren formalities of religious service, will aspire no farther and yet count himself safe. 3. Now herein lies the grand peculiarity of the gospel. It pronounces on the utter insignificance of all that man can do for the establishment of his right to the kingdom of heaven; and yet, he must be somehow or other provided with such a right, ere that he can find admittance there. It is not by an act of mercy alone that the gate of heaven is opened to the sinner. He must be furnished with a plea which he can state at the bar of justice—not the plea of his own deservings, which the gospel holds no terms with; and therefore with a plea founded exclusively on the deservings of another. Now what we reckon to be the very essence of the gospel is the report which it brings to a sinful world of a solid and satisfying plea; and that every sinner is welcome to the use of it. In defect of his own righteousness, which he is required to disown, he is told of an everlasting righteousness which another has brought in; and which he is invited, nay commanded, to make mention of. It is thus that Christ becomes the end of the law for righteousness.
  2. As holding out a method by which we might acquire a rightness of character in the cultivation and the exercise of its bidden virtues. The legal right which obedience confers is one thing. The personal rightness which obedience confers is another. Obedience for a legal right is everywhere denounced in the New Testament, but obedience for a personal rightness is everywhere urged. For the one end, the law has altogether lost its efficacy; and we, in our own utter inability to substantiate its claims, must seek to be justified only by the righteousness of Christ. For the other end, the law retains its office as a perfect guide and exemplar of all virtue; and we, empowered by strength from on high to follow its dictates, must seek to be sanctified by the transference of its bidden uprightness upon our own characters. It is no longer the purchase-money by which to buy your right of entry to the marriage supper of the Lamb; but it is the wedding garment, without which you will never be seated among the beatitudes of that festival. To be meet in law, and without violence done to the jurisprudence of heaven, we must be invested by faith with the righteousness of Christ. To be meet in character, and without offence or violence to the spirit or the taste of heaven’s society, we must be invested with the graces of our own personal righteousness. (T. Chalmers, D.D.)[12]

4. Christ is the end of the law, that every one who has faith may be justified. The word ‘end’ (telos) has a double sense: it may mean ‘goal’ or ‘termination’. On the one hand, Christ is the goal at which the law aimed, in that he embodies the perfect righteousness which it prescribes. This is implied in Matthew 5:17, ‘Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfil them.’ And the law’s requirements are fulfilled in the lives of those who are ‘in Christ Jesus’ (8:3–4; cf. 3:31). On the other hand, since Christ is the goal of the law, since in him the law has found its perfect fulfilment, a righteous status before God is available to everyone who believes in him, and that implies the termination of the law’s function (real or imagined) as a means of acquiring such a righteous status. In him the old order, to which the law belonged, has been done away, to be replaced by the new order of the Spirit. Cf. 2 Corinthians 3:6–18.

The case for understanding telos as ‘termination’ is presented by Käsemann, ad loc.; the case for ‘goal’ by Cranfield, ad loc. The two senses are combined by Barrett, ad loc.: Christ ‘puts an end to the law, not by destroying all that the law stood for but by realizing it’.[13]


4. For the end of the law is Christ, &c. The word completion, seems not to me unsuitable in this place; and Erasmus has rendered it perfection: but as the other reading is almost universally approved, and is not inappropriate, readers, for my part, may retain it.

The Apostle obviates here an objection which might have been made against him; for the Jews might have appeared to have kept the right way by depending on the righteousness of the law. It was necessary for him to disprove this false opinion; and this is what he does here. He shows that he is a false interpreter of the law, who seeks to be justified by his own works; because the law had been given for this end,—to lead us as by the hand to another righteousness: nay, whatever the law teaches, whatever it commands, whatever it promises, has always a reference to Christ as its main object; and hence all its parts ought to be applied to him. But this cannot be done, except we, being stripped of all righteousness, and confounded with the knowledge of our sin, seek gratuitous righteousness from him alone.

It hence follows, that the wicked abuse of the law was justly reprehended in the Jews, who absurdly made an obstacle of that which was to be their help: nay, it appears that they had shamefully mutilated the law of God; for they rejected its soul, and seized on the dead body of the letter. For though the law promises reward to those who observe its righteousness, it yet substitutes, after having proved all guilty, another righteousness in Christ, which is not attained by works, but is received by faith as a free gift. Thus the righteousness of faith, (as we have seen in the first chapter,) receives a testimony from the law. We have then here a remarkable passage, which proves that the law in all its parts had a reference to Christ; and hence no one can rightly understand it, who does not continually level at this mark.[14]


4 This verse, containing one of the most famous of all of Paul’s theological slogans, grounds (“for,” Gk. gar) what Paul has said about the Jews in v. 3. Specifically, he shows that the Jews’ pursuit of a righteousness of their own, based on the law, is wrong because Christ has brought the law to its culmination and thereby made righteousness available to everyone who believes. We must now justify this reading of the verse by looking at (1) the meaning of the word “law”; (2) the syntactical relationship between the first part of the verse and the second; and (3) the meaning of the word telos (which I have translated “culmination”).

(1) Scholars have argued for four different meanings of the word nomos in this verse: “law” in general, in whatever form; “OT revelation” broadly; “legalism”;404 and Mosaic law. The first and second of these interpretations are unlikely since neither meaning is found in the immediate context. The third, on the other hand, as I have argued elsewhere, is unattested in Paul and is not adopted here. With the great majority of scholars, therefore, I conclude that nomos refers in this verse, as usually in Paul, to the Mosaic law.

(2) Verse 4 contains an assertion—“Christ is the telos of the law”—and a prepositional phrase—“eis righteousness for everyone who believes.” How are we to connect the prepositional phrase to the assertion? A number of scholars argue that it should be connected directly to the word “law.” Paul would then be claiming that Christ is the telos of the law in its relationship to righteousness, or as a means of righteousness (“for everyone who believes” would then be attached to the statement as a whole); see NASB: “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes” (KJV is similar). Most who construe the syntax in this way also think that telos means “end,” “termination.” They therefore conclude that Paul is proclaiming here the end of the (false) understanding of the law as a means of securing righteousness with God or the end of Israel’s misunderstanding of the law and its righteousness as confined to Israel.408 But the syntax does not favor attaching the prepositional phrase directly to the word “law.” It is much more likely that the prepositional phrase introduced by eis functions as a purpose or result clause attached to the assertion as a whole: “Christ is the telos of the law, with the result that there is (or with the purpose that there might be) righteousness for everyone who believes” (so, essentially, most modern English translations).

(3) This leaves the question of the meaning of the word telos. Most major English versions translate this word “end.” But this translation contains a crucial ambiguity: does “end” mean (1) “termination,” as in the sentence “The end of the class finally came!” or (2) “goal,” as in the sentence “The end of government is the welfare of the people”; or (3) “result,” as in the sentence “She did not foresee the end of her actions.” Each of these meanings is possible for the Greek word telos, and each is attested in Paul.412 If we accept the first meaning, Paul’s point will be a purely temporal one: the coming of Christ means that, in some manner, the period of the law’s significance and/or authority is at an end. If we choose either the second or the third meaning, however, Paul will be presenting the law and Christ in a dynamic relationship, with the law in some sense directed toward, or pointing forward, to Christ.

Neither lexical nor contextual data point unambiguously toward one or the other of these two main options. R. Badenas has shown that telos usually means “goal” or “intent” (a teleological sense) in nonbiblical Greek. But in both the LXX and the NT the temporal meaning (“closing part,” “termination”) of telos dominates. The context uses language of pursuing and attaining with reference to the law (9:31–32a); and this might lead us to expect that Paul would now present Christ as the true “goal” of the law, that goal that Israel sought but could not attain. In the same way, Paul’s use of OT texts to describe Christ and the righteousness he has brought (9:32b–33; 10:6–8, 11, 13) might indicate that Paul is thinking of Christ as the true meaning or intent of the law. However, there is much in both the immediate and wider context to favor a temporal translation. The relationship between v. 4 and v. 3 shows that Paul wants to stress the discontinuity between Christ and the law. The Jews’ striving for a righteousness of “their own,” based on the law (v. 3), is wrong (among other reasons) because (“for” [gar]) Christ has brought an end to the law and to the era of which it was the center. This is the same point that Paul has made in Rom. 3:21: God’s righteousness has been made manifest “apart from the law.” Indeed, the salvation-historical disjunction between the era of the law and the era of Christ is one that is basic to Paul’s teaching in Romans (see also 6:14, 15; 7:1–6). Moreover, while Paul certainly emphasizes in this passage the continuity between the OT generally and Christ and the righteousness he has brought (e.g., 9:32b–33; 10:6–8, 11, 13), he consistently emphasizes the discontinuity between Christ and the law (9:30–32a; 10:3; 10:5–8).

These considerations require that telos have a temporal nuance: with the coming of Christ the authority of the law of Moses is, in some basic sense, at an end. At the same time, a teleological nuance is also present. This is suggested not only by the contextual factors mentioned above but also by the fact that similar NT uses of telos generally preserve some sense of direction or goal. In other words, the “end” that telos usually denotes is an end that is the natural or inevitable result of something else. The analogy of a race course (which many scholars think telos is meant to convey) is helpful: the finish line is both the “termination” of the race (the race is over when it is reached) and the “goal” of the race (the race is run for the sake of reaching the finish line). Likewise, we suggest, Paul is implying that Christ is the “end” of the law (he brings its era to a close) and its “goal” (he is what the law anticipated and pointed toward). The English word “end” perfectly captures this nuance; but, if it is thought that it implies too temporal a meaning, we might also use the words “culmination” (NIV), “consummation,” or “climax.”

As Christ consummates one era of salvation history, so he inaugurates a new one. In this new era, God’s eschatological righteousness is available to those who believe; and it is available to everyone who believes. Both emphases are important and reflect one of the most basic themes of the letter (1:16; 3:22, 28–30; 4:16–17). Because the Jewish people have generally not understood that Christ has brought the law to its culmination, they have not responded in faith to Christ; and they have therefore missed the righteousness of God, available only in Christ on the basis of faith. At the same time, Christ, by ending the era of the law, during which God was dealing mainly with Israel, has made righteousness more readily available for Gentiles. Verse 4 is, then, the hinge on which the entire section 9:30–10:13 turns. It justifies Paul’s claim that the Jews, by their preoccupation with the law, have missed God’s righteousness (9:30–10:3): for righteousness is now found only in Christ and only through faith in Christ, the one who has brought the law to its climax and thereby ended its reign. It also announces the theme that Paul will expound in 10:5–13: righteousness by faith in Christ for all who believe.

We conclude our study of this verse with two theological reflections. First, while I have argued that Paul is teaching that Christ brought an “end” to the law, it is important to clarify what this means and, perhaps, more important, what it does not mean. Paul makes this claim in terms of his usual salvation-historical perspective. The Mosaic law represents an epoch in God’s dealings with human beings that has now come to an end. The believer’s relationship to God is mediated in and through Christ, and the Mosaic law is no longer basic to that relationship. But Paul is not saying that Christ has ended all “law”; the believer remains bound to God’s law as it now is mediated in and through Christ (see Gal. 6:2; 1 Cor. 9:19–21). Nor is he saying that the Mosaic law is no longer part of God’s revelation or of no more use to the believer. The Mosaic law, like all of Scripture, is “profitable” for the believer (2 Tim. 3:16) and must continue to be read, pondered, and responded to by the faithful believer.

Second, we find in Paul’s teaching about Christ as the culmination of the law another evidence of the beautiful unity of the NT message. For what Paul says here is almost exactly what Jesus claims in one of his most famous theological pronouncements: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them” (Matt. 5:17). Each text pictures Christ as the promised culmination of the OT law. And together they sound a note of balance in the Christian’s approach to the OT and its law that is vital to maintain. On the one hand, both Jesus and Paul warn us about undervaluing the degree to which Christ now embodies and mediates to us what the OT law was teaching and doing. Our relationship with God is now found in Christ, not through the law; and our day-to-day behavior is to be guided primarily by the teaching of Christ and his apostles rather than by the law. On the other hand, Jesus and Paul also caution us against severing Christ from the law. For he is its fulfillment and consummation and he cannot be understood or appreciated unless he is seen in light of the preparatory period of which the law was the center.[15]


4 This verse gives the reason for the thesis of verse 3 that God’s righteousness and not man’s is the institution of God: “Christ is the end of the law”. This has been taken in the sense that the purpose of the law is fulfilled or realized in Christ. The term rendered “end” does on occasion have this meaning (cf. Luke 22:37; 1 Tim. 1:5). It is also true that if law is understood in the sense of the Mosaic institution, then this institution is fulfilled in Christ (cf. Gal. 3:24). Furthermore, the righteousness which Christ has provided unto our justification is one that meets all the requirements of God’s law in its sanctions and demands. There are, however, objections to this interpretation.

  1. Though the word “end” can express aim or purpose, preponderantly, and particularly in Paul, it means termination, denoting a terminal point (cf. Matt. 10:22; 24:6, 14; Mark 3:26; Luke 1:33; John 13:1; Rom. 6:21; 1 Cor. 1:8; 15:24; 2 Cor. 1:13; 3:13; 11:15; Phil. 3:19; Heb. 6:11; 7:3; 1 Pet. 4:7).
  2. If “end” means purpose then we should expect the apostle to say that the purpose of the law is Christ, the reason being that, on this assumption, the purpose of the law would be the main thought and the real subject of the sentence. But this would give an awkward if not impossible construction as will appear from the translation that would be required: “The end of the law is Christ for righteousness to every one that believeth”.
  3. In this epistle and in the context the antithesis is between the righteousness of the law as that of works and God’s righteousness as the righteousness of faith. The next verse is the clearest demonstration of this antithesis and of the meaning we are to attach to the apostle’s concept of the law as the way of attaining to righteousness (cf. also 3:20, 21, 28; 4:13, 14; 8:3; 9:32). The view most consonant with this context is, therefore, that the apostle is speaking in verse 4 of the law as a way of righteousness before God and affirming the relation that Christ sustains to this conception. The only relation that Christ sustains to it is that he terminates it.
  4. It needs to be noted immediately, however, that a qualification is added: “to every one that believeth”. This qualification implies that only for the believer is Christ the end of the law for righteousness. Paul does not mean that the erroneous conception ceased to be entertained. That was sadly not the case, as verse 3 proves. It is, Paul says, for every one who believes that Christ is the end of the law, and his whole statement is simply to the effect that every believer is done with the law as a way of attaining to righteousness. In this consideration we have an added reason for the interpretation given. If Paul were speaking of the purpose of the law as fulfilled in Christ, we would expect the absolute statement: “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness”, and no addition would be necessary or in place.

The foregoing observation regarding the force of the apostle’s statement bears also upon an erroneous interpretation of this verse, enunciated by several commentators to the effect that the Mosaic law had propounded law as the means of procuring righteousness.

It is strange that this notion should be entertained in the face of Paul’s frequent appeal to the Old Testament and even to Moses and the Mosaic law in support of the doctrine of justification by grace through faith (cf. 3:21, 22; 4:6–8, 13; 9:15, 16; 10:6–8; 15:8, 9; Gal. 3:10, 11, 17–22; 4:21–31). There is no suggestion to the effect that in the theocracy works of law had been represented as the basis of salvation and that now by virtue of Christ’s death this method had been displaced by the righteousness of faith. We need but reflect again on the force of the proposition in question: for the believer Christ is the end of the law for righteousness. Paul is speaking of “law” as commandment, not of the Mosaic law in any specific sense but of law as demanding obedience, and therefore in the most general sense of law-righteousness as opposed to faith-righteousness.[16]


4 Israel’s covenantal relation to God and reliance on law keeping do not add up to salvation, since only in and through God’s Messiah is salvation possible (cf. Jn 14:6; Ac 4:12). For this reason, Paul points away from the law and instead to Christ as the way to righteousness for Israel, just as for the Gentiles. The proof that Israel was out of line with respect to the will of God, to the extent of rebelling against him, lies in the fact that when he sent his Son as the bringer of a salvation in full accord with the divine righteousness, the nation rejected him. The same kind of revolution in thinking that was necessary for Paul is required for his people.

Considerable debate has focused on the interpretation of v. 4, especially on the intended meaning of the word the NIV translates as “end” (most translations use this word and thus preserve the ambiguity of Paul’s statement; contrast NJB, “the Law has found its fulfilment in Christ”). Just as in English we speak of “the end of the matter” and use the expression “to the end that”—the one expression meaning conclusion or termination, and the other, purpose or goal—the Greek word telos (GK 5465) allows the same dual possibility. Commentators have been seriously divided about which way to take telos in Paul’s statement, though the majority seem to favor the conclusion that Paul here speaks of the termination of the law (e.g., Käsemann, Dodd, Michel, Sanday and Headlam, Nygren, Stuhlmacher, Schreiner). The decisive factor that favors “termination” rather than “purpose” as the main idea is the contrast in 9:30–32 between the law and God’s righteousness (cf. 10:5–6). Though the law is righteous in its requirements, it fails as an instrument of justification (cf. 8:3–4). Paul’s contention regarding the Jews (v. 3) is not the incompleteness of their position, which needed the coming of Christ to perfect it, but the basic incorrectness of it, because it entailed an effort to establish righteousness by human effort rather than by acceptance of the divine gift. Also favorable to this understanding is the fact that the law had a certain course to run in God’s economy (see esp. Gal 3:19–25; cf. Lk 16:16), and now with the coming of Christ, the law, having fulfilled its job, has come to an end. The law has been terminated both in a salvation-historical sense and in a soteriological sense (cf. 3:21). Adolf Schlatter (Romans: The Righteousness of God [Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson, 1995], 213) writes, “God’s righteousness has become manifest in that Christ is the end of the law and thus he also is the end of all of the individual’s own righteousness. For the believer righteousness is brought about precisely because Christ acts apart from the law and takes its place as the individual’s Lord.”

At the same time, the second meaning has some plausibility here, since there is also a sense in which (1) Christ is himself the goal of the law as its fulfillment, and (2) Christ has not brought the law to an end but rather to its goal (examples of those who favor this interpretation include Barth, Cranfield, Fitzmyer, Byrne, and Badenas [see note at 10:4]). If we think of the goal of the law as righteousness and the fact that Paul has argued that the gospel upholds the law because Christians will produce the righteousness of which the law spoke (e.g., 8:4), then we can see how the passage can easily be taken in this way. It also fits with Paul’s teaching about the law as the child-leader to bring human beings to Christ (Gal 3:24).

In fact, surprisingly, both concepts—termination and goal—seem to fit our passage rather well; it is, therefore, tempting to conclude that both ideas are true, namely, that in Christ the law has in one sense been brought to its termination, but in another sense the law has arrived at its intended purpose. A number of commentators who favor the idea of termination also see the possibility of truth in the fulfillment idea (e.g., Barrett, Bruce, Achtemeier, Dunn, Moo, Edwards).

Paul adds a certain qualification to the statement about Christ as “the end of the law so that there may be righteousness.” He is that “for everyone who believes.” This seems to imply that the law is still applicable to those who do not believe: “Those who have not yet passed from the being-in-the-Law to the being-in-Christ, and those who allow themselves to be misled into exchanging the being-in-Christ for the being-under-the-Law, are under the Law and are made to feel its power” (A. Schweitzer, The Mysticism of Paul the Apostle [New York: Holt, 1931], 189).[17]


Christ: The Fulfillment of the Law

Romans 10:4

Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.

I have learned many lessons in more than twenty years of Bible study and preaching, and one of the lessons is that things that seem simple often are not. Our text is an example. Romans 10:4 seems to be a very simple verse. After all, what could be more straightforward than the words “Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes”? The verse has only seventeen words, less in Greek (nine words), and all but three of the English words have only one syllable.

Yet Romans 10:4 is a difficult verse to interpret.

And here is the interesting thing: It is the simple words (not the polysyllabics) that are the problem.

The two most problematic words are “end” and “law.”

In his excellent commentary on Romans, the great Princeton Theological Seminary scholar Charles Hodge probably reduced the possible meanings of “end” as much as can reasonably be done, but he still speaks of three possible interpretations: (1) “the object to which any thing leads,” (2) the “completion or fulfillment” of something, or (3) an “end or termination.” In terms of our text, if the first meaning is the right one, the verse means that Jesus is that to which the law points so that, if it is properly used, the law will carry the one using it to him. If the second meaning is correct, the idea is that Jesus has himself perfectly fulfilled the law. If the third meaning is chosen, the verse means that Jesus has brought the dispensation of law to an end by dying for sin, rising again, and inaugurating the Christian Era. Obviously, something can be said for each interpretation.

Then, if you add to these difficulties the possible meanings of “law”—the law of Moses, a principle of conduct, the ceremonial law, or moral law—you can see how the difficulties of interpreting this verse proliferate.

How should we proceed?

I am convinced that in this case the most helpful procedure is not to argue the merits of the various possibilities, but to back off from the text itself and instead ask, “How does Jesus Christ fulfill the law?” He does it in a variety of ways. After we have explored those answers, we can then come back to the text, interpret it, and apply it practically.

To Fulfill All Righteousness

The first way in which Jesus fulfilled the law, and thus became the end of the law, is that he kept it perfectly himself. In books written about Jesus’ work, theologians usually distinguish between what they call Christ’s “active” and “passive” obedience. Jesus’ passive obedience refers to his willingness to accept death in conformity to his Father’s will, according to Philippians 2:8:

And being found in appearance as a man,

he humbled himself

and became obedient to death—

even death on a cross!

[emphasis added]

Christ’s active obedience refers to the way he carefully and deliberately kept the law of Moses in all respects.

This has several dimensions. It is usually said that Jesus fulfilled the moral law by obeying it perfectly; he was a perfect man. He fulfilled the types and ceremonies of the law by being the reality to which they pointed and by accomplishing in his death what they symbolized; thus, he was himself the perfect sacrifice for sins to which the daily sacrifices and the great sacrifices on the Day of Atonement pointed. Jesus fulfilled the prophecies by living them out to the letter.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus referred explicitly to two of these areas (and probably the third) when he said, “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them” (Matt. 5:17).

In the story of Jesus’ baptism, according to Matthew, there is a sentence that has bearing on Jesus’ fulfillment of the law. John the Baptist had been alerted by God as to who Jesus was. So, when Jesus came to John to be baptized, John demurred, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” (Matt. 3:14). John had been teaching about the Messiah’s work in baptizing with the Holy Spirit in contrast to his own merely preparatory water baptism. So he meant that he needed to receive a baptism of the Holy Spirit from Jesus, rather than Jesus receiving any benefit from him.

But Jesus responded, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness” (v. 15).

This has been a puzzling statement to many people, since John’s was a baptism for repentance and Jesus had committed no sin for which he needed to repent. But the reason for it seems clear enough.

On the one hand, since baptism signifies identification, it was by his baptism that Jesus willingly identified himself with all the other Israelites who were responding to John’s preaching by turning from their sin to faith in the Messiah. That is, it was a symbol of the union of Jesus with the believer, a doctrine basic to Paul’s theology. We looked at this earlier in these studies.

On the other hand, since Jesus speaks of fulfilling “all righteousness,” it is clear that he also considered this act to be part of his conscious obedience to all that God required. Through John, God had commanded his believing people to be baptized. So Jesus was baptized.

However, the word that I think is most important in the exchange between Jesus and John the Baptist is “all.” For by it Jesus was declaring his intention to fulfill all that God had required. He did this so well that his enemies were unable to accuse him of any wrongdoing, as much as they would have liked to. And God himself affirmed Jesus’ perfect obedience to the law by declaring, just two verses later, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased” (Matt. 3:17). This divine evaluation was repeated at the time of the transfiguration (see Matt. 17:5 and parallels).

It was because Jesus fulfilled the law perfectly that he was able to be our substitute in dying for us on the cross, truly “a lamb without blemish or defect” (1 Peter 1:19).

This is the first part of the meaning of Paul’s statement in Romans 10:4. It teaches that Christ is “the end of the law” in the sense that he fulfilled or satisfied the demands of the law completely.

Christ Our Righteousness

The second way Jesus became the end of the law is that he fulfilled the law on our behalf, so that now he is not only the source but is himself the righteousness of all who are joined to him by faith. This is what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 1:30 and 2 Corinthians 5:21: “Christ Jesus … has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption,” and “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

This is what justification is about, and it is what Paul seems chiefly to be talking about in this section of Romans 9 and 10.

We know what Paul teaches about righteousness, of course. But if we can lay that knowledge aside for a moment and go back to look at the end of Romans 9 and the verses that come before our text in Romans 10, we can see at a glance that a major question is unanswered. Paul has contrasted a righteousness that is “by works” with a righteousness that is “by faith” (Rom. 9:32). He has defined the righteousness he is talking about as “God’s righteousness,” showing that it comes “from God” as opposed to righteousness that comes from ourselves (Rom. 10:3). But he has not said in so many words where this righteousness that is “by faith” can be found. Or, to put it in other terms, if righteousness is to be received “by faith” and faith has content, as it must if it is true faith, what is faith’s object?

Those questions are answered by verse 4, which introduces the name of Christ for the first time since the opening paragraph of Romans 9. Jesus is faith’s object. He is the one in whom is located the righteousness we need to be saved.

This justification, by which we stand or fall in the sight of the holy God, involves two corresponding transactions. On the one hand, if we are believers, our sin has been transferred to Jesus Christ and was punished in him when he died in our place on the cross. That is why we sing:

My sin—O the bliss of this glorious thought!—

My sin, not in part, but the whole,

Is nailed to the cross and I bear it no more;

Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

On the other hand, his righteousness was transferred to us, with the result that we are now counted as being righteous in him.

Jesus, thy blood and righteousness

My beauty are, my glorious dress;

’Midst flaming worlds, in these arrayed,

With joy shall I lift up my head.

Both belong to justification, and both are true for anyone who has turned from sin and committed his or her life to Jesus Christ. It is what Paul has been writing about in much of the earlier portion of Romans and is reiterating in this passage.

So justification is another meaning of our text: “Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.”

Free at Last

Thus far we have been thinking of the word end as “fulfillment,” or the “culmination” to which something tends. But “end” also sometimes means “termination,” and this, too, is involved in Paul’s statement. It teaches that Christ has ended the law as a system by which we are supposed to attain to righteousness. Or, to put it in other language, he has freed us from the law’s bondage.

I have to be very careful how I say this, because nothing in this study is more apt to be misunderstood—and that from either of two perspectives.

First, I do not mean, as one commentator has written, that “Christ put a stop to the law as a means of salvation.” The reason it cannot mean this is that the law never was a means of salvation. Paul has spoken of the true purpose of the law in Romans 7, showing that the law was given to reveal the nature and extent of our sin and to point us to Jesus Christ as the only place salvation can be found. So, whatever “the end of the law” means, it clearly does not mean that Christ terminated it as a way of getting saved.

But neither does it mean the end of any continuing value for the law, for the law is part of Scripture, and “all Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness” (2 Tim. 3:16). In fact, in Romans 3 Paul asked, “Do we, then, nullify the law by this faith?” and answered, “Not at all! Rather, we uphold the law” (v. 31). In Romans 7 he said, “So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good” (v. 12).

The best way of understanding this point is by something the apostle Peter said at the Council of Jerusalem described in Acts 15. Representatives of the expanding church had gathered in Jerusalem to decide the question of whether or not the Gentiles needed to submit to the law of Moses, which the Jewish church at that time upheld. It involved the ceremonial laws of Israel as well as the moral law, and the focal point of the debate was circumcision. Was it necessary for Gentile males to be circumcised to be Christians?

As you know, the council decided that it was not necessary. But the reason I refer to this debate is for something Peter said in the midst of it. He argued that God had saved the Gentiles without their becoming Jews, giving the Holy Spirit to them just as to Jewish converts. “Now then,” he said, “why do you try to test God by putting on the necks of the disciples a yoke that neither we nor our fathers have been able to bear?” (Acts 15:10). The “yoke” was the law. So Peter was admitting that the law had been a burden for the Jews in the past and was arguing that it should not be imposed on the Gentiles, since even the Jews had been unable to sustain that harsh burden.

Does that mean that he was encouraging lawlessness, then? Not at all. He was encouraging righteousness, which is my next point. The council’s decree reiterated some of the law’s moral absolutes, but Peter was acknowledging that righteousness is not attained by legalism. That is, you do not become a better follower of Jesus Christ or a more holy person by adhering to a list of rules. The moral end of the law is attained by Christians, but it is attained by a different principle. It is by the life of Jesus Christ within the believer.

We need to remember that an entire book of the New Testament, Paul’s letter to the Galatians, was written to combat the notion that Christians are to make their lives better or advance their discipleship by legalism. The Galatians were not saved by keeping the law but through faith, as Paul repeatedly points out. Therefore, why should they fall back into legalism? They should continue as they had started out. The main point of Galatians is summarized at the start of chapter 5: “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery” (Gal. 5:1).

Righteousness in Us

This leads to my final point, because, whenever we speak of Jesus, the law, and righteousness, we need to say that Jesus has as his ultimate goal in saving us that we are to be a holy people. I need to add that I do not believe that is what this verse teaches. I think it is primarily teaching about justification—from the context and because Paul says that Jesus is the end of the law “so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.” A righteousness for us is a righteousness imparted to us by God for Christ’s sake. That is what Paul says.

But Paul also could have said, “… so that there may be righteousness in [or practiced by] everyone who believes,” which would mean an actual righteousness to be attained by us.

How can I say this?

It is because Paul says it himself:

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man, in order that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the sinful nature but according to the Spirit.

Romans 8:1–4, emphasis added

We are neither justified nor sanctified by the law. But those who are justified will also be progressively sanctified by the Spirit of Christ who lives within them, and this means that they will inevitably and increasingly live righteous lives. If they do not, they are not Christians.

Three Applications

I said at the start of this study that I wanted to return to some practical applications of our text, and I do that now. There are many, but I want to mention three.

  1. Christ is everything. It is hard for us to imagine how important the law of Moses was for Jewish people living in Paul’s day. The law is important for Jews today, of course, even though tradition has tended to replace a thorough knowledge of it. But it was more so then. The law was the very essence of Jewish religion. Yet Paul, who was himself a Jew, is telling us that Christ is the culmination, fulfillment, and (in a sense) termination of the law. For he “is the end of the law.” It is a way of saying that everything that matters in salvation and religion is in him.

One commentator writes, “Instead of the temple it is to be Christ; instead of Moses, Christ; instead of Aaron, Christ; instead of the law, Christ; instead of ceremonies, Christ; instead of worship localized in a building, there is to be the eternal, omnipotent Christ.” It is impossible to exalt the nature and place of the Lord Jesus Christ too much.

  1. If I am in Christ, I will never be condemned for breaking the law or be rejected by God. How could I be, since Jesus has fulfilled the law on my behalf and has borne the punishment due to me for breaking it? He has become my righteousness.
  2. To be “in him” I must believe on him. For the verse also tells me, “Christ is the end of the law … for everyone who believes.” For everyone? Yes, but for everyone who believes. The promise is universal and specific.

In one of his books, Harry Ironside tells of a young woman he led to the Lord on one occasion. She had received a Christian upbringing, but she had thrown her heritage to the wind and had lived a worldly life. Now she was dying of tuberculosis and had sent for Ironside. She had been given three weeks to live. “Do you think there is any hope for a sinner like me?” she asked when she saw Ironside.

Ironside led her through the gospel, coming at last to John 3:16: “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

“Are you included in that ‘whoever’?” he asked the woman.

By this point she was ready to commit herself to Christ and did so, and Ironside assured her that if she was truly in Christ there was no condemnation for her, even though she had lived a sinful life and was coming to Jesus at what was apparently the very end of it. John 3:18 said: “Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already.…”

A month or so later, after Ironside had finished his meetings in that area and had gone elsewhere, he was told of her passing. Her minister had been with her. “Can you hear me?” he had asked.

“Yes,” she said.

“Do you believe on the Lord Jesus Christ?” he continued.

“Yes.”

“What does he say about you?”

“Not condemned,” she replied. And then, uttering her last words, “If you see Mr. Ironside, tell him it’s all right.”

It is all right, and will be. “For Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.”[18]


[1] Patterson, P. (2017). Salvation in the Old Testament. In E. A. Blum & T. Wax (Eds.), CSB Study Bible: Notes (p. 1797). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.

[2] Sproul, R. C. (Ed.). (2005). The Reformation Study Bible: English Standard Version (p. 1631). 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 10:4). Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.

[4] Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 2174). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

[5] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2006). The MacArthur study Bible: New American Standard Bible. (Ro 10:4). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[6] Stanley, C. F. (2005). The Charles F. Stanley life principles Bible: New King James Version (Ro 10:4). Nashville, TN: Nelson Bibles.

[7] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson’s new illustrated Bible commentary (p. 1444). Nashville: T. Nelson Publishers.

[8] MacDonald, W. (1995). Believer’s Bible Commentary: Old and New Testaments. (A. Farstad, Ed.) (p. 1720). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[9] Utley, R. J. (1998). The Gospel according to Paul: Romans (Vol. Volume 5, Ro 10:4). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

[10] Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953–2001). Exposition of Paul’s Epistle to the Romans (Vol. 12–13, pp. 342–343). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

[11] Barnett, P. (2003). Romans: The Revelation of God’s Righteousness (pp. 227–229). Scotland: Christian Focus Publications.

[12] Exell, J. S. (n.d.). The Biblical Illustrator: Romans (Vol. 2, pp. 336–342). New York; Chicago; Toronto; London; Edinburgh: Fleming H. Revell Company.

[13] Bruce, F. F. (1985). Romans: an introduction and commentary (Vol. 6, p. 200). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

[14] Calvin, J., & Owen, J. (2010). Commentary on the Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans (pp. 383–385). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[15] 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. 654–660). Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

[16] Murray, J. (1968). The Epistle to the Romans (Vol. 2, pp. 49–51). Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, U.K.: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

[17] Harrison, E. F., & Hagner, D. A. (2008). Romans. In T. Longman III &. Garland, David E. (Ed.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Romans–Galatians (Revised Edition) (Vol. 11, pp. 159–160). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[18] Boice, J. M. (1991–). Romans: God and History (Vol. 3, pp. 1165–1172). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.

What Is Hell? — Ligonier Ministries Blog

We have often heard statements such as “War is hell” or “I went through hell.” These expressions are, of course, not taken literally. Rather, they reflect our tendency to use the word hell as a descriptive term for the most ghastly human experience possible. Yet no human experience in this world is actually comparable to hell. If we try to imagine the worst of all possible suffering in the here and now we have not yet stretched our imaginations to reach the dreadful reality of hell.

Hell is trivialized when it is used as a common curse word. To use the word lightly may be a halfhearted human attempt to take the concept lightly or to treat it in an amusing way. We tend to joke about things most frightening to us in a futile effort to declaw and defang them, reducing their threatening power.

There is no biblical concept more grim or terror-invoking than the idea of hell. It is so unpopular with us that few would give credence to it at all except that it comes to us from the teaching of Christ Himself.

There is no biblical concept more grim or terror-invoking than the idea of hell

Almost all the biblical teaching about hell comes from the lips of Jesus. It is this doctrine, perhaps more than any other, that strains even the Christian’s loyalty to the teaching of Christ. Modern Christians have pushed the limits of minimizing hell in an effort to sidestep or soften Jesus’ own teaching. The Bible describes hell as a place of outer darkness, a lake of fire, a place of weeping and gnashing of teeth, a place of eternal separation from the blessings of God, a prison, a place of torment where the worm doesn’t turn or die. These graphic images of eternal punishment provoke the question, should we take these descriptions literally or are they merely symbols?

I suspect they are symbols, but I find no relief in that. We must not think of them as being merely symbols. It is probably that the sinner in hell would prefer a literal lake of fire as his eternal abode to the reality of hell represented in the lake of fire image. If these images are indeed symbols, then we must conclude that the reality is worse than the symbol suggests. The function of symbols is to point beyond themselves to a higher or more intense state of actuality than the symbol itself can contain. That Jesus used the most awful symbols imaginable to describe hell is no comfort to those who see them simply as symbols.

Hell is an eternity before the righteous, ever-burning wrath of God

A breath of relief is usually heard when someone declares, “Hell is a symbol for separation from God.” To be separated from God for eternity is no great threat to the impenitent person. The ungodly want nothing more than to be separated from God. Their problem in hell will not be separation from God, it will be the presence of God that will torment them. In hell, God will be present in the fullness of His divine wrath. He will be there to exercise His just punishment of the damned. They will know Him as an all-consuming fire.

No matter how we analyze the concept of hell it often sounds to us as a place of cruel and unusual punishment. If, however, we can take any comfort in the concept of hell, we can take it in the full assurance that there will be no cruelty there. It is impossible for God to be cruel. Cruelty involves inflicting a punishment that is more severe or harsh than the crime. Cruelty in this sense is unjust. God is incapable of inflicting an unjust punishment. The Judge of all the earth will surely do what is right. No innocent person will ever suffer at His hand.

Perhaps the most frightening aspect of hell is its eternality. People can endure the greatest agony if they know it will ultimately stop. In hell there is no such hope. The Bible clearly teaches that the punishment is eternal. The same word is used for both eternal life and eternal death. Punishment implies pain. Mere annihilation, which some have lobbied for, involves no pain. Jonathan Edwards, in preaching on Revelation 6:15-16 said, “Wicked men will hereafter earnestly wish to be turned to nothing and forever cease to be that they may escape the wrath of God.”

Hell, then, is an eternity before the righteous, ever-burning wrath of God, a suffering torment from which there is no escape and no relief. Understanding this is crucial to our drive to appreciate the work of Christ and to preach His gospel.

This excerpt is from R.C. Sproul’s Essential Truths of the Christian Faith.

Further resources on the subject of hell:

Articles

Are those who have never heard of Christ going to hell? by R.C. Sproul
Hold the Fire and Brimstone, Please by Burk Parsons
The Horror of Hell by Tom Ascol

Media

Can We Enjoy Heaven Knowing of Loved Ones in Hell? by R.C. Sproul
The Gates of Hell by Burk Parsons
Hell by R.C. Sproul
The Intermediate State, Heaven and Hell by R.C. Sproul
Is the Exclusivity of Christ Unjust? by Alistair Begg

Resources

Heaven CD by R.C. Sproul
Hell CD by R.C. Sproul
Saved from What? by R.C. Sproul 

What Is Hell? — Ligonier Ministries Blog

February 24 Afternoon Quotes of The Day

Jesus Christ Both God and Man
John 1:14

If ever man was God, or God man, Jesus Christ was both.

LORD BYRON

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

“Do Not Think Death Far Off”
Job 7:6; 8:9; 9:25; Psalm 35:9; Ecclesiastes 6:12; Isaiah 40:6–8; Luke 12:16–21; 1 Corinthians 7:29–31; James 4:14

Do not, while present prosperity smiles upon you, forget its certain end, lest adversity without end succeed it. Let not the joy of this present life hide from you the sorrow which it brings about, and brings about while it hides. Do not think death far off, so that it come upon you unprepared, and while in expectation of long life it suddenly leaves you when ill-prepared.

BERNARD OF CLAIRVAUX

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

24 Feb 2021 News Briefing

As Americans Turn Left, We Should Remember Socialism Killed 36 Million Chinese
After I finished reading Yang Jisheng’s book, Tombstone: The Great Chinese Famine 1958-1962, an extensive analysis on the worst man-made calamity in human history, I couldn’t help but wonder: If Yang’s book were required reading for American college students, would so many young people embrace socialism so enthusiastically? Since the founding of Communist China in 1949, the CCP had sealed China off from the outside world. The government had a domestic monopoly on information and facts.

Report: US taxpayers could fund Chinese Wuhan lab until 2024
A Wuhan virology laboratory that is believed by some U.S. assessments to have been the source of the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak, is still eligible to receive U.S. taxpayer funding through the National Institute of Health (NIH), according to a new report by the Daily Caller News Foundation last week. NIH officials confirmed to the Daily Caller that the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) in Wuhan, China is still eligible to receive funding for animal research through January 2024. The NIH is funded through congressional appropriations of U.S. taxpayer dollars.

If You Believe Life Will “Return To Normal”, You Have A Fundamental Misunderstanding Of The Times In Which We Live
Despite all of the craziness that is going on out there, many pundits are trying to convince us that life will soon “return to normal” and that great days are just around the corner. They are telling us this despite the fact that the state of Texas has been in a state of collapse this week, the real economy continues to implode, the unemployment numbers are going up, civil unrest continues to rage in our streets on a nightly basis, and our entire planet continues to become even more unstable.
Rather, this is a time when America is going to go even deeper into “the perfect storm”.

US pledges support for two-state solution to Israeli-Palestinian conflict
The Biden administration is committed to a two-state resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken told Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi when the two men spoke on Monday night.

‘John Kerry betrayed America, murdered Iranian citizens’
Anti-regime activist tells Newsmax John Kerry is responsible for betraying American interests, guilty for mullahs murdering protesters. (video)

IAEA: Iran has started enriching uranium at up to 20% purity
The confidential IAEA document distributed to member countries and seen by AP is the first official confirmation of plans Iran announced in January to enrich to the greater purity, which is just a technical step away from weapons-grade levels … .

California’s Wet Season Hasn’t Brought Much Drought Relief and the Outlook Isn’t Promising
California’s wet season has not brought much relief so far and the outlook is not promising. The water year, which runs from October through April, started off slowly. October was the second driest on record for California.

Continued Plains, Western Midwest Drought Expected
Scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the USDA Midwest Climate Hub have drought in focus for much of the central region of the United States through the spring season. The NOAA Climate Prediction Center seasonal drought outlook, which runs through the end of May, calls for drought to remain in western Iowa, and to either remain or develop over all but the southeastern portion of the Plains.

PA tells Biden Hamas Wants Two-State Solution. Hamas: No we didn’t
In the letter, the PA claims that all Palestinian factions, including Hamas, are have committed to a bilateral agreement with Israel that would create a Palestinian state within the pre-1967 borders with its capital in East Jerusalem. They committed to limiting themselves to non-violent resistance against Israel.

Syria Appointed to UN Human Rights Council on Same Day UN Reports Assad May Be Guilty of Genocide
Syria’s new UN envoy, Bassam al-Sabbagh, is set to join the forum in June. Ironically, on the same day, the UN released a report claiming that the regime of Syrian President Bashar al Assadactions was guilty of actions that likely constituted “crimes against humanity, war crimes and other international crimes, including genocide.”

Babylon Rising? War-torn Iraq is rebuilding and Pope Francis is heading there to see it for himself, encourage Christian community
The Pope is even planning a special visit to Ur of the Chaldees, the birthplace of Abraham, father of Judeo-Christian civilization

The Israel-Lebanon border could become battleground over Iran’s nuclear program
The threats and counter-threats are flowing fast and furious – and it could all quickly degenerate turn into a Third Lebanon War. Such a war could lead to extensive casualties on both sides and devastate the economies and infrastructure of both Israel and Lebanon and cause the Middle East to once again erupt in flames.

Mount Etna illuminates night sky with 1,500-metre lava fountain
Mount Etna’s spectacular eruptions reached a peak on Monday when the volcano’s lava fountains soared to 1,500 metres – a display described by one expert as “one of the most striking in the last few decades”. Europe’s most active volcano has been on explosive form in recent weeks, spewing incandescent magma and a copious shower of ash, reaching as far as Catania.

Quantum Spacetime Measured in a Major Step to Understanding the Fabric of Reality
the Holometer in 2016 discovered that, rather than detecting the expected jitters of matter being carried by quantum-geometrical fluctuations, quantum spacetime was entirely still.

UK Launching “high risk” Scientific Agency ARIA to take “great leaps into the unknown”
The United Kingdom has just announced the spending of £800 million over five years on ARIA. This brand new scientific research agency will focus on “high risk” science to “cement the UK’s position as a global science superpower.” ARIA, the Advanced Research and Invention Agency, will “drive forward the technologies of tomorrow” by “stripping back unnecessary red tape,” stated the UK’s Business Secretary Kwasi Kwateng.

Lessons From Texas: US Infrastructure More Vulnerable Than We Ever Imagined
We are getting a very short preview of what will eventually happen to the United States as a whole. Texas has immense wealth and vast energy resources, but now it is being called a “failed state”. If it can’t even handle a few days of cold weather, what is the rest of America going to look like when things really start to get chaotic in this country?

Blinken: US to run for UNHRC seat, abolish anti-Israel bias
The United States plans to run for a seat on the United Nations Human Rights Council, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Wednesday as he decried the 47-member body’s bias against Israel and called for Agenda Item 7 to be abolished. “I’m pleased to announce the United States will seek election to the Human Rights Council for the 2022-24 term,” Blinken said…

AHLC chair: End Israeli-Palestinian conflict with land for peace formula
The formula of “land for peace” must be revived to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide said as she called for…peace through the creation of two-states. “I emphasized to the meeting how important it is to resume a political process,” Søreide said. “Israelis and Palestinians must negotiate a permanent peace agreement based on the formula of peace for land.”

Biden holds first foreign meeting with Canada’s Justin Trudeau
US President Joe Biden has spoken to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in his first bilateral meeting with a foreign leader since taking office. The two leaders highlighted mutual policy priorities around climate change and China. They vowed to align climate goals to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

Kentucky Police Officer Fired For Allegedly Giving Officers’ Information To BLM Protesters
“Officer Middleton’s conduct during a highly stressful and potentially vulnerable time during the history of our community – the most significant policing event in our community in 20 years – demonstrates that he should no longer be a police officer,”

63% of Biden voters reject that God is ‘all powerful,’ ‘perfect and just’ creator
A new post-election survey reveals that a majority of those who voted for President Joe Biden don’t believe “God is the all-powerful, all-knowing, perfect and just creator” who rules over everything in Heaven and Earth today.

Powerful eruption at Etna volcano, Italy
Volcanic activity at Mount Etna, Italy intensified again at 21:10 UTC on February 22, 2021, and evolved into the 5th paroxysm since February 16 — truly spectacular and most powerful in recent years.

The COSMIC WAR against human civilization
The war against humanity isn’t merely a globalist extermination agenda run by power-crazed humans. Far beyond that, there is a cosmic war to commit planet-scale genocide against the human race in order to prepare Earth for a post-human existence.

20th Texas City Bans Abortions, Becomes “Sanctuary for the Unborn”
Mayor Corey Hull, recalling his mother’s decision to choose life for him in difficult circumstances, led the City of Carbon on Monday in becoming the 20th Texas city to outlaw abortions.

RINOS Brett Kavanaugh And Amy Coney Barrett Side With The Other Corrupt Liberal Justices In Refusing To Hear 2020 Election Voter Fraud Cases
I actually left the Republican Party back around 2015 after watching how the GOP let the radical Left walk all over them time and time again, I only came back to vote for Donald Trump which I did twice. So I cannot use what’s happening currently as my reason for quitting the Republican Party because I am no longer a member. But I would like to draw your attention to this as further proof of election night shenanigans.

MAN OF SIN: Emmanuel Macron’s End Times Dream Of A 10-Nation European Army Gets Major Boost From European Council on Foreign Relations 
For everyone who still continues to doubt our assessment of Emmanuel Macron being the biblical man of sin from 2 Thessalonians 2, we present to you this latest update regarding Macron’s plan for a United States of Europe with their own free-standing army. Now let me see, where have I read about that before? Oh wait, now I remember.

What’s Happening in Texas? Texas woman talks about power outages
Windmill farms have operated in sub zero temperatures, with sheets of ice flying from their massive blades. I know people who work in the windmill farm industry so I’m aware of this. This was the first red flag for me.

Japan Appoints “Minister Of Loneliness” After Disturbing Rise In ‘Social Distancing Era’ Suicides
Whopping 70% increase in suicides during a single month of 2020 compared to prior year…

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas Blasts Mail Voting: ‘Fraud Is Vastly More Prevalent’
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected a challenge on the manner in which Pennsylvania conducted its fall election, although one justice expressed concern about potential fraud with mailed-in ballots and two other justices highlighted the problem of slow mail delivery.

National Cathedral tolls bell 500 times to honor 500K Americans who died from COVID-19
The Washington National Cathedral tolled its 12-ton bell 500 times in memory of the approximately 500,000 Americans who have died due to COVID-19 on Monday.The cathedral, affiliated with The Episcopal Church and is known as the Cathedral Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul in the City, livestreamed the event in the afternoon. The ceremony included prayers and reflections from individuals representing multiple faith traditions.

Advocating Israel’s Destruction Is Antisemitic, Say Clear Majority of French Voters in New Survey
A growing number of French voters now perceive a clear connection between anti-Zionism and antisemitism, according to a new survey published by CRIF, the representative body of Jews in France.

Indiana House votes to eliminate handgun licenses
Indiana’s state House on Monday passed legislation that would eliminate handgun licensing in the state, over objections from the State Police. The measure, which passed 65-31, will now head to the state Senate. It would eliminate handgun licenses, which raise more than $5 million annually for law enforcement training, according to The Indianapolis Star.

Source: 24 Feb 2021 – Rapture Ready


Headlines – 2/24/2021

Israel Will Stop Iran Nuclear Program ‘With or Without’ Joe Biden Deal, Benjamin Netanyahu Warns

The Israel-Lebanon border could become battleground over Iran’s nuclear program

As Iran plays chicken with Biden, it also moves closer to the bomb

IAEA deeply troubled by possible nuclear material at Iran site flagged by Israel

UN confirms Iran increasing uranium enrichment purity, quantities

Iran announces official start of new restrictions on UN nuclear inspections

Having Won Syria’s War, al-Assad Is Mired in Economic Woes

Afghanistan’s Ghani sees ‘window of opportunity’ for peace process

China Back as Top India Trade Partner Even as Relations Sour

Hong Kong Residents Now Able to Apply for UK Visas via Smartphone App

Ex-Capitol Police, security officials testify at Senate hearing that riot was ‘coordinated attack’

Facebook to restore Australia news, pay media companies

Biden’s AG Pick Says He Would Support White House’s Push to Restrict Gun Ownership

Merrick Garland: Repealing Gun Maker Lawsuit Protections Doesn’t Raise 2A Issue

Biden Gun Control Plan Would ‘Criminalize’ up to 105 Million People: Gun-rights Group

White House press secretary grilled over Biden’s ‘kids in cages’ at the border

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

AG Nominee Garland Waffles on Whether Illegal Border Crossing Should Remain a Crime

Merrick Garland draws sharp contrast with William Barr by saying ‘it is plain to me’ that systemic racism exists in US

SPLC: At least 160 Confederate symbols taken down in 2020

Bitcoin extends its slide, tumbling below $50,000

Tesla’s share price is now directly tied to the value of bitcoin, analyst says

Fukushima nuclear plant operator: Seismometers were broken

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits near Tobelo, Indonesia

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits the South Sandwich Islands region

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits near Riverton, New Zealand

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits the Kermadec Islands region

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Port-Olry, Vanuatu

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 24,000ft

Sangay volcano in Ecuador erupts to 22,000ft

Popocateptl volcano in Mexico erupts to 20,000ft

Fuego volcano in Guatemala erupts to 15,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 15,000ft

Raung volcano in Indonesia erupts to 14,000ft

Semeru volcano in Indonesia erupts to 14,000ft

Sheveluch volcano on Kamchatka, Russia erupts to 13,000ft

Mt Etna’s latest eruptions awe even those who study volcanos

Niagara Falls freezes over as storms continue to engulf US

Disastrous Oil Spill Off Israel’s Shores Spreads to Lebanon

Freshwater fish are in “catastrophic” decline with one-third facing extinction, report finds

Patient stabs doctor multiple times at Philadelphia hospital

Pennsylvania woman charged with fatally shooting her children in the head

Trump may soon have to answer rape allegations under oath

Israel said to trade coronavirus vaccines for diplomatic support

Israel to Send Thousands of Vaccines to Countries Opening Embassies in Jerusalem

As more governments mull vaccine passports, critics raise discrimination fears

COVID Vaccine Injuries Do Happen, But Experts Say Recipients Have No Legal Recourse

Blinken Urges China to Come Clean on Pandemic

Fauci: US Political Divide Contributed to ‘Stunning’ COVID-19 Death Toll

Biden Caught In Another Big Lie – Claims More Deaths from COVID than WWI, WWII and Vietnam Wars Combined – Simply Not True

Former Clinton Adviser Warns US Becoming ‘Totalitarian’ Under Lockdown Orders

Naomi Wolf: ‘Under the Guise of a Real Medical Pandemic, We’re Really Moving into a Coup Situation, a Police State Situation’

Fed’s Powell Says Economic Outlook ‘Highly Uncertain,’ Pins Hopes on Vaccine

Fauci said new CDC rules are coming for people who’ve been fully vaccinated

Fauci’s mixed messages, inconsistencies about COVID-19 masks, vaccines and reopenings come under scrutiny

North Dakota House passes bill forbidding mandatory mask wearing

Woman claiming to have COVID blows in deputy’s face, gets assault charge, NC cops say

Meghan McCain torches Chris Cuomo and ‘ghoul of a brother’ for CNN ‘comedy shows’ amid nursing home scandal

California Passes Bill Approving $600 Stimulus Payments for 5.7 Million People

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


Apostasy Watch Wednesday 2-24-21

Dr. Michael Brown Claims False Prophets are not False if They Were Sincere When They Prophesied Falsely

Southern Baptists Expel Four Churches for Abuse and LGBTQ Membership

Shane Claiborne Says Problem With Tower of Babel Was Lack of Ethnic Diversity

Moody Provost Heading Investigation Expresses Regret for Endorsing Pastor with History of Sex Abuse

63% of Biden voters reject that God is ‘all powerful,’ ‘perfect and just’ creator: survey

Israeli Archaeologists Find First Purple Fabric from King David’s Era

Source: Daily News and Commentary (apostasywatch.com)

Mid-Day Snapshot · Feb. 24, 2021

Mid-Day Digest

THE FOUNDATION

“If men through fear, fraud or mistake, should in terms renounce and give up any essential natural right, the eternal law of reason and the great end of society, would absolutely vacate such renunciation; the right to freedom being the gift of God Almighty, it is not in the power of Man to alienate this gift, and voluntarily become a slave.” —Samuel Adams (1772)

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IN TODAY’S DIGEST

FEATURED ANALYSIS

The Capitol Riot Hearing That No One Heard

Douglas Andrews

The memo was the topic of much discussion at yesterday’s Senate hearings on the January 6 riot. It came from the FBI’s Norfolk office on January 5, and it provided a stark warning. It also painted a picture of unequivocal premeditation by a relative handful of zealots — not a picture of thousands of garden-variety Trump supporters who’d heard the president speak just moments before and decided to head up Pennsylvania Avenue to start a riot at the Capitol building.

And the memo was reported on by The Washington Post just six days after the riot, so the incessant “incitement” claim made by House Democrats in their impeachment of President Trump was already a dubious one. But we knew that.

The FBI’s memo spoke of “individuals sharing a map of the complex’s tunnels, and possible rally points for would-be conspirators to meet in Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and South Carolina and head in groups to Washington.”

“As of 5 January 2021,” the document says, “FBI Norfolk received information indicating calls for violence in response to ‘unlawful lockdowns’ to begin on 6 January 2021 in Washington, D.C. An online thread discussed specific calls for violence to include stating ‘Be ready to fight. Congress needs to hear glass breaking, doors being kicked in, and blood from their BLM and Pantifa [sic] slave soldiers being spilled. Get violent. Stop calling this a march, or rally, or a protest. Go there ready for war. We get our President or we die. NOTHING else will achieve this goal.”

“These people came specifically with equipment,” said former U.S. Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund during a rare joint hearing with the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and Rules Committee. “You’re bringing climbing gear to a demonstration, explosives, chemical spray — you’re coming prepared. The fact that the group attacked our West Front 20 minutes before the event at the Ellipse ended — they were planning on our agency not being at full strength at that time.”

So the riot kicked off a full 20 minutes before President Trump had finished speaking? If nothing else, this sheds some light on the Democrats’ phony claim of same-day riot incitement by Trump. Remember what their impeachment article said: “Shortly before the Joint Session commenced, President Trump addressed a crowd at the Ellipse in Washington, DC. There, he reiterated false claims that ‘we won this election, and we won it by a landslide.’ He also willfully made statements that, in context, encouraged — and foreseeably resulted in — lawless action at the Capitol, such as: ‘if you don’t fight like hell you’re not going to have a country anymore.’ Thus incited by President Trump, members of the crowd he had addressed, in an attempt to, among other objectives, interfere with the Joint Session’s solemn constitutional duty to certify the results of the 2020 Presidential election, unlawfully breached and vandalized the Capitol, injured and killed [sic] law enforcement personnel, menaced Members of Congress, the Vice President, and Congressional personnel, and engaged in other violent, deadly, destructive, and seditious acts.”

Based on the facts, it’s hard to imagine a weaker, less serious article of impeachment than this. But what are we to expect from House Democrats?

Perhaps the most maddening thing to come out of yesterday’s hearing, though, was former Chief Sund’s claim that he never got the aforementioned memo. As Axios reported, “Sund testified that he just learned in the past 24 hours that his department had received the report from the FBI on the evening of Jan. 5. Sund said a member of the intelligence division at USCP did review the memo — but that ‘it didn’t go any further than that’ and that Sund himself had not seen it.”

That sounds like a pretty catastrophic failure to communicate. And it makes us wonder just what we’re paying “the intelligence division at USCP” to do.

The hearing involved plenty of finger-pointing, with Sund and former House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving and former Senate Sergeant at Arms Michael Stenger painting “a picture of poor intelligence, structural communication issues, and a lackluster response from Pentagon officials as driving reasons behind the botched response.”

Oops.

All this, though, is just a prelude. A preview of a coming attraction. The main event, the real bit of theater, will take place when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi establishes her “9/11-type” commission to examine the attack.

That’s when she and her fellow Democrats will cry “White Supremacy!” and call for all manner of encroachments on our freedom, rather than getting to the bottom of what really happened and who was responsible for the security failures.

That’s when she’ll conduct her one-sided investigation and get her predetermined outcome that says supporters of former President Donald Trump are entirely to blame. And that’s why she’s chosen the hopelessly and ridiculously partisan Russel Honoré to lead that investigation.

That’s when we’ll see our tax dollars hard at work.

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Biden’s ‘Kids in Cages’

Thomas Gallatin

When are “kids in cages” not “kids in cages”? For Democrats and the Leftmedia, the answer hinges on who happens to be sitting in the White House. This hypocrisy was brought home on Tuesday when White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki was questioned on the Biden administration’s reopening of a detention camp for illegal alien minors — a camp that both Joe Biden and Kamala Harris have blasted as a “horrifying” human rights abuse, dubbing it keeping kids in cages.

Psaki responded with classic newspeak spin. “This is not kids being kept in cages,” she asserted. “This is … a facility that was opened, that’s going to follow the same standards as other HHS facilities. It is not a replication [of previous practices], certainly not. That’s never our intention of replicating the immigration policies of the past administration, but we are in a circumstance where we are not going to expel unaccompanied minors at the border. That would be inhumane. This is not what we are going to do here as an administration.”

So “cages” (which they never were to begin with) have become “facilities” to house these illegal children by HHS standards (which were the same standards used by the Trump administration). In other words, the Biden administration is doing the same thing, only now, “It’s okay when we do it, because we care.”

When further pressed, Psaki emphasized the “we care” distinction — a distinction without a difference when compared to Trump’s DHS. “We want these kids to be in facilities where they are getting access to health and medical assistance to education,” she said. “That is our human and moral objective from this administration.”

But Psaki and the Biden administration are allowed to get away with this newspeak because much of the mainstream media refuses to call them on it. Worse, Leftmedia outfits like The Washington Post provide an assist with rhetorical gymnastics to turn “kids in cages” into “migrant facility for children.” Of the Post’s sudden language shift, conservative commentator Drew Holden wrote, “Big difference 20 months and a new President makes.”

Donald Trump Jr. wryly observed, “I believe you mean ‘Cages’ hence the bars on the windows.” And Reason senior editor Robby Soave mocked, “Aw it’s like an adorable ‘lil summer camp vibe now, thank you mainstream media.”

Meanwhile, the reality on the ground that precipitated reopening the cages facilities has everything to do with the fact that illegal border crossings are surging again. By reversing Trump’s lawful immigration strategy, Biden has effectively and predictably resurrected the crisis of unaccompanied minors that rose during the Obama era.

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Fauci’s Dreary Advice

Nate Jackson

“There are things, even if you’re vaccinated, that you’re not going to be able to do in society. For example: indoor dining, theaters, places where people congregate.” So says Dr. Anthony Fauci in his latest pronouncement on COVID-19. Why the continued restrictions? “That’s because of the safety of society.”

Oh, so in other words, the only way to have a safe society is to have no society.

He added, “We want to make sure that people continue to wear masks despite the fact that they’re vaccinated,” probably into 2022. Double masks, in fact. Masks that Fauci opposed last spring.

Fauci, at age 80, is still the face of public health during this pandemic, and for reasons we don’t entirely understand. He’s been wrong a lot, and his dishonest flip-flops are practically legendary. Plus, he’s been director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984, where he’s now the highest-paid of the federal government’s four million employees. At this point he’s more swamp creature than medical doctor, and taxpayers deserve better.

Of course, people in most of the country already are going out to eat, wearing masks to their tables and taking them off during their meal. Movie theaters are open, even if attendance is still low. Most schools are open to some degree, and in some districts there are no mask mandates for students. So it may be news to people that we evidently weren’t supposed to be doing those things for the last 10 months.

Moreover, Fauci made his “safety of society” declaration at a time when distribution of vaccines that are 95% effective is going gangbusters, with more than 64 million doses already given and an estimated 240 million total doses by the end of next month. Cases are dropping precipitously at the same time.

Yet his warnings about how far away “normalcy” remains could in some ways be self-fulfilling if he discourages people from taking the vaccine. Why bother if it doesn’t mean returning to normal?

As The Babylon Bee humorously put it, “Dangerous Conspiracy Theorist Doesn’t Believe Vaccines Work.”

Fauci’s comments on vaccines have been highly manipulative. “When polls said only about half of all Americans would take a vaccine, I was saying herd immunity would take 70 to 75%,” Fauci said in December. “Then, when newer surveys said 60% or more would take it, I thought, ‘I can nudge this up a bit,’ so I went to 80, 85.” In other words, this isn’t science. It’s manipulating public opinion.

According to National Review’s Michael Brendan Dougherty, “The early data we have suggest very strongly that asymptomatic people are very weak transmitters of the disease. The data coming out of Israel, which is ahead of almost everyone in giving the top-shelf vaccines to its population, suggest that transmission basically stops among the vaccinated.”

So forgive our skepticism when Fauci advises that all this good news doesn’t mean we can begin to put this pandemic behind us this year. Certainly we should continue with precautions to protect the vulnerable, but it’s time to declare independence from the tyranny of nanny-staters like Fauci.

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The Return of Operation Choke Point

Douglas Andrews

Nice bank ya got there. It’d be a shame if something happened to it.

That’s essentially the message our nation’s worst attorney general began sending back in 2013 to certain banks that had the wrong kinds of customers. He even came up with a fittingly descriptive name for his unconstitutional anti-business program: Operation Choke Point.

As we wrote yesterday, the Biden administration is planning to revive Barack Obama and Eric Holder’s infamous initiative, a 2013 scheme by which the Obama Justice Department’s banking industry regulators forced certain banks to investigate the business they did with firearm and ammunition dealers and other disfavored businesses — such as pawn shops, coin dealers, and short-term loan providers — ostensibly because they were believed to be at a high risk for fraud and money laundering. Thus, through Operation Choke Point, the Obama administration was trying to deny several perfectly legal industries even basic access to the banking system.

This orchestrated denial of goods and services is the very definition of redlining, a system that was originally used to keep blacks out of certain neighborhoods in certain U.S. cities through the denial of mortgages or home improvement loans. Rather than redlining “undesirable” people, the Obama administration was redlining undesirable businesses.

And it worked. Just ask Brian Bookman, a former police officer and Army veteran. As The Daily Signal reported back in 2014, “After researching his case on the Internet, Brookman says he concluded that his banker, JP Morgan Chase, closed the account because two of his business activities — dealing in vintage coins and selling firearms — were labeled ‘high risk’ by federal bureaucrats as part of an Obama administration initiative called Operation Choke Point.”

So selling firearms and thereby facilitating access to our Constitution’s Second Amendment is now considered “high risk”?

Under President Donald Trump, however, Choke Point was rightly considered an unconstitutional infringement on these legal businesses and ended by the Justice Department in 2017. “And by the end of the former president’s term,” writes Jon Dougherty in BizPac Review, “the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency [OCC] issued a ‘Fair Access’ rule instructing large banks to provide financial services to businesses and individuals irrespective of political considerations.”

But like nearly every other good policy work from the Trump administration, Joe Biden and his hard-left handlers are undoing it. Rather than attempt to enact legitimate legislation through Congress, the Biden administration is, as our Nate Jackson put it, carpet-bombing us with executive orders. And so, eight days after taking office, Biden’s OCC announced that it was suspending the Trump administration’s Fair Access rule.

And why might it do that, except to revive Operation Choke Point, even if by another less suspicious name?

All this is part of a larger strategy: the Left’s politicization of the economy. As Kelsey Bolar writes in The Federalist, “For all intents and purposes, Operation Choke Point is happening every day on a massive scale, [including] a stranglehold on information, speech, and the broader marketplace of ideas. Concerningly, the government is now playing an active role. As exemplified by Parler and the recent Twitter purge, Big Tech is choking conservatives off their social media platforms while Democrats cheer it on.”

So much for the promise our 46th president made in his inaugural speech to “work as hard for those who didn’t vote for me as those who did.”

But that’s Joe Biden. Promises made, promises broken.

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Voting Third Party Is a Vote for Tyranny

Louis DeBroux

A recent Gallup poll found that 62% of Americans, an all-time high, support the idea that a third party is needed.

Of course, this poll, taken late in January, is meaningless. First, voters already have numerous “third”-party options (Libertarian, Constitution, Green, Communist, etc.). Second, voters had an opportunity less than four months ago to vote third party, and the results were, shall we say, underwhelming.

The Libertarian Party, celebrating the 50th anniversary of its founding this year, is the most viable of all third parties. Yet its presidential candidate, Jo Jorgenson, received just 1.2% of the vote, less than half of what 2016 LP candidate Gary Johnson received.

On its website, the Libertarian Party boasts not a single victory for a statewide office. The party’s best performance was winning a state House seat in Wyoming’s 39th district. Other than that, nationwide, LP candidates won less than two dozen seats on city councils, community advisory councils, and boards of commission.

Today there is a schism within the Republican Party over whether the party will fully embrace Trumpism or be taken back over by more traditional “establishment” Republicans like Mitch McConnell and Mitt Romney (if you can even put those two in the same category). Angry at a tiny handful of mostly blue-state Republicans voting to impeach President Donald Trump over his comments at a rally on January 6, many Trump supporters have called for the formation of a new “MAGA” or “Patriot” Party.

Yet President Trump has already dismissed the idea of forming a third party (even disavowing a new MAGA Patriot Party that filed with the FEC in late January). Still, there’s strong discontent within the base of the Republican Party at a handful of top party leaders who have been openly critical of Trump, who held an 82% approval rating among Republicans in January.

With his promise to stay engaged in the party, President Trump seems to have once again answered the question posed by the beloved Ronaldus Magnus; namely, “Is it a third party that we need, or is it a new and revitalized second party?”

The price for answering that question incorrectly is disastrously high.

In November, Georgia’s senior U.S. Senator David Perdue missed an outright victory by just 0.3%. If just one-quarter of Libertarian candidate Shane Hazel’s votes had gone to Perdue, Perdue would have been reelected, and Democrats would not now control the U.S. Senate. With complete control of the House, Senate, and White House, the Democrats are now in position to shove through a plethora of radical leftist, anti-Liberty, Big Government agenda items.

And therein lies the problem. Third-party contenders can’t be victors, but they can be spoilers. And the spoiler almost always hands the victory to the leftist Democrat, who will vote for, or enact, a slew of policies Libertarians claim to oppose.

Edward Ring, senior fellow of the Center for American Greatness, perfectly captures the problem with the Libertarian Party’s spoiler role in a must-read article. The party that claims to be the “Party of Principle” in practice undermines the very principles it espouses.

Ring points out that most Americans, on the Left and the Right, agree with a large part of the Libertarian Party’s platform, from opposition to government funding of private charities and foreign military engagements on the Left, to opposition to higher taxes and more regulations on the Right.

After summarizing a number of LP positions, and before dissecting them point by point, Ring notes that standing on principle is “the luxury libertarians have that governing parties do not have.” Indeed, he says, “It’s all theoretical. … In every one of these cases, there is a monstrous gap between writing a principled bullet point, and operating in the real world.”

For example, the LP opposes “nation-building” and favors the “principle of nonaggression” in foreign affairs (and generally). Yet Communist China is threatening its neighbors militarily and economically, so what is America’s proper response?

The LP also famously supports legalization of drugs. But drugs don’t just include marijuana; there are also highly addictive drugs like fentanyl, heroin, and methamphetamines that have destroyed the lives of individuals. How do you deal with the growing number of homeless drug addicts? The increased crime rates?

Ring’s analysis is fairly comprehensive and asks some very astute questions that Libertarians should answer if they want to be taken seriously and trusted with the reins of power. It’s easy to support legalization of drugs and the principle of nonviolence in theory, but it becomes more difficult when some meth-addled junkie has a gun pointed at your wife’s head demanding money.

As for the allegation that there is no difference between Republicans and Democrats “when it comes to protecting individual liberty and economic freedom,” Ring says this is “a preposterous delusion. It isn’t even close.” Republicans may fall short of the Libertarian ideal, and often disappoint their own voters, but the Democrat Party is actively working to undermine the Constitution and destroy individual Liberty.

As Ring concludes, “This is an existential battle. Siphoning off voters from the side that’s fighting the hardest to preserve individual liberty and economic freedom is not principled. It is nihilism.” Whether voting Libertarian or creating a new Patriot Party, the result is the same — more power to Democrats.

Voting third party is not principled. It is a fool’s errand that gives power to the enemies of Liberty.

Don’t be a fool.

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BLM’s Death Toll

Thomas Gallatin

A funny thing happened this past year on the way to the Left’s police-free social justice paradise of Wokeville — the homicide rate spiked. While mobs of Black Lives Matter activists marched, looted, and burned their way to “racial justice,” the number of individuals who lost their lives due to increasing rates of violent crime rose dramatically.

In tracking the homicide rate across major U.S. cities since 2015, journalist Steve Sailer recently made a telling observation. Since the death of George Floyd and the protesting and rioting that quickly followed calling for the defunding of the police, the murder rate across the nation’s major cities has essentially doubled.

Dubbing it the “Minneapolis Effect,” Sailer cites City Crime Stats (CCS) on homicides. Sailer found that “for these 19 cities for which CCS has day by day data through the end of September, [the number of homicides] ended the third quarter cumulatively up 30%.” He further notes, “Nationally, the largest ever one year increase in homicides was murderous 1968, when Martin Luther King’s assassination set off riots, at 12.7% followed by 2015 during the First BLM Era, when murders went up 12.1%. So, 2020 was the worst year for increase in homicides over the 60 years for which we have reliable data.”

So, while BLM has been largely successful in duping millions of Americans into believing the fallacious narrative of a systemically racist society that permits and even facilitates a plague of racist cops to hunt down and kill black Americans, the number of bodies piling up as a result of the lack of a police presence, especially in black inner-city neighborhoods, has been the result.

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Protecting and saving black lives doesn’t appear to genuinely matter to BLM. Moving the anti-American, anti-capitalist agenda forward is BLM’s actual goal.

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Win the Battle, but Lose the War

Roger Helle

As a Vietnam veteran, I understand the concept of winning the battle but losing the war. I have been returning to Vietnam for 32 years now. On every trip, our organization (Vets With A Mission) hosts a “Reconciliation Dinner.” We invite the local communist soldiers that we once fought against to dinner. In fact, our first dinner in 1989 was attended by none other than Morley Safer of “60 Minutes” fame.

Our media was never in favor of America’s involvement (anyone surprised?) in Vietnam. Our first trip was also Safer’s first trip back since the communist takeover in 1975. Our team of returning veterans was interviewed by “60 Minutes” on three separate occasions. One of them was at the first dinner we hosted in Saigon.

As a Christian group, we were interested in how Safer would view us. During two tapings without him, the film crew wept as we shared stories of our Vietnam experiences and God’s redeeming grace in our lives. When the episode aired three months later (on my wife’s birthday), we were not surprised when all Safer said was, “We met these veterans in Vietnam.” One team member’s story of his best friend dying in his arms at Khe Sanh was included. I’m “shocked — shocked” that Safer neglected to say anything good about our involvement!

Our dinners were always interesting, as former enemies sat together across the table from each other, talking about our shared experiences during the war. One former North Vietnamese soldier told me, “When they would tell us, ‘Tomorrow we fight the Marines,’ I would cry.” I told him no one ever told us that. We sat together, no longer enemies, but as men who had lost much during the war, and each respected the other as a worthy adversary.

But the most interesting aspect of every dinner together was the opinion of our former adversary as to why America lost the war. High-ranking officers admitted the Vietnamese couldn’t defeat America on the battlefield. They won because they knew our politicians lacked the resolve to see the war through to victory. Yet they won the war and lost the peace.

The cost? After one million soldiers died in the fighting, over 2.5 million died in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos in the aftermath. Amazingly, many of the soldiers we met admitted it was a hollow victory, because what they won was not what they were told they would win. They won a repressive communist regime. The anti-war protesters who rallied against the war in America were referred to as “useful idiots.” Jane Fonda, call home!

The point is, too many in our country today want the type of government that has resulted in untold millions dead and oppression that continues to this day. The South Vietnamese government did not get serious about the fight until it was too late. I pray we do not do the same here.

Many think it matters little which party is in power because things will go along as usual. They’re wrong. Each day we see more and more of our freedoms being threatened.

The battle for the soul of our country is going to be fought two ways: at the ballot box and on our knees. This battle is not for the fainthearted. We need to heed the words of Winston Churchill during World War II: “Never give up! Never give up! Never, never, never give up!”

Something to pray about!

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EXECUTIVE NEWS SUMMARY

Jordan Candler

Biden Cabinet

  • Neera Tanden committee votes abruptly delayed as budget nominee in deep jeopardy (Fox)
  • Senate Republican leader unloads on “radical and underqualified” HHS nominee Xavier Becerra (Daily Wire)
  • Senate confirms Linda Thomas-Greenfield as UN ambassador, despite her calling Chinese intervention in Africa a “win-win-win situation” in 2019 (Fox)
  • Senate confirms former Tom Vilsack for return engagement as agriculture secretary (Des Moines Register)

National Security

  • Good move: Federal judge indefinitely blocks 100-day deportation moratorium (Forbes)

Around the Nation

  • $1 billion class-action lawsuit filed against Texas electric company after “catastrophic” bills (Forbes) | Five ERCOT board members who live outside of the state are resigning (Texas Tribune)
  • Virginia lawmakers vote to abolish the death penalty (AP)
  • Grand jury votes not to indict Rochester officers in Daniel Prude case (NPR)

Annals of the “Social Justice” Caliphate

  • Democrats write a bill to start a racism racist center at the CDC (National Pulse)
  • Americans identifying as LGBTQ more than ever thanks to indoctrination of our youth (NBC)
  • Identity wars: Campground for homosexuals takes heat for prohibiting women who identify as men (Disrn)
  • Washington Football Team to spend one more year fumbling for a new name (Disrn)
  • Nearly 100 Confederate monuments removed in 2020 (NPR)

Odds & Ends

  • Biden to visit Texas on Friday following deadly winter storm (CNBC)
  • Trump appeals Facebook’s decision to indefinitely suspend him (CNSNews.com)

“Non Compos Mentis” Award

  • MSNBC contributor who encouraged ISIS to bomb Trump Tower will testify on domestic terrorism (Federalist)

Closing Arguments

  • Policy: The Cotton-Romney plan to raise the minimum wage without killing jobs (National Review)
  • Policy: The tax benefits of parenthood: A history and analysis of current proposals (AEI)
  • Satire: Compassionate Biden moves migrant children from cages to humane high-security metal containment cubes (Babylon Bee)

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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VIDEOS

Enlightened Tyrants — Our post-American elites trade away our security to China.

Critical Race Theory War — On Biden’s reversal of Trump’s EO banning government agencies from receiving training involving CRT.

In Defense of Rush Limbaugh — The Left tried to smear Rush after his death. Most of the things you hear about Rush are fake news.

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

 

 

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

SHORT CUTS

Insight: “All you have to do, is to see whether the law takes from some what belongs to them in order to give it to others to whom it does not belong. We must see whether the law performs, for the profit of one citizen and to the detriment of others, an act which that citizen could not perform himself without being guilty of a crime. Repeal such a law without delay. … [I]f you don’t take care, what begins by being an exception tends to become general, to multiply itself, and to develop into a veritable system.” —Frederic Bastiat (1801-1850)

Upright: “We use black power to create white guilt. My approach is biblical: How can I ask my Heavenly Father to forgive me if I can’t forgive my brother? … Many have died trying to get into America. No one is dying trying to get out. … What percentage of black must you be to receive reparations? Do you go to 23andMe or a DNA test to determine the percentage of blackness? Some American ancestors just came to this country 80 years ago, their ancestors wasn’t even here during slavery. Some black immigrants weren’t here during slavery, nor their ancestors. Some states didn’t even have slavery.” —Herschel Walker

Observations: “[Rush] Limbaugh’s devoted fans believed their values helped build and sustain America through wars, economic downturns and other challenges. They see those values under siege from a secular progressive generation that tolerates everything but them. Many had served in the military to defend once traditional values and the freedoms many now take for granted, as if freedom is automatically and effortlessly achieved. These people go to church and take their children to Sunday school. Some enroll their kids in Christian schools or home school them because they dislike what is taught in public schools. They believe their country is losing all moral standards, is becoming increasingly corrupt and in danger of extinction if things don’t turn around. Shouldn’t these concerns explain why they wish to issue warnings because they love the country and don’t want it to fail? Limbaugh was their spokesman in these and other matters.” —Cal Thomas

Food for thought: “People associate evil with darkness. But that is not accurate: It is easy to look into the dark; it is very hard to stare into bright light. One should therefore associate evil with extreme brightness, given that people rarely look at real evil. And those who do not confront real evil often make up evils (such as ‘systemic racism,’ ‘toxic masculinity’ and ‘heteronormativity’ in 21st-century America) that are much easier to confront.” —Dennis Prager

For the record: “The suspension of the rule of law … is when you start to be a police state, and we’re here. There is no way around it. … Lockdowns have never been done in society and really, we are turning into a totalitarian state before everyone’s eyes.” —former Democrat adviser Naomi Wolf

Friendly fire: “[Andrew] Cuomo abused his powers to hide life and death information from the Department of Justice that prevented lawmakers from legislating — like fully repealing corporate immunity for nursing homes. That is an impeachable offense.” —Democrat New York State Assemblyman Ron Kim, who added, “The only way to protect the integrity of the co-equal branch of the state government, AKA the ‘People’s House,’ is to start impeachment.”

A trip down memory lane: “You know, I walked in when I was 21 and I got arrested. In those days, no guards stopping you everywhere. And they just got out of session. I walked in the back; all of the sudden I found myself in the chamber. I was stunned. I walked up, sat down in the presiding officer’s seat, guy grabbed by the shoulder and said, ‘You’re under arrest.’” —Joe Biden in 2007 about being arrested for trespassing in the Senate chamber

Then: “I waited for a vaccination appointment, and patience was rewarded. … I think it was the National Guard running the show. Very cool. Get it done, folks. Let’s kill this thing.” —Stephen King, who lives in Florida, on February 5 | Now: “It seems possible — likely, even — that Ron DeSantis provided rich, Republican-leaning communities like Lakewood Ranch with priority vaccinations for political gain.” —Stephen King on February 22 (“Stephen King is 73 years young. Two weeks ago, he got a vaccine against a virus that’s deadliest to people in his age group. That’s because the state of Florida is prioritizing those people. The elderly are the most vulnerable to COVID. Florida is vaccinating the elderly first. It really shouldn’t be a difficult concept to grasp.” —Jim Treacher)

And last… “Disney is concerned that ‘The Muppet Show’ is offensive. But filming where China runs concentration camps for Uighurs? Disney is okay with that.” —Senator Tom Cotton

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TODAY’S MEME

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For more of today’s memes, visit the Memesters Union.

TODAY’S CARTOON

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For more of today’s cartoons, visit the Cartoons archive.

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Barack Obama’s Six Most Impeachable Offenses | The American Spectator

Now that we have established that even ex-presidents can be tried in the Senate, the time may be right for a fresh look at ex-President Barack Obama’s presidential crimes and misdemeanors. To get the tumbrils rolling, let me suggest the following six areas of investigation, ranked from probably worthy of impeachment to possibly worthy of imprisonment.

The challenge here was not to find six but to whittle the list down to six. Left on the cutting room floor are Obama extra-constitutional DACA authorization, his duplicitous Iran deal, his misadventures in Syria and Iraq, his Nixonian “Internal Threat Program,” his responsibility for the lethal “Ferguson effect,” and his spying on journalists, all of which abuses dwarf any of President Trump’s misdeeds, real or imagined.

6. Pigford

Said the late Andrew Breitbart in December 2010, “All I’ve been doing is eating, breathing, sleeping Pigford, researching Pigford … ” Breitbart was referring here to Pigford v. Glickman, a multi-tiered lawsuit that offered a sneak preview of what “reparations” might one day look like.

The money in play was originally awarded as compensation for black farmers allegedly denied USDA loans. Before the Pigford gravy train left the station, however, thousands of random blacks and other minorities, many of whom had not seen a farm since CBS canceled Green Acres, hopped on board.

Reporting on the story seemed to have died with Breitbart in 2012, but in April 2013, with the president safely reelected, the New York Times surprised its readers with a random act of journalism. In a major exposé, reporter Sharon LaFraniere of the Times described Pigford as “a runaway train, driven by racial politics, pressure from influential members of Congress and law firms that stand to gain more than $130 million in fees.”

A Berkeley professor said, “It was just a joke. I was so disgusted. It was simply buying the support of the Native-Americans.”

The Obama administration committed billions to female and minority farmers who had never even filed a bias claim. “From the start, the claims process prompted allegations of widespread fraud and criticism that its very design encouraged people to lie,” wrote LaFraniere, “Those concerns were played down as the compensation effort grew.” The Times estimated the total cost of the swindle at about $4.4 billion, in the words of one USDA analyst, “a rip-off of the American taxpayers.”

The unusually honest Times article tied Obama directly to this race-based boondoggle. As a senator, Obama had supported expanding Pigford compensation. As president, he pressed for an additional billion or so to make this happen. Obama’s billion-dollar demand maddened the career attorneys involved in the case given that the courts, including the Supreme Court, had already ruled against compensating the various female, Hispanic, Native American, and pretend black “farmers” who clamored for a slice of the Pigford pie.

Politics drove much of the decision-making. According to LaFraniere, President Bill Clinton had recruited a politico “known for his expertise in black voter turnout” to help launch the program. The political courtship of Native Americans was even more flagrant. A Berkeley professor who had prepared a 340-page report on the case told LaFraniere, “It was just a joke. I was so disgusted. It was simply buying the support of the Native-Americans.”

LaFraniere concluded her report with a focus on Thomas Burrell, head of an entity called the Black Farmers and Agriculturalists Association. She recounted his rollicking speech to a group of several hundred African Americans at a Little Rock church. “The judge has said since you all look alike, whichever one says he came into the office, that’s the one to pay — hint, hint. There is no limit to the amount of money, and there is no limit to the amount of folks who can file.”

True to form, Obama does not so much as mention Pigford in his newest memoir, A Promised LandHis readers will not miss it. They have likely never heard of it. The Times story produced not the faintest echo in the echo chamber.

5. Fast and Furious

In December 2010, Mexican banditos killed Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in Arizona using two AK-47-style weapons purchased courtesy of a bizarre program known as “Fast and Furious,” the logic of which continues to defy easy explanation 10 years after Terry’s murder.

Most likely, the White House thought that if American-purchased guns were allowed free flow across the border, a steady stream of news about Mexican mass killings with American weapons might persuade the American public to support a crackdown on guns. No other explanation makes sense. Terry’s death forced this covert program into the open. Obama responded by pleading ignorance. Attorney General Eric Holder responded by lying.

In February 2011, Holder’s Department of Justice denied there was any such program. A month later, Obama admitted to Mexican journalist Jorge Ramos that “there may be a situation here which a serious mistake was made.” Although insisting that neither he nor Holder had anything to do with Fast and Furious, Obama noted that Holder had assigned an inspector general to investigate. “And you were not even informed about it?” asked an incredulous Ramos. “Absolutely not,” said Obama.

With the media in his pocket, Holder stonewalled from day one. During a House hearing in May 2011, Republican Darrell Issa asked Holder when he first learned about the program. Said Holder, “I probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.” Republican Jason Chaffetz caught the inconsistency. He noted that six weeks prior, on March 22, Obama had told Ramos that Holder had already launched an investigation. “How did it not come to your attention?” Chaffetz asked.

Holder had no good answer. He claimed the DOJ’s inspector general was looking into the program as though that were attention enough. He also showed no particular interest in responding to a House subpoena in anything resembling good faith.

Holder’s testimony on Fast and Furious scarcely made the news. On Comedy Central, reputed comedian Stephen Colbert, reflecting the indifference of Big Media, laughed off Fast and Furious as “the biggest scandal in history I have ever forgotten to talk about.” The family of Brian Terry did not quite get the joke. Nor did the families of the hundred or more Mexicans killed with Fast and Furious guns.

One final postscript, as reported by Politico in June 2012, the House voted to hold Holder in contempt of Congress for his failure to turn over relevant documents, “the first time Congress has taken such a dramatic move against a sitting Cabinet official.” Seventeen Democrats signed on to the resolution. Only 67 Democrats voted against it. The vote may have been the purest bipartisan moment in Obama’s misbegotten first term. In A Promised Land, Obama makes no mention whatsoever of the program or the death of Brian Terry.

4. Libya

In March 2011, President Obama authorized military intervention in Libya without congressional approval. To justify the impromptu attack Obama claimed that if he had delayed just one more day, “Benghazi, a city nearly the size of Charlotte, could suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world.”

Two weeks later, Alan Kuperman, a professor of public affairs at the University of Texas and author of The Limits of Humanitarian Intervention, did the math Obama still refuses to do. Writing in the Boston Globe, Kuperman made the simple point, “The best evidence that Khadafy did not plan genocide in Benghazi is that he did not perpetrate it in the other cities he had recaptured.”

As Kuperman explained, rebel forces did what rebel forces have been doing since the dawn of the age of mass media: they faked a humanitarian crisis to save their futile cause. Kuperman had no reason to embarrass Obama. A Democrat, he had previously served as legislative director for then-Rep. Chuck Schumer.

Gaddafi, for all his despotic flaws, had recently abandoned his WMD program and his terrorist arm. Obama admits as much. “It’s fair to say that I found the idea of waging a new war in a distant country with no strategic importance to the United States to be less than prudent,” he writes in A Promised Land.

Readers curious about why he intervened may have to wait for Volume II of the memoir. This volume ends with Osama bin Laden’s death in May 2011. The unraveling of Libya that leads to September 2012 attack on the Benghazi consulate goes unreported. Hint: Obama will blame the fiasco on Hillary.

3. The Weaponization of the IRS

Democrats feared the Tea Party. Having grown used to manufacturing dissent, they had not seen a genuine, grassroots movement of such magnitude in the past half-century. To neutralize it, Obama played a card whose spots would be worn thin by the end of his presidency. Yes, Virginia, the race card.

Almost immediately after the Tea Party emerged, the IRS began using its vast power to suppress it.

“By September [2009],” Obama writes in A Promised Land, “the question of how much nativism and racism explained the Tea Party’s rise had become a major topic of debate on the cable shows.” The passive-aggressive Obama makes this observation as though the “cable shows” had some mission loftier than race-baiting conservatives.

If blind to the motives of Tea Party members, Obama could see clearly the threat they posed to his reelection. Obama loyalists had no trouble picking up the vibes from the White House. Still unclear is where these loyalists got their marching orders, but what is undeniable is that almost immediately after the Tea Party emerged, the IRS began using its vast power to suppress it.

In a predictably anodyne report issued in 2013, the inspector general of Obama’s Treasury Department traced the beginning of the IRS crackdown to early 2010. As the report conceded, “The IRS used inappropriate criteria that identified for review Tea Party and other organizations applying for tax-exempt status based upon their names or policy positions instead of indications of potential political campaign intervention.”

In 2014, Tea Party organizer Catherine Engelbrecht testified before the House on what “inappropriate criteria” felt like at the ground level. No sooner did she file to incorporate her two groups than she found herself “a target of this federal government.” Although neither she nor the business she ran with her husband had ever been audited before, in the next several years they would undergo more than 15 audits or investigations by governmental agencies.

These audits occurred in addition to the “multiple rounds of abusive inquiries” she endured from IRS agents wanting to see all her Facebook and Twitter entries, the contents of her speeches, and the schedule of her speaking engagements. In concluding her testimony, Engelbrecht asked the Committee “to end this ugly chapter of political intimidation.”

In 2017, the Department of Justice settled with Engelbrecht and other Tea Party groups that had been protesting IRS abuse since 2010. The damage, however, had long since been done. The silencing of the Tea Party helped assure Obama’s 2012 reelection. None of this story makes it past the gatekeepers of A Promised Land.

2. The Benghazi Deception

Much has been written about the various blunders that led to the attack on the American consulate in Benghazi on September 11, 2012. Not until 2016, however, when Kenneth Timmerman released his book Deception, did anyone write in depth about the filmmaker Obama held responsible for those attacks: Nakoula Basseley Nakoula.

Timmerman describes the White House response to Nakoula’s video as “disgraceful, un-American, illegal, and a clear violation of Nakoula’s constitutional rights.” If anything, the major media’s treatment of Nakoula was more disgraceful. In the aftermath of Benghazi, journalists shamelessly conspired with the White House to sell a conspicuously false story that put an innocent man in prison.

The dissembling began while the consulate was in flames and the attack still underway. Needing to draw attention away from the administration’s duplicitous meddling in Libyan affairs, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton released a memo on the night of September 11 blaming the attack on some “inflammatory material posted on the Internet.” Obama’s role in the creation of this story line has never been explored for the simple reason that no one knows where Obama was that night or what he did. He has never been asked.

As Timmerman explains in convincing detail, the video had nothing to do with the pre-planned assault on the Benghazi compound. “There were never any demonstrations in front of either U.S. diplomatic facility in Libya. Ever. That was just a full-throated lie,” he writes.

On Sunday, September 16, 2012, National Security Adviser Susan Rice dutifully played her role in the charade. “Our current best assessment, based on the information that we have at present, is that, in fact, what this began as, it was a spontaneous — not a premeditated — response to what had transpired in Cairo,” Rice told Jake Tapper on ABC’s This Week. She repeated the same obvious lie on four other shows that morning.

Knowing his base, Obama went looking for a reliably clueless audience to hear his take on Benghazi and found one on the David Letterman Show. “Here’s what happened,” Obama told his wide-eyed host a week after the assault. “You had a video that was released by somebody who lives here, sort of a shadowy character who — who made an extremely offensive video directed at Mohammed and Islam.”

The same president who defended the First Amendment rights of the Ground Zero imam showed a shocking indifference to those of Nakoula, an American citizen of long standing and a Coptic Christian whose co-religionists were being slaughtered by Muslims in Egypt.

With the media cheering on the administration, federal probation officers took Nakoula into custody on September 15 under the pretext of a parole violation. They held him in secret without charge or without access to an attorney — “an extrajudicial prisoner in the United States of America,” writes Timmerman. That a filmmaker was about to spend a year in federal custody for producing a perfectly legal satire inspired not a single Big Media journalist to cry foul.

1. Russia

It is always possible that Special Counsel John Durham will surprise us with his long-awaited report, but even if he does, Barack Obama will almost assuredly escape indictment. Based on recent precedent, impeachment would seem a likely way to proceed.

Obama deserves all the credit for what transpired — arguably the greatest political crime in American history.

Thanks to another Susan Rice misjudgment, we know about Obama’s presence at an unusual meeting that took place in the White House on January 5, 2017. In conference with Obama was his national security team including all the usual suspects: James Comey, John Brennan, Joe Biden, James Clapper, Rice, and acting Attorney General Sally Yates.

Following the meeting, Obama asked Yates and Comey to stick around along with Rice, his trusted scribe and factotum. Obama had a reason for singling out Comey and Yates. Unlike the others, they were staying on in their jobs. On the very day at the very moment Trump was being inaugurated, Rice sent to “self” a peculiar email. It read:

President Obama began the conversation by stressing his continued commitment to ensuring that every aspect of this issue is handled by the Intelligence and law enforcement communities “by the book.” The President stressed that he is not asking about, initiating or instructing anything from a law enforcement perspective. He reiterated that our law enforcement team needs to proceed as it normally would by the book.

What credibility Rice had to spare after her Benghazi dissembling she squandered with this comically disingenuous email. She was trying to absolve Obama of signing off on the coup against President-elect Donald Trump. Unfortunately for Obama, she proved to be just as clumsy and obvious as on the fateful Sunday shows.

Sens. Charles Grassley and Lindsey Graham saw right through the smokescreen. “Despite your claim that President Obama repeatedly told Mr. Comey to proceed ‘by the book,’ ” the good senators responded to Rice upon discovering the email, “substantial questions have arisen about whether officials at the FBI, as well as at the Justice Department and the State Department, actually did proceed ‘by the book.’ ”

If there were a book, CIA Director John Brennan likely ghosted it under Obama’s name. In authorizing a coup against an elected president, as only a sitting president could have done, Obama deserves all the credit for what transpired — arguably the greatest political crime in American history. And if that is not an impeachable offense, what is?

Jack Cashill’s latest book, Barack Obama’s Promised Land: Deplorables Need Not Apply, is now available for pre-order. His recent book, Unmasking Obama: The Fight to Tell the True Story of a Failed Presidency, is widely available. 

Source: Barack Obama’s Six Most Impeachable Offenses

Is Rising Inflation About To Hit U.S. Economy In Big Way? | Kimble Charting Solutions

Inflation seems to be a thing of the past… but current trading in bond and commodity markets tell us that it could become a thing of the future!

Inflation hasn’t been an issue, or even on our radar, since the 1980s. Sure, the 2007 surge in oil prices offered some concern but the financial crisis killed any thoughts of inflation.

So what’s got us concerned about inflation in 2021?

Today we take a look at long-term charts of two potential inflation indicators: Crude Oil and 10-Year Bond Yields (interest rates). Both have been mired in longer-term downtrends BUT both have rallied sharply higher of late.

A multi-year resistance/breakout test is in play for Crude Oil and Bond Yields at the same time at (1).

As most of you know, inflation-themed investments have done well in 2021. If breakouts take place here, they should do very well going forward. And perhaps it would be a strong signal that inflation is real again. Stay tuned!

This chart was first published for See It Markets.com. To see the original post CLICK HERE

Source: Is Rising Inflation About To Hit U.S. Economy In Big Way?

1 in 6 Americans under 23 say they’re LGBTQ, as more people in the US than ever identify as non-heterosexual | RT – Daily news

1 in 6 Americans under 23 say they’re LGBTQ, as more people in the US than ever identify as non-heterosexual

More Americans than ever identify themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ) according to a survey of sexuality, with one in six people under 23 saying they are something other than heterosexual.

The Gallup Poll released Wednesday, found that 5.6 percent of Americans classify themselves as LGBTQ – up from 4.5 percent in 2017. That was the last time Gallup carried out polling on the issue.

Gallup surveyed 15,000 Americans above 18 years of age and found that of those who identified themselves as LGBTQ, 54.6 percent said they were bisexual, 24.5 percent said they were gay, and 11.7 percent said they were lesbians. Another 11.3 percent identified themselves as transgender while 3.3 percent said they preferred to use another term such as ‘queer’ or ‘same-gender loving’ to describe their sexual identity.

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Respondents were able to choose more than one survey category for their answers.

Of the 15,000 surveyed, 86.7 percent said they are heterosexual or straight, and 7.6 percent did not answer questions about sexual orientation.

The poll also asked respondents about political ideology and party identification, and 13 percent of political liberals, 4.4 percent of moderates, and 2.3 percent of conservatives said they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. It said differences are “somewhat less pronounced by party identification than by ideology,” with 8.8 percent of Democrats, 6.5 percent of independents, and 1.7 percent of Republicans identifying as LGBTQ.

Women are more likely than men to identify as LGBT (6.4 percent to 4.9), and there was no meaningful educational difference – 5.6 percent of college graduates and 5.7 percent of non-graduates – when it comes to LGBTQ identification.

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‘Stripped NAKED and left in cell with lights on’: Trans woman charged in Capitol riot alleges mistreatment in jail

Gallup added that with younger generations far more likely than older generations to consider themselves LGBTQ, that growth should continue.

“The pronounced generational differences raise questions about whether higher LGBTQ identification in younger than older Americans reflects a true shift in sexual orientation, or if it merely reflects a greater willingness of younger people to identify as LGBTQ,” Gallup said.

“To the extent it reflects older Americans not wanting to acknowledge an LGBTQ orientation, the Gallup estimates may underestimate the actual population prevalence of it.”

Source: 1 in 6 Americans under 23 say they’re LGBTQ, as more people in the US than ever identify as non-heterosexual

One-Third of Deaths Reported to CDC After COVID Vaccines Occurred Within 48 Hours of Vaccination

 

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News Link • Vaccines and Vaccinations
 • https://childrenshealthdefense.org

According to new data released today, as of Feb. 12, 15,923 adverse reactions to COVID vaccines, including 929 deaths, have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) since Dec. 14, 2020.

VAERS is the primary mechanism in the U.S. for reporting adverse vaccine reactions. Reports submitted to VAERS require further investigation before a determination can be made as to whether the reported adverse event was directly or indirectly caused by the vaccine.

The latest VAERS data show that 799 of the deaths were reported in the U.S., and that about one-third of those deaths occurred within 48 hours of the individual receiving the vaccination.

As is consistent with previous VAERS data reports, 192 of the reported deaths — or 21% — were cardiac-related. As The Defender reported earlier this month, Dr. J. Patrick Whelan, a pediatric rheumatologist, warned the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in December that mRNA vaccines like those developed by Pfizer and Moderna could cause heart attacks and other injuries in ways not assessed in safety trials.

Of the 929 deaths reported since Dec. 14, 2020, the average age of the deceased was 77.8 and the youngest was 23. Fifty-two percent of the reported deaths were among men, 45% were women and 3% are unknown. Fifty-eight percent of the deaths were reported in people who received the Pfizer vaccine, and 41% were related to the Moderna vaccine.

February 24 Morning Quotes of The Day

Love Your Enemies That They May Become Brothers
Matthew 5:43–44; Luke 6:27, 35; Romans 12:20–21; 1 John 4:20–21

Love all men, even your enemies, not because they are your brothers, but that they may become your brothers; that you may be at all times on fire with brotherly love, whether toward him that has become your brother, or toward your enemy, so that, by being beloved, he may become your brother.

AUGUSTINE OF HIPPO

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

“Grace to Ride Out the Storm”
Psalm 25:4–5; 34:19; 37:23–24; Isaiah 43:2; 49:13

I looked to God with great earnestness day after day, to be directed; asking him to show me the path of duty, and give me grace to ride out the storm.

CHARLES FINNEY

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

February 24 Morning Verse of The Day

8:37 We are more than conquerors not by our ability but because God loved us.[1]


8:37 more than conquerors. The strength shown in enduring the hostility of persecutors and the pain of circumstances is astonishing.[2]


8:37 Christians are more than conquerors, because God turns everything—even suffering and death—into good.[3]


8:37 overwhelmingly conquer. A compound Gr. word, which means to over-conquer, to conquer completely, without any real threat to personal life or health.[4]


8:37 The trials and difficulties listed in v. 35 not only do not separate us from Christ’s love; they make us more than conquerors by forcing us to depend even more on God.[5]


8:37 Instead of separating us from Christ’s love, these things only succeed in drawing us closer to Him. We are not only conquerors, but more than conquerors. It is not simply that we triumph over these formidable forces, but that in doing so we bring glory to God, blessing to others, and good to ourselves. We make slaves out of our enemies and stepping stones out of our roadblocks.

But all of this is not through our own strength, but only through Him who loved us. Only the power of Christ can bring sweetness out of bitterness, strength out of weakness, triumph out of tragedy, and blessing out of heartbreak.[6]


8:37

 

NASB

 

“But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer”

 

NKJV

 

“Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors”

 

NRSV

 

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors”

 

TEV

 

“No, in all these things we have complete victory through him”

 

JB

 

“these are the trials through which we triumph”

 

This was an intensified form of the term “conquer.” Paul must have coined this term (hyper + nikaō). This is a wonderful mixed metaphor, “conquering sheep.” Believers are conquerors through Christ (cf. John 16:33; 1 John 2:13–14; 4:4; 5:4). See Special Topic: Paul’s Use of Huper Compounds at 1:30.

© “through Him who loved us” This PRONOUN can refer to the Father or the Son.[7]


37. In all these things. Possibly a Hebraism, meaning ‘despite all these things’, ‘for all that’.

We are more than conquerors. Greek hypernikōmen, ‘we are super-conquerors.’[8]


37. We do more than conquer, &c.; that is, we always struggle and emerge. I have retained the word used by Paul, though not commonly used by the Latins. It indeed sometimes happens that the faithful seem to succumb and to lie forlorn; and thus the Lord not only tries, but also humbles them. This issue is however given to them,—that they obtain the victory.

That they might at the same time remember whence this invincible power proceeds, he again repeats what he had said before: for he not only teaches us that God, because he loves us, supports us by his hand; but he also confirms the same truth by mentioning the love of Christ. And this one sentence sufficiently proves, that the Apostle speaks not here of the fervency of that love which we have towards God, but of the paternal kindness of God and of Christ towards us, the assurance of which, being thoroughly fixed in our hearts, will always draw us from the gates of hell into the light of life, and will sufficiently avail for our support.[9]


8:37 in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Paul assures the believer of future victory with his choice of words “more than conquerors” (hypernikaō). Nikaō is a favorite word of Revelation for the victorious destiny of believers who are faithful to Christ despite being persecuted for their faith (e.g., 2:7, 17, 26; 3:5).[10]


37 The “but” (Gk. alla) connects this verse with v. 35. Paul assumes a negative answer to the question of v. 35 and here proceeds to go even further: not only are such things as enumerated in that verse unable to separate us from Christ’s love, but, on the contrary, we are “more than conquerors” with respect to them. “More than conquerors” is a felicitous rendering, going back to the Geneva Bible, of the intensive verb Paul uses. If more than simple emphasis is intended, perhaps Paul wants to emphasize that believers not only “conquer” such adversities; under the providential hand of God, they even work toward our “good” (v. 28). But the victory is not ours, for it is only “through the one who loved us”1265 that it happens.[11]


37 There are three observations. (1) “More than conquerors” is a felicitous rendering. What is stressed is the superlative of victory. Appearance to the contrary places the reality and completeness of the victory in bolder relief. Martyrdom seems to be defeat; so it is regarded by the perpetrators. Too often we look upon the outcome of conflict with the forces of iniquity as mere escape, perhaps by the skin of our teeth. In truth it is victory and that not merely but completely and gloriously. The designs of adversaries are wholly overthrown and we come off as conquerors with all the laurels of conquest. (2) This victory is always the case—“in all these things”. In every encounter with adversity, even with the hostility that is unto death, the victory is unqualified. Unbelievable! Yes, indeed, were it not for the transcendent factors perceived only by faith. (3) “Through him that loved us”—this must refer to Christ specifically, in view of verse 34 and the reference to the love of Christ in verse 35. The tense of the verb “loved” points to the love exercised in and exhibited by the death upon the cross. This is not to suggest in the least that the love of Christ is in the past. Verse 35 conceives of this love as abiding and, as such, insuring the security of the believer. But it is the love exercised towards us when we were alienated from God, sinners and without strength (cf. 5:6–10), that certifies the reality and intensity of Christ’s love. We may well have staggered at the superlative terms in which the victory had been described. Here we have the explanation and validation—it is only “through him that loved us”. This is the transcendent factor which contradicts all appearance and turns apparent defeat into victory. Without question the constant activity of Christ as risen and at the right hand of God (vs. 34) is contemplated in the mediation reflected on here. But we cannot but think also of the conquest secured once for all by Christ himself in that cross which exhibited his love. It was then that he “despoiled the principalities and the powers and made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it” (Col. 2:15).[12]


37 Here Paul bursts into a magnificent piece of eloquence, as he will do on occasion (e.g., 1 Co 3:21–23; 1 Co 13). This passage (vv. 37–39) is especially notable for its largeness of conception and majesty of expression: “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us” (cf. NASB, “we overwhelmingly conquer,” which some find puzzling; it could mean that believers turn their enemies into helpers, as 5:3–5 suggests, but this is rather conjectural). BDAG, 1034, affirms that the verb hypernikaō (GK 5664) used here is a heightened form of “conquer” and suggests the translation, “we are winning a most glorious victory.” Bauernfeind (TDNT 4:945) renders it, “we win the supreme victory through him who loved us.”

By saying “loved us,” Paul does not intend to restrict Christ’s love to the past; rather, he is emphasizing the historic demonstration of this love on the cross that gives assurance of its continuing under all circumstances. Nothing in all of life, with its allurements and dangers and trials, can separate the believer from that love. Not even the last and great enemy, death, can separate him or her from that love (cf. 2 Co 5:8; Php 1:21). Death has lost its sting and victory (1 Co 15:54–55).[13]


More Than Conquerors

Romans 8:37

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.

There are passages of the Bible that are so familiar that we often pass over truths that would be startling if we were coming to them for the first time. Romans 8:37 is an example. We have just been reminded in the previous verse, by a quotation from the Old Testament, that the people of God “face death all day long” and are “considered as sheep to be slaughtered” (Ps. 44:22). But now, in verse 37, we are told that nevertheless we are all “more than conquerors.”

Sheep that conquer? We can think of lions that conquer, or wolves or polar bears or wild buffalo. Edgar Allan Poe even spoke of “the conquering worm,” meaning that at last death comes to all. But sheep? The very idea of sheep as conquerors seems ludicrous.

This is figurative language, of course. But the image is not meaningless, nor is it as ludicrous as it seems. In contrast to the world and its power, Christians are indeed weak and despised. They are as helpless as a flock of sheep. But they are in fact conquerors, because they have been loved by the Lord Jesus Christ and have been made conquerors “through him.”

Yet even that is not the most startling thing about this verse, for the victory of Christians is described as being more than an ordinary victory. In the Greek text a single compound verb, hypernikōmen, lies behind the five English words “we are more than conquerors.” The middle part of the word is the simple verb nikaō, meaning “to overcome” or “to conquer.” (The famous statue “Winged Victory” in the Louvre in Paris is called a Nike, which means “victory” and was the name given to the goddess of victory in Ancient Greece.) The first part of the verb, hyper, means “in place of,” “over and above,” or “more than.” From it we get our word super, which means almost the same thing. When we put the two parts of the word together we find Paul saying that believers are all “super-conquerors,” or “more than conquerors” in Jesus Christ.

But how can that be? How can those who are despised and rejected—troubled, persecuted, exposed to famine and nakedness, danger and sword—how can such people be thought of as overcomers, superovercomers at that?

It is a question worth pondering—and answering. Let me suggest a few reasons we may think like this.

Against Supernatural Forces

The first reason why the victory given to Christians by Jesus Christ is a superlative victory and why we are “more than conquerors” is that we are fighting against an enemy who is more than human.

This is the note on which Paul ends his letter to the Ephesians, reminding the Christians at Ephesus that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Eph. 6:12). In this passage Paul is thinking of the devil and his hosts, and he is saying that our battle, however human it may seem, is actually supernatural. It is a spiritual battle. If our enemies were mere human beings or mere natural forces, our victory, if we achieved it, would be a natural victory. But, as it is, our foes are supernatural, and therefore our victories are supernatural, too. We are more than conquerors.

The devil is the embodiment of these hostile spiritual forces, and he is a cunning foe. I have often said that we must not overrate Satan’s strength, as if he were the evil equivalent of God. Satan is a creature. Therefore he is not omnipresent, omniscient, or omnipotent. Only God is that.

However, Satan is very dangerous.

And crafty! The devil devises more schemes in a minute than we can conceive in a lifetime, and all of them are directed toward our destruction. How can we stand against such an evil, crafty foe, let alone be a “superconqueror” of him and his forces? It is not in our own strength, of course. It is as the text says: “through him who loved us.” Martin Luther stood against these spiritual forces, prevailed over them through Christ, and wrote about it in the hymn we know as “A Mighty Fortress”:

Did we in our own strength confide,

Our striving would be losing;

Were not the right Man on our side,

The Man of God’s own choosing.

Dost ask who that may be?

Christ Jesus, it is he;

Lord Sabaoth his Name,

From age to age the same,

And he must win the battle.

None of us could stand against Satan’s hostile forces even for a moment, but in Jesus Christ we can stand firm and fight on to victory.

Lifelong Battles

Second, Christians are “more than conquerors” because the warfare we are engaged in requires us to fight lifelong battles.

In his excellent study of this verse Donald Grey Barnhouse sharply contrasts our battles as Christians with the limited battles other soldiers fight: “In earthly battles soldiers are sometimes called upon to fight day and night. But there comes a moment when flesh and blood cannot take more and the struggle comes to an end through the utter exhaustion of the soldier. But in the spiritual warfare there is no armistice, no truce, no interval. The text is in the present tense … in the Greek: ‘For thy sake we are being killed all the day long’ (rsv). From the moment we are made partakers of the divine nature, we are the targets of the world, the flesh and the devil. There is never a moment’s reprieve. It follows, then, that our conquest is more than a conquest, and thus we are more than conquerors.”

Eternal Results

The third reason why Christians are more than conquerors is that the spiritual victories achieved by God’s people are eternal. This is a very important point and one we need to remind ourselves of constantly.

We are creatures of time, and we live in a perishing world. Apart from spiritual battles and spiritual victories, everything we accomplish will pass away, no matter how great an earthly “victory” may seem in the world’s eyes or our own. How can it be otherwise when even “heaven and earth will pass away” (Matt. 24:35)? Great monuments will crumble. Works of art will decay. Fortunes will be dissipated. Heroes will die. Even great triumphs of the human intellect or emotion will be forgotten. Not so with spiritual victories, for our spiritual victories impart meaning to the very history of the cosmos.

I am convinced that this is what our earthly struggles are about and that this is how we are to view them. When Satan rebelled against God sometime in eternity past, God was faced with a choice, humanly speaking. He could have annihilated Satan and those fallen angels, now demons, who rebelled with Satan against God. But that would not have proved that God’s way of running the universe is right. It would only have proved that God is more powerful than Satan. So, instead of punishing Satan immediately, God allowed Satan’s rebellion to run its course. In the meantime God created a universe and a new race of beings, mankind, in which the rebellion of Satan would be tested. Satan could have his way for a while. He could try to order things according to his will rather than God’s. He would even be allowed to seduce the first man, Adam, and the first woman, Eve, into following him in his rebellion.

But God would reserve the right to call out a new people to himself, the very people Paul has been writing about in Romans 8. These individuals would be foreknown, predestined, called, justified, and glorified—all according to God’s sovereign will. And when they were called they would be thrust into the spiritual struggle that Satan and his demons had brought upon the race. Satan would be allowed to attack, persecute, and even kill God’s people. But for them, for those who have been brought to know the love of God in Christ Jesus, these sufferings would not be an intolerable hardship but would instead be a privilege that they would count themselves happy to endure for Jesus.

I am convinced that in his supreme wisdom God has ordered history in such a way that for every child of Satan who is suffering, a child of God is suffering in exactly the same circumstances. And for every child of Satan who enjoys the fullness of this world’s pleasures, there is a child of God who is denied those pleasures.

The unbeliever curses his or her lot if deprived and made to suffer. The believer trusts and praises God and looks to him for ultimate deliverance. Unbelievers boast of their superiority if they are fortunate in securing this world’s success or treasure. Believers acknowledge God as the source of whatever good fortune they enjoy, and if deprived of these things, as is frequently the case, they say, as Job did, “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised” (Job 1:21b).

And the angels look on, as they also did in Job’s case. “Is Satan’s way best?” they ask. “Does the way of the evil one produce joy? Does it make him and God’s other creatures happy? Or is the way of God best? Are believers the truly happy ones, in spite of their suffering?”

We, too, may pose such questions, and even wonder about the truth of Jesus’ words in the Sermon on the Mount:

Blessed are the poor in spirit.…

Blessed are those who mourn.…

Blessed are the meek.…

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness.…

Blessed are the merciful.…

Blessed are the pure in heart.…

Blessed are the peacemakers.…

Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness.…

Matthew 5:2–10

Those words are indeed true! They are profoundly true. They are what God’s people are proving every day of their lives as they suffer and in some cases are put to death, being literally counted “as sheep to be slaughtered.”

“But the poor in spirit are despised,” someone says.

True enough, but “theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”

“But those who mourn, mourn alone,” says another.

They often do, in human terms. But when they mourn an unseen presence stands beside them, Jesus himself, and they are truly “comforted.” They know “the peace of God, which transcends all [human] understanding” (Phil 4:7).

“But the meek are crushed and beaten down.”

In this world they are. Indeed, for God’s sake “we face death all day long.” But our kingdom is not here, any more than Jesus’ kingdom was here, though in the end we will “inherit [even] the earth.”

“But those who hunger and thirst after righteousness are strange, odd. Most people don’t want to have anything to do with them.”

True, but their longings will be satisfied by God himself, while those who seek earthly pleasures will fall short of joys here and in the end will be cast into the lake of fire, where thirst is never quenched.

“But the pure in heart have no welcome here, no secure place.”

True enough, but they will see God. They have a home in heaven.

“Why do we need peacemakers?” asks another person. “We need strong armies to fight the world’s conflicts.” Peacemakers are despised. The strong and powerful are favored.

But those who make peace “will be called sons of God.”

“Who would want to be persecuted, especially for righteousness’ sake?”

No one, of course. But when Christians are persecuted, they count it a privilege, for it shows that they are standing with Jesus, belong to his kingdom, and have a reward laid up for them in “the kingdom of heaven.”

Victories in such sufferings are eternal in the same way that the victory of our Lord upon the cross is eternal. Our sufferings endure for a moment, but they achieve an eternal victory. They point to the truth and grace of God forever. I am convinced that in the farthest reaches of heaven, in what we would call billions of years from now, there will be angels who will look on everyone who has been redeemed by Jesus Christ and thrust into spiritual warfare by him, and they will say, “Look, there is another of God’s saints, one who triumphed over evil by the Lord’s power!” Revelation 12:11–12 describes how they will exclaim of our great victories over Satan:

“They overcame him

by the blood of the Lamb

and by the word of their testimony;

they did not love their lives so much

as to shrink from death.

Therefore rejoice, you heavens

and you who dwell in them!”

In achieving those eternal victories, we who love the Lord Jesus Christ will have indeed been more than conquerors.

Eternal Rewards

The fourth reason why we are more than conquerors in the struggles of life is that the rewards of our victory will surpass anything ever attained by earthly conquerors.

The kings of this world generally fight for three things: territory, wealth, and glory, often all three. And they reward their soldiers with a proportionate share of these attainments. The Romans settled their soldiers on land won from their enemies, though chiefly to consolidate their territorial holdings. Armies have usually been allowed to share in war’s spoils. Napoleon said that men are led by “trinkets,” meaning titles, medals, and other such glory symbols. The world’s soldiers have their rewards, but they are earthly rewards. The people of God look for rewards in heaven. The apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians, “… Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever” (1 Cor. 9:24–25).

In this life, like our Master, we may wear nothing but a crown of thorns. But in heaven we will wear crowns that are incorruptible and will possess an inheritance that will never slip away.

No Greater Cause

The final reason why we are more than conquerors is that the goal of our warfare is the glory of God, and that is an infinitely worthy and utterly superior thing.

A few lines back I wrote of our reward as being imperishable crowns, using the image the Bible itself gives us. With that in mind I call your attention to a scene in Revelation 4:1–11. The setting is the throne room of heaven, and there, before the throne of Almighty God, are twenty-four elders who represent the people of God saved from all nations and all ages. They, too, are seated on thrones and wear crowns, because the saints reign with Jesus. In the center, immediately surrounding the throne, are four living creatures who cry out day and night, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come” (v. 8).

Whenever the four living creatures worship God with these words, the twenty-four elders rise from their thrones, fall before God, and worship him. Then—and this is the point for which I recall this picture—they lay their crowns before the throne, saying,

“You are worthy, our Lord and God,

to receive glory and honor and power,

for you created all things,

and by your will they were created

and have their being” [v. 11].

This picture is extremely beautiful, for it shows that the crowns of victory won by God’s people are won by God’s grace and therefore rightly belong to him. They are our crowns, but they are laid at the Lord’s feet to show that they were won for his honor and by his strength. In this, as well as in all the other things I mentioned, we are more than conquerors.

But there is one more thing to say: The way to victory is not by “going up” to any self-achieved glory but rather by “stooping down” in suffering.

Remember the picture of Satan given in Isaiah 14? Satan said, “I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High” (vv. 13–14). But God tells Satan, “You [will be] brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit” (v. 15).

Where Satan aimed to sit is in some measure where the saints of the ages are raised, for they sit on the “mount of assembly,” higher than anything except the throne of God, as we have just seen. But notice how they get there. Not by trying to dislodge the Almighty from his throne. Rather, they are exalted because they have followed in the steps of their Master, who

… did not consider equality with God

something to be grasped,

but made himself nothing,

taking the very nature of a servant,

being made in human likeness.

And being found in appearance as a man,

he humbled himself

and became obedient to death—

even death on a cross!

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place

and gave him the name that is above every name,

that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,

in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,

to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:6–11

Jesus was the prototype—the true sheep fit only “to be slaughtered.” He was “the Lamb that was slain from the creation of the world” (Rev. 13:8). But he was also a super-conqueror, and we are more than conquerors through him.[14]


[1] Patterson, P. (2017). Salvation in the Old Testament. In E. A. Blum & T. Wax (Eds.), CSB Study Bible: Notes (p. 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] Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 2172). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

[4] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2006). The MacArthur study Bible: New American Standard Bible. (Ro 8:37). Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[5] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson’s new illustrated Bible commentary (p. 1442). Nashville: T. Nelson Publishers.

[6] MacDonald, W. (1995). Believer’s Bible Commentary: Old and New Testaments. (A. Farstad, Ed.) (p. 1714). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[7] Utley, R. J. (1998). The Gospel according to Paul: Romans (Vol. Volume 5, Ro 8:37). Marshall, Texas: Bible Lessons International.

[8] Bruce, F. F. (1985). Romans: an introduction and commentary (Vol. 6, p. 180). Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

[9] Calvin, J., & Owen, J. (2010). Commentary on the Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans (p. 329). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

[10] Pate, C. M. (2013). Romans. (M. L. Strauss & J. H. Walton, Eds.) (p. 180). 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. 565–566). Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

[12] Murray, J. (1968). The Epistle to the Romans (Vol. 1, pp. 331–332). Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, U.K.: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

[13] Harrison, E. F., & Hagner, D. A. (2008). Romans. In T. Longman III &. Garland, David E. (Ed.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Romans–Galatians (Revised Edition) (Vol. 11, p. 144). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

[14] Boice, J. M. (1991–). Romans: The Reign of Grace (Vol. 2, pp. 991–998). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.

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