An Examination of Biblical Precepts Involved in Issues at Hand
I recently acquired a book, The History of Providence as manifested in Scripture. Alexander Carson, 1840. Banner of Truth Trust, Carlisle Pa. The book is rich with enough material to last a preacher for as long as he wants to deal with Divine Providence. I find the doctrine of Divine Providence especially important and applicable for our day. Everywhere we turn, we hear of conspiracies: bankers, political leaders, the elite of all stripes, particularly in the national news media. The list of conspirators is endless, and many talk show hosts are making a good living exposing conspiracies. The conspiracy is the devil against the Lord God. Admittedly, there are fearful conspiracies, but we are not called to reveal and deal with conspiracies. Rushdoony points out that emphasis on conspiracies is devil worship. As wise men, we should know what is taking place so we can prepare. But our emphasis must not be on conspiracies, but on the total Christian Gospel of Christ.
As we will see in this one illustration, God is in total control, as his unseen hand guides all the affairs of men and nations for his glory and for the good of his people. Not only is the Gospel doctrine presented in the Old Testament, but we have recorded there how the Divine Providence works to accomplish his purpose:
1 Corinthians 10:11 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.
There are unlimited examples of Providence recorded in the Word for our instruction, and the one we will look at is found in,
Psalms 33:9 For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast. 10 The LORD bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: he maketh the devices of the people of none effect. 11 The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations. (Dan. 4:35, Ps. 115:3, Isa. 14:24.)
Ephesians 1:11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: (Acts 4:28)
Webster defines Providence (1828):
In theology, the care and superintendence which God exercises over his creatures. He that acknowledges a creation and denies a providence, involves himself in a palpable contradiction; for the same power which caused a thing to exist is necessary to continue its existence. Some persons admit a general providence, but deny a particular providence, not considering that a general providence consists of particulars. A belief in divine providence, is a source of great consolation to good men. By divine providence is often understood God himself.
Webster points out that God is just as active in his unseen hand in Providence as he was and is in creation.
Though we believe in the doctrine of God's providence, do we really in our minds and hearts apply what we know to daily events? If we fail to recognize God's hand in absolutely every situation, we can grow weak in the faith, and some will even depart from the faith. 1 Tim 4:1
When we fail to see God's hand, we lose one of the greatest blessings of our faith. Actually, we deny Romans 8:28, 29, though we say we believe it. All things, visible and invisible, work toward the sovereign purpose of the Lord our God..
In other words, God works to govern this world through Providence just as sure as he worked through creation. There are those, even pastors, who will readily confess the work of Divine Providence in creation, even in 6 days of creation, yet in the next breath, they deny the particulars of Providence that are required to continue creation to its God appointed end. They have replaced Divine Providence with the Devil's providence by saying that Satan is the one controlling history.
The work of God in governing this world is unknowable to the wisdom of this world, as God governs through his physical laws. For the Word of God is clear that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will. (Daniel 4:17, 25, 32, 5:21.) I know Christians who refuse to recognize that God reigneth over the heathen, as he now sitteth on the throne of his holiness. (Ps. 47:8, Isa. 52:7, Rev. 19:6.) I know some Christians who go as far as to mock the doctrine of Divine Providence controlling history, because "Divine Providence" is not clearly stated in Scripture.
In 1 Corinthians 11:19, Paul tells us that it is the will of God that heresies should enter and even prosper, and that those heresies should pervert many. Heresies are needed to reveal the truth about those who claim to speak for Christ. Paul warned us so we would not be surprised and so we would be prepared for them by studying Scripture. We must study to show ourselves approved unto God, or we will be blown about by every wind of doctrine. We must be able to recognize and stand our ground against those who deny the many truths revealed to us in Scripture, starting with the very basic doctrines of the Gospel of Grace.
Moreover, 1 Peter 1:7 tells us that heresies must come from even the most unexpected and surprising sources, for by them our faith is purified, e.g., Federal Vision is a heresy that sounds good and is making inroads into some good churches.
Without the proper view of Providence, Christians have no hope in the face of prevailing errors in the Church, as well as the prospering evil around us. Our comfort comes from the knowledge that the Lord God omnipotent reigheth. (Rev. 19:6.) He who sits in the heavens laughs at his opposition, whether that opposition comes from within the church or from without. (Ps 2.) The Lord God will be honoured even in the wrath of his enmies.
Nothing does damage to the cause of Christ and leads into error like success. We are inclined to judge not by righteous judgment, but by outward appearances. We are influenced by the success of an endeavor without examining the foundation of that endeavor. Messages from the pulpit are judged not by their soundness, but by the visible results they produce.
As someone said, "Opinions spread by infection, rather than by a thorough investigation of the evidence."
However, a Biblical view of Providence will deliver us from viewing worldly success as a mark of God's blessings. Scripture shows us that often times God has granted great success to his enemies. His enemies are thus hardened in their rebellion, and our faith is tried. Success is no proof of truth, nor is the lack of success a proof of error.
In 1 Corinthians 2, Paul disclaimed all worldly wisdom in his attempt to advance the Gospel Kingdom, and so must we. Even if Christianity were in danger of being banished from the earth, we must not attempt to assist it by fraud, deceit, craft, nor any other dishonourable or umbiblical means. All the ingenuity of all the wise men of the earth with their high sounding, worldly wise degrees cannot extend the Gospel Kingdom one soul beyond God's assigned limits.
We are often afflicted as we consider the signs of the times in which we live. We see the prosperity of the wicked, and the unjust oppression of the righteous. We live in the results of the influence of the powers of darkness. However, we have our consolation in the Providence of God. Providence tells us that opposition to the Gospel Kingdom is part of the plan of Divine Wisdom.
Though God seems to have given the world over to the dominion of the enemy, God has not excluded himself from the government of the world. 1 Kings 22:22, shows us that Satan himself is no more than a servant of the Most High God.
The wrath of Satan, as well as the wrath of man and any device man can imagine against the Gospel Kingdom must praise God. He will not allow any works of evil to progress beyond what will praise him.
Ps 76:10 Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain.
Isaiah 45:9 Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands?
God pronounces a strong woe against those who might question his providential workings here on earth.
Genesis 12:10-20, Abraham is driven by famine into Egypt
Lesson 1 - Divine Providence sends and uses both good and bad to fulfill his divine plan and purpose, which is normally unknown to man.
God sends both feast and famine to fulfill his own purpose. One of the scourges with which he afflicts his enemies is famine, which, at the same time, afflicts his own people, for it rains on the just and the unjust. God used three famines to move his people: 1. Abraham into Egypt. 2. Isaac into Egypt, and 3. To move Israel into Egypt. How many people died in these sore famines?
In chapter 12, we see that the famine in Canaan was intended by Providence to try Abraham's faith. Abraham's faith is emphasized many times by Paul, as well as in Hebrews:
Romans 4:9-16. Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also? for we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness. 12 And the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised. (Also Gal. 3:7-9, Heb. 11:8, 17.)
But in Genesis 12, we see a very different and unfaltering picture of Abraham's faith. Providence forces Abraham into Egypt. In Egypt and out of fear for his life because of his wife's beauty, he tells his wife to convince the Egyptians that she is his sister. The lie is very convincing.
Lesson 2 - The fear of death cannot justify cowardly conduct in his people.
Hebrews 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; 15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
To make matters even worse, events reveal that Abraham's fear was totally ungrounded. In his fear of losing his life, he denies his wife, and thus he greatly dishonors God, himself and his wife.
No danger can excuse any man for denying his wife for his own life. In fact, one of the problems of women in combat is that men take unnecessary risks with their own lives for the women.
Lesson 3 - Genesis 12 proves that Abraham's faith was in no way of his own making, nor from anything he had within himself. Abraham here is shown to be even weaker than other men. His lack of faith in this instance is shocking, as he sacrifices the virtue of his wife on the altar of his unbelief and fear.
If all we knew of Abraham was what we have recorded in the New Testament, he would set an unattainable example of faith.
* Is this the man who is presented to us in the New Testament as the father of the faithful?
* Is this the man who had faith strong enough to leave his home country at God's command, not knowing where he was going?
* Is this the man who had enough faith to place his only son on the altar?
We see, therefore, that Abraham's faith was the gift of God. The strength of faith depends not upon any strength of the human mind, will nor emotion. Rather, faith depends on the Spirit of God who must both give faith and maintain faith.
Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
If Abraham, throughout his history, has shown great strength of faith, then his faith would be attributed to his own strength, and a product of his own particular character. Who can, on his own, obtain to the faith of Abraham as revealed in the New Testament?
We see that when God left Abraham on his own, and his faith was tried, he utterly failed. We must beware of exalting Abraham because of his faith. Though he exhibited a great tower of faith, yet when God left him, he sunk to the lowest level of distrust. In Abraham, we not only see the height of faith, but we also see that there is nothing good in man.
Psalms 115:1 Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake.
Romans 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.
In Abraham's weakness, the most timid believer can find encouragement. In our trials and distresses we cannot say, "Abraham was strong, but I am weak." We see that when left to himself and his faith tried, he shows himself as weak as water.
When God was with him, his faith was unwavering. When left on his own, he had no faith. We see that in our greatest trials and tests, we will surely fail if we do not have God's strength.
2 Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (1 Cor. 10:13.)
No matter how great a test of our faith God might call us to, God will supply the needed faith to see us through, as he did many times for Abraham. On the other hand, God may let us fall as he did Abraham to remind us of our dependance upon him.
Proverbs 16:18 Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.
God has a way with dealing with pride, and those ways can be very hurtful both to us and to our loved ones.
First, through famine, Providence forced Abraham into this trial.
Second, Providence brought Sarah to the attention of the Egyptians, and then to Pharaoh's princes who had close and immediate access to Pharaoh. They then brought her to the attention of Pharaoh.
If Abraham was fearful for his life because of her beauty, why did he not encourage her to keep out of sight? She could have remained unnoticed in Egypt for a good bit of time, for she had a tent of her own, and could have remained secluded from common observation.
But in this case, it was the Lord's divine purpose that Abraham's faith would be tried and found wanting. It was God's unseen hand of providence that arranged all the circumstances to bring Sarah to Pharaoh's attention.
Lesson 4 - We can arm ourselves to the teeth, store years worth of food and take every precaution known to man to avoid trials, even locking ourselves up in our homes, but unless the Lord protects us, when we face those trials, we will fail in the faith.
Psalms 127:1 Except the LORD build the house, they labor in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.
Providence determined that Sarah should be seen by those who had immediate access to the king. They commend her beauty to Pharaoh, and she is brought to his house to be one of his wives.
Lesson 5 - God may see fit to deliver his people from the justly deserved and hurtful consequences of their own foolishness, faithlessness and sinfulness. He may deliver them from the harm they do unto themselves, the harm they do to others and the harm others may seek to do to them. However, it is the sin of presumption to enter into foolishness, faithlessness and sin hoping for God's deliverance from the results of our presumptions.
2 Peter 2:10 But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, selfwilled, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities. (Ps 19:13, Deut 1:43.)
Abraham's sin brought his wife into danger; he dishonored his God, himself, and his wife.
God permitted Abraham's sinful plan to work up to the very brink of fulfillment before he stepped in. Divine Providence prevented Pharaoh from fulfilling his purpose, for he plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai, Abram's wife, v. 17.
Of what did the plague consist? Whatever it was, Pharaoh recognized it as a result of having taken Abraham's wife.
Lesson 6 - Did God use disease, afflictions or accidents to keep the king from fulfilling his desire with Sara? God can use these things to stop evil intents against his people. They are also used to keep his people from fulfilling sinful or hurtful purposes.
How many repeat the "Lord's Prayer" as a ritual without even considering the implications of what they are praying? In the context of Abraham here, "deliver us from evil" could mean that we are praying for God to send disease, afflictions and even accidents our way if necessary, in order to deliver us from the evil intents of our own hearts, from the evil intents of others or from future evils that would befall us if God did not intervene in some terrible way to change our future.
Christians must accept all things that come into their lives as being from God, according to his divine purpose, glory and for their own good.
Certainly, it is difficult to see how disease, afflictions and accidents can be for our good when those things are happening to us. But years down the road, and maybe not until we get to heaven, we will see how those afflictions were for our good and God's praise.
Lesson 7 - Though God's providence is clearly seen throughout Scripture, there is no human understanding of how God works all things for his own praise and glory, and for our good.
Proverbs 21:30 There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the LORD.
Abraham willingly sacrificed his wife to Pharaoh's desires (his harem) to save his own life. Providence stepped in, and did what fear prevented Abraham from doing. It was Providence that delivered her out of Pharaoh's hands, and not any wisdom on any man's part.
Not only did Providence protect Sarah, but moved Pharaoh to "commanded his men concerning him:" Pharaoh issued a proclamation of protection over Abraham and his wife.
V. 16, Pharaoh had bestowed great wealth upon Abraham for his wife's sake. Now Pharaoh sends Abraham and his wife away, but he does not spoil Abraham. Though Abraham had gained the great wealth by his deceit, Providence moves Pharaoh to allow Abraham to keep that wealth.
Human nature would not have been so generous with a deceiver, but it was in God's predetermined plan to prosper Abraham with worldly goods.
However, Abraham's goal in his deceit was not to gain worldly wealth; rather, it was to save his own life. It would certainly be presumptuous sin on our part to seek to gain worldly wealth through deceit.
God fulfilled his divine purpose in Abraham, and Abraham went back to Canaan with great riches, 13:2.
Finally, lesson 8
Colossians 3:18 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.
The godliness and the faith of Sarah is clearly show.n Sarah submitted unquestioningly to her husband, even calling him lord. Evidently, she trusted the Lord to protect her. Her husband was clearly in the wrong in what he commanded her to do, but God protected her in her obedience to her husband.
Lesson 1 - Divine Providence sends and uses both good and bad to fulfill his divine plan and purpose.
Lesson 2 - The sure prospect of death cannot justify cowardly conduct in his people.
Lesson 3 - Genesis 12 proves that Abraham's faith was in no way of himself, nor from anything he had within himself.
Lesson 4 - unless the Lord protects us, we will fail in the faith in difficult times.
Lesson 5 - God may see fit to deliver his people from the justly deserved and hurtful consequences of following their heart, but it is serious presumption to depend on his deliverance so they might be able to do their own thing.
Lesson 6 - Disease, afflictions and even accidents are often used by God to keep the wicked from fulfilling their evil desires against his people, as well as to protect his people from their own willful desires. Deliver us from evil.
Lesson 7 - Though God's providence is clearly seen throughout Scripture, there is no human understanding of how God works all things for his own praise and glory, and for our good.
Lesson 8 - God can protect even as we may have to obey unlawful orders at the point of a gun. But there are times when we must not act the coward, and take our stand, even to the death as so many saints of old have done.
Romans 11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!
Finally, note the woe pronounced by God against those who strive against God's providential workings:
Isaiah 45:9 Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands?
Burzynski, the Movie is an internationally award-winning documentary that tells the true story of a medical doctor and Ph.D biochemist named Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski who won the largest, and possibly the most convoluted and intriguing legal battle against the Food & Drug Administration in American history.
His victorious battles with the United States government were centered around Dr. Burzynski's gene-targeted cancer medicines he discovered in the 1970's called Antineoplastons, which have currently completed Phase II FDA-supervised clinical trials in 2009 and has been given permission by the FDA to begin the final phase of FDA testing?randomized controlled clinical trials.
When Antineoplastons are approved, it will mark the first time in history a single scientist, not a pharmaceutical company, will hold the exclusive patent and distribution rights on a paradigm-shifting medical breakthrough.
Antineoplastons are responsible for curing some of the most incurable forms of terminal cancer. Various cancer survivors are presented in the film who chose these medicines instead of surgery, chemotherapy or radiation - with full disclosure of medical records to support their diagnosis and recovery - as well as systematic (non-anecdotal) FDA-supervised clinical trial data comparing Antineoplastons to other available treatmentsÐwhich is published within the peer-reviewed medical literature.(The FDA spent $60 million trying to put him out of business. See http://www.burzynskimovie.com/ The movie is a must see for those concerned about cancer.)
A few years ago, my good friend Brian opened his heart to me and a few other friends about a tragedy in his family. Brian's teenage son had been brutally murdered some time before and Brian was reflecting on his loving memory of his son and the heartbreak of losing him.
Interestingly, Brian blamed himself for his son's death because he had allowed his son to be in a dangerous situation and a dangerous place where the murder occurred.
Too late, Brian learned that his son was regularly associating with dangerous people who had no regard for the child?s safety.
Too late, Brian learned that almost every day his son was hanging out in a place where he was distracted from his studies, and where illegal drugs were being sold and used.
Too late, Brian found out that his son was spending large portions of his day in a Godless environment where sexual perversions were practiced, where disrespect for proper authority was encouraged, and where bullying and fighting were everyday practices.
Brian loved his son. Brian and his wife are good, caring, respected citizens. Some of us tried to sympathize with Brian and argued that he should not blame himself for the loss of his son, but Brian was unmoved by what we said.
You see, Brian Rohrbough's son was murdered at Columbine.
And Brian doesn't blame guns; he blames himself.
He blames himself for being unfaithful and disobedient to God, He blames himself for being lulled into believing that a Godless government school system would be a healthy and safe place for his son.
Brian pleaded with all of us not to make the same mistake.
Michael Anthony Peroutka,
By Thomas Williamson
One of the religious trends of our modem age is the proliferation of the Multi-Site Church movement, in which one church, usually a megachurch with ample resources, establishes a network of multiple satellites or campuses over a wide geographical area, all of which are considered part of one congregation.
Like any other innovations in religion, there are some who hail the Multi-Site technique as a bold and effective methodology of reaching and evangelizing our generation, and there are others who are suspicious and critical of the movement.
Critics believe that there is a tendency by megachurches to plant their multiple sites in affluent suburban areas of the Bible Belt that are already well-covered by Baptist and other evangelical churches, because it is easier to build up a big crowd of faithful and generous adherents by means of transfer growth from existing churches.
Proponents of planting new multi-site locations point out that there are plenty of unchurched people everywhere in the Bible Belt, even in neighborhoods that are full of Baptist church buildings. They say that many existing Baptist churches are not reaching their own communities and are not willing to change their ways and adopt new, more effective methods of outreach.
They maintain that it is easier to plant a new church that is effective and dedicated to reaching new people, than it is to go into an established, dead congregation and try to change the thinking of the "faithful few," so as to become effective in outreach.
Critics believe that in many cases, megachurches will open up a satellite site that is deliberately located close to another megachurch or to thriving existing churches, in hopes of growing themselves by transfer growth from the existing churches. Multi-site proponents deny such motives and say they are going after the unchurched, not after members of established churches.
Proponents feel that existing traditional churches are not doing the job, because they are not willing to "speak the language" of the younger generation, by entertaining them with heavy metal rock, rap or hip-hop music in their church services. Recently Perry Noble, a prominent Multi-Site megachurch pastor in South Carolina, selected the rock song "Highway to Hell" by AC/DC to be presented in his Easter services, saying that he did so in order to irritate the religious people.
Critics feel that the locations for satellite churches are selected not on the basis of spiritual need in those locations, but rather as a business decision - new sites are placed in areas that are affluent and can bring in the money. They point to a statement by Pastor Tom Messer of Trinity Baptist Church (Independent) in Jacksonville, Florida, who announced to his people that a proposed new campus in St. Johns County would bring in money back to the main campus to support its ministries.
One critic of the Multi-Site movement is Pastor Bart Barber of First Baptist Church (SBC) in Farmersville, Texas. He has charged that "the Multi-Site movement and the preponderance of domestic SBC church planting is focused like a laser upon those areas where people with lots of money live in church-friendly cultures - places where it is easy to fill a church with rich people."
Barber feels that the emphasis on planting new Multi-Site campuses is draining money, preachers and other resources away from where they are really needed: "If younger Southern Baptists are serious about getting resources out to where lostness is, then we will witness some stanching of the flow of young seminary graduates out to plant new churches throughout the Southland. If it is wrong for a local congregation to keep the preponderance of its money and if it is wrong for a state convention to keep the preponderance of its Cooperative Program receipts within a state, then it is equally wrong for seminary graduate after seminary graduate to cram their new church starts into wealthy Southern suburbs tighter than sardines in a can.
"If the Southern Baptist Convention's leaders are really serious about getting more resources out to reach the most lost areas of the world, they ought to reject entirely the notion of widespread church planting (apart perhaps from language work) within the strength areas of the SBC and labor hard to curtail it - and yet a steady stream among our seminary graduates eschew established churches and choose to create yet another local church bureaucracy in communities already served by multiple congregations, reducing with each new work the funding available to send to the nations."
The "FBC Jax Watchdog" blogger, commenting on Barber's observations, stated, "What the SBC is doing is what marketers call `brand cannibalism.' It has many facets, but cannibalism can occur when a firm opens new retail outlets that are located physically too close, and the two outlets end up competing for what are essentially the same customers.' Not a smart strategy, unless you're the pastor of the new outlet and can get help from the SBC to fund your new church, or if you're a megachurch pastor starting a satellite, and you plan on taking customers from the existing churches in that area."
There are concerns of this nature expressed in other denominations. Recently a Lutheran paper raised the issue of why the Lutheran Church/Missouri Synod was funding a new church plant in Washington, Missouri, a small town which already has two thriving LCMS congregations.
Of course, any time that anyone plants any new church in any location (unless way out in the desert somewhere), someone is going to gripe that the new church is being planted too close to other existing churches.
Church planters should be encouraged to follow the example of the Apostle Paul, who said, "Yes, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man's foundation," Romans 15:20.
The bottom line, of course, is that it's a free country, and that anyone has the right to plop down a new mission, or megachurch Multi-Site campus, right next to your church or mine if they want to. And we have the right to support, or withhold support from, any church plants that may appear to be questionable or unnecessary.
Meanwhile, questions have been asked as to whether the concept of "one church in many locations" is theologically sound and valid, based on New Testament teachings on the nature of the church.
SBC theologian Al Mohler has ruminated on this, saying, "I find myself somewhat continually double-minded on the question (of how does congregationalism function in a multisite church. I'm not sure how to fit this into my own ecclesiological expectations. I also see the almost necessity of some of the missiological adaptation."
SAC pastor Grant Gaines, of Brushy Fork Baptist Church in Canaan, Indiana, has published a critique of the Multi-Site concept on the "9 Marks" web site. He believes that "the most significant problem with a multi-site church structure [is] the belief that a Christian organization may be properly called an ekklesia (church), even though the believers who constitute it assemble in different places."
Gaines notes that in the New Testament and the Septuagint, the word ekklesia always means a literal assembly.
Multi-Site advocates say their church model is Scriptural on the basis that "the congregations in the New testament were too large to meet in one house - they consisted of house churches meeting all over the cities of Corinth, Rome, etc."
But Gaines points out that the phrase espi to auto, meaning "in the same place," is used to describe the local church gathering in 1 Corinthians 11:18, 14:23, and Acts 1:15, 2:1, 2:44, 5:12, 14:27, 15:22, 15:30.
Such statements as Acts 6:2, "Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them," and 1 Corinthians 14:23, "If therefore the whole church be come together into one place," do not support the Multi-Site concept, but rather refute it.
Gaines states, "No particular earthly assembly is in need of any other particular earthly assembly or campus or site to fill up what might be lacking in its status as a full-fledged, self-contained earthly manifestation of the heavenly eschatological assembly. Thus, what proponents of multi-site church structures consider a site or campus that is still part of a church, the Bible considers a church in itself....
"Simply put, multiple sites equal multiple churches, and churches should be self-governing. Because multiple sites equal multiple churches there is actually no such thing as a multi-site church....
"If the multi-site structure could be described to any number of congregationalists from the past, they would recognize it as something very similar to something in between Presbyterian or Episcopalian connectionalism...
"Why not plant churches and maintain close cooperation with an associational type of model? . . . Multi-site churches could move toward turning each site into a church plant, and form, if they desire, their own association of churches that are bound not by church-governmental authority but by voluntary submission to a statement of faith and code of conduct."
In view of a consideration of the Scriptural definition of the local church, we may want to be cautious about embracing the Multi-Site movement. Instead of establishing multiple campuses under the direction of one church, we would do better to plant missions with the view of turning them loose as independent congregations as soon as possible. The independence and autonomous nature of mission congregations should be respected as much as possible, even in church plants that are still in official "mission" status.
In some cases, multiple sites are formed with the best of intentions. They may be the result of a large megachurch absorbing, merging with or otherwise taking over buildings from small, failing congregations that were no longer able to maintain themselves without outside help. In such cases, the intention and purpose of such takeovers should be to get the satellite locations back on their feet and spin them off again as independent congregations, rather than using them to build an empire for the mother church.
The Lord has provided the funds, so here is another issue sooner than normal. We still s-mail several hard copies at .65 ea. Events are taking place so fast that I feel a need to do an issue as often as possible.
We trust you had a good time with your families over the holidays. I notice we are still here though the Mayan calender called for an end of all things. I noticed people got more worked up over that calender than they do over the Lord's calender, which promises an end to all things, followed by righteous judgement. There were even articles about people in NY city seeking "hook ups" before the end.
Things have been quiet
We welcomed a new grandson Dec 28. 11 lbs, 15 ozs. The birth at home with a midwife. Mother and son doing very well.
Winter is here. We got about 6 or 7 in. of snow, with some chilly temperatures (200 - 300) and 30-40 mph winds. The snow drifted some, but the winds came after the snow came. We were able to get out with a 4x4 PU. There are still several inches on the ground. We certainly praise the Lord for wood heat.
Dear Pastor Need,
I found this Examiner quite valuable in several respects, but what I cannot get off my mind is the "Christian cults" that you uncovered that appear to abound. Oh, sure, I am aware of the "social gospel" of the RC's that may flavor some other ministries, but what you uncovered appears to be huge. What this does for me personally is to confirm the direction my devotional has taken and to quash all wonder about some of His judgments. Professing Christians cannot pray against abortion and even the imperialistic murders while advocating theft to fund the social gospel and engaging in the idolatry of salvation by government Thank you! Robert
With all the commotion about guns, we must say a few things. A little research, and one will come to the conclusion that many of the shootings have been "false flags", meant to create public pressure for gun control. (Proper gun control is learned on the shooting range, so one can hit his target.)
Drudge Report, December 30, 2012
Obama hopes to enact new gun-control measures in 2013
By Meghashyam Mali - 12/30/12 09:49 AM ET
President Obama on Sunday said he would make gun control a priority in his new term, pledging to put his "full weight" behind passing new restrictions on firearms in 2013....
First, by many accounts Obama stole the election with the electronic voting machines.
We head an interview on NPR the other day with a software developer who had worked with the machines. He pointed out the extreme ease with which those machines can be hacked, even to swinging an election.
Second, Sandy Hook, more than likely, was a "false flag". 223 caliber casings were found in the building, but Lanza's .223 (Assault Rifle) was still in his car. We have heard no more about the other two men who were apprehended at the scene. Go figure.
Third, Obama got his health care despite the huge public outcry against it. Where were the House and Senate "Republicans" when we needed them? Why will not the House Republicans cut off the funds needed to finance the socialist agenda?
Fourth, The news media for the last several weeks has reported record gun, both hand gun and long gun, sales, particularly of the military style AR15, which uses the military .223 round. (There is a 6 month backlog at the gun factories.) There are several other long guns that use the same round and are semi-automatic also, e.g., the Ruger mini-14 Ranch Rifle. It has a wooden stock and looks like the older military M-14 of Viet Nam era. There is not a big fuss about that long gun, evidently because it does not look as menacing as the AK47.
The vast majority of purchases are for self-defense.
Consider the Word of God, and its promised destruction of false gods and their promised security. For space's sake, I will not quote many passages. I do urge you to do a little research on your own.
Psalms 3:3 But thou, O LORD, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head. 20:7 Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God. 33:16 There is no king saved by the multitude of an host: a mighty man is not delivered by much strength. 17 An horse is a vain thing for safety: neither shall he deliver any by his great strength. 18 Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; 147:10 He delighteth not in the strength of the horse: he taketh not pleasure in the legs of a man.
Isaiah 31:1 Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the LORD!
Jeremiah 17:5 Thus saith the LORD; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the LORD. 48:7 For because thou hast trusted in thy works and in thy treasures, thou shalt also be taken: and Chemosh shall go forth into captivity with his priests and his princes together.
Throughout Scripture, God has used the enemy of his people to destroy whatever hope they had outside of Himself. He continuelly showed them that their trust in what man can do is a useless hope. In his destruction of their false gods, they had to return to dependence upon him.
The more the nation departs from God, the more lawlessness prospers. But notice that rather than seek to return to the law-word of God, evil continues to grow, so people purchase guns to protect from the evil.
Over the years, God has destroyed man's false gods and assurances. Will God allow gun control go to its logical conclusion?
The above certainly does not mean that Christians should ignore the dangers, and depend totally upon the Lord for his deliverance:
Proverbs 21:31 The horse is prepared against the day of battle: but safety is of the LORD.
Luke 22:36, he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one.
What does it appear that America is depending upon for safety: the Lord, or strength of the flesh?
Written by Bob Adelmann. The New American, 12/4/12
... the fiscal cliff, according to investment manager Peter Schiff, "is simply a legal trigger that will trim the deficit in 2013 by automatically implementing spending cuts and tax increases. In other words, the government will spend less, and more of what it does spend will be paid for with taxes rather than debt."
The result, according to Schiff, would be "that the federal budget deficit will be immediately cut in half, shrinking to approximately $641 billion in 2013 from the approximately $1.1 trillion in 2012."
Unfortunately, all the discussions and debates taking place in Washington about how to deal with the so-called fiscal cliff crisis miss the point entirely because they are based on the misperception that the national debt is $16 trillion. In reality, the national debt, when all the promises that the government has made to everyone Ð China, Japan, the Social Security trust fund, Medicare, Medicaid, unemployment benefits, federal employee health and retirement benefits, healthcare and retirement benefits to veterans Ð are added up, exceeds $200 trillion, nearly 14 times larger than the amount to which Washington is willing to admit.
In that context, all the conversation and "serious debate" taking place in Washington is now seen for what it really is: tinkering and fiddling and posturing, while ignoring the elephant in the living room -- the real national debt.
Professor of economics at Boston University Laurence Kotlikoff did the math and concluded that
"the truth is far worse.... The truth is that our politicians have been very careful in their labeling of government receipts and payments so as to keep most of the coming bills Ð off the books....
I recently calculated the fiscal gap [which] measures the present value difference between all projected future federal expenditures (including interest) and all projected future values.
The fiscal gap is thus the true measure of our government's total indebtedness....
How big is the fiscal gap?
Brace yourself: It's $222 trillion.
Worse than that, it's growing by $11 trillion every year. That's 10 times larger than the perceived, assumed, "official" annual deficit over which Washington is currently wringing its hands.
Economist Gary North thinks the problem is so great that nothing short of default and bankruptcy will result. It's not only Washington's unwillingness to acknowledge that the problem is vastly larger than is perceived, it's growing so fast that the current fight over the nibbling around the edges of the problem won't have any impact at all:
We can be certain about this: there is no way to repay the obligations that the federal government has negotiated with the voters.... It has extended its promises vastly beyond its ability to deliver on [them].
And so, concludes North, default is the only option: "The government is going to have to renege on [its] promises."...
The passage of the money bill shows the hypocrasy of the whole affair. $1 cut for every $42 in spending. It had to be loaded with pork in order to get the votes to let it pass. What a fraud upon the American people.
The character of the times in which we live is such as to call forth from us even this admonition, that we ought not to be astonished at the heresies (which abound) neither ought their existence to surprise us, for it was foretold that they should come to pass; nor the fact that they subvert the faith of some, for their final cause in, by affording a trial to faith, to give it also the opportunity of being "approved." Groundless, therefore, and inconsiderate is the offence of the many who are scandalized by the very fact that heresies prevail to such a degree... [Tertullian, A.D. 145-220, The Ante-Nicene Fathers, vol III, p 243.]
The prevalence of and the ready acceptance of heresies, therefore, by believers is neither new nor unexpected. Hence a primary purpose of instruction in God's Word is countering heresies.
The heresy discussed below concerns the most critical issue of the Christian faith; that is, an unbiblical gospel invitation. We should not be surprised that there are very few corners in Christianity where the below heresy does not prevail, as it sends multitudes of sincere people to hell. It is a double serious call to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints.
I submit to you that this country is not Gospel hardened; it is Gospel ignorant, because most of its preachers are. Let me repeat this. The malady of this country is not liberal politicians, the root of socialism, Hollywood, or anything else. It is the so-called evangelical pastor, preacher or evangelist of our day; that is where the malady is to be found. We do not know the gospel. We have taken the glorious Gospel of our blessed God and reduced it down to four spiritual laws, and five things God wants you to know, with a little superstitious prayer at the end. And as someone repeats it after us with enough sincerity, we popishly declare them to be born again! We have traded regeneration for decisionism. (Decisionism Ð the belief that "making a decision," usually practiced by walking a church aisle as method of showing belief and/or praying a sinners prayer is equivalent to repenting of one's sins and trust in Christ alone for the pardon of sinÉ(Ten Indictments against the Modern Church, Pastor Paul Washer.)
The latest booklet sent out by Chapel Library (www.mountzion.org) is titled Ten Indictments against the Modern Church, preached on October 22, 2008 at the Revival Conference in Atlanta, Georgia, by Pastor Paul Washer. The entire message can be heard at www.termindactments.com.
Some years ago, I regularly attended a preachers' fellowship. One of the topics bandied around was "The sins of the church", or some like subject. All kinds of social ills were laid at the feet of preachers, but the indictments presented by Pastor Washer below were not emphasized, if mentioned at all. The Ten Indictments Bro Washer presents are: 1. A Denial of the Sufficiency of Scripture. 2) An Ignorance of God. 3) A Failure to Address Man's Malady. 4) An Ignorance of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 5) An Unbiblical Gospel Invitation. 6) An Ignorance Regarding the Nature of the Church. 7) A Lack of Compassionate Church Discipline. 8) A Silence on Separation. 9) A Replacement of the Scriptures Regarding the Family. 10) Pastors Malnourished in the Word of God. Let me urge you to contact Mt Zion for a copy of this booklet.
All the indictments are well worth repeating, but the Fifth especially caught my attention. I will reserve my comments until the end.
"The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel." Mark 1:15
And now, just as it was in the time of the Wesleys and Whitefield, it is the same today! What do we face? It is not necessarily a sort of infant baptism most of the time; it is not a High-Church confirmation by an ecclesiastical authority. What we face now is the "sinner's prayer." And I am here to tell you, if there is anything I have declared war on, it is the sinner's prayer.
Yes, in the same way that dependence upon infant baptism for salvation,29 in my opinion, was the golden calf30 of the Reformation, the sinner's prayer is the golden calf of today for the Baptists, the Evangelicals, and everyone else who has followed them. The sinner's prayer has sent more people to hell than anything on the face of the earth!
You say, "How can you say such a thing?" I answer: Go with me to Scripture and show me, please! I would love for you to show me where anyone evangelized that way. The Scripture does not tell us that Jesus Christ came to the nation of Israel and said, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand, now who would like to ask me into their hearts? I see that hand." That is not what it says. He said, "Repent and believe the gospel" (Mar 1:15)!
Men today are trusting in the fact that at least one time in their life they prayed a prayer, and someone told them they were saved because they were sincere enough. And so if you ask them, "Are you saved?" they do not say, "Yes I am, because I am looking unto Jesus and there is mighty evidence giving me assurance of being born again." No!Ñthey say instead, "One time in my life I prayed a prayer." Now they live like devils, but they prayed a prayer! I heard of one evangelist who was coaxing a man to do that thing. Finally, the man felt so uncomfortable, the evangelist said, "Well, I'll tell you what. I will pray to God for you and if it is what you want to say to God, squeeze my hands. Behold the power of God."
Decisionism, the idolatry of decisionism. Men think they are going to heaven because they have judged the sincerity of their own decision. When Paul came to the church in Corinth, he did not say to them, "Look, you are not living like Christians, so let's go back to that one moment in your life when you prayed that prayer, and let's see if you were sincere." No, he said this, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves" (2Co 13:5).
I want you to know, my friends, salvation is by faith alone! It is a work of God. It is a grace upon grace upon grace. But the evidence of conversion is not just your' examination of your sincerity at the moment of your conversion. It is the on-going fruit in your life.
Oh, my dear friends, look at what we have done! Isn't a tree known by its fruit (Mat 7:20)? Today 60% or 70% of Americans think they are converted, born again. But we kill how many thousands of babies a day? And we are hated around the world for our immorality. Yet we think we are Christian!
And I lay the blame for this squarely at the feet of the preachers. I have seen this everywhere. The Calvinist, the Arminian, a lot of them share something in common. It is this: the same superficial invitation. They talk a lot about a lot of things and then they come to the invitation, and it is almost as though everyone loses their minds.
Walk up to someone and say, "God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life." Can you imagine telling that to an American?
"Sir, God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life."
"What? God loves me? Well, that's great because I love me, too. Oh, this is wonderful. And God's got a wonderful plan? I've got a wonderful plan for my life, too. And if I accept Him into my life, I'll have my best life now. This is absolutely wonderful."
But this is not biblical evangelism. Let me give you something in its place. God comes to Moses, and He says, "The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation" (Exo 34:6-7). What was the reaction of Moses?Ñ"Moses made haste, and bowed his head toward the earth, and worshipped" (Exo 34:8).
Evangelism begins with the nature of God. Who is God? Can a man recognize anything about his sin if he has no standard by which to compare himself? If we tell him nothing but trivial things about God that tickle the carnal31 mind, will he ever be brought to genuine repentance and faith?
1. We do not begin with, "God loves you and has a wonderful plan." We must begin with a discourse of the full counsel of who God is. And we must tell the person from the start it may cost him his life (Mat 16:24)!
2. And then, after that beginning, we have exploratory questions. "Hey, you know you are a sinner, don't you?" That's like years ago, when my mother was dying of cancer, the doctor walking in and saying, "Hey, Barb, you know you've got cancer, don't you?" We treat it so superficially. There is no weight; no solemnity.
Instead, we must tell them: "Sir, there is a terrible malady upon you and a judgment coming." Because if you just tell a man, "Sir, you know, you are a sinner?" you do not touch heart conviction at all. Go ask the devil if he knows he is a sinner. He will say, "Well, yes, I am. A mighty good one at that, or a mighty bad one depending on how you look at it. But, yes. I know I am a sinner."
The question is not "do you know you are a sinner?" The question is: Is the Holy Spirit so at work in your heart through the preaching of the Gospel, that a change has been wrought, so that the sin you once loved you now hate, and the sin you once desired to embrace, you are wanting to run from it as though you were running from a dragon?
3. And then people today ask the question: "Do you want to go to heaven?" This is the reason I would not let my children go to 98% of the Sunday schools and vacation Bible schools in evangelical churches, because some well-meaning person stands up and says, "Isn't Jesus wonderful," after showing the Jesus film. "Yes," the children respond.
"How many of you little children love Jesus?" "Oh, I do."
"Who wants to accept Jesus into their little heart?" "Oh, I do."
And they get baptized. And they may walk like Christians for a little bit because they have been taught well. They are being raised in a Christian culture, sort of, a church culture anyway. But when they turn 15 or 16, when they have a strength of will, they begin to break the bonds. They begin to live in wickedness. And then we go after them saying, "You are Christians; you are just not living like it. Stop your backsliding."
Instead, we must go to them biblically and say, "You made a confession of faith in Christ. You professed Him even in baptism, but now it seems as though you have turned away from Him. Examine yourself. Test yourself. There is little evidence of any true conversion in you!"
And then after college, when they are 24 or 25, or maybe 30, they come back to church and rededicate their life. They join right in with that pseudo Christian morality that encompasses "churchianity" in America. And in the last great Day, they hear this: "Depart from me you worker of iniquity. I never knew you" (Mat 7:23).
You say, "Brother Paul, you are so angry." Have I not a right to be? Somebody must be crying out for revival. But we haven't even got the foundations straight. Oh, that revival would come and straighten our foundations! But while we have open eyes and ears, and have Scripture in front of us, should we not correct these things about the Gospel invitation?
So why do we ask this question, "Would you like to go to heaven?" My dear friend, everybody wants to go to heavenÑthey just don't want God to be there when they get there! The question is not, "do you want to go to heaven?" The question is this: "Do you want God? Have you stopped being a hater of God? Has Christ become precious to you? Do you desire Him?"
That is what political theory is all about, my dear friend. Everybody wants to go to heaven; but men are haters of God. So the question is not do you want to go to a special place where you will no longer hurt and you will get everything you want. The question is: Do you want God? Has Christ become precious to you?
Often, to get a person to pray the sinner's prayer, he is asked, "Would you like to go to heaven?" "Well, yes," is the reply. "Well, then, would you like to pray and ask Jesus into your heart?" Now, my dear friend, let me say this. There are people who get saved using that methodology, but it is not because of it. It is in spite of it!
Instead, we must be asking this: "Sir, do you desire Christ? Do you see your sin?"
"Oh, yes, yes, I do."
"Sir, let's look at a few Scriptures here that lay out for us what repentance looks like, the Spirit bearing witness that this is happening in your life. Do you see brokenness? Do you see the disintegration of everything you thought, and now your mind is filled with new thoughts about God and new desires and new hope?"
"Yes, I see that.
"Sir, that may be the first fruits of repentance. Now, throw yourself upon Christ. Trust in Him. Trust in Him !"
Listen to me. You have the authority to tell men the Gospel. You have authority to tell men how to be saved, and you have authority to teach men biblical principles of assurance. But you have no authority to tell men they are saved. That is the work of the Holy Spirit of God!
But instead, you take them through that little thing, "Did you ask Jesus into your heart?"
"Yes," he replies.
"Do you think you were sincere?"
"Do you think He saved you?"
"I don't know."
"Of course He saved you because you were sincere and He promised that if you asked Him to come in, He would come in. So you are saved."
And they walk out of the church after five minutes of counseling, and then the evangelist goes to lunch, and the man is lost. The man is lost!
It is an unbiblical invitation. And if they ever doubt their salvation, then you do it all again. You say, "Was there ever a point in time in your life when you prayed and asked Jesus to come in?"
"Yes." "Were you sincere?"
"I think so."
"Then that's the devil bothering you now."
And if they live without growth, even in the context of a church without growth in continued carnalityÑno fear. We blame it on the lack of personal discipleship, and we write it off as the doctrine of the "carnal Christian."
The doctrine of the carnal Christian32 has destroyed more lives and sent more people to hell than you can imagine! Do Christians struggle with sin? Yes. Can a Christian fall into sin? Absolutely. Can a Christian live in a continuous state of carnality all the days of his life, not bearing fruit, and truly be Christian? Absolutely not !Ñor every promise in the Old Testament regarding the New Testament covenant of preservation has failed, and everything God said about discipline in Hebrews is a lie (Heb 12:6)! "A tree is known by its fruit" (Luk 6:44).
I have seen preachers who understood much about the things of God, but when they come to an exemplary Gospel presentation, they will enter, once again, into this unbiblical methodology.
Let me give you a story, a story that is one of the most precious moments in my life as a Christian.
I was preaching in Canada just 30 kilometers from Alaska. There really were more grizzly bears in the town than there were people! It was a little church of about 15 or 20 people, and I was to preach. And just when I got up into the pulpit, this mountain of a man walked in, in his 60s or early 70s. He could have whipped every one of us in this building. And as I preached, as I saw his face, I just threw everything away and started preaching the Gospel. Ile was the saddest human being I had ever seen. I preached just Gospel and more Gospel, and when I was done, I walked from the pulpit directly to him.
I said, "Sir, what is wrong? What is troubling your soul? I have never seen a man so sad and down-hearted in all my life?" He pulled out a manila envelope; it had some x-rays which I couldn't understand. But he said, "I just came from the doctor. I am going to die in three weeks." That is what he told me. "Now I have lived all my life on a working cattle ranch. You can only get there by float plane or riding horses across the mountains." He said, "I have never been to church; I have never read a Bible. I believe there is a God, and one time I heard somebody talking about some guy named Jesus." He said, "I have never been afraid of anything in my lifeÑand I am terrified."
I said, "Sir, did you understand the message, the Gospel?"
He said, "Yes."
Now what would have a great majority of preachers done at that moment? "Well, would you like to ask Jesus to come into your heart?"Ñthat is what they would have done.
I said, "Sir, you understood it?"
He said, "I understood it, but is that it?" He said, "A child could have understood that. Is that all it is, that I understand it and I pray, or...?"
I said, "Sir, you are going to die in three weeks. I have to leave tomorrow. I will cancel my plane ticket and we will stay here over the Scriptures wrestling and crying out to God until you are either converted or you die and go to hell."
And so we began. I began in the Old Testament, the New Testament, every verse of Scripture dealing with the promises of God regarding redemption and salvation, over and over, time after time, reading John 3:16, praying for a while, crying out to God, questioning the man regarding repentance, regarding faith, regarding assuranceÑworking till Christ be formed in him.
And then finally, just exhausted that evening, there was no breakthrough; there was nothing. And I said, "Sir, let's pray." And we prayed.
I said, "Sir, read John 3:16 again."
He said, "We have read this a million times."
I said, "I know, but it is one of the greatest promises of salvation. Read that text again."
And I will never forget it. He had my Bible on his lap in those big mountainous hands of his and he said, "OK." He said, "For God so loved the world, that He gave...ÑI'm saved. I'm saved! Brother Paul, all my sins are gone! I have eternal life! I'm saved!"
I said, "How do you know?"
He said, "Haven't you ever read this verse before?"
What was going on? A working of the Spirit of God, instead of those little tricks you try. What!Ñyou want to go eat? What!Ñyou think preaching is a spectacle, and after that you go back to the hotel? No, after the preaching is when the work begins. It is dealing with souls. People come forward in meetings for counsel by someone who shouldn't be counseling. And after five minutes, they are given the sinner's prayer to pray and the card to sign. And then, quick, give the card to the pastor, and the pastor says, "I would like to present to you a new child of God. Welcome him into the family of God." How dare you!!
If you are going to present him, say this: "This man tonight has made a profession of faith in Jesus Christ. And because of our fear of God and our love for the souls of men, we will now be working with him to make sure that Christ has truly been formed in him, that he truly has a biblical understanding of repentance and faith, and great assurance and joy in the Holy Spirit. That is what we are going to do."
Look at what we have done in modern Christianity. I plead with you, look at what we are doing. And this is not some strange cult. This is us that we are talking about. I plead with you: Stop it. Please, stop it!
Pastor Paul Washer
HeartCry Missionary Society
Radford, VA. 24143
29 infant baptism for salvation Ð see Charles Spurgeon, Baptismal Regeneration.
30 golden calf Ð reference to the golden calf constructed by Aaron at Mount Sinai, which allowed the rebellious Hebrews to defy God's order (Exo 32:1-30).
31 carnal Ñ fleshly, sensual; as opposed to spiritual.
32 doctrine of the carnal Christian Ñ see L.R. Shelton, Jr., The True Gospel of Christ versus the False Gospel of Carnal Christianity. All titles listed in footnotes are available from CHAPEL LIBRARY.
First, I am also extremely angry over the unbiblical invitation to Christ. I have dealt with and warred against the Unbiblical Gospel Invitation since I was saved out of that unbiblical invitation in 1977. I have preached hard against it. The golden calf... I all too well remember preaching against "ask Jesus into your heart" at a preacher's meeting. The following speaker mocked my message against the unbiblical invitation.
Second, I cannot count the number of people I have asked to show me from Scripture any justification for the "sinner's prayer", particularly of "asking Jesus into your heart".
Third, multitude of times, I have had people tell me, upon questioning them, that they had prayed "the sinners' prayer". It is next to impossible to convince them that there is no salvation in that or in any prayer.
Fourth, sincerity! As an associate pastor from the time I went "full time" in 1970 until I was saved in 1977, I "worked" the altar, dealing with those who came forward for whatever reason. "Were you sincere when you prayed that prayer? If so, then you were saved then." I would give a few assurance verses, and send them back to their seats. A few weeks later, they would come forward again for the same reason, assurance. After I was saved, I no longer dealt for assurance, but for conversion.
Fifth, how many services have I sat in since 1977 with a burning heart as the preacher urges his hears with some unscriptural invitation, e.g., turn your heart over to the Lord, or give your life to God, or accept God into your life. The list is endless. Hell will not be too hot for those preachers who have led, and are leading multitudes of sincere seekers down the broad path to destruction. Some of those preachers I have counted as friends over the years, and have tried to warn them, and the warnings were either ignored, or mocked.
Sixth, even the devils know there is a God, and the power of that God, and they tremble. Yet man refuses to tremble before the Thrice-Holy God.
Seventh, I must plead guilty of the above evil with children. I had "worked" large children's churches in two churches before I was saved, and was saved 4 years into the third church. The churches all had large bus routes, and the children's churches' were packed out with multitudes of kids. In any of the three churches, less than 300 on the buses was a cause of "weeping and wailing". I believe that the "Jesus into your heart" came out of "Child Evangelism", because the leaders there felt that children could not understand that redemption was by faith alone in Christ alone. So a new gospel was developed for human understanding. I have also encountered some of those young people after they grew older. They had nothing except a memory of a prayer, and, obviously, no salvation. The bus ministry.... I can not remember one family reached through a bus ministry over the 13 year period of working with the bus routes and with the children's churches. I have heard of children who matured into fine Christian young people, but they were the exception.
Eighth, we are commanded to examine ourselves to see if we are in the faith. Have we been converted evidenced by a new heart. The command is not to remind one of his baptism; that is, to pull him up by his baptism. Is the person, even a child, being told to live godly now because he has been baptized? It is the new birth that gives new life in Christ. Are righteous actions the result of the new birth, or the result of outwardly following a formal creed or statement of faith? We must take care that credalism does not replace the new birth.
Ninth, rededicate... I despise that term the way it is commonly used to dismiss the troubled sinner. Over the years until 1977, I can not count the number of troubled souls I sent back to the pew with a prayer of rededication. In 1977, I abandoned that evil term, and started dealing with troubled souls as lost sinners. The result was beyond our wildest hope. A large portion of the people in that church where I served at that time became genuinely concerned about their souls, and were converted.
Tenth, from Child Evangelism, the sinner's prayer made its way into the adult population, and there it found a happy home: turn your heart over to the Lord, or give your life to God, or accept God into your life, ask Jesus into your heart. The list is endless. With this offer of heaven with no repentance and turning from sin and to a Christ-like life, the unbiblical offers are gladly accepted. The offers of heaven with no change have overwhelmed the visible church as the enemy gleefully watches. Even more distressing is what "door to door" evangelism has and is doing with these false offers of heaven. Again, I know far too well from hundreds of hours of "door to door" evangelism experience.
Eleventh, when I went as the pastor of the Linden Baptist Church, I preached very hard against the many unscriptural invitations. When one would express concern about his or her soul because of responding to a past unscriptural invitation, I would send them home with instructions to read the book of John with a sincere desire to know the truth, and then get back with me as the Lord would lead. Accordingly, a large portion of the Linden church was converted. Of those converted during that time, very few did not follow through with baptism and a new life in Christ. Though they may have left the Linden church, they continued to follow the Lord over the years. I remember one man who came to me saying he had to leave the church with his family because of my stand on Scofield. He was a Scofieldite, and did not like my messages against the doctrines offered by Scofield. His wife and children had been saved, and he thanked me for not putting pressure on them for salvation. To him, it was obvious the Spirit had dealt with them, and called them to repentance in the Lord.
I wrote a small booklet, "The other jesus, The gospel perverted" that deals with Unbiblical Gospel Invitations. They will be sent at no charge upon request. It is also posted on our web site, www.biblicalexaminer.org (Rushoony ordere 12 when I first printe them. The area AWANA leaer in Indiana took a good number before he retired.)
By Paul McGuire, 12/24/12
"MindWar is the deliberate, aggressive, convincing of all participants that in a war we will win that war." -General Michael Aquino and Col. Paul E. Vallely "From PSYOP to MindWar: The Psychology of Victory"
2013 is going to be the convergence of many events that have been more or less in a holding pattern. First of all, there exists a hidden and very powerful, Satanic elite that is largely controlling world events. This elite which goes all the way back to Nimrod and the Tower of Babel has changed names many times. Sir Francis Bacon, a Rosicrucian (the forerunner of the Illuminati,) planned for America to be the "New Atlantis" and head of the New World Order, long before 1776. ...
"Lucifer" is only used one time in Scripture, Isaiah 14:12 :
"Lucifer, as a name given to the devil, was derived from this passage, which the fathers (and lately Stier) interpreted, without any warrant whatever, as relating to the apostasy and punishment of the angelic leaders. The appellation is a perfectly appropriate one for the king of Babel, on account of the early date of the Babylonian culture, which reached back as far as the grey twilight of primeval times, and also because of its predominant astrological character. ..." (Keil & Delitzsch Old Testament Commentary)
We are continually reminded of the quick passage of time. It seems that Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years and New Years roll around every few months.
Christmas tells us that God entered history in the person of Jesus Christ. Easter tells us that God destroyed the power of sin and death through the work of Jesus Christ, and that he now rules and reigns over his creation as King of kings and Lord of lords. New Years reminds of the swiftness of time passing, as a vapor.
Time means change.
* Time means that good can be developed for the glory of God. Time gives the chance to develop the word and work of God on earth.
* Time means that fallen man has the chance to develop his evil desires.
* Time means that the world is moving toward God's appointed and victorious end.
Rushdoony points out that as God's judgment increases, time speeds up. Experience seems to confirm his observation. We should rejoice that time moves so quickly, for it means that the time of the Righteous judge is approaching quickly. He will judge the world in righteousness and truth, and will make all things right.
The unseen hand of God moves history to His preordained end. Example: Notice the events that had to take place before the birth of Christ, and the quick spread of the Good News.
Divine Providence moved Babylon to subdue Judah; Babylon fell to the Medes and Persians; the Persians fell to Greece; Greece fell under the horrible iron heel of Rome, and Rome built many wonderful roads in order to keep the conquered territories under its heel. Providence exalted Nero, probably the most wicked ruler in history, who brought the terrible persecution which spread Christianity to the farthest reaches of the known world. It traveled with unheard of speed over the high tech roads of the day.
Christ: Providence raised up Caesar Augustus, and moved him to decree that all the world should be taxed, and that each man had to go to his own city. Bethlehem "just happened" to be the city of Mary's husband. Because of the prophecies of Isaiah 7 and Micah 5, Bethlehem had to be the city of the Messiah's birth. Providence cause the inn to be full with only a smelly and dirty stable available, for the Messiah had to be born in humble circumstances. Was Joseph aware that he was fulfilling prophecy as they journey to Bethlehem, and found room only in a stable?
Wicked rulers, e.g., Nero, were used to spread the Gospel. Taxes were used to bring Joseph and his wife to Bethlehem in fulfillment of prophecy, just as sure as famine was used to move Abraham, and his son Isaac and then Isaac's son Jacob-Israel to the places appointed to them by God.
Throughout history, we see the Lord's control of all events through his unseen hand of providence. Several times in the protection of his Only Begotten Son, he literally spoke to Joseph. However, he normally controls history for his purpose and glory without the knowledge of men.
If scripture is clear on anything, it is that the Creator God, with his unseen hand, moves all things to fulfill his appointed purpose. The "conspirators" are moving according to the divine will of Him Who had all power in heaven and earth.
Psalms 33:9 For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast. 10 The LORD bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: he maketh the devices of the people of none effect. 11 The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations. (Dan. 4:35, Ps. 115:3, Isa. 14:24.)
Is history controlled by Satan or God? Job chapters 1 & 2 (Satan had to answer to the Lord God), 1 Kings 22 (Micaiah) and Zechariah 3 (Satan rebuked as he stood at the right hand of Joshua, the high priest), clearly show that Satan himself is subject to the Most High Who ruleth in the kingdom of men.
There are undoubtedly conspiracies, but those who think history is controlled by evil conspirators have denied the faith; they are Satanists. They give more power to Satan than to God.
The conspirators, the UN, Banks, Politicians, &c., are working for the God of the Universe, as He determines where history will go.
"Facebook suspends account for questioning official narrative on shooting."
One must be publically Politically Correct, or he will be "investigated and prosecuted." The move is on to bring into line the "underground" media.
The senseless and horrific killings last week in Newtown, Connecticut reminded us that a determined individual or group of individuals can cause great harm no matter what laws are in place. Connecticut already has restrictive gun laws relative to other states, including restrictions on fully automatic, so-called "assault" rifles and gun-free zones.
Predictably, the political left responded to the tragedy with emotional calls for increased gun control. This is understandable, but misguided. The impulse to have government "do something" to protect us in the wake national tragedies is reflexive and often well intentioned. Many Americans believe that if we simply pass the right laws, future horrors like the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting can be prevented. But this impulse ignores the self evident truth that criminals don't obey laws.
The political right, unfortunately, has fallen into the same trap in its calls for quick legislative solutions to gun violence. If only we put armed police or armed teachers in schools, we're told, would-be school shooters will be dissuaded or stopped.
While I certainly agree that more guns equals less crime and that private gun ownership prevents many shootings, I don't agree that conservatives and libertarians should view government legislation, especially at the federal level, as the solution to violence. Real change can happen only when we commit ourselves to rebuilding civil society in America, meaning a society based on family, religion, civic and social institutions, and peaceful cooperation through markets. We cannot reverse decades of moral and intellectual decline by snapping our fingers and passing laws.
Let's not forget that our own government policies often undermine civil society, cheapen life, and encourage immorality. The president and other government officials denounce school violence, yet still advocate for endless undeclared wars abroad and easy abortion at home. U.S. drone strikes kill thousands, but nobody in America holds vigils or devotes much news coverage to those victims, many of which are children, albeit, of a different color.
Obviously I don't want to conflate complex issues of foreign policy and war with the Sandy Hook shooting, but it is important to make the broader point that our federal government has zero moral authority to legislate against violence.
Furthermore, do we really want to live in a world of police checkpoints, surveillance cameras, metal detectors, X-ray scanners, and warrantless physical searches? We see this culture in our airports: witness the shabby spectacle of once proud, happy Americans shuffling through long lines while uniformed TSA agents bark orders. This is the world of government provided "security," a world far too many Americans now seem to accept or even endorse. School shootings, no matter how horrific, do not justify creating an Orwellian surveillance state in America.
Do we really believe government can provide total security? Do we want to involuntarily commit every disaffected, disturbed, or alienated person who fantasizes about violence? Or can we accept that liberty is more important than the illusion of state-provided security? Government cannot create a world without risks, nor would we really wish to live in such a fictional place. Only a totalitarian society would even claim absolute safety as a worthy ideal, because it would require total state control over its citizens' lives. We shouldn't settle for substituting one type of violence for another. Government role is to protect liberty, not to pursue unobtainable safety.
Our freedoms as Americans preceded gun control laws, the TSA, or the Department of Homeland Security. Freedom is defined by the ability of citizens to live without government interference, not by safety. It is easy to clamor for government security when terrible things happen; but liberty is given true meaning when we support it without exception, and we will be safer for it.
Dr. Ron Paul is a retired Republican member of Congress from Texas.
Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, said yesterday that it would continue to sell guns, including rifles like the one used at Newtown, where 26 people, most of them children, were killed on Dec. 14. By contrast, Dick's Sporting Goods Inc. (DKS) suspended sales of similar guns at its more than 500 stores.
Searches of five kinds of semi-automatic rifles on Wal- Mart's website showed them to be out of stock at stores in five states, including Pennsylvania, Kansas and Alabama. Wal-Mart doesn't sell guns online, instead asking customers to input a zip code to see if their local store carries a specific weapon.
"We remain dedicated to the safe and responsible sale of firearms in areas of the country where they are sold," David Tovar, a spokesman for Wal-Mart, said yesterday. He didn't immediately respond to a request for comment on this story....
2 Timothy 3:12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.
(2) You are presenting the case why we Christians who believe in God are more wretched than all others. The words of the Apostle to the Churches could supply me with the proper answer in this instance: no man should be moved in these tribulations; for you yourselves know that we are appointed thereto.' 2 Since the Apostle says that we are placed by God in this world to bear hardships, miseries and sorrows, what is strange about it if we who fight for the sake of sustaining all adversities should suffer all manner of evil? Many do not understand this and think that Christian men should receive these things from God as tribute, as it were, for their faith. They think that, since Christians are more religious than all other peoples, they should also be stronger. Let us agree with their opinion and their way of expressing it.
Let us see what it is to believe in God with faith. We who wish our reward for belief and faith to be so great in this world should consider what the quality of that belief or faith must be. What is belief or faith? I think a man has faith who believes faithfully in Christ, that is to say, he is faithful to God who observes faithfully the commandments of God. As the slaves of the rich or as the administrative agents of government, to whom expensive furnishings or well-stocked warehouses are entrusted, doubtless cannot be styled faithful if they have wasted the things entrusted to them, in the same way, indeed, Christians also are unfaithful if they have abused the goods granted them by God. 2 1 Thess. 3.3. (Salvian, The Governance of God, pp. 69, 70. C. 439 AD.)
First, Salvian points out that Christians feel they should receive good "things from God as tribute, as it were, for their faith." When all the time, Christians know what to do, as apposed to the pagans, yet fail to do it. And then we wonder why Christians "suffer" more than do the pagans.
Second, note he defines faith as "he is faithful to God who observes faithfully the commandments of God." And unfaithfulness as abusing "the goods granted them by God."
Finally, whether man believers God's word or not is totally irrelevant: God said it, and he will remain faithful to his word:
Romans 3:3 For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?
Apostates reduce God to their level, making a god after their own image, a god that will changes as they do. And they think that because they change and because society changes, God changes also. (JFB) Apostates also attempt to change his word with many "versions" of "Scripture." With these many new versions, they hope to remake God more to their liking. However, he will be faithful to his promised threats and to his promised blessings:
Psalms 50:21 These things hast thou done, and I kept silence; thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself: but I will reprove thee, and set them in order before thine eyes. 22 Now consider this, ye that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver.
Note that God remains faithful to his word, not to people, societies nor to nations. (Mal. 3:6.) Those who forsake his word must be judged accordingly. Does God have any choice but to judge our modern Western "Christian" culture, or any culture for that matter, that has worked so hard to create a god more to its liking?
Salvan, the presbyter, asks "Why," and then answers (c. 400AD):
Why does the whole world come under the sway of authorities, for the greater part unjust? I could answer with reason and with sufficient constancy: I do not know,' because I do not know the secret councils of God. The oracle of the heavenly Word is sufficient proof for me in this case. God says, as I have proved in the previous books, that He regards all things, rules all things and judges all things. If you wish to know what you must believe, you have Holy Scripture. The perfect explanation is to hold with what you read.
I do not want you to ask me why God does as He does in the instances of which I have been speaking. I am a man. I do not understand the secrets of God. I do not dare to investigate them. I am also afraid to pry into them, because, if you desire to know more than you are allowed to know, that in itself is a kind of sacrilegious rashness. Let it suffice for you that God testifies that He Himself performs and ordains all things. Do you ask me why one man is greater and another less, one man is wretched and another happy, one man strong and another weak? Why God does these things I do not know, but my demonstration that this is done by Him should suffice for a full explanation. Just as God is greater than all human reason, in like manner it should mean more to me than reason that I recognize that all things are done by God. There is no need to listen to anything new on this point. Let God alone, the Creator, be sufficient over the reasoning of all men. It is not proper to say of the actions of the divine judgment this is right and this is wrong, because whatever you see and are convinced is the work of God, that you must confess is more than right. (The Writings of Salvin, the Presbyter, [The Governance of God] Translated by Jeremiah F. O'Sullivan, Ph.D. New York, CIMA Publishing Co., Inc. © 1947. Fathers of the Church, III.68.)
4. To seek the public good of others above the private good of himself.
The sentiment of Plato, a heathen, is worthy to be adopted by every Christian: "I was not born for myself alone, for my country claims a part, my relations claim a part, and my friends claim a part in me." As we are not born by ourselves, so we are not born for ourselves.
Baruch, the man of God, was forbidden to make self the center of his wishes: "And seekest thou great things for thyself? seek them not" (Jer 45:5). For saints to set their hearts upon that whereon beasts set their feet, is as if a king should abdicate his throne to follow the plough, or as if a man should desert a gold mine to dig in a pit of gravel. When we hide ourselves, it denotes that we are virtuous; but when we seek ourselves, it denotes that we are covetous.
I am unwilling to draw a defective feature in any man's picture; yet how many are there who have occupied public places with private aspirations! While they pretended to undertake everything for the good of others, it has appeared that they undertook nothing but for the good of themselves. Such suckers at the roots have drawn away the sap and nourishment from the tree. They have set kingdoms on fire, that they might roast their own venison at the flames. These drones stealing into the hive have fed upon the honey, while the laboring bees have been famished! Too many resemble ravenous birds, which at first seem to bewail the dying sheep, but at last are found picking out their eyes!
There is a proverb, though not Solomon's: "Every man for himself and God for us all." But where every man is for himself, the devil will have all. Whoever is a seeker for himself is not found of God. Though he may find himself in this life, he will lose himself in eternity (Mat 16:25)."
The Consistent Christian, William Secker, (c. 1681) Chapel Library, firstname.lastname@example.org.
The wicked never miss the opportunity to shed large crocodile tears while they enrich themselves and advance their personal agenda.
Advice from Pravda -- of all places.
By Stanislav Mishin
These days, there are few things to admire about the socialist, bankrupt and culturally degenerating USA, but at least so far, one thing remains: the right to bear arms and use deadly force to defend one's self and possessions.
This will probably come as a total shock to most of my Western readers, but at one point, Russia was one of the most heavily armed societies on earth. This was, of course, when we were free under the Tsar. Weapons, from swords and spears to pistols, rifles and shotguns were everywhere, common items. People carried them concealed, they carried them holstered. Fighting knives were a prominent part of many traditional attires and those little tubes criss crossing on the costumes of Cossacks and various Caucasian peoples? Well those are bullet holders for rifles.
Various armies, such as the Poles, during the .... (Times of Troubles), or Napoleon, or the Germans even as the Tsarist state collapsed under the weight of WW1 and Wall Street monies, found that holding Russian lands was much much harder than taking them and taking was no easy walk in the park but a blood bath all its own. In holding, one faced an extremely well armed and aggressive population Hell bent on exterminating or driving out the aggressor.
This well armed population was what allowed the various White factions to rise up, no matter how disorganized politically and militarily they were in 1918 and wage a savage civil war against the Reds. It should be noted that many of these armies were armed peasants, villagers, farmers and merchants, protecting their own. If it had not been for Washington's clandestine support of and for the Reds, history would have gone quite differently.
Moscow fell, for example, not from a lack of weapons to defend it, but from the lying guile of the Reds. Ten thousand Reds took Moscow and were opposed only by some few hundreds of officer cadets and their instructors. Even then the battle was fierce and losses high. However, in the city alone, at that time, lived over 30,000 military officers (both active and retired), all with their own issued weapons and ammunition, plus tens of thousands of other citizens who were armed. The Soviets promised to leave them all alone if they did not intervene. They did not and for that were asked afterwards to come register themselves and their weapons: where they were promptly shot.
Of course being savages, murderers and liars does not mean being stupid and the Reds learned from their Civil War experience. One of the first things they did was to disarm the population. From that point, mass repression, mass arrests, mass deportations, mass murder, mass starvation were all a safe game for the powers that were. The worst they had to fear was a pitchfork in the guts or a knife in the back or the occasional hunting rifle. Not much for soldiers.
To this day, with the Soviet Union now dead 21 years, with a whole generation born and raised to adulthood without the SU, we are still denied our basic and traditional rights to self defense. Why? We are told that everyone would just start shooting each other and crime would be everywhere....but criminals are still armed and still murdering and too often, especially in the far regions, those criminals wear the uniforms of the police. The fact that everyone would start shooting is also laughable when statistics are examined.
While President Putin pushes through reforms, the local authorities, especially in our vast hinterland, do not feel they need to act like they work for the people. They do as they please, a tyrannical class who knows they have absolutely nothing to fear from a relatively unarmed population. This in turn breeds not respect but absolute contempt and often enough, criminal abuse.
For those of us fighting for our traditional rights, the US 2nd Amendment is a rare light in an ever darkening room. Governments will use the excuse of trying to protect the people from maniacs and crime, but are in reality, it is the bureaucrats protecting their power and position. In all cases where guns are banned, gun crime continues and often increases. As for maniacs, be it nuts with cars (NYC, Chapel Hill NC), swords (Japan), knives (China) or home made bombs (everywhere), insane people strike. They throw acid (Pakistan, UK), they throw fire bombs (France), they attack. What is worse, is, that the best way to stop a maniac is not psychology or jail or "talking to them", it is a bullet in the head, that is why they are a maniac, because they are incapable of living in reality or stopping themselves.
The excuse that people will start shooting each other is also plain and silly. So it is our politicians saying that our society is full of incapable adolescents who can never be trusted? Then, please explain how we can trust them or the police, who themselves grew up and came from the same culture?
No it is about power and a total power over the people. There is a lot of desire to bad mouth the Tsar, particularly by the Communists, who claim he was a tyrant, and yet under him we were armed and under the progressives disarmed. Do not be fooled by a belief that progressives, leftists hate guns. Oh, no, they do not. What they hate is guns in the hands of those who are not marching in lock step of their ideology. They hate guns in the hands of those who think for themselves and do not obey without question. They hate guns in those whom they have slated for a barrel to the back of the ear.
So, do not fall for the false promises and do not extinguish the light that is left to allow humanity a measure of self respect.
Note: Increased "mental health" screening to help control gun violence!! Who defines "mental health"? I certainly am considered "unbalanced" because I believe there is only one way to see God, and that is through Christ alone.
Have you noticed that the forms you now fill out at the doctor's have the question: Do you own a gun, or Do you have a gun in the house?
In fine "if women" says pious Bishop Pilkington" would learn what God will plague them for, and how; let them read the third chapter of the prophet Esay. And if they will learn what God willeth them to do, and be occupied withal, though they be the best sort, let them read the last chapter of the Proverbs. It is enough to note it, and point it out to them that will learn.' `That which is least to be done" concludes an old Expositor "is to mark it well, and let every woman strive to make it agree to herself as much as she can. Let every man be ashamed, that any woman shall excel him in virtue and godliness. [Proverbs, Charles Bridges [1794Ð1869], pp. 628, 629. Emp added.]
Praise the Lord for Godly women willing to be faithful to Him, but God's design is for men to set the standard of "virtue and godliness".
We live in a in a tumultuous time of history. The word of God has not only clearly delineated the way to victory amid all the turmoil, faith, but has given us examples for our encouragement.
Hebrews 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Christ, the author and finisher of faith, completed His work by faith; His faith in His final victory over death caused Him to be faithful to the will of the Father; His faith caused Him to endure the cross, despise the shame.. which was involved in obedience to the Father. (He lightly regarded the shame that was involved in the cross because of what lay before Him: the joy of His exaltation to the right hand of the throne of God.)
We must remember that the everlasting God is also the God of the Future: God Who appeared in the Garden to Adam, Who appeared to Noah both before and after the flood, Who appeared to Abraham and Who appeared to Joseph, was the God of promise (Gen 50:24). In fact, the God of Hebrews 11, the "Faith Chapter," is the God of promise. Notice Hebrews 11 is followed by chapter 12:2, Jesus, the author and finisher of faith, was a faithful high priest because of a promise.
In other words, faith must be defined as hope in the future: the future will hold the fulfillment of God's promises. Therefore, to limit the Lord to the present is anti-Christian, for the Christian God is the God of the FUTURE. Notice the many things from Hebrews 12 which are based upon faith that the future, both immediate and distant, is controlled by Divine Providence:
1) v. 3, faith provides strength to endure: without faith one will grow weary and faint in his mind.
2) v. 4, faithlessness results in an inability to resist and stand against sin.
3) v. 5, faithlessness results in faintness in the chastening of the Lord.
4) vv. 6-12, faith strengthens the individual in the Lord's chastening. Note that only by faith do we understand that the chastening of the Lord is for our future good: that we might be partakers of his holiness. Faith looks past the present chastening to the resulting peaceable fruits of righteousness. (Cf. v. 6, Rom 8:28.)
5) v. 13, faith straightens our path and heals the lame because the lame will wander from the "straight and narrow."
6) v. 14, faith leads to peace (and holiness) with all men (except, of course, those who are against God's law, Pro 28:4).
7) vv. 15-18, faith is God's condition for His grace which enables one to turn from the lusts of the flesh and the profane things of this world. Faith results in holiness, without which no man shall see God.
8) vv. 19-26, faith looks to Jesus, the mediator of the new covenant. Faith will not refuse to obey the words spoken by the Lord from the new city of the living God, the church, as Israel refused to obey the words spoken from the mount.
9) v. 27, faith will not be shaken as the kingdoms of men around us, built without Christ and His law-word, shake so hard that they collapse.
10) v. 28, faith provides the grace to serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.
The first promise given to Adam was of future victory to the obedient people of God; every promise, including the promise of the Father to the Son, was of future victory to the obedient people of God. Without this faith in the God of the future, it is impossible to please God.
Our strength to stand comes from unshakable confidence, faith in the future victory of our Lord over all the opposition of the enemy.
"It is very grievous to see how some professedly Christian parents are satisfied so long as their children display cleverness in learning, or sharpness in business, although they show no signs of a renewed nature. If they pass their examinations with credit and promise to be well fitted for the world's battle, their parents forget that there is a superior conflict, involving a higher crown, for which the child will need to be fitted by divine grace and armed with the whole armor of God. Alas, if our children lose the crown of life, it will be but a small consolation that they have won the laurels of literature or art."
Note: It is a wonderful day to be a young man who is dependable and willing to work. He has an abundance of opportunities. Unless he is going into a specialized field, "higher education" is a waste of money.
Annual Report Shows Planned Parenthood Tallied Record Abortion Count in 2010
Written by Dave Bohon
Planned Parenthood has come out with its annual report, and in it the abortion giant boasted that its affiliates around the nation performed 333,964 of the murderous procedures during 2010-11, up from 332,278 pre-born deaths in 2009, the previous yearly record. The latest number, which represents an abortion performed every 94 seconds, is just one of the many statistics the group crowed about in its just-released report. "We are so proud of the year?s many successes, and deeply grateful for all the partners, sponsors, volunteers, staff and friends who helped make them possible," the group's president, Cecile Richards, said in a statement.
A fact sheet released with the report noted that among the "services" provided by Planned Parenthood during the reporting period were the distribution of 1.43 million "emergency contraception kits," which include birth control drugs known to cause abortion in pregnant women who take them. And while the abortion giant oversaw the killing of hundreds of thousands of babies, it could only muster 2,300 adoption referrals over the same time period, which comes out to some 145 abortions for every adoption.
As for other services it boasts, the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List (SBA List) noted that over the past three years, while its revenue has skyrocketed, Planned Parenthood's contraceptive services have dropped by 12 percent and its cancer screenings by 29 percent.
Meanwhile, according to its annual report, in 2010 Planned Parenthood raked in a record $542.4 million in federal, state, and local government funding ? nearly half of its $1.2 billion in total revenue. Overall, Planned Parenthood ended the 2010-11 fiscal year with a $87.4 million profit. ...
From my experience, I am sure that a very large parentage of the murdered children had "Christian" parents. Words escape me to describe the judgment due against American Christianity for the general indifference to abortion (and sodomy), which reveals a hatred of children. However, the murders are pretty much world-wide. We found in Kenya a strong public attitude against both sodomy and abortion.
I have been going through my notes on Jeremiah getting them ready to post on the Examiner web site. In chapters 43, 44, Jeremiah warned God's people of the coming judgment against their sin of serving Egypt's gods. The proud men said "we will not harken unto thee, But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth" and continue to serve Egypt's gods. 44:15, 16.
The attitude of the proud men reminds me of the many I have met over the years. Not only I but many preachers have warned of the coming judgment for letting the pagans train their Christian children, yet they said, "we will not harken to thee, But we will certainly do whatsoever thing" that seems right to us. The results have come to pass as those pagan children have voted their paganism, and open pagans now reign over us.
The pagan education to which Christians have knowingly subjected their children has paid off for the wicked.
Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ has made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage, Gal 5:1 (Gen 1:27, 28, 1 Cor 7:22, 23, Ja 1:25; 2:12.)
Know you not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? Rom 6:16.
1) liberty was bought by Christ on the cross.
2) "unalienable rights" are a gift from God, and make it possible for us to be free (at liberty) from the bondage of sin and earthly tyranny. "...in proportion as the minds of individuals are made free from sin, the virtues of the Gospel are practiced; oppression and tyranny must cease, and liberty revive and prevail..." Gad Hitchcock, Plymouth, MA, Dec. 22, 1774.
3) the sole purpose of liberty must be for God's service and glory.
4) when liberty is used to pursue man's desires rather than to bring glory to God with whatsoever he does, tyranny must develop; nothing can stop it.
5) world-wide tyranny is increasing today because individuals have departed from God. As the Christian culture dissolves, tyranny shall take its place.
6) the only answer to tyranny is Christian liberty studied (#1 above) and applied; therefore, Samuel Adams, in 1772, said, "...The right to freedom being the gift of God Almighty.., the Rights of the Colonists as Christians' ... may be best understood by reading and carefully studying the institutes of the Great Lawgiver ... which are to be found clearly written and promulgated in the New Testament."
Liberty is not procured with guns, nor is it procured with laws of any kind. Notice that the law, "Gun Free Zone" for schools does not produce a gun free zone. How foolish to think that passing a law will produce change in people.
There is no short cut. Every effort to secure liberty and freedom other than studying and applying the law of Liberty has God's curse against it, and must fail. Ps 119:45, Pro 8:36.
On 4 January 1884 in London was established the Fabian Society. Its goal was to gradually transform society to socialism. It was named for the Roman general, Fabius "Cunctator" ("The Delayer") who pursued a slow strategy of harassment and attrition against the Carthaginian general Hannibal, and eventually won. I can't remember where the building is, but in some Fabian Society building is found its symbol, worked into a stained glass window: A wolf in sheep's clothing.
The Fabian Society offers one of the most striking examples of the suicidal impulse in 19th Century English & European society. Most of all, they were anxious to throw off the so-called restraints of Christianity. Their members included silly people, like the Theosophist Annie Besant, and nasty people, like Havelock Ellis, who was a strong supporter of eugenics, that is, snuffing out what he considered those "unfit to carry on the race." Many of them were connected to Madame Blavatsky, the Theosophist poseur and occultist. Ellis later worked & had an affair with Margaret Sanger, enthusiastic eugenicist & Mother of Abortion.
It's instructive that now that the Fabians have won, their victory is seen to be Pyrrhic (named for the Greek general, who won a victory so costly he lost the war). Rather than freedom, their throwing off the "restraints" of Christianity brought only slavery, personal and social. In order to perfect the world, socialism & communism managed to soak the 20th century with the bloodiest wars in human history, killing well over 100 million people. For peace, they gave us a desert. For life, death wholesale & unimaginable. For contentment, never-ending envy.
God save us from do-gooders! Hell hath no fury like a do-gooder armed with government force.
Franklin Sanders, The Moneychanger market report. 4 Jan, 2013 the-moneychanger.com
"The Fabian Society, which favoured gradual change rather than revolutionary change, was named -- at the suggestion of Frank Podmore -- in honour of the Roman general Fabius Maximus (nicknamed "Cunctator", meaning "the Delayer"). His Fabian strategy advocated tactics of harassment and attrition rather than head-on battles against the Carthaginian army under the renowned general Hannibal.
An explanatory note appearing on the title page of the group's first pamphlet declared:
"For the right moment you must wait, as Fabius did most patiently, when warring against Hannibal, though many censured his delays; but when the time comes you must strike hard, as Fabius did, or your waiting will be in vain, and fruitless."
Note: The Tortoise is the symbol of Fabian Society, representing its goal of gradual expansion of socialism. The Fabian Socialists successfully worked a 150 year plan, and have conquered the Christian world while Christians have waited for a "rapture" to get them out of the mess they allowed to develop.
This the great Southern Presbyterian theologian and Civil war historian made this wise observation and prediction.
"The history of human rights is, that their intelligent ancestors usually learn the true grounds of them "in the furnace of affliction"; that the posterity who inherit these rights hold them for a while, in pride and ignorant prescription; that after a while, when the true logic of the rights have been forgotten, and when some plausible temptation presses them to do so, the next generation discards the precious rights bodily, and goes back to the practice of the old tyranny. . . you may deem it a strange prophesy, but I will predict that the time will come in this once free America when the battle for religious liberty will have to be fought over again, and will probably be lost, because the people are already ignorant of its true basis and conditions."
Rev. R.L. Dabney, The Practical Philosophy, (Copyright S. B. Ervin, 1897 - republished by Sprinkle Publications, Harrisonburg, Virginia, 1984) p. 394.
"In a sense America voted for big government in November. What it didn't vote for is the willingness to pay for it. We have the biggest gap between revenue and spending of any nation on Earth. So people have got to get real about this. If you want Swedish-style government, you have to pay Swedish-style taxes. And if you don't, you have to grow up and learn to live within your means," ... Mark Steyn. 1-2-13
Material by Thomas Williamson:
* Defining our Terms--Essays in New Testament Prophecy
* Mission Accomplished--What Christ Achieved as a Result of His First Coming, Death and Resurrection.
* What Does the Bible say About That
He will send these, and any other material he might have, at no charge, and post paid upon request.
Thomas Williamson, Th.M, Ph.D, 3131 Archer Ave, Chicago IL 60608
It might also be a total coincidence that according to Google.com, the United Way Sandy Hook donation support page was created on December 11, 2012 -- a full three days before the shooting took place.