“He that takes truth for his guide, and duty for his end, may safely trust to God’s providence to lead him aright.” – Blaise Pascal. "There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily" – George Washington letter to Edmund Randolph — 1795. We live in a “post-truth” world. According to the dictionary, “post-truth” means, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Simply put, we now live in a culture that seems to value experience and emotion more than truth. Truth will never go away no matter how hard one might wish. Going beyond the MSM idealogical opinion/bias and their low information tabloid reality show news with a distractional superficial focus on entertainment, sensationalism, emotionalism and activist reporting – this blogs goal is to, in some small way, put a plug in the broken dam of truth and save as many as possible from the consequences—temporal and eternal. "The further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it." – George Orwell “There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.” ― Soren Kierkegaard
We’ve all heard it said, “Boy, he’s a spitting image of his father.” Or, “The apple hasn’t fallen far from the tree.” We use these kinds of expressions to communicate the idea of just how much a child is a mirror image of his or her father or mother. There are certain characteristics, mannerisms, attitudes and conduct so similar to that of the parents that there is no case of mistaken identity.
But then, can that also be said of us as children of our God, “He is a spitting image of his Father in heaven?” Can it be said of us that we are a mirror image of our heavenly Father? Can it be said of us that our characteristics, our attitude, and our conduct are so similar to that of our heavenly Father, that there is no doubt that we are dear children of our Father? Can it be said of us – I see the family resemblance.
Adopted by grace through Jesus Christ, we are dear children of our heavenly Father and must no longer live as those belonging to the world, but rather, we are to live as members of the household of faith into which we have been adopted. There is to be no case of mistaken identity that we are dear children of our Father!
Suggestions for prayer
As dear children of our heavenly Father may we more and more be imitators of God Whom we are privileged to call “our Father.”
Rev. Henry Van Olst felt called to the ministry at the age of 32 after 12 years of working in the accounting field. He served the Parkland Reformed Church (URC) of Ponoka, Alberta from 1993 to 2005; served in several other churches, and upon retirement in 2020 moved back to Ponoka, Alberta along with his wife Mary, to be closer to their four married children and fifteen grandchildren. Rev. Van Olst remains active in preaching and teaching as the church is currently vacant. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.
Whatever a Soul Can Desire Is Found in Christ Isaiah 55:1; John 4:10–15; 6:35, 53–58; 7:37–39
Cast your eyes among all created beings, survey the universe, observe strength in one, beauty in a second, faithfulness in a third, wisdom in a fourth; but you shall find none excelling in them all as Christ does. Bread has one quality, water another, clothing another, medicine another; but none has all in itself as Christ has. He is bread to the hungry, water to the thirsty, a garment to the naked, healing to the wounded; and whatever a soul can desire is found in him.
Ritzema, E., & Vince, E. (Eds.). (2013). 300 Quotations for Preachers from the Puritans. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
Friendships Will Continue in the Next Life 2 Samuel 12:23; Isaiah 51:11; Revelation 19:5–7; 22:3–4
The friendships and fellowships begun in this world will be taken up again never to be broken off. Meanwhile, let us have patience and wait with courage till the hour of our departure strikes to go where these friends already are.
FRANCIS DE SALES
Ritzema, E. (2013). 300 Quotations for Preachers from the Reformation. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
Now will I rise, saith the Lord; now will I be exalted; now will I lift up myself. (Isaiah 33:10)
When the spoilers had made the land as waste as if devoured by locusts, and the warriors who had defended the country sat down and wept like women, then the Lord came to the rescue. When travelers ceased from the roads to Zion, and Bashan and Carmel were as vineyards from which the fruit has failed, then the Lord arose. God is exalted in the midst of an afflicted people, for they seek His face and trust Him. He is still more exalted when in answer to their cries He lifts up Himself to deliver them and overthrow their enemies.
Is it a day of sorrow with us? Let us expect to see the Lord glorified in our deliverance. Are we drawn out in fervent prayer? Do we cry day and night unto Him? Then the set time for His grace is near. God will lift up Himself at the right season. He will arise when it will be most for the display of His glory. We wish for His glory more than we long for our own deliverance. Let the Lord be exalted, and our chief desire is obtained.
Lord, help us in such a way that we may see that Thou Thyself art working. May we magnify Thee in our inmost souls. Make all around us to see how good and great a God Thou art.
“We all unanimously teach that our Lord Jesus Christ is to us one and the same Son, the self-same perfect in Godhead, the self-same perfect in manhood; truly God and truly man … acknowledged in two natures, unconfusedly, unchangeably, indivisibly, inseparably … the properties of each nature being preserved.”
So wrote the church fathers in the Definition of Chalcedon in AD 451. But even if they spoke “unanimously,” their doctrine of Christ sounds so complex. Does it really matter?
Given the sacrifices they made to describe Christ rightly, one can imagine that if these Christians were present at a group Bible study on Philippians 2:5-11, they might well say to us, “From what we have heard, it never mattered more.”
Imagine the discussion on “Though he was in the form of God … emptied himself” (Phil. 2:6-7, RSV). Says one: “It means Jesus became a man for a time and then went back to being God afterwards.” “No,” says another, “He only emptied himself of His divine attributes and then He took them up again.” “Surely,” says another (not pausing to reflect on the miracles of Moses, Elijah, or the Apostles), “He mixed humanity with His deity—isn’t that how He was able to do miracles?”
Does it really matter if those views are wrong, indeed heretical, so long as we know that Jesus saves and we witness to others about Him? After all, the important thing is that we preach the gospel.
But that is precisely the point—Jesus Christ Himself is the gospel. Like loose threads in a tapestry—pull on any of these views, and the entire gospel will unravel. If the Christ we trust and preach is not qualified to save us, we have a false Christ.
Reflect for a moment on the descriptions of Christ above. If at any point He ceased to be all that He is as God, the cosmos would disintegrate—for He is the One who upholds the universe by the word of His power (Heb. 1:3). If He were a mixture of deity and humanity, then He would not be truly or fully human, and therefore would no longer be one of us and able to act as our representative and substitute. He could neither save sinners nor succor saints. This is why Hebrews emphasizes that Christ possesses a humanity identical to ours, apart from sin. No mixing or confusing here.
Most of us are sticklers for clearly describing anything we love, be it science, computing, sports, business, or family life. Should we be indifferent to how we think and speak about our Savior and Lord?
This is why the church fathers, and later the Westminster divines, stressed that God’s Son ever remained “of one substance, and equal with the Father” and yet, in the incarnation, took “upon him man’s nature, with all the essential properties and infirmities thereof, yet without sin… . So that two whole, perfect, and distinct natures, the Godhead and the manhood, were inseparably joined together in one person, without conversion, composition, or confusion” (WCF 8.2).
What makes this statement so impressive is that it safeguards the mystery of the incarnation while carefully describing its reality. The Son’s two natures are not united to each other, but they are united in His one person. So in everything He did, He acted appropriately in terms of His deity or His humanity, one divine person exercising the powers of each nature in its own proper sphere.
This, then, underscores the value of the church’s creeds. They were written by men who had thought more deeply and often suffered more grievously than we do. They spoke out of a deep love for Christ and His people, concerned for a lost world. Their testimony helps us in three ways:
It protects us by setting boundaries for our thinking.
It instructs us by helping us see biblical truth expressed in its briefest form.
It unites us, so that everywhere in the world, Christians can share the same clear confession of who Christ is and what He has done.
Does it really matter? In light of the sacrifices our forefathers made in order to articulate the grandeur of the person of our Savior and what Christ had to be in order to save us, you bet it matters.
Is Scripture at odds with science? Thomas Aquinas certainly didn’t think so. In this brief clip, R.C. Sproul examines Aquinas’ teaching on the two sources of truth that God has given us: grace and nature. Today, watch the entire message for free.
The double truth theory basically said this: Something can be true in philosophy and false in religion at the same time. Or it can be true by faith but false in science at the same time. Now, let’s translate that idea to contemporary categories. We see the raging controversy that goes on about human origins. Are we as human beings the product of a purposive act of divine creation, or are we merely fortuitous cosmic accidents, grown-up germs that have spontaneously come out of a chance collision of atoms? Now, obviously we cannot both be purposefully created by a self-existent, eternal God and at the same time be cosmic accidents. Those two concepts cannot be reconciled. But a double-truth thinker would say this: “I’m a religious person, but I’m also a scientist. So, on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I will believe in creation, and on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, I will believe in man as a cosmic accident. And on Sunday, I’ll rest from the controversy.” Do you see what’s going on here? It is a separation or a disjunction between faith and reason, between philosophy and religion, between theology and science, where the two don’t meet or ever overlap. Now, it’s precisely against that kind of thinking that Saint Thomas Aquinas—who had been the illustrious student of Albert the Great, and who had been called by his student classmates while he was in school “the dumb ox of Aquino,” to which Albert the Great replied, “This dumb ox is going to astonish the world with his brilliance.” But in any case, it was against this kind of thinking that Aquinas was responding. He realized that if you had that kind of disjunction between faith and reason, an antithesis between science and religion, you would end up as an intellectual schizophrenic, and it would make truth impossible to reconcile. And so, he said that there are certain truths that we learn from nature and other truths that we learn from grace. What he means by that is something like this: If you study nature, you can learn something about the circulatory system of the human body. But you can read the Bible all you want, and the Bible will not reveal to you the intricacies of the circulatory system of the human body or the molecular structure of a leaf. You have to apply natural science and empirical investigation to discover that sort of thing. So, you get certain truths—truths that don’t contradict the Scriptures or contradict special revelation—but you don’t find that content in the Bible. You find other truths, according to Aquinas, that are revealed to us only in the Bible, that you can’t discover with the microscope or with a telescope. For example, God’s plan of salvation—you can’t study that in a laboratory. You get that through the revelation of Scripture. So, you have two sources of truth: grace and nature.
“For it is by free grace (God’s unmerited favour) that you are saved (delivered from judgment and made partakers of Christ’s salvation) through your faith. And this salvation is not of yourselves (of your own doing, it came not through your own striving), but it is the gift of God.” Ephesians 2:8 (Amp)
Some of us have accepted Jesus as our Saviour. We realize salvation is a free gift. It becomes ours when by faith we repent of our sin (self-sufficiency) and admit “it’s only through Christ’s sacrifice on the Cross that I am made right with God.” We receive Jesus Christ as our Saviour and LORD.
But so soon, we slide back into the performance trap. We want God to be pleased with us and so we work hard at it. Can you relate?
I taught Sunday School, led a women’s group, sang in the choir, gave money to missions, became a missionary myself–besides caring for my husband and five children. One day I collapsed. The doctor advised bed rest. As I was lying in my bed, I kept thinking is this what God expects of us? No!
In the Bible I read that God values me not for what I achieve but for who I am in Christ: I am a child of God, (Ephesians 1:5) a citizen of heaven (Ephesians 2:19) a joint-heir with Christ (Romans 8:17).
What about good works? What role do they play? For we are God’s handiwork recreated in Christ Jesus, (born anew) that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us to do (Ephesians 2:10)
As we surrender to Him, He works in us and through us. It’s not our striving but His living in me that produces the good works. Good works are not the root of our salvation, but its fruit.
When I began to realize the grace of God–how He comes down to us rather than demanding that we climb the impossible ladder to infinity to reach Him—it was tremendously freeing.
To celebrate God’s undeserved favours in my life, I took on a middle name: Grace. Every time I write it, it’s a reminder to me and a witness to the world: I am saved by grace and I live the Christian life by grace.
Father, thank you for your grace that accepts me totally.
It is time to abandon our fears and the stressful anxieties that come from not trusting in God.
One title for the Messiah is Immanuel, which means, “God with us.” Jesus promised to be with us, “even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). At some point we must accept the wonder and power of Christ’s promise. He is with us always! To mistrust this promise is to reject the very character of the divine nature. It is serious sin.
In the Psalms, the Lord gives us a promise for the day in which we find ourselves. He says,
“Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth” (Psalm. 46:10).
No matter what things look like now, God has decreed that He will be exalted in the earth. Not Satan, but God; not evil, but good. Hell may have its moment, but God will win the day.
All our lives we are taught to judge by what our eyes see and our ears hear. To do so is perfectly rational. The only problem is that when our decisions are based only upon our senses, we lose the perspective and wisdom of God. The living God not only sees the end from the beginning; in a heartbeat He can change the world we see into something that is full of redemption and grace.
God’s Word tells us to focus on “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things” (Philippians 4:8).
You see, fear is a magnifying lens that exaggerates whatever it looks at. The devil is a master illusionist who uses fear to take our eyes off the Lord. The result is that our stress level increases, and anxiety brings death into our world. Indeed, the more we talk about what’s wrong, the less we see what is right and good in our world.
Again, the Word tells us, “In repentance and rest you will be saved. In quietness and trust is your strength” (Isaiah 30:15).
Be quiet. Wait upon the Lord and compose your soul. Don’t let your unbelieving words deplete your spirit; for the more you talk, the more peace you lose. Keep your soul focused upon Christ, the Lord. Those who believe enter His rest, and from the place of rest, we can hear His voice.
If you know who God truly is, anxiety will fade into trust. Therefore, cease worrying! God cares for you. Those who trust Him have peace that surpasses all understanding. Talk to the Lord and then quietly listen. As you do, your spirit will soar, and your heart expand and ascend into His presence.
It has been truly said, “Fear is the darkroom where Satan develops our negatives.” Therefore, renounce fear. Divorce anxiety. Beloved, the Lord is good. Trust Him with your battle. Yes, it’s time to cease striving and know that He is God.
After the Fever of Life, the Beatific Vision Isaiah 6:3; 1 Thessalonians 4:13; Revelation 20:11
After the fever of life; after wearinesses and sicknesses; fightings and despondings; languor and fretfulness; struggling and failing, struggling and succeeding; after all the changes and chances of this troubled unhealthy state, at length comes death, at length the White Throne of God, at length the Beatific Vision.
JOHN HENRY NEWMAN
Ritzema, E. (Ed.). (2012). 300 Quotations for Preachers. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
Huss’ Statement of the Gospel He Believed Matthew 5:18; 16:18; 1 Peter 3:15
Seeing that I am always ready to give an answer to the satisfaction of every man who asks concerning the faith I hold, I declare with a sincere heart that the Lord Jesus Christ is very God and very man; and that His whole gospel is established so firmly in the truth that “not a jot nor tittle” of it can fail; and finally that His Holy Church has been so firmly founded on a firm rock that “the gates of hell cannot in any wise prevail against it.” I am ready in hope of the Lord Jesus Christ, Himself the Head, to bear the punishment of a dreadful death rather than to state … anything else than His truth.
Ritzema, E., & Brant, R. (Eds.). (2013). 300 quotations for preachers from the Medieval church. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.
Knesset Speaker Levin to announce Lapid-Bennett coalition on Monday Knesset Speaker Yariv Levin confirmed on Friday afternoon that he would announce that Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid has managed to form a coalition on Monday, a technical step required before the Knesset can approve the new government. Levin’s announcement came after concerns were raised of him attempting to delay the step.
AIPAC congratulates Lapid, Bennett for reaching agreement The American Israel Public Affairs Committee congratulated Yair Lapid and Naftali Bennett on Thursday “for assembling a broad and diverse coalition — spanning the political spectrum of Zionist and Arab parties — to form an Israeli government pending Knesset approval. The formation of this government…demonstrates the resilience of Israel’s democracy and its commitment to democratic values.
US economy adds fewer jobs than forecast despite reopening The US economy saw an increase in hiring in May as restrictions eased, although fewer jobs were added than expected. Employers created 559,000 jobs, driven by reopenings at restaurants, bars and hotels in particular. That failed to meet economists’ expectations of 675,000 jobs being added.
G7 nations near historic deal on taxing multinationals Group of Seven rich nations are seeking to overcome long-standing differences…and strike a landmark deal to close the net on large companies that they say do not pay enough tax. The proposed accord…is aimed at ending a decades-long “race to the bottom” in which countries have competed to attract corporate giants with ultra-low tax rates and exemptions.
Thousands attend Jerusalem Pride Parade under heavy security Thousands took part in Jerusalem’s Pride Parade Thursday under heavy security over fears of extremist attacks and a year after most of the globe’s pride events were scrapped over the coronavirus pandemic. Officials said some 8,000 people attended the annual event, which was held in celebration of the international Pride Month.
Support for Israel shifts among young US evangelical Christians After the latest round of conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, American televangelist John Hagee lectured his congregation on consecutive Sundays at the Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas. “Supporting Israel is not a political issue. It is a Bible issue,” Hagee proclaimed in a May 23 sermon on what he called “the battle for Jerusalem”.
Shallow M5.9 earthquakes hit Gorda plate, off the coast of Oregon, U.S. Two shallow M5.9 earthquakes hit off the coast of southern Oregon, U.S. at 07:52 and 08:17 UTC on June 4, 2021, at a depth of 16.6 km (10.3 miles) and 14.5 km (9 miles), respectively. They were located around 12 km (7.4 miles) from each other and followed by 5 moderately strong aftershocks over the next 15 hours. 13 M6+ earthquakes have occurred within 200 km (124 miles) in the last 50 years.
Chinese communist conference plots how to ‘promote’ the ‘powerful weapon’ of Marxism Taking place on May 27th in Beijing, the event was hosted by the International Department of the Chinese government’s Central Committee and counted “some 70 leaders and representatives from 58 political parties in 48 countries” in attendance. Communist leaders from across the world – including the United States – sent “congratulatory messages to the symposium,” which saw attendees focus on “how to promote the development of Marxism in the new era and how they can better work together to jointly cope with those challenges.”
The COVID vaccine; more genetic thunder Children’s Health Defense: “VAERS [US] data released today showed 227,805 reports of adverse events following COVID vaccines, including 4,201 deaths and 18,528 serious injuries between Dec. 14, 2020 and May 14, 2021.” Depending on which study you read, you can multiply reported adverse-effect numbers by 10 or 100, to arrive at a truer estimate of the human damage.
CCP planning major attack on USA this year: Bioweapons, cyber war, kamikazee drones and infrastructure sabotage Over the last 48 hours, I’ve received a flood of intel from sources, both private and public, indicating that communist China is moving up the timetable of a long-planned attack on the United States of America. In reality, the biological warfare phase of the attack is already under way, having begun in 2019 with the deliberate release of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, followed by direct interference in rigging the 2020 election and installing CCP puppet Joe Biden as a temporary occupant of the White House.
France planning to inject 12-year-old children with spike protein bioweapons The President of France, Emmanuel Macron, recently announced the government’s plan to prey on psychologically vulnerable parents and vaccinate as many children as possible. Children as young as 12 years of age will be pressured to inoculate with experimental spike proteins from the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine series. The European Medicines Agency recently approved the Pfizer-BioNTech covid jab for young teenagers. The dishonest drug maker recently settled a $2.3 billion judgment for fraudulent marketing, the largest health care fraud settlement in the history of the U.S. Department of Medicine. Now Pfizer is seeking approval to inoculate babies as young as six months in the US, Europe and Poland, as they fraud the world on levels of criminality that are unconscionable.
Exposing what ALEC is – and how it’s pushing to make 5G a reality As more information about the dangers of 5G comes to light, the pushback has been tremendous. But all of the groups that are trying to protect the public from the many dangers of 5G are facing an uphill battle against a large organization that is determined to make sure 5G makes its way to the masses.
People want to work from home PERMANENTLY People want to work from home permanently and if you’re reading this, you’re probably one of them. After reading this post, you will find that most people want to work from home permanently, and if they can’t, they will find another job that offers it.
Facebook has officially Banned Trump for 2 YearsPosted: 04 Jun 2021 03:52 PM PDT(ETH) – The quasi-independent oversight board of Facebook has decided to ban President Trump from its platform for two years. Trump immediately released a statement Friday saying, “Facebook’s ruling is an insult to the record-setting 75M people, plus many others, who voted for us in the 2020 rigged Presidential Election.They shouldn’t be allowed to get away with this censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win. Our Country can’t take this abuse anymore!” The social media giant had suspended his account while he was still the sitting president of the United States, accusing him of calling for the breach of the U.S.Continue reading Facebook has officially Banned Trump for 2 Years at End Time Headlines.
Top Weekly Stories from ChristianNews.net for 06/05/2021
‘Sinning Against Our God’: Teacher Put on Leave After Speech on Refusing to Lie About ‘Transgenderism’ Jun 01, 2021 10:45 am (Fox News) — An elementary school physical education teacher in Virginia was placed on leave after an explosive speech in which he told his school board he wouldn’t “affirm that a biological boy can be a girl and vice versa,” Fox News has learned. During a Loudoun County school board meeting Tuesday, teacher Byron “Tanner” Cross voiced his opposition to…Continue reading the story
Ex-LGBT Visit DC to Warn Senators About Dangers of the So-Called Equality Act Jun 04, 2021 11:22 pm (LifeSiteNews) WASHINGTON, D.C. – Former gay, lesbian and transgender individuals have come to the nation’s capital this week to warn members of the U.S. Senate against the dangers of the so-called Equality Act, which threatens to diminish religious liberty and severely hinder those seeking to deal with unwanted same-sex attraction and gender…Continue reading the story
QUOTE OF THE WEEK “The same apparatus of suppression that insisted the lab leak theory was a ‘conspiracy theory’ have spent over a year shutting down honest debate about mask and lockdown effectiveness. Authoritarian censorship is a bad idea, even when some of its proponents wear lab coats.” —Buck Sexton
After months of sharp criticism against the U.S. government’s top epidemiologist, a growing wave of congressional Republicans are now going a step further to call on Anthony Fauci to resign or be fired from his post over revelations contained in thousands of his emails released this week.
The United States gave over $800,000 to the top-level laboratory in China from which some believe the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus escaped, according to newly released documents. Internal emails from officials with the National Institutes of Health and an office inside the agency, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), show they discussed in 2020 a question from Republican members of Congress regarding how much the agencies sent to the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
Fox News contributor Jason Chaffetz on a former Ukrainian prosecutor reportedly telling Obama-era State Department officials that a Burisma-linked firm offered him access to Hilary Clinton’s 2016 campaign team.
The news comes almost two weeks after two insiders revealed Facebook has allegedly been testing an algorithm on its users that demoted, buried, and hid comments, describing “potentially or actually true” events or facts.