Daily Archives: November 16, 2022

C.H. Spurgeon: ‘The Lord is my portion, saith my soul.’ — Reformed Christian Studies

 Posted at Sermon Audio – Daily Devotional:

“The Lord is my portion, saith my soul.”
— Lamentations 3:24

It is not “The Lord is partly my portion,” nor “The Lord is in my portion”; but He Himself makes up the sum total of my soul’s inheritance. Within the circumference of that circle lies all that we possess or desire. The Lord is my portion. Not His grace merely, nor His love, nor His covenant, but Jehovah Himself. He has chosen us for His portion, and we have chosen Him for ours. It is true that the Lord must first choose our inheritance for us, or else we shall never choose it for ourselves; but if we are really called according to the purpose of electing love, we can sing–

“Lov’d of my God for Him again With love intense I burn; Chosen of Him ere time began, I choose Him in return.”

The Lord is our all-sufficient portion. God fills Himself; and if God is all-sufficient in Himself, He must be all-sufficient for us. It is not easy to satisfy man’s desires. When he dreams that he is satisfied, anon he wakes to the perception that there is somewhat yet beyond, and straightway the horse-leech in his heart cries, “Give, give.” But all that we can wish for is to be found in our divine portion, so that we ask, “Whom have I in heaven but Thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside Thee.” Well may we “delight ourselves in the Lord” who makes us to drink of the river of His pleasures. Our faith stretches her wings and mounts like an eagle into the heaven of divine love as to her proper dwelling-place. “The lines have fallen to us in pleasant places; yea, we have a goodly heritage.” Let us rejoice in the Lord always; let us show to the world that we are a happy and a blessed people, and thus induce them to exclaim, “We will go with you, for we have heard that God is with you.”

C.H. Spurgeon: ‘The Lord is my portion, saith my soul.’ — Reformed Christian Studies

Nothing Old — VCY America

Revelation 21:5

Glory be to His name! All things need making new, for they are sadly battered and worn by sin. It is time that the old vesture was rolled up and laid aside, and that creation put on her Sunday suit. But no one else can make all things new except the Lord who made them at the first; for it needs as much power to make out of evil as to make out of nothing. Our Lord Jesus has undertaken the task, and He is fully competent for the performance of it. Already he has commenced His labor, and for centuries He has persevered in making new the hearts of men and the order of society. By and by He will make new the whole constitution of human government, and human nature shall be changed by His grace; and there shall come a day when the body shall be made new and raised like unto His glorious body.

What a joy to belong to a kingdom in which everything is being made new by the power of its King! We are not dying out: we are hastening on to a more glorious life. Despite the opposition of the powers of evil, our glorious Lord Jesus is accomplishing His purpose and making us, and all things about us, “new” and as full of beauty as when they first came from the hand of the Lord.

Nothing Old — VCY America

The Only Totally Fair Judge! — Daily Devotionals by Thoughts about God

“Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”  1 Samuel 16:6-8


Sometimes I cringe at how often we make judgments about people’s behavior or actions from things we hear or read or see: tidbits of gossip – (internet – is bad for that), rumors or slanted opinions (the media). If you have ever been on the receiving end of these judgments, you have experienced how painful it is to be judged on false information.

But often, we ourselves can be guilty of spreading rumors. We, too, judge or criticize others on partial truths without knowing the whole picture. Sometimes people take credit for deeds others have actually accomplished and it doesn’t seem fair. It is our humanness, isn’t it? We are sinners and we are weak.

I find it so encouraging to know that God always judges fairly. He knows everything about us. What we do, what we think, what we could have done. He knows and has given us our gifts and talents. He knows the circumstances surrounding our actions, yet His attitude toward us is always enveloped with love.

Dr. Bill Bright, in his book, God, Discover the Benefits of His Attributes, states:

Because God is just -He will always treat me fairly.”

Not only does He judge us fairly regarding questionable thoughts and actions, He rewards us for the good we do. As JI Packer states in His book, Knowing God Through the Year:

To reward good with good, and evil with evil, is natural with God. The retributive principle applies throughout: Christians as well as non-Christians will receive according to their works.

Sometimes life doesn’t seem fair. But remember this, God is fair!

God will see that each person sooner or later receives what he deserves – if not here, then hereafter.” – JI Packer

God, when I see and hear about the suffering of the thousands of people throughout the world, I sometimes wonder about the fairness of what is happening. It is so comforting to know that You will sooner or later give each person what he/she deserves. Thank You! Amen.

by Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission


Further Reading

•  Feelings, Forgiveness and Peace | by Dr. Muriel Larson

•  How to Experience God’s Love and Forgiveness (3 parts)

•  Salvation Explained

The Only Totally Fair Judge! — Daily Devotionals by Thoughts about God

16 Nov 2022 News Briefing

Fired engineer still convinced Google has created sentient being
Are humans capable of creating sentient, self-aware “beings” that literally take on a life of their own, confronting humanity with all kinds of moral, ethical and possibly dystopian implications?Blake Lemoine believes it’s not only possible, it already has happened. In June, as a senior software engineer and AI researcher for Google, he made world headlines when he revealed that the Big Tech giant was developing an artificial intelligence called LaMDA. (comment notice the name?) Google’s intent from the beginning was to create an artificial intelligence that could pass the “Turing test,” which aims to test a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behavior that is indistinguishable from that of a human.

How Do Americans Determine Right From Wrong? Poll Shows Disappointing Results
The study maintains that, until recently, the principles found in the Bible had been commonly accepted as the basis for morality. From there, most Americans drew “traditional moral values.” Now, while a majority (89%) claim to uphold the latter, they draw from different moral authorities, rather than just Scripture. Previous research by Barna found that only 6% of Americans have a biblical worldview, though many claim to have one.

One Way Or Another, The Population Of The Globe Will Soon Be Much Smaller Than It Is Right Now
I explain that we are moving into one of the most chaotic times in all of human history. There will be wars and rumors of wars, economic collapse, worldwide famines, horrifying pestilences and great natural disasters. Needless to say, in such a future the global population would fall very rapidly. But the population of our planet is not growing as rapidly as it once was. In fact, even the UN is acknowledging that total population growth has dropped to just a trickle… The global population is growing at its slowest rate since 1950, having fallen under 1 per cent in 2020.

People are euthanizing themselves in Canada because they can’t afford housing. Literally.
Canada: A St. Catharines man says he will choose medically assisted death over homelessness. CityNews explores the ethics of MAiD amid concerns some feel they have no other choice.

Israel’s First Religious Regime: Challenge and Opportunity
Israel’s right-wing political takeover by Menachem Begin is often dubbed “The 1977 revolution.” This week, however, we experienced a far more significant revolution—”The 2022 revolution”—in which the religious, for the first time, have come to power. Based on the winners and losers of the election for the 25th Knesset, it seems certain that the new government will have a majority of religiously observant members. … Just several years ago, nobody would have entertained the thought. It is truly a revolution.

Horror stories lead to judgment day for Israel’s legal system
Nationwide outrage over the light sentence meted out by the Beersheva Juvenile Court last Wednesday to a Bedouin who sodomized a little girl two years ago sheds light on why the right garnered a clear victory on Nov. 1. As the 25th Knesset is sworn in today (Tuesday), with coalition negotiations in full swing, the above heinous crime and measly punishment can help explain the election results. Chattering-class hysteria notwithstanding, the probability that Religious Zionist Party member Itamar Ben-Gvir will be given the public-security portfolio he’s been demanding is actually a relief to much of the public.

Survey reveals mass mental illness in Gen Z, with 57% of young people now taking medication just to cope
After facing two and half years of lockdowns, restrictions, fear propaganda, isolation, and harmful mandates, the young and aspiring Generation Z are dealing with several mental health conditions. An analysis conducted by Harmony Healthcare IT finds that millions of young adults are dealing with new mental health problems that were brought on during the covid-19 scandal.

4.2 million lightning strikes during wild weekend storms in Australia
Australia just endured a weekend of prolific thunderstorm activity, with more 4.2 million lightning strikes detected across the country on Saturday and Sunday. A perfect mix of thunderstorm-producing ingredients lined up over Australia on the weekend.

A Crack in the Magnetic Field | Q and A Nov.15.2022
Earths magnetic field continues to weaken. (watch)

Zelensky Issues 10-Point Plan To End War In G20 Virtual Address
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was quick to reject what he called “unrealistic and inadequate” terms for future peace talks put forward by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday. Zelensky had addressed the G20 summit in Bali via video link earlier in the day, in which he presented a 10-point peace plan to end the war.

“Invasion Clause” Triggered In Texas As Migrants Overwhelm Border
Texas Governor Greg Abbott has invoked the state’s “Invasion Clauses” to take measures against a record-setting influx of migrants who are illegally crossing the border. “I invoked the Invasion Clauses of the U.S. & Texas Constitutions to fully authorize Texas to take unprecedented measures to defend our state against an invasion,” Abbott tweeted Tuesday morning.

NBC Pushes ‘Tripledemic’ Fear Mongering – Claims Children At Risk During The Holidays
Why can’t leftists and the mainstream media let go of the pandemic, accept that it is over and move on? There are a number of reasons, but much of it can be explained by the psychological drivers within the mind of the average progressive. Leftists are often defined by their addiction to fear. For them, fear is a powerful tool, a great motivator for organization and a means to manipulate large groups into conformity with an agenda that would normally take many years or decades to accomplish otherwise.

Biden On Democrats’ Effort To Codify Roe v. Wade: ‘I Don’t Think There’s Enough Votes’
Democrats probably won’t be able to pass federal legislation codifying the struck-down Roe v. Wade abortion protections, President Joe Biden said on Nov. 14.

Tuesday evening news briefing: Russian missiles hammer Ukraine
Just hours after President Volodymyr Zelensky told the gathering in Bali that “now is the time” to end the war and Prime Minister Rishi Sunak called for an end to the “barbaric” conflict, the Kremlin pounded cities and energy facilities in a fresh wave of strikes. A Ukrainian air force spokesman said Russia fired around 100 missiles in a countrywide assault.

‘Significant Escalation’: Pentagon Warns US ‘Will Defend Every Inch Of NATO Territory’ After Russia Fires Two Missiles Into Poland
Poland’s Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, is holding an emergency meeting on the “crisis situation” according to a government spokesperson. The nearby NATO country, Latvia, also called an emergency meeting, after the Deputy Prime Minister, Artis Pabriks, condemned the “Criminal Russian regime” for firing the missiles. While the Pentagon has yet to confirm or deny the attack, Press Secretary Patrick Ryder, in a news briefing underscored: “when it comes to our security commitments and Article 5, we’ve been crystal clear that we will defend every inch of NATO territory.”

Ted Cruz: Anyone involved in FBI investigation against Israel should be fired or impeached
Senator Ted Cruz accuses Biden Admin. of weaponizing FBI against Israel in launching an investigation of Al Jazeera journalist’s death. Biden and his administration view Israel and Prime Minister-elect Benjamin Netanyahu as political enemies, and so they are responding to them the way they respond to all their political enemies: by unleashing the FBI. “This outrage underscores how corrupt and blatantly politicized the Justice Department has become, and how entirely beholden to the radical left-wing Squad Democrats really are.

Poland calls ‘urgent’ defense meeting after alleged Russian missiles kill 2
Initial reports indicated that Russian rockets had hit a Polish town near the Ukrainian border, killing two civilians. Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki convened an urgent meeting of the Committee of the Council of Ministers for National Security and Defense Affairs on Tuesday, with initial reports indicating that stray Russian missiles hit a town near the border with Ukraine. Pabriks has invoked Article 4 of the NATO treaty, which would have the allies meet to hold a consultation on the situation and further action.

The State Department’s Systemic Failure in the Middle East
the State Department’s well-intentioned policy has fueled Middle East violence, generating tailwinds to rogue entities and headwinds to the U.S. and its Arab allies.

American Jews, get out now!
The Jewish people outside of Israel must step back and examine their reality. Too many things are happening at once that point to the fact that the s**t is about to hit the fan. This isn’t new. It’s been going on for years, escalation after escalation. But over the past few months, it’s reached the point of no return. It’s just too much to ignore.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott Has Sent Out 300 Migrant Buses
Texas reached a major milestone last week after Gov. Greg Abbott (R), who handily won his election, announced the departure of the 300th migrant bus, headed to blue Chicago.

UK’s NHS Hires US ‘Spy-Tech’ Firm Palantir To Extract Patient Data Without Patient Consent
Palantir, with intimate ties to defense, intelligence and security industries around the world, is set to play an even larger role in the UK’s crisis-ridden National Health System (NHS).

Erin Go Britain? Ireland Considers Enacting a Bill Criminalizing the Possession of Hateful Material 
We recently discussed a troubling conviction in Great Britain of a man for his “toxic ideology.” Now Ireland appears ready to replicate that case a thousand fold. The proposed Criminal Justice (Incitement to Violence or Hatred and Hate Offences) Bill 2022 would criminalize the possession of material deemed hateful. It is a full frontal assault on speech and associational rights.

Tranny film for children called “Mama has a Mustache” sponsored by Bayer, producer of drug prescribed for feminizing males 
A pro-transgender propaganda film for children called Mama has a Mustache was sponsored by Bayer, a pharmaceutical company that produces drugs that are used to feminize men who identify as transgender.

Global Banking Conglomerates To Join With Federal Reserve Bank of New York To Conduct A 12-Week Digital Dollar Pilot Program 
Back in March, we told you how pretend president Joe Biden signed an Executive Order to set the table to create a United States Central Bank Digital Currency. Today comes the announcement that the New World Order is sending representatives from assorted global banking conglomerates to begin as 12-week pilot program at the Federal Reserve of New York. What does all this mean? It means we just got another giant step closer to the biblical Mark of the Beast which will control all financial transactions.

As Russian Missile Fall In Poland Killing 2 People, Will It Trigger NATO’s Article 5 Provisions That Authorizes An Allied Attack Against Putin’s Forces?
As Russia pounded Ukraine with a series of fresh and aggressive missile strikes, two of those rockets went astray, landing in Poland and killing two people. According to the NATO charter, member nations would now be 100% justified in moving against Russia with military action. The only question is, does NATO have the appetite for world war with Russia? We are about to find out. The fact that this is happening during the G-20 Summit is wonderfully coincidental timing, to say the least.

BREAKING: Clinton-Appointed Judge Blocks US From Expelling Illegal Aliens Under Title 42 Policy
A federal judge on Tuesday blocked Title 42 – a Trump-era order blocking asylum seekers at the US border. Title 42 was used by President Trump in 2020 to expel migrants seeking asylum during the Covid pandemic.

October’s Border Arrests Are The Third Highest In U.S. History
Despite a general lack of concern among Democrats and corporate media, the U.S.-Mexico border continues to spiral out of control, setting new records for illegal border crossings nearly every month now.

The Biggest Story In America Right Now Should Be The Incestuous Connection Between The Democrat Party, Aid To Ukraine And FTX Crypto Donations To The DNC 
The main stream media is doing their best to not talk about the stunning apparent connection between the Democrats sending billions in ‘aid’ to Ukraine, Ukraine sending boatloads of cash to FTX Crypto, and FTX sending to much money to the Democrat Party that they are second only to George Soros as the largest donor. If this was happening to the Republican Party, it would already be a 5-part miniseries on Netflix.

Australian government says vaccine risk too high for people under 30
Australian government says vaccine risk too high for people under 30. “In males aged 16-40 years, it is uncertain whether the risk following COVID-19 remains higher than the risk following vaccination,” the government said.

Remember, Remember The 15th of November?! Latest Events and What’s Possibly Next
Remember, Remember The 15th of November?! Latest Events and What’s Possibly Next

Church Leaders Call Out Globalists’ Plans
“What we’ve just seen in England is a globalist coup d’etat.  The globalists … have operated a skilful manoeuvre by which they have got their puppets into power, the puppets they want in power.” These were the words of Bishop Richard Williamson during a sermon at the end of October:

Australia’s Banks have introduced a Social Credit System by linking Publics transactions to their Carbon Footprint
Banks that turn green, yes, but at what cost? Commonwealth Bank, an Australian bank also known as CBA, that already refuses to allow its clients to support The Expose, has teamed up for the first time with CoGo, a startup that specializes in “carbon management solutions”, to create a feature that monitors the carbon footprint of its customers through their transactions.

PfizerGate: Official EU Data proves Thousands are dying every week due to COVID Vaccination with Europe suffering 300k Excess Deaths in 2022, making it a record-breaking year in terms of Deaths
Mortality figures published by 27 countries across Europe reveal that the continent has suffered nearly 300,000 excess deaths so far this year. Officially making 2022 a record-breaking year in terms of death. Every single age group, including children, has suffered more deaths by week 44 of 2022 than it did by week 44 of 2020, a year that saw extreme waves of alleged Covid-19 deaths.

LETHAL INJECTIONS: 18% of Cattle DIE Immediately Following mRNA ‘Vaccination’
…Believe it or not, cattle are reportedly now getting jabbed with the stuff, which in a recent mass “vaccination” campaign of an Australian herd resulted in 35 of the 200 animals dying immediately.

Source: https://www.raptureready.com/2022/11/16/16-nov-2022/

Headlines – 11/16/2022

As 25th Knesset sworn in, president urges MKs to end ‘addiction’ to toxic discourse

Netanyahu said to tell Smotrich he won’t receive defense portfolio over US objection

Israeli liberals fear new government will undo gains

Abbas: No option other than to deal with Netanyahu – The Palestinian Authority chief claims the prospective Israeli prime minister does not believe in peace, despite Netanyahu having helped usher in the Abraham Accords.

Israel, energy companies sign companion agreement to Lebanon border deal

Hezbollah exploiting diplomatic loopholes to finance terror, investigation finds

Israel will not cooperate with FBI inquiry into killing of Palestinian American journalist

Lapid on FBI probe of Abu Akleh death: No foreign body will interrogate our troops

Three Israelis killed by Palestinian in West Bank knife and car attack

Security guard probed for failure to shoot terrorist as deadly rampage began

US expresses alarm over Israeli, Palestinian civilians killed in West Bank

Romania passes ‘landmark law’ guaranteeing right to kosher slaughter

Oil tanker owned by Israeli billionaire hit by bomb-carrying drone off Oman

Georgia says it foiled Iranian attempt to murder Israeli on its soil

Iran’s Quds Force tried to kill Israeli businessman in Georgia, Jerusalem says

US, allies submit resolution to UN nuclear agency censuring Iran for blocking probe

‘Two dead’ as Iran protests swell on anniversary of lethal 2019 crackdown

Turkey alleges US complicity in deadly Istanbul bombing, rejects condolence statement

Day After Ukraine Finally Announces a Willingness to Seek Peace Talks – Russia Bombs NATO Member Poland with Missiles

Poland: Russian-made missile fell on our country, killing 2

EU chief ‘shocked’ by reports of deaths as Poland hit by ‘missile or munition’

Zelensky slams Russia’s alleged strike on Poland as ‘very significant escalation’

Poland Likely to Invoke NATO’s Article 4, Will Raise Missile Blast With UN – Officials

The Pentagon says the US would ‘defend every inch of NATO territory’ after reports that Russian missiles killed 2 people in Poland

Biden Calls ‘Emergency’ Meeting After Missile Hits Poland

Biden says ‘unlikely’ missile that hit NATO ally Poland fired from Russian territory

US official now admits blast in Poland caused by stray missile fired by Ukraine

U.S. Officials Now Say Poland Likely Struck by Ukrainian Missiles, Biden Says ‘Unlikely’ Russia Responsible

Polish Journalist: Rocket That Hit Likely Shot Down by Ukraine

NATO to meet on Wednesday at request of Poland for consultations – diplomats

US Slaps Sanctions on Groups Supplying Iranian Drones to Russia

Russia pounds Ukraine in heaviest missile strikes of war

Russian airstrikes reported in cities across Ukraine, triggering blackouts

Russia to introduce return of Soviet-era military training for teens

Both Ukrainian, Russian forces tortured prisoners of war, UN investigators find

Ukraine’s envoy blasts Israeli ‘summons’ as ties deteriorate

White House requests $37.7 billion in new Ukraine funding, $10 billion for Covid relief

Rep. Thomas Massie Calls for Immediate Halt to Ukraine Funding, Audit of What Has Already Been Sent

UK PM Sunak Funds Ukrainian Energy Independence After Banning Fracking at Home

Japan scrambles fighters for Chinese aircraft near Okinawa

Taiwan readies missile defenses after Chinese military vessels cross ADIZ: report

Canada charges electric vehicle battery researcher with espionage for China

Uyghur Leader Says Biden-Xi Meeting ‘Unbefitting’ Amid Genocide

FBI is ‘extremely concerned’ about China’s influence through TikTok on U.S. users

Joe Biden Sparks Concern After Bowing out of G20 ‘Leaders’ Event, White House Won’t Explain Why

Biden skips G-20 gala, White House says ‘it’s not COVID’

Sen. Ron Johnson: Biden is ‘highly compromised’ because of Hunter Biden’s Chinese influence-peddling

Top Biden DOJ official going to work for law firm that defends Hunter Biden

Hunter Biden Interview Goes Sideways After Caller Asks About Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried’s Mega Donations to Democrat Party

The Crypto-Ignorant Person’s Guide To What’s Going On With FTX And Founder Sam Bankman-Fried

FTX Appears to Be a Political Ponzi Scheme Running Dollars to Politicians and Through Ukraine

After losing almost all of his fortune, FTX’s Sam Bankman-Fried said he’s about to break down exactly what went down at the crypto exchange

Sam Bankman-Fried reportedly said it was a mistake to pick a fight with Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao: ‘not a good strategic move on my part”

SEC Chairman Gary Gensler met with head of FTX months before collapse

FTX Bankruptcy Filing Update: FTX Possibly Lost Money for Over a Million People

Washington lobbyists sever ties with FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried after crypto exchange implodes

McConnell Received $2.5 Million from Crypto Laundromat FTX for His Senate Leadership Fund

FTX Donations to Democrats from Foreign Entities Like Ukraine Are in Violation of Executive Order 13848 Signed by President Trump and Biden

If Sam Bankman-Fried committed fraud, he’ll face the music in the U.S, legal experts say

FTX Balance Sheet Contained Investment Called “TRUMPLOSE”

FTX crash is eerily similar to the Bernie Madoff scandal, ex-regulator Sheila Bair says

Collapse of crypto exchange FTX endangers founder’s philanthropic gifts

29-Year-Old Crypto Pioneer Found Dead After Warning Days Earlier that Pedo Elite Would Kill Him

Here Come “Programmable Dollars”: New York Fed And 12 Banking Giants Launch Digital Dollar Test

Chris Wray is Smacked Down for Dodging Question on ‘FBI Informants Dressed as Trump Supporters’ on January 6

Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani plans to sue the Justice Department if they don’t offer him compensation

Where Was All The Right-Wing Political Violence Democrats Warned Would Plague The Midterms?

Judge Says Michael Flynn Must Testify in Ga. Election Probe

Election machines reported more votes than ballots in two Virginia precincts, nonprofit alleges

Possible recounts loom in Arizona as machine issues marred Election Day

Wendy Rogers, who wanted to decertify the 2020 election, picked to chair Senate’s election committee

Pence: ‘Relitigating’ 2020 Election Doomed Candidates

Schumer: Winning GA Runoff Will Help Us Confirm More ‘Progressive Judges’

Results: Republicans win control of the US House of Representatives

Kevin McCarthy wins GOP nomination for House speaker

‘Nancy Pelosi has been fired’: Trump takes a dig at US House Speaker as GOP all set to get majority

Politico: Biden got unexpectedly good election results – but also 2 years of gridlock

Trump announces 2024 White House run amid midterm setbacks, legal peril

Raskin: Running for Office Will Not Immunize Trump Against Prosecution

Ivanka skips Trump’s 2024 announcement, says she’s done with politics

As Trump readies possible 2024 White House run, GOP megadonors back DeSantis, Youngkin, other Republicans

Murdoch Reportedly Tells Trump His Political Career is ‘Over,’ Threatens to Back Democratic Opponent in 2024

Michelle Obama: Unqualified Trump’s Language and Behavior Brought Chaos

Facebook reminds fact-checkers Trump is off limits if he says he’s running again for president

NBC News mum as Miguel Almaguer hasn’t appeared on-air since Paul Pelosi report was mysteriously retracted

Paul Pelosi saga shows NBC ‘hypocrisy,’ says former CIA official

Nancy Pelosi husband attack suspect David DePape pleads not guilty to federal charges

FBI promises to ‘permanently’ end use of Pegasus spyware

Tesla Tells US of New Fatal Crashes Involving Automated Driving

New NASA moon rocket carrying Israeli experiment lifts off 50 years after Apollo

5.5 magnitude earthquake hits near Bengkulu, Indonesia

5.2 magnitude earthquake hits the South Sandwich Islands region

5.1 magnitude earthquake hits southern Sumatra, Indonesia

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits south of Australia

5.0 magnitude earthquake hits near Ambon, Indonesia

Sabancaya volcano in Peru erupts to 25,000ft

Ruiz volcano in Colombia erupts to 23,000ft

Sangay volcano in Ecuador erupts to 22,000ft

Popocatepl volcano in Mexico erupts to 20,000ft

Fuego volcano in Guatemala erupts to 16,000ft

Reventador volcano in Ecuador erupts to 15,000ft

Sheveluch volcano on Kamchatka, Russia eurpts to 12,000ft

Submarine volcanic activity in the Ahyi seamount area, Northern Mariana Islands

Aussie towns inundated by ‘wall of water’ as dam overflows: ‘So frightening’

Feet of snow to bury Buffalo as potentially historic lake-effect event looms

Jihadists execute 26 women for being ‘witches’ after claiming children suddenly died

4 University Of Idaho Students Murdered, Town Mayor Calls It A ‘Crime Of Passion’

3 butchered bodies wash ashore in Acapulco, Mexico – as tourists lounge nearby

Texas Gov. Abbott Declares Invasion on Border; Invokes US and Texas Constitutions to Deploy Guard Troops to Repel Illegal Immigrants

Greg Abbott to deploy National Guard, gun boats to secure Texas border against invasion of illegal aliens

Clinton-Appointed Judge Blocks US From Expelling Illegal Aliens Under Title 42 Policy

CBP reports all-time record 230,000 migrant encounters at US border in October

Frontex: Illegal Migrant Entries To EU Have Passed 275,000 In 2022

AOC, other Democrats ask Biden to pardon marijuana offenses for illegal immigrants, reopen deportation cases

$10-million settlement reached with Roman Catholic Church in N.S. sexual abuse case

Mormon Church Comes Out in Support of Same-Sex Marriage Law

Rasmussen Reports: Majority of Parents Oppose ‘Drag Story Hour’

Report: Disney Hosts ‘Two-Spirit,’ ‘She-They,’ ‘Merperson’ Drag Queen Lecture for Employees

Nolte: Upcoming Disney Toon ‘Strange World’ Features Gay Teens

California early childhood teacher admits using ‘gender unicorn’ to instruct kids on sexual attraction

Transition surgery study raises questions about long-term results on quality of life after ‘top surgery’

Georgia Judge Strikes Down Heartbeat Abortion Ban

88 Abortion Business Close Down This Year, 14 States Now Abortion Free

Men’s sperm count worldwide decreased by 50% in the last 50 years – study

Global sperm count crisis threatens humanity’s existence

World population slated to surpass 8 billion Tuesday amid mounting global challenges

Ambitious plan sees Israel as heart of Middle East medical supply chain for US

Amazon launches virtual healthcare clinic in U.S. for common ailments

Frontier, five foreign airlines pay $622M in COVID refunds, plus $7.25M to feds

Scathing audit finds Andrew Cuomo’s New York lost $11 billion in unemployment fraud in 2020

Key House investigator fears feds used grants as hush money to keep COVID origins quiet

China Insists 20 Updated Coronavirus Restrictions Are Not ‘Loosening’ of Lockdowns

Covid curbs set off rare unrest in Chinese city of Guangzhou

Communist China Imposes Indefinite Coronavirus Lockdown on Disney Shanghai

As school mask mandates return, critics claim pro-mask study plagued by methodological problems

NBA Sued by Fired Refs Who Refused Covid Vaccine on Religious Grounds

Reports: Australia to Allow Unvaccinated Tennis Champion Novak Djokovic Back In

G20 Panel Calls for a Global Digital Health Certificate Acknowledged by WHO to Track Vaccination Status

“The World Will Look Differently After We Have Gone Through This Transition” – WEF’s Klaus Schwab on the Great Reset to World Leaders at G20 Summit

Source: http://trackingbibleprophecy.org/birthpangs.php

Mid-Day Snapshot · Nov. 16, 2022

“From The Patriot Post (patriotpost.us)”.

THE FOUNDATION

“The aim of every political constitution is, or ought to be, first to obtain for rulers men who possess most wisdom to discern, and most virtue to pursue, the common good of the society; and in the next place, to take the most effectual precautions for keeping them virtuous whilst they continue to hold their public trust.” —James Madison (1788)

IN TODAY’S DIGEST

FEATURED ANALYSIS

Trump 2024: ‘This Is a Movement’

The former president showed once again why he has won such a devoted following. Will it be enough?

Nate Jackson

“My fellow citizens, America’s comeback starts right now,” said Donald Trump about 20 minutes into an hour-plus speech last night. “In order to make America great and glorious again, I am tonight announcing my candidacy for president of the United States.” It was an expected announcement and, just a week out from the 2022 midterms, officially kicks off the 2024 campaign. In many ways, Trump was on message and was the best version of himself, proving that he’ll be formidable once again.

Trump is a master at painting things as an obvious binary choice between the worst disaster caused by his opponents and the best successes he brought and will bring again. Last night’s speech was ultimately a very hopeful message, and it’s a vivid reminder of why he evokes such devotion among disenfranchised and disillusioned grassroots folks.

He recounted his many admirable domestic and foreign policy achievements as president, and he celebrated all the new people he brought into the GOP.

“This is a movement,” he said. “This is not for any one individual.”

That’s very true, and it’s also not. Trump is famously obsessed with himself, usually splitting his time between accomplishing things and offering endless commentary about how awesome he is. And as he alluded last night, his second run has a lot to do with avenging 2020. Yet the vast majority of his speech was forward focused, hitting all the right themes, punching all the right villains, and making all the most appealing promises. It was full of the great and wonderful things he pledges to do again, in stark contrast to what is being done (horribly wrong) now by Joe Biden and his Democrats.

What Trump brings to the table this time is hope that the good days will return. He offers a chance to relive the prosperity our nation enjoyed from 2017 through 2019, and that’s a powerfully appealing divergence from the terrible record of the current non compos mentis president.

If he sticks with that message, he may very well be the GOP nominee.

However.

Few politicians elicit the blind hatred that Trump does. Few can offset votes gained with votes against like Trump. Few have a record as full of self-sabotage and inexplicable hatred directed at allies as Trump. Democrats beat him in 2018, 2020, and again in 2022. They’re quite eager to do it one more time in 2024. Those are just observable facts.

By his own doing, Trump has also lost a lot of conservative support. He has never won a majority of voters — not in the 2016 primaries, and not in either general election. Let’s just say it’s hard to believe that will change in 2024. Even if he somehow wins the presidency again, the then-78-year-old can serve only one term and would arguably be an immediate lame duck. Again, those are just observable facts.

Trump is trying to accomplish a feat achieved only by Grover Cleveland in winning another term after losing. There’s good reason to think, however, that the better parallel is Teddy Roosevelt, who bullheadedly divided his party and handed the White House to one of America’s very worst presidents, Woodrow Wilson.

Even so, Trump’s most devoted supporters remain loyal to the end, and they’ll ever-so-politely remind you that no one — no conservative, no Republican, no Fox News talkinghead, no analyst writing for a humble grassroots publication in the mountains of east Tennessee — is going to tell them what or how to think about Donald J. Trump. Woe to the scribes and pharisees who haven’t learned that lesson by now.

The primaries will play out how they play out. Republican voters will have other candidates to choose from, and Trump will have to make his case, which is a strong one. No one brings to the table the base or the record that he does, and that will be a powerful force.

The first test of Trump’s post-announcement influence will be the December 6 Senate primary in Georgia. Trump’s antics in late 2020 cost the GOP two Georgia Senate seats, which brought about unified Democrat control in Washington and all the ills he bewailed while taking no responsibility for allowing. But last night, he stumped hard for Herschel Walker, saying how important it is to go vote for him. We’ll see how that plays out.

Whatever happens in the GOP presidential primary, come 2024, Republicans will either be unified and victorious against whoever Democrats substitute for Joe Biden, or they will be divided, bitter, and angry over the primary fight — and they will lose.

That choice, dear voter, is up to you.

Comment | Share

A Gift That Gives Back

Our primary mission at The Patriot Post is to ensure that the legacy of Liberty, won at great sacrifice by generations gone before, is extended to the next generation.

We have a critical deadline to meet to ensure our defense of Liberty is funded into 2023. Our work is 100% supported by Patriots like you. If you can, please partner with us and make your gift to The Patriot Fund today. If you have already sent in a recent contribution, thank you!

McCarthy Doesn’t Yet Have the Votes

The House minority leader easily won a procedural vote for speaker yesterday, but getting to 218 will be a far heavier lift.

Douglas Andrews

While California continues to drag its feet on last week’s midterm election results and thereby delay the inevitable flip of the lower chamber, House Republicans got down to business yesterday.

Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, whose Republican caucus gained seats two years ago and gained seats again this cycle, overcame his first hurdle in becoming the next speaker of the House when he drew support from more than half of his conference during a closed-ballot vote yesterday. That initial vote of confidence, though, shouldn’t fool anyone into thinking the speakership is in the bag for McCarthy. It isn’t. He’ll need at least 218 votes in order to grab the speaker’s gavel when the GOP holds its floor vote in January, and he’s nowhere near that number right now.

“I’m proud to announce the era of one-party Democrat rule in Washington is over. Washington now has a check and balance,” said McCarthy. “The American people have a say in their government. And this new Republican leadership team is ready to get to work, to put America back on the right track.”

One challenger to McCarthy will be Arizona’s Andy Biggs, the former House Freedom Caucus chairman who announced his intent to vie for the speakership on Monday evening. Biggs explained his rationale in a series of tweets:

The American people want us to turn a page. They do not want excuses or performance art, they want action and results. The promised red wave turned into a loss of the United States Senate, a razor-thin majority in the House of Representatives, and upset losses of premiere political candidates.

My bid to run for speaker is about changing the paradigm and the status quo. Minority Leader McCarthy does not have the votes needed to become the next speaker of the House and his speakership should not be a foregone conclusion.

Reforms must be made in the House in order to facilitate representation of our constituents. Items such as allowing members to move to amend bills, only allowing bills that cover a single subject, and requiring bills to go through committees before bringing them to the floor. Members must also be granted more time to read the legislation and debate the merits of it.

“It’s not a vote against Kevin,” said Texas Congressman Chip Roy, who nominated Biggs, “but a vote to force us all to the table to figure out how — not if — how we will come together as a party, to reshape the conference rules, rethink the makeup of steering and the very structure and operation of the rules committee, and, most of all, lay out a specific agreed-to agenda and battle plan around which we can unify.”

McCarthy beat Biggs easily in the above-mentioned procedural vote, 188-31. But 181 is still a long way from the necessary 218, and McCarthy will have to win over the Freedom Caucus if he’s going to get there.

One unlikely vote McCarthy can count on, though, belongs to Georgia firebrand Marjorie Taylor Greene, who announced her support for McCarthy on Monday and said it would be a “bad strategy” for fellow Republicans to challenge him for the gavel. Politics do indeed make strange bedfellows.

One vote McCarthy will have a much harder time securing will be that of Florida’s Matt Gaetz, a frequent critic. “Kevin McCarthy couldn’t get 218 votes, he couldn’t get 200 votes, he couldn’t get 190 votes today,” said Gaetz. “So, to believe that Kevin McCarthy is going to be speaker, you have to believe he’s going to get votes in the next six weeks that he couldn’t get in the last six years.”

Gaetz has a point. Back in 1856, it took more than two months and 133 ballots before Nathaniel P. Banks of Massachusetts was finally and mercifully elected speaker. More recently, as McCarthy noted, Republican Paul Ryan and Democrat Nancy Pelosi lost 43 and 32 votes respectively before ultimately being elected speaker.

Perhaps as a pragmatic hedge, Biggs and the Freedom Caucus are also pushing for rule changes that would diminish McCarthy’s power should he ultimately become speaker. As the Washington Examiner reports: “The reforms include easing the process for the motion to vacate the chair, a mechanism used to oust a sitting speaker; changes to the Steering Committee, which is tasked with selecting who chairs and sits on different standing committees; and a push to slow down the legislative process by allowing for more amendments.”

It’s an interesting strategy, that of weakening one’s own speaker. On the one hand, it would keep McCarthy from getting too comfortable and from ignoring his more conservative flank. On the other hand, it would restrict him from using the speaker’s muscle to marshal votes and move legislation through the chamber.

Although he may be looked at somewhat suspiciously by members of the Freedom Caucus, North Dakota’s Kelly Armstrong, who nominated McCarthy, noted that the minority leader has earned this shot. “Kevin has taken all the incoming from every direction so that we don’t have to,” she said. “He has barnstormed the country, raising over $500 million, holding events in 40 states — and financially supported more than 125 members, candidates, and state parties. Every single person in this room has benefited from his work, and in a few short weeks, we will have the gavels.”

Yes, Republicans will have those gavels on January, but it might be a while longer before they have a speaker.

Comment | Share

Executive News Summary

Border crossings hit record in October, judge strikes down Georgia abortion ban, NBC News suspends Pelosi reporter, and more.

Nate Jackson & Jordan Candler

Cross-Examination

  • Border crossings hit record in October: The border is “secure,” assured DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas again this week. How secure? Well, the 230,678 known border crossings last month set a new October record. Crossers included 12,034 unaccompanied minors, nine people on the terror watchlist, massive quantities of deadly drugs, and more than 130,000 migrants from countries outside Mexico and the Northern Triangle, which shows this crisis has expanded in scope since Joe Biden opened the border in January 2021. More than four million migrants have been apprehended by the Border Patrol on Biden’s watch, and another one million are known to have gotten away. How many got away without being known? But hey, the border is “secure.”
  • Judge strikes down Georgia abortion ban: A Peach State law banning abortion after a heartbeat can be detected at around six weeks gestation had been blocked from 2019 until taking effect in July after the Supreme Court’s Dobbs ruling. Despite the Court’s ruling that there is, in fact, no “right” to abortion in the U.S. Constitution, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney seems to still think there is, and he struck down Georgia’s law Tuesday. When the law was written, he said, it was “unequivocally unconstitutional for governments — federal, state, or local — to ban abortions before viability. And yet the LIFE Act … did just that.” Therefore, he wrote, “It did not become the law of Georgia when it was enacted and it is not the law of Georgia now.” That’s some pretty warped originalism that we doubt McBurney applies fairly in other cases.
  • NBC News suspends Pelosi reporter: There are still some unanswered questions about the attack on Paul Pelosi, the husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. NBC correspondent Miguel Almaguer attempted to answer some of those questions and got suspended for it. Whether he was reporting correctly is almost beside the point. Where were all the suspensions for false media reporting about Hillary Clinton’s emails? Or the Steele dossier? Or Hunter Biden’s laptop revealing Joe Biden’s corruption? Or Brian Sicknick’s death after the Capitol riot — a death that had nothing to do with being bludgeoned in the head by a fire extinguisher despite repeated media reporting and even “fact-checking”? (Pelosi was attacked with a hammer, by the way.) We’re just amused that some reporting can have such quick and serious consequences when the above false reporting instead won Pulitzer Prizes.

Headlines

  • Mike Pence lays out his vision for Republican Party (Fox News)
  • Rick Scott takes on Mitch McConnell in bid for Senate leader (AP)
  • Parental rebellion pays off: Conservatives win school board seats (Daily Signal)
  • Biden requests $9.25 billion to fight COVID after declaring pandemic over (Free Beacon)
  • Biden administration faces tough questions as student loan plan held up in court (Washington Examiner)
  • Polish president says “no proof” missile that landed in NATO territory was fired by Russia (Fox News)
  • Wholesale prices rose 0.2% in October, less than expected, as inflation eases (CNBC)
  • Mormon church comes out in support of same-sex marriage law (NBC News)
  • Policy: Democrats’ Respect for Marriage Act would hurt children (Daily Signal)
  • Humor: Former Twitter employee can’t seem to find meditation room at new Taco Bell job (Babylon Bee)

For more editors’ choice headlines, click here.

Comment | Share

Missing the Point for World Cup

The U.S. men’s soccer team perverts the USA jersey symbol with LGBTQ+ flag colors.

Emmy Griffin

The United States Men’s National Soccer Team (USMNT) has made it to the World Cup. This is a big deal since this is only the 12th time in World Cup history that the U.S. men’s team has been good enough to make it.

The USMNT has never won the World Cup. The closest it’s gotten in recent decades was eighth place in 2002, and that is the best it’s done since its first appearance in 1930, when it finished third.

Unfortunately, the USMNT has redesigned the USA crest on its jerseys with rainbow colors, choosing to mar this year’s honor of making it to the World Cup by using its platform to virtue signal to Qatar and elevate the LGBTQ+ lobby abroad.

Qatar won the honor of hosting the World Cup through questionable means, and it is widely agreed that this desert country is a poor host based on its tough climate alone.

Like many Middle Eastern countries, Qatar is predominantly Muslim and has made it illegal to be homosexual. Breaking the homosexuality law there carries a maximum sentence of seven years in prison. According to Human Dignity Trust, the instances of this law being enforced are rare. But when it does happen, the consequences are severe and usually entail the homosexual person being beaten before being arrested. As awful as that is, it pales in comparison to other human right abuses perpetrated by Qatar.

According to The Wall Street Journal, many Western countries have been debating how to address the human rights violations that are a constant in Qatar.

For example, migrant workers who were brought in to construct the World Cup stadiums have been working in atrocious conditions. Many have even died. Denmark has chosen to honor the lives that were lost constructing the stadiums by designing and wearing all black kits. But the dead migrants got as much consideration from the USMNT as the Left gives to those illegal immigrants dying in great numbers crossing the U.S. southern border, or the Uyghur genocide in China.

The lives of people far away from America’s privileged enclaves are a low priority to USMNT leadership, which places much more significance on sexual gratification and the woke fad of gender ideology. That is likely why the USMNT chose to virtue signal to the LBGTQ+ lobby. That, and there is a significant homosexual fanbase for U.S. soccer. USMNT Chief Communications Officer Neil Buethe went so far as to claim that the rainbow flag is a symbol of their identity.

Ergo, upon arrival in Doha, and in an obvious snub to Qatar and its stance on homosexuality, the USMNT on its jerseys changed the usual USA patch with red stripes to a patch with rainbow colors.

USMNT coach Gregg Berhalter explained, “When we are on the world stage and when we are in a venue like Qatar, it is important to bring awareness to these issues and that is what ‘Be the Change’ is about.”

“Be the Change” is the slogan for the George Floyd/BLM movement. Interesting how that riotous movement is indelibly tied to the LGBTQ+ activists.

It’s fair to say these types of petty statements will have no impact whatsoever on Qatar. It’s also fair to say they are especially hollow since the USMNT won’t be wearing the rainbow jerseys during matches, only in the privacy of practice facilities.

Just like the Olympics, the World Cup presents an opportunity to represent your country and its values. But in recent years, these sporting events — which are meant to be diplomatic and build bridges between countries — have been tainted by leftist virtue signaling. And just like how the Women’s National Soccer Team kneeled for BLM at the Olympics, plenty of soccer fans in the U.S. who were looking forward to a U.S. run for the World Cup are put off by this empty gesture.

It’s a woke stand that misses the goal and poorly represents the American people.

Comment | Share

The Times Hedges Its Bets on Transgenderism

In a lengthy but long-overdue article on puberty blockers, The New York Times wrestles with self-doubt.

Douglas Andrews

In its unending pursuit of human perfectibility, the Left has taken plenty of wrong turns. Most recently, we’re finding that the issuance of puberty blockers to gender dysphoric children might entail some unforeseen consequences.

Naw. Really?

Perhaps sensing that the road to hell is paved with good intentions, and that a hot hereafter awaits them, the “progressives” at The New York Times are now hedging their bets on unfettered interference in the biology and physiology of our children.

A lengthy article in Monday’s Times sets the stage by noting incuriously that the number of “adolescents” who identify as transgender continues to grow, and that experimental drugs known as puberty blockers have become the go-to treatment for these — let’s call them what they are — children. The article is titled “They Paused Puberty, but Is There a Cost?” and it begins by listing instances of children as young as 11 being prescribed puberty blockers to treat their gender dysphoria. As for those radical experimental drugs, Megan Twohey and Christina Jewett write:

Their use is typically framed as a safe — and reversible — way to buy time to weigh a medical transition and avoid the anguish of growing into a body that feels wrong. Transgender adolescents suffer from disproportionately high rates of depression and other mental health issues. Studies show that the drugs have eased some patients’ gender dysphoria — a distress over the mismatch of their birth sex and gender identity.

But — and there’s always a “but”:

An increasing number of adolescents identify as transgender — in the United States, an estimated 300,000 ages 13 to 17 and an untold number who are younger — [and] concerns are growing among some medical professionals about the consequences of the drugs, a New York Times examination found. The questions are fueling government reviews in Europe, prompting a push for more research and leading some prominent specialists to reconsider at what age to prescribe them and for how long. A small number of doctors won’t recommend them at all.

What could go wrong? Well, bone development for one. And here’s yet another “but”: “But there is emerging evidence of potential harm from using blockers, according to reviews of scientific papers and interviews with more than 50 doctors and academic experts around the world.”

Indeed, we here in the states are lagging behind the European continent when it comes to pumping the brakes on “transgender” care, which our Emmy Griffin has extensively and determinedly documented.

The Times article notes that puberty blockers, er, block puberty, and they do so by suppressing the male and female hormones of testosterone and estrogen that help develop the reproductive system “and also affect the bones, the brain, and other parts of the body.”

“During puberty,” the authors write, “bone mass typically surges, determining a lifetime of bone health. When adolescents are using blockers, bone density growth flatlines, on average, according to an analysis commissioned by The Times.”

In a few decades, then, long after the proponents of these experimental treatments have left the scene, we may see a surge of earlier-than-expected bone fractures in our senior citizens, perhaps even in non-seniors.

“There’s going to be a price,” said Dr. Sundeep Khosla, who leads a bone research lab at the Mayo Clinic. “And the price is probably going to be some deficit in skeletal mass.”

That won’t be the only price, of course. Many other costs are as yet unknowable or immeasurable.

In his 2001 book The Reckless Mind: Intellectuals in Politics, Columbia University Professor of Humanities Mark Lilla reflects on the well-meaning wreckage caused by those who think they know better:

Distinguished professors, gifted poets, and influential journalists summoned their talents to convince all who would listen that modern tyrants were liberators and that their unconscionable crimes were noble, when seen in the proper perspective. Whoever takes it upon himself to write an honest intellectual history of 20th-century Europe will need a strong stomach.

But he will need something more. He will need to overcome his disgust long enough to ponder the roots of this strange and puzzling phenomenon.

Swap out “20th-century Europe” for “21st-century medicine” and you’ve got the makings of an honest look back at the intellectual arrogance of “gender-affirming care.”

Blogger Ann Althouse invited a discussion about the article. Said one commenter: “Transgenderism is a mental disorder. Pretending it isn’t especially in a child is monstrous. Doctors who perform these ‘treatments’ on minors are on the Mengele spectrum.” Said another: “It would be a start if we didn’t call it ‘gender affirming care.’ The treatment doesn’t affirm their gender. It changes it.”

Here we might suggest being on the lookout for the word “affirming” and all its roots and variations. The Left’s appropriation of this euphemism didn’t begin with “affirmative action,” and it won’t end with “gender-affirming care.”

“A small number of people are making a great deal of money from the ‘trans’ fad at the expense of troubled children,” writes Power Line’s John Hinderaker. “Liberals in general, and the Democratic Party and the New York Times in particular, have been their enablers. A reckoning is coming — and, as I said, sooner rather than later.”

He’s right. A reckoning is coming. Just like a reckoning is coming for Team Shutdown and Team Lockdown and Team Take-the-Jab-or-Lose-Your-Job.

Whatever else we do or don’t do, let’s not cave to their eventual calls for an amnesty. Instead, let’s hold them severely accountable. Anything less would be an affront to the many thousands of young victims of these awful experiments and this abominable crime.

Comment | Share

‘Things Are Tough All Over’

The G20 Summit may be a gathering of out-of-touch elites, but it has bearing on what happens at the kitchen table.

Lewis Morris

If this year’s G20 Summit in Bali, Indonesia, has a theme, it would be “Things Are Tough All Over.” The annual meeting of the world’s most powerful economies — 19 nations and the European Union — exhibited a level of discord and urgency rarely seen since it first met in 2008.

Most of the countries represented at the summit are in a recession or about to enter one. The International Monetary Fund is predicting global economic growth at a paltry 2.7% in 2023, with 31 of 72 economies expecting two consecutive quarters of falling output this year or next. A Wall Street Journal survey of economists found that the probability of a recession in the U.S. is at 63%, with the EU and the UK also falling into recession in the coming months.

This grim outlook has led to belt-tightening across all the economies represented at the summit. Each nation is pursuing its own plan to combat inflation and economic uncertainty. This raises the potential for an uncoordinated response to the global slowdown that could make the path ahead more painful and longer than any of the summit attendees might hope.

The global economic slowdown has a few causes. The world economy’s bounce back from the 2020 pandemic has been tenuous, especially for the developing world and less stable economies that do not have plentiful resources or diversified portfolios. China’s zero-tolerance policy in combatting COVID, the virus it unleashed on the world in late 2019, has caused that nation’s economy to falter, with effects rippling throughout the industrialized world. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has upended global energy and grain markets with canceled international shipments, embargoes against Russia, and that country’s retaliation against said embargoes.

The war turned out to also be a major issue of concern at the summit. Many of the leaders present haggled to produce a declaration that condemns Russia’s invasion and sets forth a plan to bring an end to hostilities that have worsened the world economy. Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky spoke virtually about a 10-point peace plan that includes a full Russian withdrawal from Ukraine.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who appeared in place of President Vladimir Putin, said that the West was attempting to politicize the summit and accused Zelensky of prolonging the conflict. Lavrov made some news of his own when stories circulated that he was hospitalized prior to the summit’s opening meeting for an undisclosed health emergency. The Russian government immediately denied the story.

The other major issue of contention was U.S.-China relations, which have been strained in the months following House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s August trip to Taiwan. President Joe Biden met with Chinese leader Xi Jinping for three hours before the start of the summit to discuss Taiwan, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and thorny diplomatic and economic relations between the U.S. and China.

Biden and his team were quite optimistic that it was a productive meeting, claiming that Xi gave no impression that he would invade Taiwan. Unfortunately, there is no reason to be confident in that assessment given Biden’s dreadful mismanagement of affairs with China and his continued refusal to press the Chinese leader about his country’s role in spreading the COVID pandemic.

How the U.S. handles China and leads, or chooses not to lead, the response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine looms large over whether the summit will amount to much. The G20 — which accounts for 80% of the world’s gross domestic product and 60% of its population — already has a dubious reputation as a group of elites out of touch with the people they lead. Biden’s feckless foreign policy and appearance as an addled leader doesn’t inspire any confidence at home or abroad that things will improve anytime soon.

Comment | Share

On the Web

VIDEOS

BEST OF RIGHT OPINION

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

SHORT CUTS

Insight

“The possession of unlimited power will make a despot of almost any man. There is a possible Nero in the gentlest human creature that walks.” —Thomas Bailey Aldrich (1836-1907)

For the Record

“Biden says we need to ‘shut down’ [coal] plants and the jobs that come with them because we need to combat climate change. One problem: Most of the rest of the world is using more coal even as we use less. Even the sanctimonious Europeans are turning to coal because their natural gas supplies from Russia are no longer reliable. Germany is even burning wood now for home heating, which is about the most environmentally damaging way to get energy. But the biggest polluting villain by far is China. Beijing is now powering its rapid industrial expansion with fossil fuels. The Chinese have more than doubled their coal production and consumption over the last decade, even as we in America have cut our domestic coal by almost half. Beijing recently announced it is building dozens of massive new coal plants. Does it sound like this nation of more than 1 billion people is concerned about climate change?” —Stephen Moore

Upright

“One of the things I’ve learned in this job is when you’re leading, when you’re getting things done, you take incoming fire. That’s just the nature of it. I roll out of bed in the morning, I’ve got corporate media outlets that have a spasm — just the fact that I’m getting up in the morning. … I don’t think any governor got attacked more, particularly by corporate media, than me over my four-year term. And yet, I think what you learn is all that’s just noise. And really what matters is, are you leading? Are you getting in front of issues? Are you delivering results for people? And are you standing up for folks? And if you do that, then none of that stuff matters. … At the end of the day, I would just tell people to go check out the scoreboard from last Tuesday night. The fact of the matter is it was the greatest Republican victory in the history of the state of Florida.” —Governor Ron DeSantis, refusing to take the media bait of a war of words with Donald Trump

Political Futures

“Following last Tuesday’s elections in which Trump-backed candidates lost, Trump began denouncing Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for no reason, other than to try to weaken the governor should he decide to run for president. Trump claimed he has ‘dirt’ on DeSantis. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black. … Trump then dumped on Virginia Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin, saying his name ‘Young-kin’ ‘sounds Chinese,’ and claimed credit for Youngkin’s victory. … Reagan was a consummate optimist. Trump behaves like a petulant child whose toys have been taken away from him for bad behavior. … If Trump couldn’t win in 2020 and if his acerbic personality helped Democrats win both houses of Congress then and kept Republicans from scoring overwhelming victories in last week’s election, what makes anyone think he can do better in 2024? … Living in the past is for losers and Trump is the greatest loser.” —Cal Thomas

“One hopes that the lesson has finally been learned that Trump — no matter how much Republicans admire his combativeness, appreciate his entertainment value, and detest his enemies — is not a sound electoral guide, to put it mildly. … At the end of the day, he’s a plurality, not a majority, candidate. And he’s drawn to other plurality candidates, who, lacking the advantage of running in races with an electoral college or against Hillary Clinton, tend to lose. Winning 46.1% worked for Trump in 2016, but it’s a formula for failure for everyone else.” —Rich Lowry

“Since 2020, Trump could have used his clout to lead, orchestrating conservative reforms — perhaps trying to clean up shady voting systems. Instead he spent this time whining, merely endorsing candidates who indulged his grievances. Republicans need a fighter, not a grump.” —Tom Elliott

“Currently, Democrats are miles ahead of Republicans at targeting specific races and voters. Through mail balloting, they put those voters in the bank early. This year, they executed and focused and performed; that’s why they have probably saved their U.S. Senate majority, based on vote counts as of this writing. It’s why they were able to limit Republican gains in the House to maybe just a handful, or maybe none at all. A lot of pollsters missed this, because Democrats had timed a lot of their advertising to hit right when the early voting began — especially their messages on abortion. This paid dividends. They banked their voters and created a mirage for analysts who thought the races were closer than they calculated. Republicans can complain about the current rules all they want, but what they need to do is wake up and start competing with the Democrats where they are. Otherwise, they’re just leaving winnable races on the table.” —Salena Zito

The BIG Lie

“This is something no president has done since John F. Kennedy — to hold Senate seats and potentially even go up one Senate seat.” —White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain (“In 2018, Republicans increased their senate majority by 2 seats under President Trump.” —Greg Price)

Dumb & Dumber

“Not only do I disagree with my respected colleagues that having a judicial philosophy is important, I also think that … originalism … is a political signal that is actually inappropriate for judges to bring to the bench.” —Senator Sheldon Whitehouse

“Vaccine hesitancy, which was much higher among Republican voters than Democrats during COVID, led to disproportionate deaths among conservatives, and may have cost them the mid-term elections in close races.” —Neil deGrasse Tyson

And Last…

“Looking forward to Katie Hobbs auditing the results of the election Katie Hobbs was in charge of and was declared the winner of… to conclude that Katie Hobbs did nothing wrong while in charge of the election that Katie Hobbs was declared the winner of.” —Tim Young

Comment | Share

TODAY’S MEME

Share

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

TODAY’S CARTOON

“From The Patriot Post (patriotpost.us)”.

Biden Asks Lame Duck Congress to Quickly Expedite Another $38 Billion for Ukraine Plus $9 Billion for Big Pharma

The White House is urging Nancy Pelosi to utilize the lame duck congressional session and construct a massive omnibus spending bill that will wrap Ukraine funding, COVID spending and a federal budget extension via continuous resolution.  The request for Ukraine funding is an additional $38 billion. Federal funds to support FEMA and hurricane recovery efforts […]

Source: Biden Asks Lame Duck Congress to Quickly Expedite Another $38 Billion for Ukraine Plus $9 Billion for Big Pharma

Schumer Calls For Amnesty For Millions of Illegal Aliens Living in US Because “We Have a Population That Is Not Reproducing On Its Own” (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

Emboldened by another stolen election, Schumer came out swinging and called for blanket amnesty for millions of illegal aliens.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Wednesday called for blanket amnesty for millions of illegal aliens living in the United States.

Schumer cited a work shortage for his reason to push for amnesty for millions of illegals.

Of course everyone knows this is political.

The Democrats will use the millions of illegal aliens to permanently entrench their party.

“Now more than ever, we’re short of workers, we have a population that is not reproducing on its own with the same level that it used to, the only way we’re gonna have a great future in America is if we welcome and embrace immigrants! The DREAMers and all of them!” Schumer said.

He added, “Because our ultimate goal is to help the DREAMers get a path to citizenship for “all 11 million or however many undocumented there are here!”

There are at least 30-40 million illegals in total currently living in the US.

VIDEO:

Schumer Calls For Amnesty For Millions of Illegal Aliens Living in US Because “We Have a Population That Is Not Reproducing On Its Own” (VIDEO) — The Gateway Pundit

Trump Announces Run For Historic Third Term — Babylon Bee

MAR-A-LAGO, FL — Last night President Trump made the announcement that he will be running for a historic third term as president after already winning the two previous ones.

“Yes, a third term. A beautiful third term. No one has ever been able to do this before, many think it’s impossible, really, but we will,” said Trump to the excited crowd. “I easily won the last two elections by more votes than anyone ever before in the history of our country. No one could do that but me, not even Ron DeSanctimonious. We’re going to do it again! We will totally win. Win big.”

Legal scholars insisted the Constitution prevents Trump from being elected for a third term, but Trump totally shut them down on Truth Social by calling them “4th-rate legal scholars who probably got a less than stellar score on the Legal Scholar Exam.”

“We are going to make America a big, beautiful, great, glorious country again,” said Trump. “We’ll do it with our third term. And by throwing the entire staff of the Washington Post in jail. Doesn’t that sound nice?”

At publishing time, concerns had been raised by several in the audience when the 76-year-old Trump wandered aimlessly off stage in the middle of his speech.

Babylon Bee subscriber Political Satire contributed to this report. If you want to pitch your own headline ideas to our staff, click here to check out all of our membership options!


You can sponsor a poor, helpless liberal for just $8 a month:

Subscribe to The Babylon Bee on YouTube for more content of acceptable quality!

Trump Announces Run For Historic Third Term — Babylon Bee

‘Threatens Our Most Basic Freedom’: Attorney’s Dire Warning About the Respect For Marriage Act — Faithwire

An attorney with conservative legal firm Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) is warning the passage of the Respect for Marriage Act could end up “completely blowing up the understanding of marriage” while also sparking increased legal battles for Christians.

Listen to the latest episode of CBN’s Quick Start podcast

👇

https://art19.com/shows/quick-start/episodes/3fa8794d-595d-406c-81c0-13c8f8f3a430/embed

“This deceptively named Respect for Marriage Act really disrespects the American people and threatens our most basic freedom,” Matt Sharp, senior counsel at ADF, recently told CBN’s Faithwire. “What it does is requires the federal government to recognize any type of marriage that’s recognized by a state.”

Sharp warned the bill, which has already been passed by the House and is poised to be taken up on the Senate floor Wednesday, “threatens religious liberty” in the process.

“It empowers the federal government with these broad new powers to go after people, faith, faith-based organizations and others that hold traditional views about marriage, biblically based views about marriage, and gives the federal government broad powers to punish organizations and people that hold those,” he said.

Watch Sharp discuss the Respect for Marriage Act:

Sharp also warned, if passed, the legislation could open Christians up to lawsuits at the federal level, noting these infractions could harm believers running businesses and charitable organizations. He even questioned whether some Christian nonprofits could find their tax-exempt status in peril.

“This explosion of what marriage means is going to have these severe consequences for so many people across the country,” he said.

These concerns become particularly pertinent as Christian business owners continue to fight battles over punishments for refusing to make same-sex wedding cakes or declining to create other products they feel violate their religious conscience.

“People of faith are coming under increased aggression from the federal government and state governments over their beliefs about marriage and family,” Sharp said. “And so what the so-called Respect for Marriage Act is going to do is give more authority to the federal government to be able to enforce this broad understanding that marriage is anything that a state says it is.”

Sharp’s comments come as a bipartisan group of senators has announced a compromise on the Respect for Marriage Act, adding an amendment they say balances their quest to protect same-sex marriage with worries over the impact the legislation could have on religious liberty.

Sens. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) released a statement this week announcing the agreement.

In his own statement, Tillis said the bill “protects all religious liberty and conscience protections available under the Constitution or federal law, including but not limited to the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and forbids this bill from being used to diminish or repeal any such protection.”

Tillis’ statement also proclaims nonprofit religious groups wouldn’t have to provide goods or services related to marriage, among other protections. Additionally, he said the bill wouldn’t require the federal government to recognize polygamous marriages; text of the bill affirms this latter statement.

“The Respect for Marriage Act is a needed step to provide millions of loving couples in same-sex and interracial marriages the certainty that they will continue to enjoy the freedoms, rights, and responsibilities afforded to all other marriages,” Tillis said. “Through bipartisan collaboration, we’ve crafted commonsense language to confirm that this legislation fully respects and protects Americans’ religious liberties and diverse beliefs while leaving intact the core mission of the legislation to protect marriage equality.”

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints also shocked observers by coming out this week in support of the bill, despite maintaining its traditional views on marriage.

“We believe this approach is the way forward,” the church said. “As we work together to preserve the principles and practices of religious freedom together with the rights of LGBTQ individuals, much can be accomplished to heal relationships and foster greater understanding.

Despite these claims and developments, Sharp is skeptical of the federal government’s approach, believing lip service is being paid to religious liberty but pondering how officials will use the bill to skirt purported protections.

“The concern is: How is the federal government going to use this bill?” he asked. “Because we’ve seen time and time again under the Biden administration and under the Obama administration beforehand, that they take seemingly innocuous language and use it against people.”

He continued, “Whatever lip service they may be paying in this amendment is not going to take away the fact that we are completely blowing up the understanding of marriage, disrespecting people and organizations that believe marriage is between one man and one woman, and opening them up to lawsuits, not just from the federal government, but from other people.”

Sharp said he and ADF plan to continue pushing back against the Respect for Marriage Act, even if it passes and becomes law.

“We’re gonna continue to stand for marriage, and that means we’re gonna stand with people and organizations that believe marriage is between one and man and one woman,” he said. “So, whether it’s the IRS knocking on the door saying, ‘We’re gonna take away your tax-exempt status,’ or even these organizations facing a federal lawsuit for standing firm on their belief that marriage, ADF is going to continue to stand with them and push back.”

‘Threatens Our Most Basic Freedom’: Attorney’s Dire Warning About the Respect For Marriage Act — Faithwire

Mastercard, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, and Others Launch 12-Week Digital Dollar Pilot Program with New York Fed — The Gateway Pundit

Mastercard, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and others launched a 12-week digital dollar pilot program with the New York Fed.

Don’t worry because the New York Fed says the pilot program will only use “simulated data” and is “not intended to advance any specific policy outcome.”

Via Business Wire:

Members of the U.S. banking community today announced the launch of a proof of concept (PoC) project that will explore the feasibility of an interoperable digital money platform known as the regulated liability network (RLN). Using distributed ledger technology, the proposed platform would create innovation opportunities to improve financial settlements and would include participation from central banks, commercial banks of various sizes and regulated non-banks.

The 12-week PoC will test a version of the RLN design that operates exclusively in U.S. dollars where commercial banks issue simulated digital money or “tokens” – representing the deposits of their own customers – and settle through simulated central bank reserves on a shared multi-entity distributed ledger. The PoC will also test the feasibility of a programmable digital money design that is potentially extensible to other digital assets, as well as the viability of the proposed system within existing laws and regulations.

Members of the U.S. banking and payments community involved in this PoC (as listed further below) are pleased to be working alongside the New York Innovation Center (NYIC) that is part of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The NYIC collaborates with the private and public sectors on innovations aimed at enhancing the functioning of the global financial system and the ability of central banks to carry out their missions.

Other key aspects of the proof of concept (PoC) via Business Wire:

  • Regulatory framework: The platform will align with the existing regulatory framework and preserve existing requirements for deposit-based payments processing, notably maintaining know your customer and anti-money laundering requirements.
  • Scope: The PoC will simulate digital money issued by regulated institutions in U.S. dollars, although the concept could potentially be extended to multi-currency operations and regulated stablecoins.
  • Tokens: The PoC will simulate tokens that are 100% fungible and redeemable with other forms of money.
  • Industry collaboration: The PoC will include dialogue with the broader U.S. banking community, including community and regional banks.
  • Results: Following the conclusion of the PoC, the banking group will publicize the results, which they hope will be an important contribution to the literature on digital money.
  • Future plans: The banking group participants are not committed to any future phases of work once the PoC has been completed.
Mastercard, Wells Fargo, Citigroup, and Others Launch 12-Week Digital Dollar Pilot Program with New York Fed — The Gateway Pundit

Is Christian Nationalism Dangerous? — Juicy Ecumenism

It seems these days that any discussion of religion and the public square introduces, without fail, some mention of the term “Christian nationalism.” But what is Christian nationalism? More importantly, is it a dangerous perspective worthy of repudiation, or a helpful viewpoint to embrace?

Dr. Sean McDowell, a professor at Biola University and host of the “Think Biblically” podcast, recently moderated a discussion to think more about this subject. His guests were Dr. R.R. Reno, editor of First Things and author of Return of the Strong Gods: Nationalism, Populism, and the Future of the West, and Dr. Paul D. Miller, a professor at Georgetown University and author of The Religion of American Greatness: What’s Wrong with Christian Nationalism.

Reno began by pointing to his concerns with the idea of an “open society.” He said, “My thesis is that we have overdone the open society consensus to the point of dissolving the shared loves that can animate a people, unify it, and inspire it.” Reno criticized what he called “the culture-wide project of dialing down the temperature of people’s beliefs and commitments.”

According to Miller, on the other hand, “The open society is certainly better than its alternative.” He added, “Let’s be careful that we don’t undo the gains of an open society, especially for those who are historically on the receiving end of our worst oppressions.”

Miller argued that the idea of nationalism runs into practical complications, saying it “depends on a prior idea, that there are peoples whom you can clearly identify and demarcate from other peoples in the world.” 

However, Reno noted, “The nation-state is probably a necessary form for democracy… a degree of cultural homogeneity is necessary.” He continued, “When a society becomes too fragmented, its political culture becomes toxic,” and posed the rhetorical question, “Are we too fragmented in 2022 or too consolidated? Do we have too much presumptive trust or too little?”

In Miller’s view, “There’s simply never a situation of perfect cultural homogeneity.” He stated, “These governments that claim to be self-determining are actually practicing a form of internal imperialism.”

Miller and Reno also expressed disagreement over what kind of “consolidation” ought to happen. Miller said, “I don’t think we can reconsolidate around the old Anglo-Protestant consensus.” He characterized nationalism as “just another kind of identity politics,” adding, “When the minority does it we call it identity politics; when the majority does it we call it nationalism.”

Reno responded, “If we don’t give people a healthy and honorable kind of national identity, they’re going to be easily seduced by demagogues who will offer them something much more dangerous and potentially perverse.” He contended, “The future of our country is likely to be strongly influenced by Anglo-Protestant heritage.”

Reno and Miller’s clearest disagreement was regarding the government’s relationship to religion, with the particular example of school prayer being raised. Reno asserted, “One of the problems we have in our society is we socialize children into a purely immanent and materialist view of the world, and it would be helpful to them and to the future of our society if we gave them some kind of transcendent horizon.” He also remarked, “Good governance of the United States would be to encourage the religious life of the American people. If we did encourage it, it would be predominantly Christian.”

Miller made the case that such a view harms the church, saying, “It’s the prerogative of the church to hold the keys of the kingdom and exercise the teaching ministry, to lead the public worship of God. If we outsource that to the state, the church loses control over what’s being taught, which might explain why Americans have always been kind of Biblically illiterate.” He further stated, “There’s a problem with the state using religion for its own purposes, to create a sense of social solidarity. It harms the church’s ability to stand apart and outside from the state and offer an independent critique.”

Miller also clarified, “I’m not saying a Christian cultural heritage is bad. If you like a Christian cultural heritage, feel free to go out and cultivate it and advocate it and build it in your own institutions, but don’t look to the government to do it for you. It’s uncharitable toward our neighbors who don’t want to participate in that heritage.”

In closing, Reno mentioned the need to “make ‘normal’ normal again.” He said, “We need to help our society reconsolidate around a capacious but sane vision of what it means to be a happy, healthy, thriving citizen.”

Miller urged listeners to “learn the art of loving civic disagreement.” He concluded, “We can be faithful to the Lord by keeping distinct our loyalties here in this world and in this great country from our ultimate loyalties, which should lead us higher.”

Is Christian Nationalism Dangerous? — Juicy Ecumenism

Harbingers Daily: Why Do So Many Christians Deny The Deadly Intent Behind The Globalists’ Agenda? — Stand Up For The Truth

Evil people have always conspired against the righteous. We see this in the words of David in Psalm 37:12, written three thousand years ago:

Psalm‬ ‭37:12‬ ‭KJV‬‬ – “The wicked plotteth against the just, And gnasheth upon him with his teeth.”

Why, then, do the majority of people doubt that this happens today? Why do so many believers deny that there’s a deadly intent in the agenda of the globalists?

One possible answer to the above questions is that many regard the warnings they hear as “conspiracy theories.” This has become a popular yet convenient way for people to disregard the threats to their wellbeing and continue with life as though they don’t really exist.

Full story at Harbingers Daily – click here.

Harbingers Daily: Why Do So Many Christians Deny The Deadly Intent Behind The Globalists’ Agenda? — Stand Up For The Truth – Addressing Issues & Topics Affecting Christians Across The Nation. 9 – 10 a.m. Central M-

CBN NewsWatch AM: November 16, 2022

Former President Trump makes it official: he’s running again- but he faces potential obstacles on the road to the Republican nomination; President of Poland says there are no indications the missile blast that killed two people in his country yesterday was an intentional attack- but also said the ultimate responsibility lies with Russia; how so-called “comfort foods” can be bad for your mental and emotional health; CBN’s Studio 5 conversation with singer and songwriter Benjamin William Hastings, who’s now embarking on a solo career; and how CBN’s Superbook is helping young refugees from the war in Ukraine.

Source: CBN NewsWatch AM: November 16, 2022

Biden Threatens to Veto Proposed Senate Resolution to End Covid-19 Emergency Declaration After 13 Democrats Voted with Republicans — The Gateway Pundit

Digital generated image of syringe filling of COVID-19 vaccine from bottle against viruses on blue background.

On Friday, the Biden regime decided to extend the Covid public health emergency for the 12th time until at least April, as public health officials are preparing for another Covid surge this winter.

Biden keeps extending COVID Emergency so the Democrats can keep abusing their emergency powers.

The declaration allows the US to grant emergency authorizations for drugs, vaccines, and other medical countermeasures.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Senate voted to terminate the national health emergency declared in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic after almost three years of emergency-justified authoritarianism.

By a vote of 62 to 36, with 13 Democrats in favor, the Senate voted to rescind the emergency declaration.

It now goes to the House. It is not known if the House will consider the proposed resolution.

Below is the list of senators who voted to end the emergency declaration:

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) said in a statement that Joe Biden has threatened to veto any legislation passed by Congress to rescind the national emergency declaration, according to Wall Street Journal.

According to OMB, revoking the emergency declaration would weaken federal response to future Covid-19 outbreaks.

“Preserving our ability to respond is more important than ever as we head into the winter, when respiratory illnesses such as Covid-19 typically spread more easily,” the statement said. “Strengthened by the ongoing declaration of national emergency, the federal response to Covid-19 continues to save lives, improve health outcomes, and support the American economy.

Twitter user, John DeFeo shared his opinion on this emergency power grab on Twitter.

Who uses COVID-19 messaging that provokes fear (at the expense of highlighting critical facts, useful nuance and evidence-based reasons for hope)?

Here is my opinion, explained via 12 personas, arranged from most lamentable to most contemptible.

  • The Charlatan The charlatan is the bad faith version of the huckster, exploiting tenuous connections to COVID-19 in order to claim expertise and authority, while using hyperbole to maximize personal attention, influence and reach. A politician with a lab coat.
  • The Partisan Opportunist The partisan opportunist sees a crisis, then exploits it, extends it and amplifies it such as to enact powers and legislation that he or she has been eager to deploy. The nature of the crisis is not relevant, just a means to a desired end.
  • The Gleeful Abuser The gleeful abuser, for lack of a better word, is a psychopath who uses the fear and chaos inherent in a crisis (pandemic, war, etc.) to cover for his or her intention of imposing harm on others. Uncommon, yet terrifying.
  • The Stunted Academic This is the accomplished doctor or scientist who has long-since been promoted to oversee others, and as a result, is informed by narratives more so than hands on experience. The bigger the team, the greater the chance to amplify a bogus narrative.
  • The Free Radical A co-dependent person who lacks a firm sense of self, and thus, derives his or her identify from movements. Zero-COVID is one of many hashtags, flags, emoticons and other ways of signaling values to strangers (in the absence of a firm personal code).
  • The Feckless Academic The feckless academic is handcuffed by status or funding. He or she often remains on the sidelines, yet may occasionally amplify low-quality COVID-19 research that, in fact, can be objectively refuted using his or her own corpus of existing work.
  • The Credentialed Grifter This doctor or scientist, who is ostensibly a well-compensated professional, uses social media to solicit tips, monetize COVID-19 content via affiliate links, or otherwise profit from newly-earned “influencer” status.
  • The Esteemed Narcissist The esteemed narcissist is intelligent and a high achiever, yet trapped in an early-childhood emotional state (often a result of verbal abuse). He or she is too fragile to admit wrongs: Blame-shifting, projection and gaslighting are the result.
  • The Traumatized Professional
    This doctor or scientist has suffered a personal loss and/or PTSD from working in a high stress, high risk environment. (It takes the utmost empathy and reasoning to question a brilliant survivor of trauma.)
  • The Good-Faith Huckster This epidemiologist or biostatistician earned a certificate in public health despite having little- to no-background in science, medicine or ethics. He or she offers COVID-19 guidance in good faith, but lacks the experience to see possible harm.
  • The Green Journalist This young journalist, who isn’t necessarily foolish, has been given a critically-important task (like fact checking) without guidance or sources. A natural instinct is to seek official commentary, thereby allowing officials to avoid accountability.
  • The Hypochondriac Specialist This atmospheric physicist or molecular biologist is highly intelligent and highly qualified, yet tends to portray disease avoidance as a primary goal in life (regardless of contextual risk). Brilliant, yet myopic.
Biden Threatens to Veto Proposed Senate Resolution to End Covid-19 Emergency Declaration After 13 Democrats Voted with Republicans — The Gateway Pundit

Horowitz: What Republican Party? Senate GOP prepares to codify gay marriage — Conservative Review

At least we can now stop scratching our heads wondering why the Republicans failed to be a viable party. Conservatives were pining for the GOP to hold 53-54 Senate seats, but this week the Senate GOP Conference, led by Mitch McConnell, is demonstrating that Democrats really have a supermajority in the upper chamber anyway, at least as it relates to the most important civilization issues.

Take a hard look at this Gallup survey of Americans who identify as the sexual alphabet soup by generation. Anyone with a modicum of common sense will realize that one need not be a Bible thumper (Allah forbid) to understand the harm that the virulent promotion of the homosexual agenda has wreaked upon this nation. There is nothing natural going on here, as when people are born with brown eyes or green eyes. How on earth have we descended so quickly to a generation that now identifies with an ever-growing number of alphabet soup sexual identities that have led to the destruction of civilization, which is built upon marriage, family, and procreation?

Have we ever considered the consequences of grooming 20% of an entire generation – and rapidly increasing every year – to behave and identity in a way that will not lead to normal family structure or even human procreation?

Again, from a purely secular standpoint, even if one has no problem with these particular behaviors and even if one thinks society needs to protect and recognize them in some way, we have long since accommodated that. The pendulum has swung so far in the other direction that children being raised today are literally convinced that it’s like a 50-50 proposition. You can either marry a man or a woman – that’s just how it is. Given the fact that Obergefell already forces states, at least for the time being, to offer marriage licenses to same-sex couples, why on earth would there be a need to codify it into law even further and place our thumbs on the scale?

Yet this is exactly what Republicans have agreed to do. Later this week, the Senate will vote on HR 8404, which will force red states to recognize any form of marriage adopted in any other state. “We look forward to this legislation coming to the floor and are confident that this amendment has helped earn the broad, bipartisan support needed to pass our commonsense legislation into law,” Sens. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) said in a statement.

Schumer has given the impression that they will get well over 10 Republican votes to avoid the filibuster, and there is no evidence that McConnell and other prominent GOP leaders are even speaking out against the bill, much less whipping against it. In fact, House GOP leaders already declined to whip against the even stronger bill in July, which downright forced red states to recognize gay marriage even among residents within the state. Even the amended bill with the supposed religious liberty protection only protects nonprofit organizations, essentially codifying “bake the cake” as the law.

Whatever the final vote is this week, it is quite evident that the entire GOP establishment sees no problem with what is going on here.

Is it their position that not enough people are identifying as something that will ensure there is no procreation? When will they be happy? When that number is at 40% of the population? A majority? According to Gallup, the number of people identifying as one of the glorified letters in the alphabet has doubled as a share of the population in just nine years. The number spiked 27% just in one year since last year’s survey!

Why would something that is so glorified by every aspect of culture, law, and policy suddenly need a reaffirmation from federal law? After all, under Obergefell, red states have to grant same-sex couples licenses anyway. Clearly, this is designed to further promote the broader grooming agenda. It’s no longer just the absence of Judeo-Christian ethos, but the adoption of a new rigid and stoic adherence to paganism, which is rooted in transhumanism and is rooting for depopulation.

Are Republicans absolutely blind to what is going on in society and how this is part of the broader transhumanist and depopulation agendas that seek to deracinate familiar ties, procreation, and traditional stable family structure and turn everyone into androgynous artificial intelligence bots controlled by global governments?

Again, this is no longer just a social or biblical values issue. Gone are the days when gay people were the underdog and it was just a matter of supposedly promoting acceptance for what was thought to be a tiny population and, by some, as a natural phenomenon. Nobody can look at society today and suggest that this trend is natural, nor can one suggest it is helpful to the healthy growth of any civilization, even a secular one.

This is no longer a proposition of “Hey, just give them a marriage license and it will be over.” With the growth of the sexual alphabet acronym every few years, it is shocking how Republicans refuse to recognize where this is coming from and where it is headed. The mantra of “this is not the hill to die on” rings hollow as an entire generation of children are being groomed into a dystopian transhumanist environment of never understanding the basic meaning of marriage, life, sexuality, and even humanity itself.
While conservatives lament the problem with mail-in ballots and possible ballot fraud, we have mail-in Republicans who commit the ultimate election fraud. Chuck Schumer was quite prescient when he said that gay marriage is “precisely the kind of bill that Democrats and Republicans can rally around together.” After all, amid all the WWE-style fighting in Washington, it’s on the issues that matter, in the way they matter, at the time they matter that both sides are as thick as thieves in their war on civilization.

Horowitz: What Republican Party? Senate GOP prepares to codify gay marriage — Conservative Review

Uh-Oh: Hillary Clinton Says She Has A Big Announcement Tonight — Babylon Bee

CHAPPAQUA, NY — In the aftermath of Donald Trump’s announcement of his 2024 Presidential candidacy, the nation was frozen with fear as word began to spread that former First Lady-New York Senator-Secretary of State-Failed Presidential Candidate-Election Denier-Legendary Assassin Hillary Clinton was preparing to make a major announcement of her own.

“We’re still awaiting details of what this announcement might be,” said conservative blogger Jerry Atric. “We can only assume that this has something to do with her own candidacy for President, which would give us the titanic rematch that absolutely no one asked for and everyone hoped we would never experience.”

In a late-night post to his Truth Social account, Trump welcomed the possibility of facing Hillary again. “Crooked Hillary Clinton would be my second-favorite opponent in 2024, behind only Sleepy Joe Biden himself,” Trump said. “I already defeated them BOTH, despite having my wonderful landslide re-election STOLEN. If Hillary wants some more, she can come and get it. Also, my pantsuits are much more flattering, everyone says so. MAGA!”

When asked for comments regarding a possible Hillary Clinton candidacy, President Joe Biden expressed total confusion as to who these Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump people were before being quickly ushered away by his caretakers.

At publishing time, the entire nation breathed a collective sigh of relief when it was revealed that Hillary’s announcement was, in fact, just a renewal of her AppleTV series with daughter Chelsea, in which they travel across the country frightening ordinary citizens.


You can sponsor a poor, helpless liberal for just $8 a month:

Subscribe to The Babylon Bee on YouTube for more content of acceptable quality!

Uh-Oh: Hillary Clinton Says She Has A Big Announcement Tonight — Babylon Bee

What Is the Most Important Thing Taught in the Bible? — BLOG – Beautiful Christian Life

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning Beautiful Christian Life LLC may get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through its links, at no cost to you.

Editor’s note: Truth isn’t afraid of questions. If you want to become better equipped to share your Christian faith, don’t miss Shane Rosenthal’s new podcast, The Humble Skeptic.

If I were to ask you to write down the most important things taught in the Bible, what do you think you might include on your list? Worship, prayer, discipleship, faith, heaven, grace, the Trinity?

Now this next question is a little harder. Which of the topics that appear on your list would you end up placing at the very top? In other words, what is the most important topic in all of Scripture? Would you be able to come up with a single answer to that question, or do you think it’s just too difficult to rank biblical topics in this way?

Jesus himself said that some matters of the law were weightier than others.

You may be tempted by the thought that because the Bible is God’s inspired word, all its precepts are of equal weight and value. Yet, Jesus told the Pharisees, “You tithe mint and dill and cumin, but have neglected the weightier matters of the law:  justice and mercy and faithfulness” (Matt. 23:23). Now of course it wasn’t that tithing mint, dill, and cumin were unimportant things, but according to Jesus they apparently carried less weight and significance when compared with the much more important themes such as justice, mercy, and faithfulness.

There is also another passage in Scripture where a lawyer asked Jesus which of the commandments found in the law of Moses was the greatest. And as you may recall, Jesus didn’t end up saying that all the commandments were of equal value and importance, but he instead cited the words of Deuteronomy chapter 6, which says, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” This he said, “is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets” (Matt. 22:36-40).

There is an important distinction between the most important commandment in the Law and the most important thing in all of Scripture.

Perhaps, then, following Jesus, we could say that “loving God with all our heart, mind, soul and strength” is the most important thing in all of Scripture. Well, if we consider carefully the lawyer’s original question, he didn’t actually ask Jesus, “What is the most important thing in all of Scripture,” but rather, “What is the most important commandment recorded in the Law of Moses?” This, as we’ll see, is an important distinction.

The thing we should notice at this point, however, is that Jesus didn’t seem to have any difficulty ranking various biblical themes in the order of their importance. And so, in light of this, what do you think every Christian should place at the very top of their list? What biblical idea should be considered the thing of first importance?

The apostle Paul reminds the Corinthian church of the most important thing in all of Scripture—the gospel.

Thankfully, we don’t have to go through the difficult process of weighing and comparing all the doctrines of the Bible in an attempt to answer this question, since the apostle Paul has already done the heavy lifting for us in the first few verses of 1 Corinthians 15:

Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures… (1 Cor. 15:1-4)

According to verse 1, Paul makes clear that he is writing to the Corinthians in order to remind them of the gospel of Jesus.

In many churches today the focus ends up drifting away from the gospel to other things.

Now, I’m convinced that in far too many churches in our day the gospel appears to be taken for granted. And because it’s something that many pastors simply assume that everyone already knows, over time our focus ends up drifting away to other things—things that are more practical, relevant and me-centered. But Paul never did end up taking the gospel for granted. As he says here in the first few verses of this passage, it was the heartbeat of his preaching while he was with the Corinthians; it was the message in which they stood and by which they were being saved. And here in this letter, Paul takes time to remind them of the gospel once again, now that he’s away.

Notice what Paul says in verse 3: “For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received.” What is this thing of first importance that Paul had already delivered to the Corinthians? Well, it’s the very thing he just mentioned. He’s writing to remind them of the gospel that he had proclaimed while he had been among them. In other words, according to the apostle Paul, of all the things he had taught the Corinthians while he lived among them, the most important thing was the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The gospel of Jesus Christ is not about our best life now or our best world now.

Unfortunately, in our day there appears to be a great deal of confusion about the nature of the Christian gospel. Some say the good news is that Jesus delivers us from things like depression or poverty, and that if we apply his principles to our lives, he can help us to achieve our “best life now.” Others say the good news is that Jesus inspires us to reform all our social institutions and helps us to create our “best world now”—you know, one without hatred, greed, intolerance, or carbon emissions. The wonderful thing about Paul’s statement in this passage is that he not only tells us that the gospel is the thing of first importance, but he also very clearly defines it for us as well.

Let’s take another look at verses 3-5 of 1 Corinthians 15: “For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.” Whether you are a new Christian, or you’ve been a believer for many decades, let this short summary of the gospel that Paul outlines here be an anchor for your soul. 

The gospel is the good news of what has already been accomplished; it’s not a set of instructions or a to-do list.

First, we should notice that there’s nothing in this brief summary that you or I need to accomplish. According to the apostle Paul, the gospel has already been accomplished (which is why it’s called “good news” rather than a “set of instructions” or “to-do list.” Paul says that this gospel is rooted in the fact that Christ died for our sins, that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day, as recorded well in advance in the Hebrew Scriptures, and was seen by numerous living eyewitnesses. This is the very heart of the good news that we profess. 

Some of you may be familiar with the famous Life magazine cover featuring a WWII sailor in Times Square who decided to kiss a total stranger. What was it that caused this young man to kiss this woman he had never met? Well, it was just a natural reaction to hearing the announcement of the U.S. victory and the close of the war.

So now imagine for a moment that you were able to go back in time and give that same sailor a list of rules for his own personal improvement or a proposal for improving American society. Do you think this would generate the same kind of spontaneous joyful reaction? Of course it wouldn’t, because you haven’t given him any news worth celebrating—just mere instructions and imperatives that he needs to put into practice.

If you ever feel discouraged about your lack of progress in the Christian life, let the words of 1 Corinthians 15 comfort you.

The same can be said of our faith. The gospel is the announcement of Christ’s victory, and when this is proclaimed in all its beauty and simplicity, the message is received with comfort and joy. Because of our sins, we who were formerly God’s enemies have now been reconciled to God. Since “in our place, condemned he stood,” the war is now over. But if the primary message you end up hearing week after week at your church has to do with various things you need to do, then you aren’t being grounded in the good news—which is the thing of first importance.

There are of course many imperatives and commands recorded throughout the Scriptures. As disciples of Jesus, we are called to love one another, to pray, to worship, etc. But these instructions are not the gospel. Are they important? Of course they are! But we are never called to perform these duties in order to get right with God. Rather, the gospel declares to us that “Christ died for our sins.” This is how we are made right with God, since as Paul says elsewhere, we’ve been “justified by his blood” (Rom. 5:9).

The most important thing in Scripture—the gospel—is also the Christian’s greatest comfort throughout the ups and downs of life.

If you ever feel discouraged about your lack of progress in the Christian life, remember the words of 1 Corinthians 15. Let the words you find there bathe you once again as you reflect on Christ’s accomplishments, rather than focusing on your failures. He died and was buried in your place. Though you feel unworthy and condemned, in Christ you are graciously accepted and reconciled. And he not only bore your sin but was also raised again to new life, objectively—for you. It has already been accomplished.

If you’re in Christ, you’ve already been justified and there is now no longer any condemnation (Rom. 8:1). And if you’re in Christ, you’ll also begin to follow your Shepherd wherever he leads. Of course, sheep are prone to wander, so you’ll never do this perfectly, which is why Jesus taught us to pray “Forgive us our debts” immediately following our petition for “daily bread.” Therefore, put all your hope and confidence in your good Shepherd who “lays his life down for the sheep” (John 10:11). This is the thing of firstimportance.

On The Humble Skeptic podcast, Shane Rosenthal explores the beliefs and ideas that shape our lives. His episode “Is Faith Irrational?” takes a deep dive into the nature of faith—is it evidence based or a blind irrational leap? You can listen to his podcast at humbleskeptic.com.

Related Articles:


Shane Rosenthal is the founder and host of The Humble Skeptic podcast, which seeks to explore the beliefs and ideas that shape our lives. He was a co-founder of the White Horse Inn radio show, which he also hosted from 2019-2021, and has written numerous articles for Modern Reformation, Tabletalk, Core Christianity, and other publications.

What Is the Most Important Thing Taught in the Bible? — BLOG – Beautiful Christian Life

November 16: Ezekiel 13–15; Hebrews 11:20–40 | ESV: Read through the Bible

Morning: Ezekiel 13–15

Ezekiel 13–15 (Listen)

False Prophets Condemned

13 The word of the LORD came to me: “Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel, who are prophesying, and say to those who prophesy from their own hearts: ‘Hear the word of the LORD!’ Thus says the Lord GOD, Woe to the foolish prophets who follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing! Your prophets have been like jackals among ruins, O Israel. You have not gone up into the breaches, or built up a wall for the house of Israel, that it might stand in battle in the day of the LORD. They have seen false visions and lying divinations. They say, ‘Declares the LORD,’ when the LORD has not sent them, and yet they expect him to fulfill their word. Have you not seen a false vision and uttered a lying divination, whenever you have said, ‘Declares the LORD,’ although I have not spoken?”

Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: “Because you have uttered falsehood and seen lying visions, therefore behold, I am against you, declares the Lord GOD. My hand will be against the prophets who see false visions and who give lying divinations. They shall not be in the council of my people, nor be enrolled in the register of the house of Israel, nor shall they enter the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord GOD. 10 Precisely because they have misled my people, saying, ‘Peace,’ when there is no peace, and because, when the people build a wall, these prophets smear it with whitewash,1 11 say to those who smear it with whitewash that it shall fall! There will be a deluge of rain, and you, O great hailstones, will fall, and a stormy wind break out. 12 And when the wall falls, will it not be said to you, ‘Where is the coating with which you smeared it?’ 13 Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: I will make a stormy wind break out in my wrath, and there shall be a deluge of rain in my anger, and great hailstones in wrath to make a full end. 14 And I will break down the wall that you have smeared with whitewash, and bring it down to the ground, so that its foundation will be laid bare. When it falls, you shall perish in the midst of it, and you shall know that I am the LORD. 15 Thus will I spend my wrath upon the wall and upon those who have smeared it with whitewash, and I will say to you, The wall is no more, nor those who smeared it, 16 the prophets of Israel who prophesied concerning Jerusalem and saw visions of peace for her, when there was no peace, declares the Lord GOD.

17 “And you, son of man, set your face against the daughters of your people, who prophesy out of their own hearts. Prophesy against them 18 and say, Thus says the Lord GOD: Woe to the women who sew magic bands upon all wrists, and make veils for the heads of persons of every stature, in the hunt for souls! Will you hunt down souls belonging to my people and keep your own souls alive? 19 You have profaned me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, putting to death souls who should not die and keeping alive souls who should not live, by your lying to my people, who listen to lies.

20 “Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I am against your magic bands with which you hunt the souls like birds, and I will tear them from your arms, and I will let the souls whom you hunt go free, the souls like birds. 21 Your veils also I will tear off and deliver my people out of your hand, and they shall be no more in your hand as prey, and you shall know that I am the LORD. 22 Because you have disheartened the righteous falsely, although I have not grieved him, and you have encouraged the wicked, that he should not turn from his evil way to save his life, 23 therefore you shall no more see false visions nor practice divination. I will deliver my people out of your hand. And you shall know that I am the LORD.”

Idolatrous Elders Condemned

14 Then certain of the elders of Israel came to me and sat before me. And the word of the LORD came to me: “Son of man, these men have taken their idols into their hearts, and set the stumbling block of their iniquity before their faces. Should I indeed let myself be consulted by them? Therefore speak to them and say to them, Thus says the Lord GOD: Any one of the house of Israel who takes his idols into his heart and sets the stumbling block of his iniquity before his face, and yet comes to the prophet, I the LORD will answer him as he comes with the multitude of his idols, that I may lay hold of the hearts of the house of Israel, who are all estranged from me through their idols.

“Therefore say to the house of Israel, Thus says the Lord GOD: Repent and turn away from your idols, and turn away your faces from all your abominations. For any one of the house of Israel, or of the strangers who sojourn in Israel, who separates himself from me, taking his idols into his heart and putting the stumbling block of his iniquity before his face, and yet comes to a prophet to consult me through him, I the LORD will answer him myself. And I will set my face against that man; I will make him a sign and a byword and cut him off from the midst of my people, and you shall know that I am the LORD. And if the prophet is deceived and speaks a word, I, the LORD, have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand against him and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel. 10 And they shall bear their punishment2—the punishment of the prophet and the punishment of the inquirer shall be alike—11 that the house of Israel may no more go astray from me, nor defile themselves anymore with all their transgressions, but that they may be my people and I may be their God, declares the Lord GOD.”

Jerusalem Will Not Be Spared

12 And the word of the LORD came to me: 13 “Son of man, when a land sins against me by acting faithlessly, and I stretch out my hand against it and break its supply3 of bread and send famine upon it, and cut off from it man and beast, 14 even if these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they would deliver but their own lives by their righteousness, declares the Lord GOD.

15 “If I cause wild beasts to pass through the land, and they ravage it, and it be made desolate, so that no one may pass through because of the beasts, 16 even if these three men were in it, as I live, declares the Lord GOD, they would deliver neither sons nor daughters. They alone would be delivered, but the land would be desolate.

17 “Or if I bring a sword upon that land and say, Let a sword pass through the land, and I cut off from it man and beast, 18 though these three men were in it, as I live, declares the Lord GOD, they would deliver neither sons nor daughters, but they alone would be delivered.

19 “Or if I send a pestilence into that land and pour out my wrath upon it with blood, to cut off from it man and beast, 20 even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, declares the Lord GOD, they would deliver neither son nor daughter. They would deliver but their own lives by their righteousness.

21 “For thus says the Lord GOD: How much more when I send upon Jerusalem my four disastrous acts of judgment, sword, famine, wild beasts, and pestilence, to cut off from it man and beast! 22 But behold, some survivors will be left in it, sons and daughters who will be brought out; behold, when they come out to you, and you see their ways and their deeds, you will be consoled for the disaster that I have brought upon Jerusalem, for all that I have brought upon it. 23 They will console you, when you see their ways and their deeds, and you shall know that I have not done without cause all that I have done in it, declares the Lord GOD.”

Jerusalem, a Useless Vine

15 And the word of the LORD came to me: “Son of man, how does the wood of the vine surpass any wood, the vine branch that is among the trees of the forest? Is wood taken from it to make anything? Do people take a peg from it to hang any vessel on it? Behold, it is given to the fire for fuel. When the fire has consumed both ends of it, and the middle of it is charred, is it useful for anything? Behold, when it was whole, it was used for nothing. How much less, when the fire has consumed it and it is charred, can it ever be used for anything! Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Like the wood of the vine among the trees of the forest, which I have given to the fire for fuel, so have I given up the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And I will set my face against them. Though they escape from the fire, the fire shall yet consume them, and you will know that I am the LORD, when I set my face against them. And I will make the land desolate, because they have acted faithlessly, declares the Lord GOD.”

Footnotes

[1] 13:10 
[2] 14:10 
[3] 14:13

(ESV)

Evening: Hebrews 11:20–40

Hebrews 11:20–40 (Listen)

20 By faith Isaac invoked future blessings on Jacob and Esau. 21 By faith Jacob, when dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, bowing in worship over the head of his staff. 22 By faith Joseph, at the end of his life, made mention of the exodus of the Israelites and gave directions concerning his bones.

23 By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw that the child was beautiful, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict. 24 By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, 25 choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26 He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward. 27 By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible. 28 By faith he kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them.

29 By faith the people crossed the Red Sea as on dry land, but the Egyptians, when they attempted to do the same, were drowned. 30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they had been encircled for seven days. 31 By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given a friendly welcome to the spies.

32 And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets—33 who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, 34 quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. 35 Women received back their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. 36 Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. 37 They were stoned, they were sawn in two,1 they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated—38 of whom the world was not worthy—wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

39 And all these, though commended through their faith, did not receive what was promised, 40 since God had provided something better for us, that apart from us they should not be made perfect.

Footnotes

[1] 11:37

(ESV)

https://www.esv.org/plans/through-the-bible/320/

November 16 Morning Verse of The Day

1:6 “Day of Jesus Christ” is a reference to the return of Christ. Paul’s confidence concerning the Philippians’ ability to remain in a state of salvation until that day is not based on his estimate of them (though that estimate is obviously high also), but on the power of God to perform in them a good work unto completion. This is the basis of all confidence in the continuing nature of salvation.[1]

1:6 he … will bring it to completion. The perseverance of the saints depends upon God’s preserving them by grace. See “Perseverance of the Saints” at Rom. 8:30. God’s saving purpose will be fulfilled on “the day of Christ” (v. 10; 2:16), when He returns in glory to raise His people from the dead (3:11, 20, 21) and to receive universal homage (2:9–11).[2]

1:6 one who began Refers to God. Paul is certain that the Philippians will progress in faith because God is committed to transforming them.

day of Christ Jesus Refers to the second coming of Jesus Christ (see note on 1 Thess 5:2). In Paul’s letters, the “Day of Christ” is synonymous with the ot phrase “Day of the Lord” (see note on Luke 17:22).[3]

1:6 Paul is sure about God’s commitment to the Philippians. The foundation for spiritual growth is recognizing that it is God who began a good work in you and will bring it to completion. Genuine spiritual progress is rooted in what God has done, is doing, and will do. His faithfulness ensures that he will be with believers until Jesus returns (the day of Jesus Christ; cf. 2:16; 1 Thess. 5:2–11; 2 Pet. 3:10–13; Rev. 20:11–21:8). They can have confidence that the God who has saved them will never let them go, and that they will inherit their eternal reward.[4]

1:6 He … will perfect it. The Gr. verb translated “began” is used only here and in Gal 3:3—both times in reference to salvation itself. When God begins a work of salvation in a person, He finishes and perfects that work. Thus the verb “will perfect” points to the eternal security of the Christian (see notes on Jn 6:40, 44; Ro 5:10; 8:29–39; Eph 1:13, 14; Heb 7:25; 12:2). day of Christ Jesus. This phrase is not to be confused with the “Day of the Lord” (see Introduction to Joel: Historical and Theological Themes), which describes final divine judgment and wrath (cf. Is 13:9; Joel 1:15; 2:11; 1Th 5:2; 2Pe 3:10). “Day of Christ Jesus” is also called the “day of Christ” (v. 10; 2:16) and the “day of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1Co 1:8), which looks to the final salvation, reward, and glorification of believers. Cf. 1Co 3:10–15; 4:5; 2Co 5:9, 10.[5]

1:6 — … being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ .…

God is faithful to finish what He starts. Once we accept Christ as our Savior, the work of sanctification begins. And it continues. There is always more to walking with God than what we’ve known, seen, learned, or experienced.[6]

1:6 being confident: Paul had become convinced some time in the past that God would complete His good work among the Philippians, and his confidence remained unshaken. in you: Since you is a plural pronoun, the good work that God was doing was taking place “among” the believers rather than “in” any isolated believer. Until can also be translated “as far as.” It expresses progress toward a goal and indicates that a time is coming when God will completely finish His work among the Philippian Christians. the day of Jesus Christ: The ministry in which the Philippians participated continues (like a relay race) up to the present, and it will continue until Christ returns. Paul calls Christ’s return “the day of Christ” (2:16). On that day, Christ will judge nonbelievers and evaluate the lives of believers (2 Tim. 2:11–13).[7]

1:6. Paul’s settled conviction is that this good work of the Philippians will be carried on until the day of Jesus Christ. Christ Himself is the agent of this good work. He began the good work by placing within the church (you is plural) the desire to help the one (Paul) who had led them to Christ. Then Christ continues this work through Paul so that the ongoing effects of their good work will end only at the day of Jesus Christ, that is, at the Judgment Seat of Christ. Their partnership with Paul will continue long after they (and Paul) have died and gone to heaven. The ultimate effects will only be seen at the Judgment Seat of Christ.

A common view of this verse is that sanctification of believers is a guaranteed work of God. However, a preferable view is that this is a promise that the Lord will honor and bless the missionary efforts of the Church in ways far beyond what it can see or understand.[8]

1:6 As the apostle thinks of the good start the believers have made in the Christian life, he is confident that God will finish the good work He has begun.

The work which His goodness began,

The arm of His strength will complete;

His promise is Yea and Amen,

And never was forfeited yet.

Augustus M. Toplady

Good work may refer to their salvation, or it may mean their active financial participation in the furtherance of the gospel. The day of Jesus Christ refers to the time of His coming again to take His people home to heaven and probably also includes the Judgment Seat of Christ, when service for Him will be reviewed and rewarded.[9]

6 Paul is confident as he prays, with a confidence not based on the Philippians’ own abilities or past achievements, but on the power and love of God and because God can be relied upon to bring what he begins to completion. When we see that God has begun a good work in people’s lives, we can be sure that it is his purpose to continue—that can always be our confidence in praying for our fellow-Christians. Notice how here also (as often in his letters) Paul saw his life and work in the light of the coming day of Christ Jesus. The time of that day is unknown to us, but what matters for us and all people is how our lives and our work will appear when we see our Lord face to face. Paul’s constant concern was that he and his fellow-Christians might be presented before God mature and unashamed in that day (cf. 2 Cor. 1:14; 5:9–10; Eph. 5:27; Col. 1:28).[10]

1:6. The apostle is confident of what God has already done and knows that the God who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion. When God starts a work in our lives, beginning with our salvation, he will finish it. As believers, we are to grow in the Christian life becoming more like Christ each day. This is called sanctification. Spiritual growth should continue in committed believers until the day of Christ Jesus, that is until Christ returns again to the earth as the angels predicted (Acts 1:11).[11]

1:6 “I am confident” This is a PERFECT ACTIVE PARTICIPLE from the root “to persuade,” meaning “I have been and continue to be certain.”

© “He who began a good work in you” This is an AORIST MIDDLE (deponent) PARTICIPLE. God (Theos) is not in the text but He is assumed (cf. Rom. 8:11; Gal. 1:6, 15 and 1 Thess. 5:24). The MIDDLE VOICE emphasizes the subject’s participation in the action of the verb. However, the form is deponent, which means that this term did not have an active form in Paul’s day, therefore, the MIDDLE may function as an ACTIVE VOICE. There must be a theological balance between God’s initiating love and mankind’s initial and continuing faith response. It could refer to (1) the beginning of the church; (2) the beginning of their participation in the gospel; or (3) the beginning of their personal salvation.

©  
NASB  “will perfect it”  
NKJV  “will complete it”  
NRSV  “will bring it to completion”  
TEV  “will carry it on until it is finished”  
NJB  “will go on completing it”  

This is a FUTURE ACTIVE INDICATIVE, which can refer to the certainty of the event. Believers live in the tension between the “already” and “the not yet” of the Kingdom of God. Full and complete kingdom benefits are future while citizenship and status are present. Believers live in the overlapping of the two Jewish ages. The new age has arrived (Bethlehem-Pentecost) but the old age remains (fallen nature both in the physical creation and in fallen mankind).

© “the day of Jesus Christ” The reference to the Second Coming is a common element of Paul’s openings (cf. 1 Cor. 1:7, 8; 2 Cor. 1:10; Col. 1:5; 1 Thess. 1:10 and 2 Thess. 1:4ff). This eschatological event appears in Phil. 1:6, 10; 2:16 also.

The eschatological emphasis of a special coming day when humans will meet Jesus (as Savior or Judge) goes by several designations in Paul’s writings: (1) “the day of our Lord Jesus Christ” (cf. 1 Cor. 1:8); (2) “the day of the Lord” (cf. 1 Cor. 5:5; 1 Thess. 5:2; 2 Thess. 2:2); (3) “the day of the Lord Jesus” (cf. 1 Cor. 5:5; 2 Cor. 1:14); (4) “the day of Jesus Christ” (cf. Phil. 1:6); (5) “the day of Christ” (cf. Phil 1:10; 2:16); (6) “His day (Son of Man)” (cf. Luke 17:24); (7) “the day that the Son of Man is revealed” (cf. Luke 17:30); (8) “the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ” (cf. 1 Cor. 1:7); (9) “when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven” (cf. 2 Thess. 1:7); (10) “in the presence of the Lord Jesus at His coming” (cf. 1 Thess. 2:19).

In the OT the writers saw two ages, an evil age and a coming age of righteousness, the age of the Spirit. God would intervene in history through His Messiah to set up this new age. This event was known as the Day of the Lord. Notice that NT writers attribute this to Christ. His first coming, the Incarnation, was foretold in many OT texts. The Jews did not expect a divine person, just a divine intervention. The two comings of the Messiah, one as suffering servant and savior, one as Judge and Lord, were not obvious to OT people.

© “He who began … will perfect it” Both the terms “began” and “perfect” were technical terms for the beginning and ending of a sacrifice (cf. Rom. 12:1–2).[12]

6. Paul thanks God for this, for it was God who had grafted his own image in the hearts of the Philippians. Hence, to the immediate reason for the thanksgiving the apostle now adds the ultimate reason: being confident of this very thing that he who began a good work in you will carry it on toward completion. Note how closely the apostle links human perseverance (“your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until the present”) with divine preservation (“he who began a good work in you will carry it on toward completion”). Any doctrine of salvation which does not do full justice to both of these elements is unscriptural. See Phil. 2:12, 13; 2 Thess. 2:13. Although it is true that God brings his work to completion, it is equally true that when God has once begun his work in men, the latter by no means remain merely passive instruments!

“He who began a good work in you,” is God, as is evident from the context, “I thank my God … being confident that he who began a good work in you, etc.” When God’s name, attitude, or activity is clearly implied, he is not always mentioned by name. In fact by not mentioning his name but merely saying he who there is often in such instances a greater opportunity to stress his disposition or his activity: “He who does this will also certainly do that.” Thus William Cullen Bryant says beautifully (in his poem “To A Waterfowl”):

“He who, from zone to zone,

Guides through the boundless sky thy certain flight,

In the long way that I must tread alone,

Will lead my steps aright.”

The good work which God had begun within the hearts and lives of the Philippians was that of grace, whereby they had been transformed. This work, indeed, was good in origin, quality, purpose, and result. The result had been their own willing and working for God’s good pleasure (Phil. 2:12, 13); specifically, their own hearty co-operation in whatever pertained to the advancement of the gospel.

Now Paul is confident that God will not permit his good work of transforming and qualifying grace to remain unfinished. The expression “will carry it onward toward completion” implies “and will present it complete.”

Accordingly, out of the darkness and the distress of a prison in Rome a message of cheer reaches each Philippian believer, enabling him to say:

“The work thou hast in me begun

Shall by thy grace be fully done.”

God, accordingly, is not like men. Men conduct experiments, but God carries out a plan. God never does anything by halves. Men often do.

This teaching of divine preservation for a life of service (hence, with implied human perseverance) is in harmony with that of the entire Bible, which tells us about:

a faithfulness that will never be removed (Ps. 89:33; 138:8),

a life that will never end (John 3:16),

a spring of water that will never cease to bubble up within the one who drinks of it (John 4:14),

a gift that will never be lost (John 6:37, 39),

a hand out of which the Good Shepherd’s sheep will never be snatched (John 10:28),

a chain that will never be broken (Rom. 8:29, 30),

a love from which we shall never be separated (Rom. 8:39),

a calling that will never be revoked (Rom. 11:29),

a foundation that will never be destroyed (2 Tim. 2:19),

and an inheritance that will never fade out (1 Peter 1:4, 5).

It should be stressed, however, that according to the present context (and all of Scripture) this preservation is not for a purely selfish purpose but is for service. God’s work of grace qualifies men for work.

Now God will carry his good work on toward completion until, and will actually have it all completed on, the day of Christ Jesus. This day is also called:

the day of Christ (Phil. 1:10; 2:16),

the day of our Lord Jesus (Christ) (1 Cor. 1:8; cf. 2 Cor. 1:14),

the day of the Lord (1 Thess. 5:2; 2 Thess. 2:2; cf. 1 Cor. 5:5),

the day (1 Thess. 5:4),

that day (2 Thess. 1:10),

the parousia (of the Lord, of our Lord Jesus, etc.) (1 Thess. 2:19; 3:13; 4:15; 5:23; 2 Thess. 2:1, 8; cf. 1 Cor. 15:23; etc.). See also N.T.C. on I and II Thessalonians, pp. 76, 122–124, 141, 146–150, 161, 167, 168.

It is called the day of Christ Jesus because on that day he will be manifested in glory, will be met by his bride (the church), will judge, and will thus be publicly vindicated.

Not until that day has arrived will that work of God be completed which qualified the addressees for hearty co-operation in spreading the gospel and which ends in the completed fellowship. Moreover, it takes all God’s ransomed children to make one ransomed child complete. A brick may have the appearance of a finished product, but it will still look rather forlorn until it is given its proper place in row and tier, and all the rows and tiers are in, and the beautiful temple is finished. So also God’s children, like so many living stones, will form a finished temple when Jesus returns, not until then. Believers are like the dawning light that shines brighter and brighter unto the coming of the perfect day, for it is then that he who began a good work in them will have completed it.[13]

Ver. 6. “Being confident of this very thing.”

Spiritual culture:—

I. The signs whereby we may know God has begun this gracious work. 1. The signs are not to be sought in any set methods or patterns by which God is supposed to begin His work of training the soul for Himself. His ways are endless. Some souls have to be smitten: for others a gentle look is enough, e.g., Saul and Zacchæus. 2. There are certain impressions and effects produced by the preaching of the gospel or by the ways of God in His providence which are sometimes mistaken for signs of a gracious work. The consequences of sin may fill the conscience with remorse, and vows made to begin a new life. A sense of happiness springs up in emotional natures on a very superficial acquaintance with religion and its responsibilities. Nor is the sign found in a head well informed. 3. What then is the sign? Love to God, Christ, man, showing itself in trust and obedience, and goodness.

II. The conditions under which this good work will be perfected by God. 1. Remember that so long as you are in this world the work is incomplete. For the development of a soul in Christ’s likeness time is necessary. “First the blade,” &c. Some are discouraged because they cannot see the full corn at once. If it is time for the full corn, however, do not be satisfied with the ear or blade. It is the indolent man who thinks he has only to believe once for all. 2. You must concur in God’s work as it advances from stage to stage till it is completed in the day of Jesus Christ. Growth proceeds slowly if it is to endure. Mushrooms spring up in the night but they soon decay. (R. Tuck, B.A.) Paul’s confidence was

I. Totally isolated from Judaism and self (Philip. 3:3–7).

II. Grounded solely in Christ. 1. As his medium of access to the mind, the heart, the power of God (Eph. 3:12). 2. As the repository of all his interests (2 Tim. 1:12). 3. As being united to Him by love-bonds which neither the mere incidents of life, nor satanic power could sever (Rom. 8:38–39).

III. A means of perpetuating living relations between him and the Churches which he had formed. He expresses his confidence—1. In the sympathy of the Corinthians (2 Cor. 1:14, 15; 2:3). 2. In the steadfastness of the Galatians in Christianity (Gal. 5:10). 3. In the obedience of the Thessalonians to his teaching (2 Thess. 3:4). 4. In the purity and intelligence of the Romans (Rom. 15:14). 5. In the final perfectness of the Philippians.

IV. The seed he lived to disseminate among men. (G. G. Ballard.)

Confidence and completion:—I. Of what was paul confident? 1. That the work of salvation in this people would be perfected. They were running a race, and he was confident that they would receive the prize. They were the workmanship of the Divine redeeming hand; Paul was confident that the work would not be forsaken by the Workman. That God would perfect this work. “It is God that worketh in you.” Paul knew that his own influence was nothing, except as it was the medium and the vehicle of the influence of God. 3. That the work would be finished in the day of the Lord. In that day every work will be tried as by fire. God’s work in this people would appear then to be perfected. A sublime persuasion, this! To stand on some moorland and see some young oaks planted, and feel quite confident that they would grow to perfection; to visit a dockyard slip, and to see the timbers of the keel of a first-rate man-of-war laid down, and to feel confident that she would answer every trial of her strength, until she had rendered full service to the nation; to be present at some important public undertaking, and to feel sure that it would be noble, and prosperous, and of national benefit; to hear the birth cry of a human being, and to feel confident that its path from the cradle to the sepulchre would be that shining brighter and brighter unto perfect day, are all glorious positions; but they cannot be compared, so far as true greatness and moral grandeur are concerned, with the position of Paul here. The sublimity of this persuasion is largely connected with the love of Paul’s heart. The multitude are thoughtless, indifferent, and careless about each other, or they are envious and malicious. But this is true, sincere, pure Christian love, which writes, “Being confident of this very thing.”

II. On what did Paul’s confidence rest? 1. On the character and resources of the Worker. It does not rest on the Church. Not because Church polity is all right, because you are thoroughly orthodox, nor because your modes of worship are just what they ought to be. The foundation of his confidence was God in Christ. Men fail in work by loss of means and of power, by change of purpose, by their dependence upon others, and by reason of death. But it is not thus with the Creator. 2. On the nature and quality of the work about which he is assured. The work is remedial to the creature, and supremely honourable to the redeeming God. 3. On the fact that the commencement of this work was by God Himself. The beginning is the pledge of the consummation. Even a wise man does nothing at random. 4. On the fact that a day is fixed for exhibiting this work in all its completeness. The day of Christ, without redemption, would indeed be a dark day. 5. He happens to blend with all this his own experience of the faithfulness and wealth of the redeeming God—Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

III. How did this confidence operate on paul? 1. It did not prevent Paul praying for these people. 2. It gave fervency and gladness to his intercessions. 3. It did not keep Paul from exhorting the people and directing them to the use of means. Conclusion: Cherish such confidence concerning yourselves and each other, but be devoutly careful not to abuse it. (S. Martin.)

Divine workmanship:—

I. Its highest sphere—man (Eph. 2:10).

II. Its chosen instrumentality—holy men (1 Cor. 4:9).

III. Its model—Divine perfectness (Matt. 5:48).

IV. Its law of accomplishment—gradual but certain progression—“begun, perform.”

V. Its guarantee of completion—God’s will. His willingness is—1. Revealed in His word. 2. Embodied in Christ the Foundation. 3. Ratified by experience. 4. Plighted to us in the earnest of the Spirit. (G. G. Ballard.)

“A good work”:—

I. The good work. 1. Its nature. A new creation (Eph. 2:10), without which we have neither will nor power to perform good works (Phil. 2:13). 2. Its property. It is a good work because—(1) It is begun by a good God (Psa. 25:8). (2) It is wrought out for a good purpose (Col. 1:12). (3) It is performed with a good end in view (Rom. 8:30; Heb. 12:14).

II. The grounds of Paul’s confidence that this good work would be completed. 1. The perfections of God’s works (Deut. 32:4) in creation, providence, and grace. 2. The atonement of Christ (John 10:15). 3. The Christian’s union to Christ (John 14:19). 4. The earnest of the Spirit (2 Cor. 1:22). 5. The nature of the life Christ gives (John 10:28). 6. The intercession of Christ (Heb. 7:25; John 11:42; 17:24). (S. Barnard.)

The good work within:—

I. A gracious operation. 1. It is good. Why? Because—(1) God the best of beings is the author of it. He is the author of the wisdom that designed it; the influence which begins, continues, and completes it; the holiness which is its pattern; the love which it displays; the means whereby it is performed. (2) Its effects are good. (a) In respect of the soul that is the subject of it, which passes from death unto life, from sin to holiness, &c. (b) In respect to families. When this good work is begun in the hearts of parents religion with all its pleasantness and peace dwells in the house, and God commands His blessing. (c) Upon ministers, who thereby are made not ashamed of the gospel. (d) Upon the Church, whose increase and prosperity is the edification and comfort of individual believers. (e) To the world. Every convert exercises, like salt, a purifying and preserving influence. (f) On heaven itself (Luke 15:10). (3) Its end and completion are good. The soul is born for glory. 2. It is a work. (1) It is primarily and chiefly the operation of the Holy Spirit. He removes all obstacles from the heart, and gives the truth free course over the inner man. (2) It is begun and carried on by means of the Word, which is the power of God unto salvation. (3) All the faculties of the soul which is the subject of it are brought into lively and diligent exercise: serious thought, anxious inquiry, restless desire, fervent prayer, repentance, faith, love.

II. Its important situation—“in you.” Not only in the head but in the heart. 1. It is evident that it is an inward work from the many figures which denote it—temple; inner man; good seed. 2. How does it exist then? (1) As light in the mind. (2) As love shed abroad in the heart. (3) As peace in the conscience. Conclusion: 1. This inward religion will be evidenced by corresponding fruits without. 2. You in whom this good work is be thankful, for “by the grace of God you are what you are.” Be anxious, watchful, prayerful, too, that it may go on. 3. You in whom it is begun, but fear that it is not, compare what your feelings and desires are with what they were. 4. You who think it is within you, but whose life proves that it is not fear, and tremble. 5. You who show no desire for it—if there is not a good work in you, there is an evil work there, evil in its origin, effects, end. Contemplate your danger. (Congregational Remembrancer.)

I. A wonderful fact. “He who began the work.” 1. The work is Divine. No part of God’s work bears so distinctly the signs of divinity (James 1:18). Human agency is the channel. 2. The work is gracious. Wisdom is here and power, but goodness is a special feature. God’s compassion in the gospel is a power to make us good. To make men wise, rich, happy, healthy, is a great work—but to make them good is better (2 Thess. 2:16–17). 3. The work is progressive. The stages of spiritual life are like those of physical life advancing towards manhood.

II. A glorious certainty. 1. The resources of God are inexhaustible (Isa. 46:9–10). 2. The faithfulness of God is unfailing (Hos. 2:20). 3. Perfection is God’s end in everything. (Weekly Pulpit.) Whether this good work relates entirely to the special act of beneficence which had called forth this Epistle may be fairly disputed. Taken upon this narrow ground the apostle’s joy would be but the refinement of selfishness. Rather he lays down a great principle respecting the Divine method of working, viz., to begin is to finish, and that principle, wide enough to encompass the universe, will also comprehend every detail of Christian service.

I. God works by a plan—to prepare manhood for the final day—a period of time, or a perfection of development; the “day” of death, of judgment, or of the completeness of Christian manhood.

II. God is not fickle in the prosecution of his purposes. He begins not that He may conduct an experiment, but that He may perform a design.

III. God has so revealed himself in the education of the individual and the training of society as to justify “the most emphatic expression of “confidence” on the part of his church. The past fortells the future. When the world was young it needed Elijahs, Ezekiels, and Daniels; but the richer the world becomes in history the louder and sweeter will be its tone of confidence. God cannot publish any amended edition of Himself. You may therefore make the past the source of the widest inferences. (J. Parker, D.D.)

The perseverance of the saints:—The passage suggests—

I. That real religion is a work upon the heart. 1. In opposition to the mere profession of orthodox sentiments and opinions. The truth may be held in unrighteousness. Christ is not only set forth a propitiation before His people, but is made unto them “wisdom,” &c. The gospel must be received as well as believed. 2. In opposition to a bare attendance upon the prescribed duties of religion. This will indeed follow but only as a means, not as an end.

II. That this work is a good work. 1. It has respect to the immortal soul. 2. It qualifies for fellowship with God the chief good. 3. It is productive of good fruits. 4. Its fruition is glory.

III. That it is the province of God to begin this work. Every other cause is inadequate.

IV. That wherever God begins a work of grace he will carry it on and perfect it. 1. He cannot be at a loss to accomplish the work He has commenced. As it is not more difficult to create than to uphold, so it is as easy for Him to communicate great supplies of grace as it was to bestow it at the first. 2. To suppose otherwise would be altogether inconsistent with His purposes of grace and love. 3. But God will perfect His work by the use of means. (1) Secret prayer. (2) Perusal of His Word. Hence perseverance is not only a privilege but a duty.

V. That the second coming of christ is the period when the work of grace shall be perfected and publicly recognized. (Congregational Remembrancer.)

Sanctification and perseverance:—Sanctification, unlike the act of justification, is a work of the Holy Spirit, which will not be completed till the soul is perfected in glory. It is the gradual transformation of the renovated but imperfect heart continued until this corruptible shall put on incorruption.

I. This work consists in—1. A gradual purification of our nature. Regeneration is the first act, but by mournful experience Paul knew, and we know, that the remains of depravity are left behind. These it is the work of sanctification to remove. (1) It clarifies the sight of believers, enabling them more distinctly to discern Diviue things. (2) It purges the conscience, causing it to pronounce more correctly on the relations of the conduct to the law and to the gospel. (3) It brings to light the lines of the Divine image already engraven on the heart. 2. A correspondent purification of our lives so that our obedience gradually approaches nearer the standard of holiness (Eph. 2:10). (1) Evil propensities are diminished. (2) The graces produced by regeneration are strengthened: Faith, humility, love.

II. The motives which should induce us to seek this sanctification. 1. God commands it. 2. The love of Christ urges it. 3. We can only be prepared for glory by it. 4. It alone will enable us to glorify God. (J. Foot, D.D.)

The day of Jesus Christ:—Man has his day; Christ shall have His. When—1. His toil and suffering shall be remunerated. 2. His government be vindicated. 3. His glory be revealed. 4. All men be brought into closest relations with Him. 5. His kingship receive universal recognition on whose head are many crowns. That day is—(1) The goal of the human race. (2) The terminus of history. (3) The fulness of time. For it Paul longed, watched, waited, lived. (G. G. Ballard.)

The present dispensation:—

I. Excelleth in glory the former.

II. Is incomplete in its results as yet.

III. Is culminative to a higher and final glory.

IV. Is rich in spiritual forces.

V. Is one is which divine operations for man’s welfare are all pervasive.

VI. Is marvellous in its history.

VII. Is accumulative in its events towards, and formative of, a future time. Former dispensations gradually opened the path of man from the guilt of Eden to the altar of atonement: this dispensation shall terminate in dissipating the shame of the cross by the glory of the Redeemer’s kingdom. (Ibid.)

The danger and security of the Christian:—The dangers which attend the spiritual life are of the most appalling character. The life of a Christian is a series of miracles. See a spark living in mid ocean, see a stone hanging in the air, see health blooming in a lazar house, and the snow-white swan among rivers of filth, and you behold an image of the Christian life. The new nature is kept alive between the jaws of death, preserved by the power of God from instant destruction; by no power less than Divine could its existence be continued. When the instructed Christian sees his surroundings, he finds himself to be like a defenceless dove flying to her nest, while against her tens of thousands of arrows are levelled. The Christian life is like that dove’s anxious flight, as it threads its way between the death-bearing shafts of the enemy, and by constant miracle escapes unhurt. The enlightened Christian sees himself to be like a traveller, standing on the narrow summit of a lofty ridge; on the right hand and on the left are gulfs unfathomable, yawning for his destruction; if it were not that by Divine grace his feet are made like hinds’ feet, so that he is able to stand upon his high places, he would long ere this have fallen to his eternal destruction. (C. H. Spurgeon.)

The faithfulness of God:—Grandly did the old Scottish believer, of whom Dr. Brown tells us in his “Horae Subsecivae,” respond to the challenge of her pastor regarding the ground of her confidence. Janet, said the minister, “what would you say, if after all He has done for you, God should let you drop into hell?” “E’en’s (even as) He likes,” answered Janet. “If He does, He’ll lose mair than I’ll do.” At first sight Janet’s reply looks irreverent, if not something worse. As we contemplate it, however, its sublimity grows upon us. Like the Psalmist she could say, “I on Thy Word rely” (Psa. 119:114, metrical version). If His Word were broken, if His faithfulness should fail, if that foundation could be destroyed, truly He would lose more than His trusting child. (Clerical Library.) The perfection of God’s works:—Show me for once a world abandoned and thrown aside half formed; show me a universe east off from the Great Potter’s wheel, with the design in outline, the clay half hardened, and the form unshapely from incompleteness. Direct me, I pray you, to a star, a sun, a satellite—nay, I will challenge you on lower ground: point me out a plant, an emmet, a grain of dust that hath about it any semblance of incompleteness. All that man completes, let him polish as he may, when it is put under the microscope, is but roughly finished, because man has only reached a certain stage, and cannot get beyond it; it is perfection to his feeble optics, but it is not absolute perfection. But all God’s works are finished with wondrous care; He as accurately fashions the dust of a butterfly’s wing, as those mighty orbs that gladden the silent night. (C. H. Spurgeon.)

The basis of Paul’s confidence:—He had one great historical instance to commend his theological inference. For he knew, with all the depth and intensity of a late and reluctant realization, that the whole history of his own people had been one vast illustration of the truth on which he relied. In them, far back, in the very childhood of the race, God had begun a good work: patriarchs, psalmists, prophets had by faith been confident that He would perform it: and He had actually performed it until the day of Jesus Christ, until His first coming. From the call of Abraham to the Incarnation one purpose had been steadfast, one work had moved on a line determined from the beginning—all that vast period, with its surprises and disasters, its restless shirtings, its immeasurable contrasts, had been spanned by one dominant conception—through all that seemed so disorderly and aimless there had sped the evolution of one supreme design—from first to last one thought held good, one will pressed on—and He who came at last could look back across the centuries to that majestic, solitary form upon the far-distant watch-tower, and could declare—“Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day: and he saw it and was glad.” (J. Paget, D.D.)

Means of progress in the Divine life:—Man is not formed in his infancy, but passes through several stages which bring him gradually to perfection; one polishes his memory, another sharpens his mind; this strengthens his judgment, and that embellishes his manners; so is it with the work of piety. For this new man who must be brought to perfection, can only be so by various degrees. He has his infancy before he attains his riper years. As in the schools of painters they first draw the figures with the pencil, and then add the colouring, giving them at different sittings and with much labour the last gloss of perfection, which in the studies of those which they adorn steals the senses of the beholders; so in the school of God, the faithful are begun and the work sketched, and then they are polished and finished. Here this work is well begun; but it can only be finished in heaven. We are the pencil sketch of the work of God to which He daily adds some touch; but the last finishing stroke we shall not receive till the great day of the Lord. (J. Daillé.)

The perseverance of the saints does not supersede human effort:—If any of you should be well assured that, in a certain line of business, you would make a vast sum of money, would that confidence lead you to refuse that business, would it lead you to lie in bed all day, or to desert your post altogether? No, the assurance that you would be diligent and would prosper would make you diligent. I will borrow a metaphor from the revelries of the season, such as Paul aforetime borrowed from the games of Greece—if any rider at the races should be confident that he was destined to win, would that make him slacken speed? Napoleon believed himself to be the child of destiny, did that freeze his energies? To show you that the certainty of a thing does not hinder a man from striving after it, but rather quickens him, I will give you an anecdote of myself: it happened to me when I was but a child of some ten years of age, or less. Mr. Richard Knill, of happy and glorious memory, an earnest worker for Christ, felt moved, I know not why, to take me on his knee, at my grandfather’s house, and to utter words like these, which were treasured up by the family, and by myself especially, “This child,” said he, “will preach the gospel, and he will preach it to the largest congregations of our times.” I believed his prophecy, and my standing here to-day is partly occasioned by such belief. It did not hinder me in my diligence in seeking to educate myself because I believed I was destined to preach the gospel to large congregations; not at all, but the prophecy helped forward its own fulfilment; and I prayed, and sought, and strove, always having this Star of Bethlehem before me, that the day should come when I should preach the gospel. Even so the belief that we shall one day be perfect, never hinders any true believer from diligence, but is the highest possible incentive to make a man struggle with the corruptions of the flesh, and seek to persevere according to God’s promise. (C. H. Spurgeon.)

The permanence and sacrificial character of the work of grace:—These words, found linked together more than once in Pauline usage, e.g., 2 Cor. 8:6; Gal. 3:3, have probably a sacrificial import. They are used in describing religious ceremonials, and especially the ritual of sacrifice. The metaphor then may be this: just as a sacrifice, when once it is solemnly inaugurated, is carried through with all the appropriate rites to its completion, so every work of grace in the believer’s heart, being not only God’s work, but a work which is an offering presented unto Him, will be carried on to its proper consummation. Nothing will be allowed to come in the way, so as to render it a half-finished, a mutilated, an imperfect thing. Begun, it must be “performed.” Paul is now writing to a Christian community composed for the most part of those who had once been heathen; his language therefore purposely takes appropriate colouring from their former but now forsaken rites. There is, he would say, a sacrifice carried on within their souls, a work of grace, a work shown in Christian liberality, which God will not permit to remain mutilated and incomplete. This explanation is all the more probable in view of a similar figure found in 2:17. There substantially the same metaphor appears distinctly on the surface, which at least lies only hidden here. It reminds us of the infinite solemnity belonging to every good work wrought within us and wrought by us. It is “an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, well pleasing to God.” But the apostle directs the thought forward to the final completion of this service, “until the day of Jesus Christ.” (J. Hutchinson, D.D.)

The day of Jesus Christ:—That is the goal of our race. That is the point to which every Christian eye is directed. Every other day of our lives, every other day of the world’s existence, is a day; a common, ordinary, casual day and no more: this is the day. It is sometimes so called without further epithet or explanation (1 Cor. 3:13; Heb. 10:25). Do we remember, do we live in the remembrance of all that is involved in it? The day of Jesus Christ is the day which is His altogether; the day which shall reveal Him as He is, disclose His real greatness, put down every rival power, and erect His throne for ever as the King of kings and Lord of lords. Where shall we be then? Shall we be among those slothful and disobedient servants who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord? or rather among those who have been long waiting for Him with loins girt and lights burning, and to whom the day of the revelation of Jesus Christ will be also the day of their own final manifestation as the sons of God? (Dean Vaughan.)[14]

6. The beginning of the work of God in the lives of the Philippians, hinted at in the phrase ‘from the first day’ (v. 5), calls forth an expression of the apostle’s confidence. He who began a good work in you is an undoubted reference to God whose redeeming grace in the gospel originated the church. Paul makes no personal claim to be the human founder of the church as he does at Corinth (1 Cor. 3:10), but even there he is careful to insist that the only true foundation is Christ himself (1 Cor. 3:11).

It is possible to take a good work as an allusion to the Philippians’ participation in the apostolic ministry by their gifts: ‘their co-operation with and affection for the apostle’, as Lightfoot puts it. 2 Corinthians 8:6 uses almost identical verbs, ‘begin, finish’, for Titus’ administration of the relief fund for the Jerusalem church. So, ‘this “sharing in the gospel” is the good work referred to here’ (Hawthorne).

On the other hand, Paul may be looking beyond the generosity of the Philippians to that work of grace within their lives which first gave them the impulse to contribute to his missionary labours. The good work would then be the action of God at the time of their conversion. This is confirmed by the way in which Paul often refers to the time when God’s grace began to work in the lives of his readers (see 1 Cor. 1:4; Col. 1:5; 1 Thess. 1:5–6; Phlm. 5f. and especially Gal. 3:3 where the two verbs of this verse are used).

God’s redeeming and renewing work will reach its crown and climax at the day of Christ Jesus. This eschatological note makes Hawthorne’s view that verse 6 refers exclusively to the matter of Philippian generosity in aiding the gospel unlikely. Paul is reaching out to see the wider context of their response to God’s grace. He who began the work of redemption will continue to perform it until its completion when the Lord returns. The thought here stresses not only the sovereign initiative of God in salvation (cf. the wording of Acts 16:14, describing the first Philippian convert), but also the sovereign faithfulness of God in Christ. It reveals Paul’s unshakeable confidence that the community at Philippi will be preserved in spite of its sufferings and in the face of assaults which are levelled against it (1:28; 2:15; 3:17ff.). The converse of this confidence is his appeal for unity and steadfastness (4:1). The readers are urged to stand firm (1:27) because of the mighty power of the Lord whose promise (Matt. 16:18) guarantees the preservation of the church in all its trials. ‘The perseverance of the saints rests on the perseverance of God with the saints’ (Motyer).[15]

6. Persuaded of this very thing. An additional ground of joy is furnished in his confidence in them for the time to come. But some one will say, why should men dare to assure themselves for to-morrow amidst so great an infirmity of nature, amidst so many impediments, ruggednesses, and precipices?3 Paul, assuredly, did not derive this confidence from the steadfastness or excellence of men, but simply from the fact, that God had manifested his love to the Philippians. And undoubtedly this is the true manner of acknowledging God’s benefits—when we derive from them occasion of hoping well as to the future. For as they are tokens at once of his goodness, and of his fatherly benevolence towards us, what ingratitude were it to derive from this no confirmation of hope and good courage! In addition to this, God is not like men, so as to be wearied out or exhausted by conferring kindness. Let, therefore, believers exercise themselves in constant meditation upon the favours which God confers, that they may encourage and confirm hope as to the time to come, and always ponder in their mind this syllogism: God does not forsake the work which his own hands have begun, as the Prophet bears witness, (Psalm 138:8; Isaiah 64:8;) we are the work of his hands; therefore he will complete what he has begun in us. When I say that we are the work of his hands, I do not refer to mere creation, but to the calling by which we are adopted into the number of his sons. For it is a token to us of our election, that the Lord has called us effectually to himself by his Spirit.

It is asked, however, whether any one can be certain as to the salvation of others, for Paul here is not speaking of himself but of the Philippians. I answer, that the assurance which an individual has respecting his own salvation, is very different from what he has as to that of another. For the Spirit of God is a witness to me of my calling, as he is to each of the elect. As to others, we have no testimony, except from the outward efficacy of the Spirit; that is, in so far as the grace of God shews itself in them, so that we come to know it. There is, therefore, a great difference, because the assurance of faith remains inwardly shut up, and does not extend itself to others. But wherever we see any such tokens of Divine election as can be perceived by us, we ought immediately to be stirred up to entertain good hope, both in order that we may not be envious towards our neighbours, and withhold from them an equitable and kind judgment of charity; and also, that we may be grateful to God.3 This, however, is a general rule both as to ourselves and as to others—that, distrusting our own strength, we depend entirely upon God alone.

Until the day of Jesus Christ. The chief thing, indeed, to be understood here is—until the termination of the conflict. Now the conflict is terminated by death. As, however, the Spirit is accustomed to speak in this manner in reference to the last coming of Christ, it were better to extend the advancement of the grace of Christ to the resurrection of the flesh. For although those who have been freed from the mortal body do no longer contend with the lusts of the flesh, and are, as the expression is, beyond the reach of a single dart, yet there will be no absurdity in speaking of them as in the way of advancement,2 inasmuch as they have not yet reached the point at which they aspire,—they do not yet enjoy the felicity and glory which they have hoped for; and in fine, the day has not yet shone which is to discover the treasures which lie hid in hope. And in truth, when hope is treated of, our eyes must always be directed forward to a blessed resurrection, as the grand object in view.[16]

Ver. 6.—Being confident of this very thing. St. Paul’s thanksgiving refers, not only to the past, but also to the future. He has a confident trustfulness in God’s power and love. The words αὐτὸ τοῦτο might mean “on this account,” i.e. on account of the perseverance described in ver. 5, but the order seems to support the ordinary rendering. That he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it; rather, as R. V., he which began. Both ἐναρξάμενος and ἐπιτελέσει have (Bishop Lightfoot) a sacrificial reference. The good work is self-consecration, the sacrifice of themselves, their souls and bodies, issuing in the co-operation of labour and almsgiving. This sacrificial metaphor recurs in ch. 2:17. The good work is God’s; he began it and he will perfect it. The beginning (Bengel) is the pledge of the consummation. Yet it is also their work—their co-operation towards the gospel (comp. ch. 2:12, 13). Until the day of Jesus Christ. The perfecting will go on until the great day. To the individual Christian that day is practically the day of his death; though, indeed, the process of perfecting may be going on in the holy dead till they obtain their perfect consummation and bliss both in body and soul. These words do not imply that St. Paul expected the second advent during the life of his Philippian converts. The words “in you” must be understood as meaning “in your hearts,” not merely “among you.”[17]

1:6 / Their eager partnership in Paul’s gospel ministry was a sure sign of the work of grace that had begun to be accomplished in their lives when they first believed the saving message. Paul voices his conviction that he who began a good work in them, will carry it on (cf. 2:13) until it reaches its consummation at the advent of Christ. Similarly in 1 Thessalonians 5:24, after praying that the readers may be preserved “blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ,” Paul and his companions affirm, “The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.” Salvation is God’s work from first to last; therefore, where it has truly been inaugurated, it will certainly be completed.

The day of Christ Jesus, called “the day of Christ” in verse 10 and in 2:16, is the time of Christ’s expected appearing in glory (cf. 3:20). The expression is taken over from the ot “day of the Lord”—the day when Yahweh, the God of Israel, would vindicate his righteous cause and put down all injustice, wherever it might be found, first and foremost among his own people (cf. Amos 5:18–20). But now, by divine investment, “Jesus Christ is Lord” in the most august sense that the word can bear (2:11); the day of the Lord is therefore the day of Christ Jesus. In a Christian context it is the day when the lives and actions of the people of Christ will be assessed. Each believer’s “work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light” (1 Cor. 3:13); therefore, final judgment must “wait till the Lord comes” and must not be anticipated by those whose knowledge of the unseen motives and personal circumstances of others is at best imperfect (1 Cor. 4:5). Above all, the day of Christ Jesus is the time when the salvation of believers, already inaugurated, will be consummated. Like their Thessalonian brothers and sisters, the Christians of Philippi had learned “to wait for his [God’s] Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead” (1 Thess. 1:10), and to rejoice in the “hope of salvation” because they had been chosen not to endure the divine retribution to be visited on the ungodly at the end time but “to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thess. 5:8, 9). For believers, then, that day would be light and not darkness (by contrast with the warning of Amos 5:20 that to some it would bring “darkness, not light”).[18]

For their victory in the last day (v. 6)

As the apostle gave thanks for the Philippians’ participation in the work of the gospel, he could not help but add a word of thanksgiving for the work of the gospel in them. He was thankful ‘… that he who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ …’

Paul was very good at slipping little nuggets of breathtakingly glorious truth into the mundane portions of his letters. This verse is one of those nuggets. It tells us the following:

•     Salvation is God’s work. The Philippians did not begin the work of salvation in themselves only to have God come along and add a little to it. It was entirely his work. God provided the way of salvation through his Son, Jesus Christ, and he even enabled the Philippians to receive that salvation.

•     Salvation is a good work. Salvation lifts the sinner from eternal condemnation and ruin and makes that person part of God’s family and a partaker of God’s eternal glory. Who would dare say that this is not a good thing?

•     Salvation is a sure work. God does not begin it and then abandon it somewhere along the way. He does not pull his people from the flames of destruction only to allow them to slip back and be consumed. God completes the work of salvation. We know what it is to plan a work and undertake a work only to see it fail. But it is not so with God. We must not picture him looking over the redeemed multitude in eternity and saying: ‘We did fairly well. Eighty per cent of the saved finally made it home.’ God will not have to say such a thing because all his people will make it home. Not one will be missing! The faithful God will faithfully complete his work![19]

1:6 Having indicated when (1:3) and how (1:4–5) he thanks God, Paul now explains why (1:6). When Paul says I am sure of this he is expressing a state of confidence, a settled conviction, that what he is about to state is true. His confidence is based not on a general sense of goodwill, but on a specific doctrinal conviction.

That doctrinal conviction is that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. The context makes it clear that the one who began this good work is God Himself. The good work in view is the entire work of salvation from beginning to end, stretching from initial regeneration and justification to final glorification (cf. Rom. 8:29–30; Eph. 1:3–14). As Peter O’Brien notes:

The expression refers to the new creation that he had begun in them, while their eager participation in Paul’s gospel ministry was not the good work itself, but clear evidence of this work of salvation. In the OT God’s activity in creation is described as a good work (Gen. 2:2). In Isaiah, where Yahweh is spoken of as ‘the First and the Last’ (Isa. 41:4; 44:6; 48:12), he is the creator not only of a ‘work’ that might in terms of Gen. 2 be called ‘good’, but also of Israel. Creation and calling were closely linked in Isaiah, where it could be seen that the First and the Last had not only created Israel his Servant, but also called her (esp. Isa. 44:1–6; cf. 42:5–6; 43:1, 7). And as the First and the Last Yahweh might be relied on to complete the work he had begun.

This good work is accomplished in you. Although it is possible to translate this prepositional phrase as ‘among you,’ the emphasis seems to fall more on the internal work of God in individual believers more so than His work among the body of believers. In any case, both are true. God begins a good work in the lives of individuals, but also in the body of believers corporately as they share fellowship in the gospel with God and each other. Without the internal transformation of individuals there is no corporate transformation of the body; without the corporate transformation of the body there is reason to question the reality of the internal transformation of the individuals.

God has not only begun this work, but he will bring it to completion. While Paul uses this Greek verb (epiteleō) seven times, the closest parallel is found in Galatians 3:3, where he uses this verb and the rare Greek verb enarchomai (‘begin’):

Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? (Gal. 3:3)

And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ. (Phil. 1:6)

This parallel strongly suggests that the good work being completed is the believer’s salvation, not merely their financial partnership in Paul’s ministry. It suggests that God completes this good work in believers by His Spirit and not their own efforts. By saying this Paul is anticipating his explanation of how the believer grows in godliness in Philippians 2:12–13.

By using the future tense, Paul expresses his confidence that the completion of this good work will come to pass. This confidence is grounded in the character of God and His faithfulness to His promises. ‘Paul’s confidence is not in the Christianity of the Christians but in the God-ness of God, who is supremely trustworthy, able, and committed to finish the work he has begun.’ This reality is the hope of all who participate in the gospel through faith in Jesus Christ. One day God will complete the work He began at regeneration, in spite of its sometimes apparently slow and imperceptible progress in this life. What comfort for all who trust in Christ! God has not and will not abandon us to finish the work of our redemption, but rather provides the willing and the working to finish what He started (Phil. 2:12–13). Calvin further unpacked this when he wrote, ‘God, therefore, begins the good work in us by exciting in our hearts a desire, a love, and a study of righteousness, or (to speak more correctly) by turning, training, and guiding our hearts unto righteousness; and he completes this good work by confirming us unto perseverance.’

God will complete this good work at the day of Christ Jesus. What in the OT was referred to as ‘the day of the Lord’ (see, e.g., Isa. 13:6–16; Ezek. 7:19; 30:3; Joel 1:15; 2:1, 11, 31; 3:14–18; Amos 5:18–20; Obad. 1:15; Zeph. 1:7, 9, 10, 14; 2:2, 3:8) in the NT has become the day of Christ Jesus (see, e.g., Rom. 2:16; 1 Cor. 1:8; 2 Cor. 1:14; Phil. 1:6, 10; 2:16; 1 Thess. 5:2). Just as in the OT the day of the Lord meant judgment for God’s enemies and salvation for His people, so too in the NT the day of Christ means judgment on Christ’s enemies and salvation for His people. Throughout the OT there were a series of ‘days of the Lord’ in which God brought judgment and salvation, foremost among them being the destruction of Jerusalem in the 6th century B.C. The NT describes both the crucifixion of Jesus and the pouring out of the Spirit at Pentecost in language that presents each of them as a Day of the Lord. Yet the NT continues to look forward to a great and final Day of the Lord Jesus Christ, when God will judge His enemies and vindicate His people (cf. Rev. 19:11–21).

Here in 1:5–6 we have the past, present, and future of our salvation in short span. Paul speaks of ‘the first day’ the Philippians believed the gospel and became partakers of it and its benefits (1:5). He then speaks of the ‘present time’ during which the Philippians are experiencing fellowship in the gospel and the ongoing work of God in/among them (1:5–6). And he concludes by speaking of the ‘day of Christ Jesus’ when all of God’s purposes will reach their consummation (1:6). On that day ‘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’ (Phil. 2:10–11). It is these temporal references that help the Philippians form a frame of reference for all that God has done and is yet to do.

What was true of the Philippians is true of us as believers today. God is the one who began the great work of redemption in us, making us a new creation by the work of his Spirit. He continues that work in us as we share in the benefits and implications of the gospel in fellowship with other believers. But we still must await the great day of Christ for that work to be completed by the transformation of our lowly bodies into conformity with the glorious body of the risen Jesus (Phil. 3:20–21).[20]

This next clause is so familiar that its place in the immediate, as well as the larger, context of Philippians is easily overlooked, especially since it is not at once clear as to how it functions in the present sentence. Some scholars, to be sure, have gone the other direction, placing it in context in a very narrow sense—the “good work” referring specifically to the Philippians’ material support of Paul that God will continue to perform through them. The clause is best understood, however, in terms of their relationship to Christ and the gospel in the broader sense argued for in v. 5. Its language and grammar also support such a view. First, then, some words about what is said, followed by some observations about context.

The clause begins with another participle, “having been persuaded” (= being confident), whose link to what precedes is more conceptual than grammatical. The clue to its place in the sentence lies in the final words of v. 5, “from the first day until now.” “Not only so,” Paul now adds in a somewhat digressive way, “but I am likewise persuaded that the good work God began in you, in terms of your long-term partnership in the gospel in every possible way, he will bring to glorious consummation at the end, when Christ returns.”

But despite this grammatical connection to what precedes, Paul’s emphasis rests on what he is about to say: “being confident,” he thus digresses momentarily, “of this very thing.” His confidence is that their lifelong participation in the gospel, “from the beginning until now,” will continue until the day of Christ. But this confidence has very little to do with them and everything to do with God, who both “began” a good work in them and will “bring it to completion at64 the day of Christ.” Thus, having reminded them of his own joy over their good past and present, he turns now to assure them of their own certain future.

The “day of Christ Jesus” is the eschatological goal of present life in Christ. Paul, and perhaps the early church before him, took up the term “day of the Lord” from the OT to refer to the Parousia, the (now second) coming of Christ. Paul thus uses the term in his earliest letters,66 and frequently thereafter. While at times the term may emphasize the aspect of judgment inherent in its OT usage, much more often the emphasis in Paul is on the eschatological consummation that has Christ’s coming—and therefore his final exaltation and glorification, including those who are his—as its central focus. This is the “not yet” of salvation that Christ has “already” secured and the Spirit appropriated in the life of the believer. Thus the focus, as everywhere in Paul, is on Christ; whatever else the final wrap-up entails, it is Christ’s day above all.

Although it is not certain to what precisely Paul is pointing with the language “good work,” it is unlikely that he is referring exclusively to their grace of giving, since one would then have expected him to say “good work through you.” The accent instead is on what God is doing in (or “among”) them, not what he is doing through them. Most likely, therefore, the term points to their “salvation in Christ,” and in this case is yet another way of speaking about their “participating in the gospel”—not so much about their sharing it, but about their experiencing it and living it out in Philippi.71 Thus with this theological affirmation in the thanksgiving, that God has begun and will complete his “good work” of salvation among them, Paul anticipates the appeal in 2:12–13: that they “work out their salvation,” meaning to live out in Christian community the salvation that Christ has effected, precisely because “God is at work in you, both to will and do what pleases him.”

That Paul in this instance should call their salvation a “good work” is hardly accidental, since this is language he uses elsewhere to refer to the ethical dimension of salvation in Christ. For him there is no salvation that does not include a transformed life; hence this present emphasis. By this language Paul is pointing ahead to the content of the prayer report that follows (vv. 9–11), and thus to the larger concern of the letter that they “live out their heavenly citizenship in Philippi in a manner that is worthy of the gospel” (1:27).

But why this particular way of rounding off the thanksgiving, with its note of joyful prayer based on their long-time partnership with Paul in the gospel? Since such eschatological moments occur elsewhere in Pauline thanksgivings, this may well be either another reflection of the same, or perhaps another typical theological “spin-off”: having mentioned “from the first day till now,” he simply cannot help himself but also to point out their certain eschatological future. One can hardly disallow such an option in Paul! Nonetheless, while the final phrase in v. 5 undoubtedly triggered this clause, its form—especially the language of “persuasion” and the emphasis on God’s “bringing to conclusion” what he has begun in/among them—suggests that its primary raison d’étre has to do with a larger issue brewing in the Philippian community. We may not have full certainty as to the reasons for it, but several moments in this letter suggest that some of them had begun to lose the basic eschatological orientation that marks all truly Christian life. This is especially in evidence in: (1) the way Paul concludes his personal testimony in 3:4–14 (12–14), as forgetting the past and pressing toward the eschatological prize, (2) the appeal that follows for them to do the same (3:15–17), (3) the sad note about those who have not persevered (3:18–19), and (4) the final eschatological notes in the exalted passages in 2:9–11 and 3:20–21 and Paul’s own “desire to depart and be with Christ” (1:23). All told, these later affirmations and appeals serve as the most likely clues to our understanding the present affirmation, which also explains its slightly digressive nature in the present sentence.

Believers in Christ are people of the future, a sure future that has already begun in the present. They are “citizens of heaven” (3:20), who live the life of heaven, the life of the future, in the present in whatever circumstances they find themselves. To lose this future orientation, and especially to lose the sense of “straining toward what is ahead, toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called us heavenward” (3:13–14), is to lose too much. Thus, triggered by their present gift, which also reminds Paul of their long association in the gospel, Paul digresses momentarily to remind them that even in the midst of present difficulties, God has in Christ both guaranteed their future and blessed their present situation in Philippi.[21]

6 The opposite of joy is not gloom but despair, the incapacity to trust in any new and good future. Paul rejoices because he is “confident” of what God’s future holds (see 1:25; 2:24). His confidence does not derive from the sterling qualities of the Philippians or from his ability to write a stirring letter, which would only be a “confidence in the flesh” (3:3–4). It derives instead from the character and faithfulness of God, who finishes what he starts and does not leave his people in the lurch to fend for themselves (cf. 1 Th 5:23–24). Despite his imprisonment, Paul remains confident that the divine grace working in them, as manifested in their gift to him, and their continuing “partnership in the gospel” will culminate as God intends when they stand together before Christ on the day of his return.

“Good work” may be an allusion to their generosity in supporting Paul’s mission endeavor. Paul uses it in 2 Corinthians 9:8 in connection with the charity for the Jerusalem saints and attests that it is kindled by God’s grace (2 Co 8:1–4; 9:14), glorifies God (2 Co 9:13), and inspires many thanksgivings to God (2 Co 9:11–12). Their “good work,” he assures them in 4:19, will be abundantly repaid by God.

Paul takes over the “day of the Lord” concept—a standard feature in OT prophetic texts for the moment when God will completely and decisively establish his reign—and transforms it into the “day of Jesus Christ” (see also 1:10; 2:16; 1 Co 1:8; 3:13; 5:5; 2 Co 1:14; 1 Th 5:2, 4; 2 Th 2:2; 2 Ti 1:12, 18; 4:8). He ties it to the parousia of the risen Lord, when Christ will right all wrongs, bring judgment, and put all things under his feet.[22]

God Finishes What He Starts

Philippians 1:6

… being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

Philippians 1:6 is perhaps one of the three greatest verses in the Bible that teach the doctrine of the perseverance of the saints, the doctrine that no one whom God has brought to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ will ever be lost.

People lack perseverance. People start things and drop them. As men and women, you and I are always beginning things that we never actually find time to finish. But God is not like that. God never starts anything that he does not finish. God perseveres. Has God begun something in your life? Have you been born again by the Spirit of God? Then you need not fear that you will ever be lost. Your confidence should not be in yourself, neither in your faith nor in your spiritual successes in earlier days, but in God. It is he who calls us as Christians, he who leads us on in the Christian life, and he who most certainly will lead us home.

A Biblical Truth

The two passages that I regard, along with Philippians 1:6, as being the greatest expression of this theme in the entire Bible are John 10:27–28 and Romans 8:38–39. In John 10:27–28, Jesus said, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand.” In Romans 8:38–39, Paul assures his readers, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

The doctrine of the perseverance of the saints is also found in less formal statements in literally dozens of other passages. David writes in Psalm 138:8, “The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me.” Hebrews 10:14 says, “By one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.” The Lord spoke to Jeremiah saying, “I have loved you with an everlasting love” (Jer. 31:3). We read in 2 Corinthians 4:8–9, 14, “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed … because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you in his presence.”

The doctrine is also suggested by the images that are applied to believers throughout the Bible. The saints are compared to trees that do not wither (Ps. 1:3), to the great cedars of Lebanon that flourish from year to year like the redwoods of California (Ps. 92:12), to a house built upon a rock (Matt. 7:24), to Mount Zion that cannot be moved (Ps. 125:1). These passages teach that the one who has been born again by God will never be lost. God never abandons his plans. God never begins a work that he does not finish.

All of God

There are many people who do not like this teaching because they like to think human beings are responsible for their own salvation. They prefer to believe that we can be accepted by God on the basis of our good works or the use of the sacraments, and that our final salvation depends more or less on how faithful or persevering we can be. This is not biblical, and it is contradicted by every moment of the Christian’s experience with God.

It is contradicted by our experience with God during the first moments of our salvation. People do not seek God; they reject him. If we are saved, it is only because God comes to us first in grace. Paul wrote to the Romans that no human being will ever be justified in God’s sight by his own good works, for all works (no matter how good they may seem in man’s sight) fall short of God’s standard of righteousness. Moreover, human beings do not seek him. Paul writes, “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God” (Rom. 3:10–11). This is true of all of us. I am like that, and so are you. You do not even begin to meet God’s standard of righteousness, and you do not know it unless God reveals your failure to you. You do not understand his standard. You do not seek the One who can help you. Still God comes to you, opens your eyes, gives you the faith to believe, and draws you to himself.

Do you know what C. S. Lewis said about his conversion? Lewis was a brilliant British scholar who was also a thoroughgoing agnostic. Yet God sought him and found him. In his autobiography, Surprised by Joy, Lewis described his conversion like this: “In the Trinity Term of 1929 I gave in, and admitted that God was God, and knelt and prayed; perhaps, that night, the most dejected and reluctant convert in all of England. I did not see what is now the most shining and obvious thing: the Divine humility which will accept a convert even on such terms. The Prodigal Son at least walked home on his own feet. But who can duly adore that love which will open the high gates to a prodigal who is brought in kicking, struggling, resentful, and darting his eyes in every direction for a chance of escape.”

Eternity magazine once published an interesting article called “Encounter with Light,” telling of a young atheistic student who had heard of C. S. Lewis and began corresponding with him. As this student unburdened himself of his doubts and questionings to the famous scholar, Lewis responded very simply: “I think you are already in the meshes of the net. The Holy Spirit is after you; I doubt if you’ll get away.” Not long afterward, the atheistic student, pursued by God for so long, finally surrendered. He had found, as C. S. Lewis himself had found, that salvation is of God. He ran, but God successfully pursued him.

Did you seek God? Of course you didn’t. You resisted him, and he had to beat down your resistance until you yielded to him like a vanquished enemy. If in the struggle there was ever a moment you seemed to seek him, it was only because he was there beforehand moving you to do it.

I sought the Lord, and afterward I knew

He moved my soul to seek Him, seeking me;

It was not I that found, O Savior true;

No, I was found of Thee.

So it is. Salvation is always of God. We love because he enables us to do so.

Now what is true of the first moments of our salvation is true of it all. Before you were even a gleam in the eye of your earthly father, you were beloved in the eye of your heavenly Father. He who knew all about you even before you were born, chose you and saved you, and he did so in order that one day he might make you like the Lord Jesus Christ in love, knowledge, holiness, and all his other perfections. That is why Paul can say of salvation, focusing every phrase upon God, “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified” (Rom. 8:29–30).

Did you ever stop to wonder why God saves people in this way? The answer is given in the Bible. God has saved us in this way so that no one might boast in his presence. “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast” (Eph. 2:8–9). God will have no one in heaven boasting about how he or she got there. He will not let you say, “Well, I must admit that God did most of it. I was far from him, and he called me. But there were five crises in my life in which I really showed my nettle and hung on tight. I’m really here because of my faith.”

This is human thinking, but God will have none of it. No one will be in heaven except saved sinners, those who deserve hell, and they will be there because salvation is entirely of God.

God never begins a thing that he does not intend to finish. And when he does it, God does it all!—in spite of our foolishness, in spite of our running away, in spite of ourselves! We are brought to safety, not by our own efforts or our own devices but solely by the faithfulness of our heavenly Father.

God’s Purpose

Everything that I have said thus far has been an encouragement for Christians, but there is a somber side to it as well. If you are a Christian, God has not saved you just to save you. He has saved you for a purpose. Paul says, “Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Phil. 1:6).

Did you ever think of this verse in that light? Not like this: “Oh, everything will be all right for me because God will certainly keep me secure until I finally get to heaven.” But rather, “I know that God Almighty saved me for a purpose and he will keep on whittling away at me until he accomplishes it in me, whether I want him to or not.” This is a somber thought, but it is certainly what the verse teaches.

Look at the verse again more closely. Paul says that God is determined to do a good work in us. What is that good work? The answer is not spelled out too clearly in Philippians 1:6, but it is spelled out very clearly in Romans 8:29. You know Romans 8:28: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” But do you know the next verse? It tells what that purpose is: “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.”

Think of it: God is so delighted with Jesus Christ that he has called millions of sinful human beings to himself in order that Jesus might reproduce himself in them and that this universe might be populated with millions of Christs. This does not mean that we will become divine. We will still be his creation, the fruit of his fingers, but we will be like him. That is the point. We will show forth his character; we will be conformed to the image of Christ.

This will mean that our growth in the character of Christ will be accompanied by growth in the knowledge of our own sinfulness. There are those who think sanctification means becoming aware of how perfect we are becoming. But those people are hypocrites and they discredit the faith. Sanctification means discovering how sinful we are and learning to turn to Jesus for hourly forgiveness and cleansing.

It is something like formal education. Take a student in high school who has just had a basic introduction to English literature. He has read Macbeth and Julius Caesar; he has read a few modern short stories and some modern plays—Shaw’s Pygmalion and others. He thinks that he has a pretty good grasp of English literature. After all, he has read the best of it, and the rest is probably not worth reading anyhow. But then he goes to college where he takes a more advanced course. He learns that he did not really know Shakespeare so well after all. In addition to the other tragedies, there are also the history plays where Shakespeare’s theories of kingship are most clearly seen, and the comedies that reveal another side of his outlook on life altogether, the realm of fantasy and nature, of Puck and Ariel and Falstaff. The student begins to realize how ignorant he is. And he goes on to learn not only what Shakespeare wrote but to master Shakespeare’s background—the Holinshead Chronicles, Boethius, Chaucer, Boccaccio—and he learns to do this for other writers and other disciplines. The search is unending.

That is the way we are to go on in Christian living. When we are first born again we think we are not too bad. We say to ourselves, “After all, I believed, didn’t I? That puts me head and shoulders above those who do not believe.” But as we live with Christ we begin to see how sinful and ignorant we really are. Instead of saying, “Oh, I’m pretty good,” we say, “I’m pretty sinful.” Eventually we say, “I’m a sinful person indeed; I am the chief of sinners” (1 Tim. 1:15). That’s sanctification. Dr. Donald Grey Barnhouse used to say, “There is no Christian listening to my voice who will think as well of himself five years from now as he does this morning.” That is true because God’s purposes will not be thwarted, even in the sanctification of Christians.

Leaning on God

The purpose of this process is to teach us to rely on God. God does not take great pleasure in forcing us to develop low opinions of ourselves, but he knows that we will never rely on him until we realize that we cannot rely on ourselves.

When I was in grade school, I spent a number of summers at a Christian camp in Canada. One summer I spent several hours watching one of the campers learn to climb a telephone pole. This boy was one of these campers who partially pay for their vacation by working; and since the camp needed more adequate wiring, he had the job of stringing the wires. For that he had to learn to climb a pole.

The secret of climbing a telephone pole is to learn to lean back, allowing your weight to rest on the broad leather belt that encircles yourself and the pole, allowing your spikes to dig into the pole at a broad angle. Climbing a pole is easy—as long as you lean back. Of course, if you fail to lean back and pull yourself toward the pole, then your spikes will not dig in and you’ll slip. It isn’t very pleasant to slip because the pole is covered with splinters that easily dig into your body.

At first my friend would not lean at all, and as a result he never got off the ground. The spikes simply would not go into the wood. It was frustrating. After a while he learned to lean back a bit and got started, but as soon as he was a few feet off the ground he became afraid and pulled himself close to the pole. Down he would go with a bump, getting covered with splinters in the process. This practice went on until he learned that he had to lean fully into the belt that held him. When he learned this, he began to climb.

It is the same in the Christian life. God wants you to climb. This is his purpose in saving you. He wants you to rise to Christ’s own stature. What is more, he is going to insist on it. He is going to teach you to climb by resting on him. There will be times when you think that you can hold on better by grasping the pole than by leaning on the belt, and when you do you will slip spiritually and God will let you get covered with splinters. He will do it because he knows that that is the only way you will learn to trust him, and to trust him is the only way to climb. What is more, he will keep at you; he will not let you quit. “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (v. 6).

Perhaps you are saying, “But that is unreasonable. God can’t work like that. It must depend on me.” But it is the way God works, and you will find it out sooner or later in your Christian life. Perhaps you are saying that you will run your own life, pick your own goals, choose your own purposes. Well, then, God may have to break you until you learn that he is determined to accomplish his purposes in you.

Perhaps, instead, you will be willing to learn to rely on him, growing in grace as he molds you into the image of Christ. If this is so, then for you Philippians 1:6 will become a blessed truth rather than a bitter lesson.[23]

The Joy of Anticipation

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. (1:6)

A fourth element of joy is anticipation. Nothing can encourage a Christian so much as the knowledge that, despite life’s uncertainties and difficulties, and no matter how many spiritual defeats there may be long the way, one day he will be made perfect.

Confident translates peithō, which here means to be persuaded of and have confidence in. Paul’s confidence was much more than human hope; it was the absolute confidence that comes from knowing and believing God’s promise that He [God] who began a good work in him will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. Salvation is wholly God’s work, and for that reason its completion is as certain as if it were already accomplished.

Began is from enarchomai, a compound verb meaning “to begin in.” It is used only twice in the New Testament, both times in reference to salvation. Paul rebuked certain believers in the Galatian churches who believed that they could finish in their own power what God had divinely begun in their lives solely by the power of His Holy Spirit. “Are you so foolish?” he asked rhetorically. “Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?” (Gal. 3:3). In the present text the apostle, in effect, responds to that same question, assuring the Philippians that their salvation is solely a gracious work of God. God requires faith for salvation, but faith is not a meritorious work. Salvation is by the power of God in response to faith; and, as already noted, faith itself is God’s work, divinely initiated and divinely accomplished (Eph. 2:8–9). Although Lydia, the first convert in what would become the church at Philippi, believed the gospel of Christ, Luke made it clear that “the Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul” (Acts 16:14).

Later in the present epistle, Paul emphasized that “to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,” and “it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure” (Phil. 1:29; 2:13). “As many as received Him [Christ],” John declared, “to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name” (John 1:12). When “the apostles and the brethren who were throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God” through the witness of Peter, “those who were circumcised took issue with him,” believing that the gospel was only for Jews or Jewish converts. But after they heard Peter’s report, “they quieted down and glorified God, saying, ‘Well then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life’ ” (Acts 11:1–2, 18). “In the exercise of His will,” James wrote, “He brought us forth by the word of truth, so that we would be a kind of first fruits among His creatures” (James 1:18).

As noted earlier, salvation is solely by God’s grace. God “chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him” (Eph. 1:4). God chose all believers before time, long before they could possibly choose Him; and apart from His choice of them, they could not choose Him (John 6:44). It has always been true, in every age and circumstance, that only “as many as had been appointed to eternal life [have] believed” (Acts 13:48). Paul clearly expressed that truth in Romans 5:8–10:

God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.

Later in that epistle Paul gave a parallel to Philippians 1:6, noting that “those whom [God] foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified” (Rom. 8:29–30). All the chosen will be glorified. God will finish what He has begun.

Every aspect of salvation is by God’s sovereign will and choice. Paul wrote to the Ephesians that:

God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God. (Eph. 2:4–8; cf. Titus 3:4–6; James 1:18; 1 Peter 1:2–3)

It is the Lord who begins the work of salvation, and it is the Lord, through His Holy Spirit, who will perfect it. To the Galatians Paul wrote, “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me” (Gal. 2:20). Epiteleō (to perfect) is a compound, formed by the preposition epi and the verb teleō (“to complete”) to give the intensified meaning of “fully completed.” Paul was absolutely certain that God will fully complete His work of salvation in the Philippians. There is no possibility of failure or of partial fulfillment.

The eschatological expression the day of Christ Jesus does not refer to what both the Old and New Testaments prophesy as the final Day of the Lord, the time of God’s judgment on the sinful world. The Day of the Lord is described by Paul in 1 Thessalonians:

For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night. While they are saying, “Peace and safety!” then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape. But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day would overtake you like a thief. (5:2–4; for more information on the Day of the Lord, see Isa. 13:6–22; Joel 1:15; 2:11; Acts 2:20; 2 Thess. 1:10, “that day”; 2 Peter 3:10, and Revelation 1–11, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary [Chicago: Moody, 1999], 199–201)

Also an eschatological expression, the day of Christ Jesus, on the other hand, clearly refers to the time when believers will be glorified, when their salvation will be completed and made perfect (1 Cor. 3:10–15; 2 Cor. 5:10). It is the same as “the day of Christ” that Paul mentions several times later in Philippians, the day for which Christians should be prepared by living sincerely and blamelessly (1:10) and by “holding fast the word of life” (2:16). In his first letter to the Corinthian church, the apostle called it “the day of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 1:8), and in his second letter to them he called it “the day of our Lord Jesus” (2 Cor. 1:14). In each instance, the personal names Jesus or Christ are given (rather than Lord), and in each instance the reference is to the time when believers will fully share the Lord’s perfect righteousness, when “Christ is formed in [them]” (Gal. 4:19), and “[they] also will be revealed with Him in glory” (Col. 3:4).

Believers are “predestined to become conformed to the image of [God’s] Son” (Rom. 8:29), because “just as [they] have borne the image of the earthy, [they] will also bear the image of the heavenly, … [and] in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, … [they] will be changed.… For this perishable must put on the imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality” (1 Cor. 15:49, 52–53). “We know that when [Christ] appears,” John wrote, “we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is” (1 John 3:2). Peter wrote: “When the Chief Shepherd appears, [we] will receive the unfading crown of glory” (1 Peter 5:4). Although a believer living in unrepentant sin may be delivered temporarily to Satan for discipline, “his spirit [will] be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus” (1 Cor. 5:5). The day of Christ Jesus is the time of perfection and glorification, when the glorious manifestation of the children of God will finally come (Rom. 8:18–19, 23).

When God saves, He saves completely and eternally. In promissory covenant terms, to be justified is to be sanctified and glorified. There is no such thing as experiencing one of those aspects of salvation without the other two. Each is an integral and necessary part of the whole continuum of salvation. For God to begin salvation in a person’s life is an irrevocable guarantee of His completing it. As William Hendriksen has observed, “God … is not like men. Men conduct experiments, but God carries out a plan. God never does anything by halves” (Philippians, 55).

The Lord said of David: “I will not break off My lovingkindness from him, nor deal falsely in My faithfulness” (Ps. 89:33; cf. v. 20). Jesus gives every believer the absolute promise that “all that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out.… This is the will of Him who sent Me, that of all that He has given Me I lose nothing, but raise it up on the last day” (John 6:37, 39). Later He reiterated that promise, saying, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand” (John 10:27–28). Paul declared, “I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:38–39). The apostle wrote to Timothy that “the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, ‘The Lord knows those who are His’ ” (2 Tim. 2:19; cf. John 10:14). Peter exulted:

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. (1 Peter 1:3–5; cf. Jude 24)

It is easy for believers to become discouraged when they focus on their problems and imperfections (and those of other believers). Those sins should not be ignored or minimized; but neither should they be allowed to overshadow the marvelous reality of the future perfection of the church and of every individual believer, as God’s Word guarantees so frequently and clearly. Remembering that glorious truth removes the debilitating pressure of doubt and fosters triumphant joy, gratitude, and anticipation. In so doing, it also frees God’s people to live more abundantly and fruitfully.

The nineteenth-century commentator F. B. Meyer wrote,

We go into the artist’s studio and find there unfinished pictures covering large canvases, and suggesting great designs, but which have been left, either because the genius was not competent to complete the work, or because paralysis laid the hand low in death; but as we go into God’s great workshop we find nothing that bears the mark of haste or insufficiency of power to finish, and we are sure that the work which His grace has begun, the arm of His strength will complete. (The Epistle to the Philippians [Grand Rapids: Baker, 1952], 28)

God has no unfinished works. The God who saves is the God who justifies, sanctifies, and glorifies. The God who begins is the God who completes. During His incarnation, the Lord gave this absolute and unambiguous assurance, which is a source of joy to all those who will ever trust in Him: “All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out” (John 6:37).[24]


[1] Criswell, W. A., Patterson, P., Clendenen, E. R., Akin, D. L., Chamberlin, M., Patterson, D. K., & Pogue, J., eds. (1991). Believer’s Study Bible (electronic ed., Php 1:6). Thomas Nelson.

[2] Sproul, R. C., ed. (2005). The Reformation Study Bible: English Standard Version (p. 1718). Ligonier Ministries.

[3] Barry, J. D., Mangum, D., Brown, D. R., Heiser, M. S., Custis, M., Ritzema, E., Whitehead, M. M., Grigoni, M. R., & Bomar, D. (2012, 2016). Faithlife Study Bible (Php 1:6). Lexham Press.

[4] Crossway Bibles. (2008). The ESV Study Bible (p. 2280). Crossway Bibles.

[5] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2006). The MacArthur study Bible: New American Standard Bible. (Php 1:6). Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[6] Stanley, C. F. (2005). The Charles F. Stanley life principles Bible: New King James Version (Php 1:6). Nelson Bibles.

[7] Radmacher, E. D., Allen, R. B., & House, H. W. (1999). Nelson’s new illustrated Bible commentary (p. 1545). T. Nelson Publishers.

[8] Sapaugh, G. P. (2010). The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Philippians. In R. N. Wilkin (Ed.), The Grace New Testament Commentary (p. 895). Grace Evangelical Society.

[9] MacDonald, W. (1995). Believer’s Bible Commentary: Old and New Testaments (A. Farstad, Ed.; p. 1960). Thomas Nelson.

[10] Foulkes, F. (1994). Philippians. In D. A. Carson, R. T. France, J. A. Motyer, & G. J. Wenham (Eds.), New Bible commentary: 21st century edition (4th ed., p. 1250). Inter-Varsity Press.

[11] Anders, M. (1999). Galatians-Colossians (Vol. 8, p. 208). Broadman & Holman Publishers.

[12] Utley, R. J. (1997). Paul Bound, the Gospel Unbound: Letters from Prison (Colossians, Ephesians and Philemon, then later, Philippians): Vol. Volume 8 (pp. 164–165). Bible Lessons International.

[13] Hendriksen, W., & Kistemaker, S. J. (1953–2001). Exposition of Philippians (Vol. 5, pp. 54–56). Baker Book House.

[14] Exell, J. S. (n.d.). The Biblical Illustrator: Philippians–Colossians (Vol. 1, pp. 8–13). Fleming H. Revell Company.

[15] Martin, R. P. (1987). Philippians: An Introduction and Commentary (Vol. 11, pp. 66–67). InterVarsity Press.

[16] Calvin, J., & Pringle, J. (2010). Commentaries on the Epistles of Paul the Apostle to the Philippians, Colossians, and Thessalonians (pp. 25–27). Logos Bible Software.

[17] Spence-Jones, H. D. M., ed. (1909). Philippians (p. 3). Funk & Wagnalls Company.

[18] Bruce, F. F. (2011). Philippians (pp. 31–32). Baker Books.

[19] Ellsworth, R. (2004). Opening up Philippians (pp. 18–19). Day One Publications.

[20] Harmon, M. S. (2015). Philippians: A Mentor Commentary (pp. 84–87). Mentor.

[21] Fee, G. D. (1995). Paul’s Letter to the Philippians (pp. 85–88). Wm.B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.

[22] Garland, D. E. (2006). Philippians. In T. Longman III (Ed.), The Expositor’s Bible Commentary: Ephesians–Philemon (Revised Edition) (Vol. 12, p. 193). Zondervan.

[23] Boice, J. M. (2000). Philippians: an expositional commentary (pp. 33–38). Baker Books.

[24] MacArthur, J. F., Jr. (2001). Philippians (pp. 26–30). Moody Press.