Jesus Never Fails

Gary Wilkerson April 15, 2019

 

“Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me from the foundation of the world” (John 17:24, my emphasis). Jesus prayed for his disciples — and that includes us. He asked the Father that we may see his glory, meaning that we would know him.

At certain times in the Old Testament, Jesus revealed himself in human or angelic form, with varying results. For instance, Jacob’s hip was broken when he tried wrestling with the Lord. And when Moses said to God, “Please show me Your glory” (Exodus 33:18), the Lord told him, “I have to cover your face and hide you behind a rock, and then you can see only the trailing afterglow of my presence.” In other words, he had to protect Moses from the full revelation of himself.

In the New Testament, when the apostle John heard the Lord’s voice and received the Revelation on the island of Patmos, he fell on his face. The normal response of men and women when they saw Jesus was awe and wonder. I wonder what would happen if we saw him in all his beauty and splendor as Moses or John did.

The truth is, Jesus is beautiful in a sense far deeper than our usual usage of the descriptive word. We remark that someone is lovely or handsome, but Jesus is far more. He is glorious, wonderful, separate, unique, special. He is also tender, kind, precious, full of majesty. He is wondrous, strong, mighty, powerful, wise, outstanding. And he never fails!

Even in his human nature, Jesus remained sovereign, one with God (see Colossians 2:10). Consider some of his beautiful attributes: full of justice (John 8:16); perfectly righteous (John 8:46). And he is love (John 13:34) — a love that is unfathomable.

We are totally undeserving of this love, but that is the beauty of our amazing, incomparable Savior. Give him praise today for his unspeakable sacrifice and gift of salvation. (Click to Source)

 

Recovery Room 7 is a community of people with similar backgrounds, where people from all walks of drug & alcohol recovery can meet together, share, socialize, interact, join in fun activities, share meals, pray and learn. It’s a place of joy and awakening to their true purpose in life. Jesus Christ is always present and ready to receive everyone in Recovery Room 7. We will be located in beautiful Northwest Montana. If you would like to donate to get Recovery Room 7 up and running, please go to our PayPal Donation Link here.

Jacob Meets Esau

Jacob knew he was walking into great danger as he returned to the land of Canaan.

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VAYISHLACH

The eighth reading from the book of Genesis is named Vayishlach (וישלח), which means “and he sent.” The title comes from the first verse of the reading, which says, “Then Jacob sent messengers before him to his brother Esau in the land of Seir, the country of Edom” (Genesis 32:3 [verse 4 in Jewish-published Bibles]). Jacob prepares to meet Esau as he returns to the promised land, but first he has a mysterious encounter with an angel in the darkness, who changes his name to Israel. The portion follows Jacob’s adventures in the land of Canaan, including the loss of his beloved wife, Rachel.

Then Jacob sent messengers before him to his brother Esau in the land of Seir, the country of Edom. (Genesis 32:3[4])

After some twenty years of labor, Jacob was finally free from Laban’s mistreatment. Only God’s direct intervention saved him from Laban’s ire. As this Torah portion begins, the confrontation with Laban is over, and Jacob leaves his father-in-law behind in peace.

But something was still bothering Jacob. One angry relative was now behind him, but Esau was still ahead of him. He knew that Esau wanted him dead. Jacob must have felt like he had escaped the frying pan only to fall into the fire.

To escape Esau, Jacob had fled to the homeland of his mother, Rebekah. She had told him, “Stay … until your brother’s anger against you subsides and he forgets what you did to him. Then I will send and get you from there” (Genesis 27:44-45). Rebekah’s message never came. Esau’s anger never cooled. Jacob knew he was walking into great danger as he returned to the land of Canaan.

Hoping that his brother’s heart had softened, Jacob sent messengers ahead to announce his homecoming to Esau. The messengers returned with bad news. “We came to your brother Esau, and furthermore he is coming to meet you, and four hundred men are with him” (Genesis 32:6). Quite a welcoming party! Jacob’s heart sank. He felt certain Esau was coming with armed men to slaughter him.

This is what dealing with our past mistakes is like. Through the course of life, our sins and bad decisions leave broken relationships and emotional messes behind us. Ordinarily, we do exactly as Jacob did. We run from the problems and hope they will go away. We hope the passage of time will heal the hurts we have caused. Perhaps forgetfulness and distance will absolve us. It rarely works that way. Inevitably, the wheel of life brings us back around to confront our past. Sometimes the problems have not diminished at all. Instead, time and neglect has only aggravated them. When Jacob left Canaan, he had only Esau to worry about. Now, upon returning, he faces Esau and four hundred armed men.

The solution is to deal with our mistakes when we make them. When we do wrong to someone, we should immediately do everything in our power to make amends. When we make a mistake, we should acknowledge it, correct it, and do our best to fix it. Yeshua taught that you should “make friends quickly with your opponent” (Matthew 5:25) lest the situation escalate.

There is one opponent, however, that we can never mollify. The adversary, that old serpent haSatan, has a case against each of us. His job is to record our sins and transgressions and bring charges against us in God’s court of law. He does not take bribes, and he never forgets. No matter how long ago it happened, he remembers. He has a claim against us that we can never escape. Just as Jacob eventually had to face Esau, we will eventually have to answer to his charges. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). We all face judgment. (Click to Source)

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Why Messianic Judaism Isn’t Anti-Semitism

COMMENTARY – By Myra Adams
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While Americans are collectively grieving over last weekend’s horrific mass shooting at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life Synagogue, a related controversy involving Vice President Mike Pence is sparking headlines and national condemnation in the media.

Monday night, at a political rally in Grand Rapids, Mich., Pence invited Rabbi Loren Jacobs to offer a prayer for the 11 worshipers who were gunned down by a Jew-hating madman. Jacobs began his prayer by saying, “God of Abraham, God of Isaac, God of Jacob, God and father of my Lord and Savior Yeshua, Jesus the Messiah, and my God and father, too.” Continuing, Jacobs asked, “Lord, please work so that instead of division in our nation there is unity and peace.”

Unfortunately, instead of unity and peace, Jacobs’ prayer ignited a firestorm in the Jewish community since he is not a traditional rabbi but a “Messianic rabbi” – one who believes that Jesus of Nazareth is the Jewish Messiah.

It is unclear whether the vice president initially knew that about Rabbi Jacobs. If so, inviting him to the stage was tone-deaf considering the raw emotion of this national Jewish tragedy. Either way, Pence’s actions have cast a negative light on Messianic Judaism, and for this writer — a Jew who also believes that Jesus is the Messiah — it is all very personal.

Although I found much of the media coverage about Messianic Jews riddled with mischaracterizations, exaggerations, and inaccuracies, I resigned myself to letting the storm pass. However, late Tuesday night I read an article in The Hill that embedded a tweet from Steven I. Weiss asserting flatly, “‘Messianic Judaism’ is antisemitism.”

Such incendiary descriptions are nothing new. In over four decades since I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior, I have experienced various degrees of hostility and insults from my own Jewish family and fellow Jews.

Although every Messianic Jew can attest to similar treatment, we all have unique and fascinating conversion stories. Here are some highlights from mine — shared in the hope that traditional Jews who have read this far will open their hearts and minds and reject the absurd and offensive claim that “Messianic Judaism is anti-Semitism.”

First, let’s begin with some Bible-based facts. Jesus was born and raised a Jew. He preached from the Jewish Bible (Old Testament) and worshiped in the temple. After his crucifixion, he was prepared for burial according to Jewish customs. The major theological differences between Judaism and Messianic Judaism (along with all Christian sects) are the beliefs that Jesus was the promised Christ — that He was resurrected from the dead, is Messiah, Lord, and Savior, and will return someday.

How did I come to believe this? Born and raised Jewish in the Boston suburb of Needham with the last name of Kahn, my parents were culturally Jewish, but religious practice was virtually non-existent in my home.

Growing up I knew only two basic religious facts: I was Jewish, and Jews did not believe in Jesus. I was without faith, but during my sophomore year in college at Ohio State University, Jesus came to me. He pulled me to Him as if He had inserted a ring through my nose. Doubt and resistance were never options nor contemplated. Without ever seeing or hearing Him speak, I instinctively knew that this powerful force was Jesus. I had no choice but to follow Him even though I knew absolutely nothing about Him.

Over the years I have often been asked about my conversion. After describing the “ring through the nose,” I always add, “I had faith before I had knowledge.” Even after 43 years as a Jewish Christian, my quest for Biblical knowledge continues, but I call myself a “completed Jew.” This term is popular among Jewish believers and stems from the notion that the Old Testament prophesies and teachings are “completed” or fulfilled by Jesus and the New Testament.

With my background established, here is why I believe that it is highly offensive for Messianic Jews to be called anti-Semitic — defined as producing hostility, prejudice, and discrimination against Jews.

First, such acts and behaviors toward Jews are evil, sinful and contrary to Jesus’ teachings in Mark (12:29-31) when he quotes from Torah’s book of Leviticus (19:17-18) and declares, “Thou shalt love your neighbor as yourself” is the second greatest commandment. Therefore, Jews who follow Jesus would not knowingly engage in behavior toward traditional Jews that is anti-Semitic — by definition.

Second, Jews believing that Jesus Christ was who He said He was, i.e., the Messiah, does not make us “anti-Jewish.” On the contrary, besides being “completed” in our faith as previously discussed, believing that Jesus is the Messiah makes us proud and privileged to be Jewish disciples of the greatest Jew who ever walked the planet. We also benefit knowing that His Spirit dwells within us. Messianic Jews can’t possibly be anti-Jewish since we follow a Jew who positively impacted and changed the course of human history, and still changes lives every day.

Meanwhile, Jewish believers in Christ, as do all Christians, fully acknowledge that over the centuries mankind has committed evil acts while evoking the name of Jesus — acts that Jesus Himself would never approve of and from which He must be disassociated.

Finally, some loving advice to my Jewish brothers and sisters: learn about the Jewishness of Jesus. Read about His life and teachings in the New Testament without fear of “conversion.” Familiarize yourself with numerous, fascinating Old Testament Messianic prophesies that foretold His birth, life, and death centuries before He was born.

In addition, specifically educate yourself about why the great majority of Jews reject Jesus as the Messiah as opposed to the standard “Jews don’t believe in Jesus,” period.

Throughout my life, I have met many Jews who were unaware that Jesus was Jewish or who thought that He was an enemy of the Jews. Such ignorance only fosters hate and division, resulting in more Jews who believe that “Messianic Judaism is anti-Semitism.”

Most important, learn why “Jesus is love,” because the world could sure use more of that right now. (Click to Source)

Myra Adams is a media producer and writer who served on the McCain Ad Council during the GOP nominee’s 2008 campaign and on the 2004 Bush campaign creative team.

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Mega-Church Pastor: The Ten Commandments No Longer Applicable, Un-hitch From the Old Testament

By Nate Brown — @natebro21 —  See Comments

Region: Georgia Published: September 28, 2018  Updated: September 28, 2018 at 7:32 am EST
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Andy Stanley, the Mega-Church pastor, located in the suburbs of Atlanta is now claiming that the Ten Commandments are no longer applicable months after previously stating that Christians need to unhitch themselves from the Old Testament.

According to the Pastor, Jesus rendered the Ten Commandments null and void, because He issues a one new law “as a replacement for everything.”

“You’ve heard the story before: A group of Christians puts up a monument of the Ten Commandments in a public space or on government property,” begins Stanley in his article titled, “Why do Christians want to post the Ten Commandments and not the Sermon on the Mount?” “Someone says it violates the separation of church and state. The Christians say taking it down would violate their freedom of speech. There’s some back and forth in court and both sides say some not-so-great things about the other. Rinse and repeat. But how many times have you seen Christians trying to post the text of the sermon on the mount in a public place? Or the all-encompassing commandment Jesus gave us? ‘A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another — John 13:34 The one commandment! Doesn’t have the same ring to it, does it? But if we’re going to create a monument to stand as a testament to our faith, shouldn’t it at least be a monument of something that actually applies to us?”

Stanley then continues that the Ten Commandments are from the ‘Old Covenant,’ which he says; “played a significant role in God’s creation of the nation of Israel. It gave them moral guidelines and helped separate this new nation from their neighbors. This was part of the formal agreement (or covenant) God created with his people, but Jesus’ death and resurrection signaled the end of that covenant and all the rules and regulations associated with it. Jesus didn’t issue his new command as an additional commandment to the existing list of commands. He didn’t say, ‘Here’s the 614th law.’ Jesus issued his new commandment as a replacement for everything in the existing list. Including the big ten. Just as his new covenant replaced the old covenant, Jesus’ new commandment replaced all the old commandments.”

Stanley’s comments directly contradict what Scripture says; In Matthew 5:17-19, Jesus says: “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

Stanley is teaching his 34,000 member congregation replacement theology. Also, Stanley is teaching his congregation to discard three-quarters of the Bible and only to interpret what’s left.

Furthermore, after Stanley’s stunning commentary he then concludes; “While Jesus was foreshadowed in the old covenant, he did not come to extend it. He came to fulfill it, put a bow on it, and establish something entirely new. The “new” Jesus unleashed made the faith of first-century believers formidable. Their apologetic was irrefutable. Their courage, unquestionable. And the results were remarkable. Dear Christian reader: Why? Why? Why would we even be tempted to reach back beyond the cross to borrow from a covenant that was temporary and inferior to the covenant established for us at Calvary?”

Stanley’s new book, which is available on Amazon, called ‘Irresistible,’ is currently ranked at Amazon as one of the most popular books in the “Church Leadership” category.

The theology presented by the Mega-Church Pastor is precisely what Jesus warned believers about in Matthew 24:5 “For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.” (Click to Source)

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Getting ‘Unhitched’ from the Old Testament? Andy Stanley Aims at Heresy

August 10, 2018

Reading the Torah

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.

For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.

For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,

Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith.

But they shall proceed no further: for their folly shall be manifest unto all men, as their’s also was.

10 But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, charity, patience,

11 Persecutions, afflictions, which came unto me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra; what persecutions I endured: but out of them all the Lord delivered me.

12 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

14 But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;

15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

(2 Timothy 3:1-17)King James Version (KJV) Public Domain

 

Eventually, we learn to take an individual at his word. Andy Stanley is a master communicator, and he communicates very well and very often. His preaching and teaching often bring controversy, and he quite regularly makes arguments that subvert the authority of Scripture and cast doubt upon biblical Christianity. He returns regularly to certain themes and arguments — so regularly that we certainly get the point. He evidently wants us to understand that he means what he says.

Earlier this year, Stanley brought controversy when he argued in a sermon that the Christian faith must be “unhitched” from the Old Testament. He claimed that “Peter, James, Paul elected to unhitch the Christian faith from their Jewish scriptures, and my friends, we must as well.”

Later, explaining his statement, Stanley told Relevant magazine, “Well, I never suggested we ‘unhitch’ from a passage of Scripture or a specific biblical imperative . . . . Again, I was preaching through Acts 15 where Peter, James, and Paul recommended the first-century church unhitch (my word, I’m open to an alternative) the law of Moses from the Gospel being preached to the Gentiles in Antioch.”

Indeed, in the sermon Stanley did not argue that any specific Old Testament command should be nullified. Instead, he went even further and told his listeners that the Old Testament should not be seen as “the go-to source regarding any behavior in the church.” In his view, the first century leadership of the church “unhitched the church from the worldview, value system, and regulations of the Jewish Scriptures.”

Again, controversy rightly erupted after those comments, spoken earlier this year. But in recent days Andy Stanley has returned to the same theme, this time in a conversation with Jonathan Merritt on his podcast, Seekers and Speakers.

In this conversation, Stanley speaks of outgrowing a childhood belief about the Bible and coming to understand what he presents as a far more complex reality. How complex? Well, Stanley argues that we must know that biblical references to the Scripture “did not mean the Bible.”

Note his words carefully:

This is something I’m trying desperately to help people understand and every time I try to explain it I get misunderstood so here I go again. There was no “The Bible” until the fourth century. When we think about the Bible we think about a book that contains the Jewish Scripture and the Christian writings and such a thing did not exist until after Christianity became legal and scholars could come out of the shadows and actually put such a thing together.”

There is more:

So the early church no one ever said in the early church, ‘the Bible says, the Bible teaches, the Bible says the Bible teaches,’ because there was no ‘The Bible.’ But the point of your question, there was Scripture but every time we see the phrase ‘the Scripture’ or ‘Scripture’ in the New Testament, as you know we have to stop and ask the question, what was this particular group of people referring to because there was no ‘The Bible’ and there was no book that contained all the Jewish Scripture because it was contained in synagogues and as you know virtually no one could read and write.”

Well, wait just a minute. It is true that Jesus and the Apostles did not have the Old Testament and the New Testament bound together in a book (codex) form. It is, of course, also plainly true that the New Testament did not exist until it was given, book by book, by the Holy Spirit to the church in the first century. But it is not true that references to “the Scriptures” or “the Scripture” by Jesus and the Apostles are any mystery to us. They are plainly referring to what we know as the Old Testament. There are references to “Moses and the Prophets” (Luke 16:29) and to the “Law and the Prophets”(Luke 16:16), but faithful Jews in the first century would emphatically have known exactly what the Scriptures are.

As a matter of fact, Mark Hamilton has documented the fact that the Greek phrase, ta biblia, “the books” was “an expression Hellenistic Jews used to describe their sacred books several centuries before the time of Jesus.”

The fact that the Old Testament Scriptures were at the time in scroll form in synagogues rather than book form is plain, but the fact is that the Jewish authorities made their arguments on the basis of appeal to the Scriptures, and so did Jesus and the Apostles. Both Jesus and the Apostles did make their arguments “according to the Scriptures” (see, for example, Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:3-4).

Consider Jesus preaching in the synagogue in Nazareth:

“And the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him. He unrolled the scroll and found the place where it was written, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captive and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. And he began to say to them, ‘Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.’” (Luke 4:17-21)

Jesus was powerfully arguing “the Bible says” in a way that his hearers in the synagogue clearly understood, and that pattern is found throughout the New Testament. Geerhardus Vos underlines this fact when he states, with reference to the Kingdom of God: “The first thing to be noticed in Jesus’ utterances on our theme is that they clearly presuppose a consciousness on his part of standing with his work on the basis of the revelation of God in the Old Testament.” In John 5:46-47 Jesus rebuked those who did not believe in him with these words: “If you believed Moses, you would believe me; for he wrote of me. But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe my words?”

Similarly, the Apostles made their arguments for the gospel of Christ with reference to the Old Testament and its testimony to Christ and the saving purpose of God. At no point in the New Testament is the Old Testament dismissed. Rather, as Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount:

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. Therefore whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever does them and teaches them will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”(Matthew 5:17-19)

The pattern is promise and fulfillment, not rejection and repudiation. This is true even in the case of Acts 15, with the apostles citing the authority of Amos 9:11-12 and even citing the binding authority of Genesis 9:4 on the Gentile believers. Again, the pattern is promise and fulfillment. Andy Stanley argues that the Old Testament should not be cited as “the go-to source regarding any behavior in the church,” but the moral law of the Old Testament remains honored by the church and repeated (even intensified) in the New Testament.

Peter, James, and Paul did not “unhitch the Christian faith from their Jewish Scriptures,” nor can we.

We are looking here at the ancient heresy of Marcion, who argued that the Old Testament must be repudiated by the church. Marcion, who lived about the years 85-160, taught that the Old Testament revealed a Creator deity who is not even the same God who sent Jesus. Unsurprisingly, he also held to a heretical Christology. The Old Testament deity was repugnant to Marcion, who argued that Christianity just make a clean break from Judaism. The Old Testament, he taught, reveals a vindictive law-giving creator deity who bears no resemblance to the merciful redeeming God revealed in Jesus Christ. As Irenaeus, one of the most significant church fathers argued, “Marcion himself divides God in two, saying that one is good, the other judicial, and in so doing takes God away from both.”

Marcion was embarrassed by the Old Testament, and so are many modern people. Andy Stanley, at the very least, seems to fear that embarrassment in others, even if he does not identify with it himself.

He spoke this way with Jonathan Merritt: “I’m convinced that we make a better case for Jesus if we leave the Old Testament or the old covenant out of the argument.” We can make a better case for Jesus than the case Jesus made for himself?

But the embarrassment comes through clearly in Andy Stanley’s comments in the interview. He spoke of people who have “lost their faith” because they read the Old Testament, and then said this:

It’s the same God. But he was doing two different things. All that differentiating between those things is so important. Again, in this sermon, I said, ‘Hey, it’s time that we face the facts and unhitch our faith and our practice from some of these Old Testament values that we can appreciate in their original context, but we really don’t have any business dragging them into a modern context.’”

To be clear, Andy Stanley does not endorse the full heresy of Marcionism, which was universally condemned by the early church. He actually appears to aim for the heresy of Marcionism, and his hearers are certainly aimed in that direction. He clearly says that God is the same God in both testaments, but says that he reveals himself in two completely different ways. Just like Marcion, he argues that the church must “unhitch” from the Old Testament. He actually says: “I am convinced for the sake of this generation and the next generation, we have to rethink our apologetic as Christians, and the less we depend on the Old Testament to prop up our New Testament faith the better because of where we are in [the] culture.”

The church cannot “unhitch” from the Old Testament without unhitching from the gospel Jesus preached. Speaking of the Old Testament Scriptures, Jesus said “it is they that bear witness about me.” (John 5:39)

Alarmingly, in the podcast Stanley questions whether Jesus actually meant his own references to Old Testament narratives to be taken as historical. He said: “Then a person has to decide, okay, well actually Jesus references the Garden of Eden, or he references in the beginning when God created the first two people, he references Jonah. Then you have to decide when the Son of God references these people and these incidences and these prophets, what did he mean? I am comfortable, not everybody is, but I am comfortable letting the conversation go from there.”

It is very instructive to remember that the most influential theological liberal of the twentieth century, Adolf von Harnack, chose Marcion as his theological hero. Why? Because, like Marcion, he wanted to reduce Christianity to what he claimed to be its essence, the benevolent fatherhood of God. All the doctrines of orthodox Christianity, including the doctrines concerning the divinity of Christ, were dismissed as either Jewish or Greco-Roman encrustations.

[By the way, I am sure that Andy Stanley means no anti-Semitism in referring to the Old Testament as the “Jewish Scriptures, but this use does have the implied effect of identifying these Scriptures only with the Jewish people, and not with Christianity. But the Christian identification of the Old Testament as the “Jewish Scriptures” has a dangerous pedigree. In any regard, Adolf von Harnack must also be remembered as seeking to champion Marcion within German Protestantism just as anti-Semitism was rising once again with deadly power in Germany. As Alister McGrath notes, “Sadly, Marcionism is a heresy that seems to be revived with every resurgence of anti-Semitism.”]

The issues actually reach deeper. In recent years, Andy Stanley has encouraged getting over “the Bible tells me so.” He actually claimed in 2016 that the church veered into “trouble” when it began to make its arguments on the basis of the Bible. He cited “deconversion” stories in which people told him that they lost their Christian faith when they lost confidence in the Bible. He said: “If the Bible is the foundation of your faith, here’s the problem: it’s all or nothing. Christianity becomes a fragile house of cards religion.”

In the podcast interview, he gives us another glimpse of what he means:

“Now, for you and me, it is much easier for us to embrace all of those things as historical primarily because of how we were raised, but I totally get when a 25-year-old or a 35-year-old comes to faith in Jesus and then starts reading the Old Testament. They’re kind of looking like, ‘Really?’ Well, you know, that’s difficult, but that doesn’t undermine my faith, and I would never press somebody to say, ‘Well if you can’t accept all of it as historically true, then you can’t really be a Christian.’ I think that’s a little bit absurd.”

But another key question is whether one can be a faithful Christian while denying the truthfulness of Scripture. Jesus himself makes the point that without the Old Testament as the Word of God, we really do not know who he is. Then what does it mean to be a Christian?

As we sing, Jesus Christ is the church’s one foundation, but we cannot know him apart from the Bible.

In this latest interview, Andy Stanley also suggests that “Christianity ultimately and eventually created the Bible.” That is consistent with Roman Catholic theology, but not with evangelical Christianity. In the interview Stanley affirmed again that affirmation of the virgin birth is not necessary. He had earlier stated, “If someone can predict their own death and resurrection, I’m not all that concerned about how they got into the world.”

But the New Testament is very concerned about how Jesus got into the world, and if he was not conceived by the Holy Spirit, then he was conceived in some other way. Here we need to remember that the etymology of heresy is rooted in choice. A heretic denies a belief central and essential to Christianity. But heresy also takes the form of choice. You can choose to believe in the virgin birth or not, Stanley argues; he is not all that concerned about it.

Several years ago, I argued that Andy Stanley represents a new face of theological liberalism. In our day, he is playing the role that was played by Harry Emerson Fosdick in the early twentieth century. Stanley may not intend to play that role — he sees himself as an apologist.

So did Fosdick. He sought to rescue Christianity from itself, from its doctrines and truth claims. He cited his own “deconversion” stories as justification for remaking Christianity.

He also sought to “unhitch” Christianity from the Old Testament. In his famous 1923-1924 Beecher Lectures on Preaching at Yale, Fosdick called for a new, modern understanding of the Bible. This would require jettisoning what were for him and many others the embarrassing parts of the Old Testament. He described the effort to retain much of the Old Testament as “intellectually ruinous and morally debilitating.” To the young preachers of that day, Fosdick argued: “The Old Testament exhibits many attitudes indulged in by men and ascribed to God which represent early stages in a great development, and it is alike intellectually ruinous and morally debilitating to endeavor to harmonize those early ideals with the revelations of the great prophets and the Gospels.”

Here we go again.

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Harry Emerson Fosdick, The Modern Use of the Bible (New York: Macmillan, 1924), p. 27.

Alister McGrath, Heresy: A History of Defending the Truth (New York: HarperCollins, 2009), p. 131.

Irenaeus quote from Judith M. Lieu, Marcion and the Making of a Heretic: God and Scripture in the Second Century (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), pp. 36-37.

Mark Hamilton, “From Hebrew Bible to Christian Bible: Jews, Christians, and the Word of God,”  (PBS FrontLine, April 1998). http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/religion/first/scriptures.html

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Do Not Give What is Holy to the Dogs

Studying the words of Yeshua in light of the Hebrew language, and in its historical context can bring clarity and insight into his teachings.

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BY AARON EBY

The Delitzsch Hebrew/English Gospels from Vine of David not only provides access to the profound scholarship and insight of Professor Franz Delitzsch, but it is also a wealth of information into the background of the New Testament.Our Master Yeshua’s words come alive in their native Jewish context. Here is an excerpt from the Translator’s Preface regarding Yeshua’s warning not to give what is holy to dogs (Matthew 7:6):

The English word “holy” does not imply anything in particular. Some Christian commentaries consider this a direct reference to Yeshua’s message of the Gospel. The Didache (9:5) connects this verse with sharing a sacred meal. But when the words are represented in Hebrew, a different allusion emerges:

אַל־תִּתְּנוּ אֶת־הַקֹּדֶשׁ לַכְּלָבִים

Do not give the kodesh to the dogs. (DHE)

When the term kodesh is used in this way, it does not refer to holy things in the broadest sense, but rather to items that have been dedicated to the Temple as a sacrifice. The fifth order of the Mishnah, entitled Kodashim, discusses laws relating to the sacrifices. One of its tractates, Temurah, discusses what happens when an animal is designated as a sacrifice and becomes unfit. For example, such an animal might develop a defect or a serious disease, which places it in a category called trefah (literally, “torn”). Such an animal cannot be sacrificed, but since it had already been designated as sacred (kodesh), people were not allowed to use it for secular purposes either. What, then, is to be done with it? Can it be redeemed—that is, purchased with money or substituted for a different animal and then put to secular use? The Mishnah explains:

Any kodashim that become trefah are not redeemed, since we do not redeem kodashim to feed it to dogs. (m.Temurah 6:5)

This statement is quoted verbatim in several places in the Gemara outside of its direct discussion of this Mishnah (b.Pesachim 29a-b, b.Bechorot 15a-b), suggesting that this teaching has an axiomatic or proverbial use.

Although Yeshua used this phrase in an idiomatic sense (i.e., he was not literally making a ruling regarding what is to be done with defiled sacrificial animals), one cannot begin to understand the significance of a metaphor without first understanding the symbols that it employs. The interpretation via Hebrew in the context of first-century Judaism enables us to see how familiar Yeshua was with sacrificial Oral Law. Furthermore, it shows the implied importance that he gave to the sanctity of the sacrifices by using them as a figure of speech.

Having explored the source of Yeshua’s figure of speech, we can begin to unpack and apply it. Like many of the rabbis of the Roman era, Yeshua covertly referred to the Roman government using a code language. He warns his followers not to entrust matters of Torah (“kodesh”) to such godless courts (“dogs”).

This is just one example of how studying the words of Yeshua in light of the Hebrew language can bring clarity and insight into his teachings. (Click to Source)

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As Global Elite Manipulate Events To Bring Chaos And Wars That Could Bring Catastrophe, What Can We Do?

Those Connected To God Almighty Will Be Far Better Off Than The Wealthiest Bankers, Scampering Away To Their Bunkers Like Cowardly Dogs With Their Tails Between Their Legs

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Submitted to All News Pipeline by Pastor Dick Carmack 

March 31, 2018

As the “Insiders” run for cover, fleeing America and Europe to their luxury hideouts in New Zealand and other isolated sea ports the rest of us can only watch and wonder; With all their wealth and supposed intelligence of knowing what is planned, do they really know, or are they just reacting to what is planned by the Globalist elite and what the underlings have been told? We suspect it’s the latter. At any rate in order to produce chaos, out of which they intend to bring in their New World “Order,” we see events being manipulated to bring the chaos about; collapse of the stock market and proposed war with Iran.

No matter how much money you have, no matter how well you are connected, no matter what your political power, if your basic assumptions are wrong then you are headed for disaster. The Master Manipulators should take heed, but they won’t.

A housewife in Hoboken, a farmer in Kansas or a day laborer in Nevada are vastly better off than the wealthiest New York banker if they are connected to the One that made all things; whom the Bible calls God Almighty. They can take that certain knowledge to the bank and it won’t disappear when the bank goes bust, because they have deposited a rare commodity called TRUTH into their personal account, a gift that never perishes. The theories and plans of men often go astray, because no matter how much planning goes into an exercise if the foundation is flawed, then the building will eventually crumble and go back to dust, but God’s word is eternal and will never fail.

As the rich roll out their jets and fly to their underground bunkers; as the price of everything skyrockets with hyperinflation looming, what can the average person do? We certainly wouldn’t be welcome where the Insiders go but we can go somewhere infinitely better to gain perfect security in the turbulent times that are apparently upon us. God wrote it all down a long time ago and all we have to do is read the instructions and believe. That’s the hard part for someone prideful or who has a ton of money, it’s because he thinks he earned it through his own omniscient powers and thereby doesn’t believe in “superstitions,” but instead believes in himself. Pray for your rich and proud friends, because mostly they’re in a heap of trouble.

Lu 18:25 For it is easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.

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It’s not that God doesn’t care about rich people, He loves them just as much as you and me. The fault lies with the idea that most people have adopted the idea there is no God, and if by chance there is, they don’t need Him. But the future is already written as past history (it’s called “prophecy),” and those who fail to heed it will suffer a fate that is literally, much, much worse than death (it’s called “hell).”

There is soon coming days of great tribulation upon this earth, when fully one-half (about 3 ½ billion people) will perish. It will come in two major stages. The first stage is described in Revelation 6, verse 8 where a coming conflagration is described that will kill “a fourth part” of the world. The main instrument of destruction is the rider of the fourth horse of the apocalypse, described in most translations as “pale.”

Re 6:8 And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth. 

If it seems like a short description of the coming holocaust that will result in the first quarter (1.75 billion or 1,750 millions) of population reduction, how many words are required to describe what is to come? God knows exactly what will bring the best result. Our job is to report the facts, not try to improve, or to dissect the words He has chosen. That falls to the liberals who think they know better than Him.

There is notably a strange association of the word “pale” when translated from the Greek “chloros,” it’s used four times in the New Testament. In the passage quoted it stands alone, the other three entries are “green grass (Mark 6:39),” also in Rev 8:7 “green grass,” when we get to Rev 9:4 we get “green thing.” One might think the translators had a hard time visualizing a green horse. Does it mean anything? How can a horse be green?

“5515. clwrov chloros, khlo-ros’ – from the same as 5514; greenish, i.e. verdant, dun-colored:–green, pale.”

A horse can be green because God said it is and apparently the color stands for something, a clue for the modern reader to see where this world is going and what the future will most certainly bring. In previous writings we have theorized that Islam is the chosen enforcement arm for the New World Order that is descending upon the world, creating chaos and bringing in the prophesied end-time events described in detail in the Bible. When the Islamic hordes, sleeper cells included, are loosed upon this earth, the green horse will gallop forth.

We refer you also for a pictorial of what’s coming, to a recent article about starvation in Venezuela by Stefan Stanford that contains the following graphic.

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It is a thesis of this writing “chloros” (pale horse) or green, stands for the pseudo religion known as Islam. The reader can quickly verify this by simply watching the TV news out of the Mid-East. Whenever Islam is in the news so is the color green. If that still doesn’t make sense please consider the following excerpt from the book “Death Rides a Green Horse” (currently out of print).

GREEN IS THE COLOR OF ISLAM.

Footnotes at the bottom of this story. (Islam reached 1 billion in 1985, in 2003 estimates run as high as 1.4 billion) The Flag of Islam is green (1), the garb, or the clothing of the prophet was green (2), The circus factions at Constantinople using the Muslims were blue and green (3). The supposed descendants of Muhammad the sherifs are distinguished by their green (4) turbans, the Palestinian Authority painted the tomb of Jewish patriarch Joseph a bright green (5) when it was given to them by the Israelis, green (6) flags are all over the TV news. The color green (7) is dominant in dozens of ISLAMIC national flags. Red (or war) (Russia?) runs a close second. Abu Moslem, a Muslim general separated his factions by color and the Fatimas were distinguished by the color green (8).

The line between the Israelis and Palestinians in Jerusalem is called the Green (9) Line, in Beirut, Lebanon the line between the Muslims and Christians is called the Green (10) Line. Judith Miller in her book GOD HAS NINETY-NINE NAMES, lists several uses of green (11) as an Islamic color. Muammar Qaddafi a Muslim fanatic and strong man of Libya wanted to name his parliament THE GREEN (12) HOUSE until the meaning of the term in the West was pointed out to him. Qaddafi also uses his “GREEN (13) BOOK, (Magazine THE GREEN (14) PATH)” a book of his wisdom patterned after the RED BOOK of the Chinese Chairman Mao. “Libya still seemed obsessed with the color green” (p. 219). Flags of the World, Internet site goes into detail showing Green (15) is the color of Islam.

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There are two easily identifiable green movements in the world today, Islam and Extreme Environmentalism. There are two riders on the green (16) horse, “death and hell.” As food for thought, I will mention there is another large organization that seems to be dominated by both the color red and the color “green,” the Roman Catholic Church. Connection? Ask someone who knows, I am just a student, not a master. There has been a lot of speculation of a connection between Catholicism and Islam. Jack Chick (Chick Publications, Alberto) charges that the Catholic Church financed the rise of Islam. Others imply the same. MOHAMMED’S daughter FATIMA was born in 606. “Our Lady of Fatima” appeared to three children in Portugal on May 13th. 1917.”

A Chronology of Biblical Christianity, Dr. R. C. Wetzel. Coincidental names? Chuck Missler (Koinonea House, Online) recently published a photo of the Virgin Mary standing on a base adorned with an Islamic Crescent.

(1) According to an article published by FLAGS OF THE WORLD (http://www.fotw.net;flags/islam.html) “Unless one takes a plain green banner similar to Libya’s as a broad representation of Islam (said to have been borne by the Prophe(t) Muhammad PBUH), there is not an Islamic flag…..The best representative body here would be the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC), which celebrated its 20th anniversary in 1990. Photos from that time show a green flag, edged all around with white (though this may simply be a fringe, the sort of wide fringe often seen on Saudi flags), with a large white circle in the center, upon which is a red crescent, points up, and within the crescent the name of the body in calligraphic Arabic. Beyond this there is of course the Arab League, but this is ‘Arab’ and not ‘Islamic.’ – Ed Haynes 6 October 1995.”

(2) THE HISTORY OF THE DECLINE AND FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE, VOL. 5, Chapter 50, page 86. “An angel or a spy revealed their conspiracy; and flight was the only resource of Mahomet. f286 At the dead of night, accompanied by his friend Abubeker, he silently escaped from his house: the assassins watched at the door; but they were deceived by the figure of Ali, who reposed on the bed, and was covered with the green vestment of the apostle.”

(3) Ibid. Vol. 4, Chapter 40 – Reign of Justinian, Pages 33,34 “In the exercise of supreme power, the first act of Justinian was to divide it with the woman whom he loved, the famous Theodora, whose strange elevation cannot be applauded as the triumph of female virtue. Under the reign of Anastasias, the care of the wild beasts maintained by the green faction at Constantinople was intrusted to Acacius, a native of the Isle of Cyprus, who, from his employment, was surnamed the master of the bears.”

(4) IBID Chapter 50. “In the various conditions of princes, or doctors, or nobles, or merchants, or beggars, a swarm of the genuine or fictitious descendants of Mahomet and Ali is honored with the appellation of sheiks, or sherifs, or emirs. In the Ottoman empire they are distinguished by a green turban; receive a stipend from the treasury;” 

(5) Hal Lindsey, INTERNATIONAL INTELLIGENGE BRIEFING. Date unknown. 

(6) ABC, CBS, NBC 

(7) Attachment: Flags of The Apocalypse

(8) HISTORY OF ROMAN EMPIRE, Chapter 52, page 205: “the green was consecrated to the Fatimites; the Ommiades were distinguished by the white; and the black, as the most adverse, was naturally adopted by the Abbassides. Their turbans and garments were stained with that gloomy color: two black standards, on pike staves nine cubits long, were borne aloft in the van of Abu Moslem;”

(9) Contemporary history.

(10) Map of Beirut, showing, West and East Beirut, separated by “Beirut-Damascus Highway, called “The Green Line.” – FROM MINNEAPOLIS TO BEIRUT. 

(11) GOD HAS NINETY-NINE NAMES – pages 219, “Libya still seem obsessed with the color green.” p. 218, “Qaddafi’s RCC supervised ‘popular committees’ that were mobilized to implement his cultural revolution, a ‘green’ version of Mao’s ruinous popular upheaval.” p. 222 “….Qaddafi pushed a button painted iridescent green – a nice touch, I thought.” — Qaddafi’s Green Book, which outlines his governing philosophy, is treated as a near-holy text.- John McTernan Blog 1-24-11 

(12) Ibid. p. 219.

(13) Ibid. pgs. 210, 211, 217, 218, 220, 227, 228, 237. 

(14) Ibid. p. 220

(15) See (1). 

(16) Rev. 6:8. 

***** This writer believes the world may well have already entered the biblical period called “the beginning of sorrows” (Mat 24:8). We are now in Act One which will lead rapidly to great tribulation (Rev 24:21), and in due time “the wrath of God” described in eleven different verses, two of which follow.

Ro 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; 

Joh 3:36 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

We can’t tell you exactly how Islam will fit into the coming depopulation of earth. We have simply presented what we think is relevant evidence. The 2nd Stage (called the Wrath of God) of the completed depopulation (3 ½ billion [one half] to die) will be covered in a future article. (Click to Source)

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Joyce Meyer Defends Tattoos, Says She Might Get One to Make Religious People Mad

My God, the God of the Bible says: You shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead nor print or tattoo any marks upon you; I am the Lord. (Leviticus 19:28)

We are the temple of the Holy Spirit :

Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. (1 Corinthians 3:16-17) 

Joyce Meyer is a False Teacher!

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During a recent conference, Christian speaker Joyce Meyer made a biblical case for getting tattoos and admitted she has been thinking of getting one herself just to shut the mouths of religious people.

The video clip posted by Joyce Meyer Ministries on March 14 kicks off with Meyer explaining the difference between being holy and religious.

“Holiness is not legalism,” Meyer declared.

She went on to explain that religious people have made a mess of holiness by putting a bunch of rules and regulations on people. She listed drinking, dancing, wearing makeup and more among those rules.

Meyer quoted Isaiah 44:5 in defense of getting permanent markings. The scripture says, “One will say, I am the Lord’s; and another will call himself by the name of Jacob; and another will write [even brand or tattoo] upon his hand, I am the Lord’s, and surname himself by the [honorable] name of Israel.”

She also shared the counterargument often used to discourage believers from getting tattoos found in Leviticus 19:28: “Do not cut your bodies for the dead, and do not mark your skin with tattoos. I am the LORD.”

Televangelist Pat Robertson, among others, has cited Leviticus to argue that getting tattoos is a “heathen practice.”

“You look at the Bible, the people are told not to mark their bodies and cut themselves like the heathen did. Tattooing is a heathen practice, it is not a Christian practice,” Robertson said in 2016.

But Meyer rejected the argument and contended that God also tattooed those He loves to Himself.

“The Bible says in Isaiah 49 that God has a picture of you tattooed on the palm of His hand,” she maintained.

“I’m right on the verge of going and getting a tattoo,” she added, pointing to her shoulder blade. “I thought I might as well just push all the religious people right off the cliff and just get it over with.”

Meyer said her ink would say, “I belong to the Lord.” She admitted that her husband pushed back a bit on her stance but they realized it was just a religious stance stemming from legalism.

Evangelist Christine Caine, seated in the front row of the meeting, can be seen rooting Meyers on as she expressed her interest in getting a tattoo.

“Why would I do that (get a tattoo)? Just to make religious demons mad, no other reason,” she maintained.

“I lived in so much bondage from legalism,” Meyer revealed of her past. “Everything in legalism is about something you can not do. Let me tell you something — it is not boring to serve Christ, it is so much fun and there’s so much you can do and not only that, you can enjoy all of it!”

The Saint Louis native pointed out that in Ezekiel 16:9-13 there was a big celebration and God put earrings and nose rings on the Israelites.

“Here’s the bottom line, it’s all about your motives and how you are doing things. We can’t look at the outside of somebody and decide for ourselves that they’re an evil person … That’s why so many people today don’t want anything to do with the church ’cause all they get is criticism and judgement,” she concluded.

The clip finished with Meyer encouraging those in attendance to pursue holiness but in freedom.

Hillsong New York City Pastor Carl Lentz has also defended Christians getting tattoos and addressed the criticism he often receives about his own markings.

(SCREENSHOT: INSTAGRAM)Carl Lentz poses with a Kevin Durant while on vacation, July 9, 2014.

“Biblical interpretation is huge right? So with tattoos not being allowed you mean Leviticus. We play both sides of the coin I think that is healthy. Like this paradox of scripture, interpretation is actually is part of our faith, the tension of it. So, on one hand, we say that is the Old Testament scripture, there is no New Testament verification of that. That law that had to do with slaves, that identified you as part of a tribe we don’t believe that came through the cross,” Lentz told World Religion News last year.

“We don’t believe that when Jesus died and rose again that old Levitical scripture applied to our modern life. That is ridiculous,” the Virginia native argued. “At the same time, there are some things we do believe follow through on the cross. So the way we break down we would literally put up the Old Testament and then put a cross in the middle and then we put up the New Testament and we say anything that comes through the cross is eternal. Anything that stops is Old Testament.”

Making the case against tattoos, some Christians have cited 1 Corinthians 10:23, pointing out that the question isn’t about whether tattooing one’s body is a “sin.” But it’s more about whether it’s “a good and necessary thing to do.”

Will Honeycutt, a professor at Liberty University, believes that while “the Bible does not explicitly forbid tattoos,” Christians should remember that “the Bible has a high view of the body as God’s handiwork, which is not to be disfigured.”

Also, he argued, one should not get a tattoo out of rebellion. Rather, “our primary motive for anything we do should be to glorify God.”

“Are you seeking to direct people’s thoughts toward God or yourself?” Honeycutt posed. (Click to Source)

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Satan’s Favorite Christians Are The Ones Who Deny That He Exists

WALSH: Satan’s Favorite Christians Are The Ones Who Deny That He Exists

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There is no better evidence of Satan’s existence than the fact that so many Christians in this country deny it. We are a culture where even those who believe in the saving power of Christ do not necessarily believe that we actually need to be saved from anything. This is the Devil’s handiwork. By pretending he isn’t real, we show his fruits.

Surveys show that 30% of American Christians reject the idea of Hell. For Catholics, the number is almost 40%. It’s a smaller figure — 25% — for Protestants, but that’s deceptive because 40% of Protestants say they don’t believe in demonic possession. They may affirm “Hell” as some kind of abstract concept, but they clearly don’t accept that evil spirits are actively at work in our world.

This is not just a problem among average Christians. Plenty of pastors and church leaders have fostered this heresy either by refusing to ever acknowledge Hell or Satan in their preaching, or by outright denying them. Here’s one article from an apostate pastor named Timothy Tutt who labels the Devil “make believe.” Incredibly, in his defense of this position, he never so much as attempts to address the numerous New Testament passages which depict the Devil explicitly. He never even mentions them.

This form of heresy — easily the most damning heresy in the church today — is one that I noticed over and over again in the reaction to my infamous yoga column from yesterday. I don’t wish to reignite that debate, but I was troubled that so many of the responses I received were based not on a defense of yoga per se, but on an outright denial of the demonic. This email is pretty well representative of so many others I read:

Matt, I couldn’t care less about yoga one way or another but your talk about “evil spirits” and “demonic forces” is what drives people away from Christianity. I’m a Christian but I don’t live my life in fear of “Satan.” The only thing you have to believe in to be a Christian is Jesus Christ. The obsession that some of you fundies have with Hell and demons just makes us all look silly. Do you really think God would make Hell or allow people to be possessed by demons? Give me a break. Focus on telling people the Good News, not superstitions.

Whether you agree or disagree with me about yoga is not the point here. Argue against my opinion about the nature of the practice all you want, but a Christian simply must not argue against my position on the existence of evil and the fact that we can do things that may open us up to their influence. What troubled me is not that some Christians denied that yoga could have that effect; it’s that some denied that anything could have that effect. “Focus on the Good News instead,” they say.

But what Good News? You mean the Good News that Christ conquered evil and redeemed mankind? Well how can I proclaim Christ’s conquering if I don’t talk about the thing He conquered? That’s like trying to tell someone about WW2 without mentioning the Nazis. Not only do you demean the achievement of the Allied Forces, but you make the whole history of the war incomprehensible. You turn Normandy into a holiday in France and Dunkirk into a nice day at the beach.

We expect secular types to laugh at any discussion of demonic spirits. That’s what shallow people do when confronted with a concept they don’t understand. But the really terrifying thing is that millions of Christians will join them in their mockery. I’ve encountered this same attitude when discussing Tarot cards and psychics and Ouija Boards, etc. The problem is not simply that professed Believers will make some argument as to why Ouija Boards or whatever could be fine, but that they’ll scoff at the entire discussion as utter silliness.

“Pffft. You think there are actual demons who might possess you because you played a board game?”

Yes, I do. But you aren’t laughing about the board game. You’re laughing about the demons. If you took the threat of demons seriously, you would never be so flippant about it. One can only imagine these sorts of Christians rolling their eyes and snickering at Jesus as He tells them about His experiences with Satan in the wilderness.

“Pffft. You think you spoke to Satan who tempted you to turn stones into bread? Hilarious!”

In Scripture, the story is recounted just a chapter before the Sermon on the Mount, where Christ makes numerous references to “Gehenna” and “the evil one,” and warns that we may be “cut down and thrown into the fire.” The question of the Devil and Hell is not an ambiguous one in Scripture. We are given no room to question it. Read 1 Peter 5:8; 2 Peter 2:4; Luke 8:2; Luke 11:14; Leviticus 17:7; Genesis 3:1-7; Matthew 10:1, Matthew 12:22; Matthew 25:41; Mark 3:11; Mark 9:38; 1 Corinthians 10:20; James 2:19, Revelation 20:10.

Demons are discussed 63 times in the New Testament. Satan is cited over 30 times. Evil spirits are depicted operating within the world and, yes, entering into human beings and taking possession of them. One of the most terrible passages in the whole text is Christ’s interaction with the possessed man in Mark 5:

He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God’s name don’t torture me!” For Jesus had said to him, “Come out of this man, you impure spirit!”

Then Jesus asked him, “What is your name?”

“My name is Legion,” he replied, “for we are many.”

Second runner up for most nightmarish Biblical verse is this warning from the First Letter of Peter: “The Devil prowls through the world like a lion, seeking someone to devour.”

We are cautioned not to be “participants with demons” (1 Cor 10:20), not to “drink the cup of demons” (1 Cor 10:21), and to be watchful for the “disguises” of Satan (2 Cor 11:14). And on and on. The Bible leaves absolutely no room for debate on this subject.

We have, in the end, only two honest options:

1) We can come to the conclusion that the Apostles, the Prophets, and Christ Himself were all a bunch of superstitious, hallucinating fools and liars. But if that is our opinion, then it makes no sense to continue calling ourselves Christians. The atheists are right and the entire thing is just a collection of ancient fables told by ignorant savages who didn’t understand that all human evil is really the result of mental illness.

2) We can accept that demons are real; they are legion; they are prowling through the world seeking to devour our souls, and our struggle truly is not against any Earthly force but against the “cosmic powers of darkness” (Ephesians 6:12). We can believe, and tremble at the thought, that actual supernatural beings are hovering around us and working around the clock to guide us away from the light and into destruction. We can feel helpless against these beings, who are stronger and smarter than we’ll ever be, and we can cling ever closer to God, who is our protection against the armies of Hell. We can take this threat seriously, and stop laughing about it like idiots and children, and we can take our faith seriously, because our faith is the only weapon we have and the only one we need.

Padre Pio once said that if all the devils took bodily form, they’d be so numerous as to blot out the Sun. This is a horrific thought. But the true Christian does not deny it just because it is scary. Instead he takes shelter in Christ, and he marches on forward.

Those are our two choices. Or we can settle on the comfortable and cowardly and irrational option which lies between the two. We can continue claiming Christianity, wearing it around like a fashion statement, while taking to heart only the bits and pieces that make us feel warm and snuggly inside. We can proclaim a Good that triumphed over a non-existent Evil, and a Christ who delivered us from the clutches of a make believe Devil. We can make a mockery of our faith in front of the entire world, and give a false sense of security to the very souls who are most in danger of eternal damnation.

Satan would be okay with option one, but he much prefers we choose this in-between route. Those who do become agents of Hell on Earth even as they deny the reality of Hell. They are dupes of Satan. His favorite Christians. And he hopes they never repent so that he can make their acquaintance in the afterlife. (Click to Source)

Brand New Film On Youtube Teaches Little Children To Sodomize Each Other

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A new short cartoon teaching little children to sodomize each other on Youtube that already has millions of views in a few days and is currently the #1 video on the site. The cartoon, called In A Heartbeat, and was produced by Beth David and Sebastian Bravo, depicts two boys attempting secretly disclose their homosexual love to each other:

Plans for this film apparently had been under way for a while, as back in November 2016 they had a Kickstarter page where they solicited funds for their project, which they say was for college:

We’re a team of two senior Computer Animation majors at Ringling College of Art + Design, and we’re mid-production on our thesis film, “In a Heartbeat!” This film is not only a culmination of our four years of education and hard work at the college, but also an expression of a subject that has not been explored in computer animation. It’s a film that deals with a real and personal topic in a very sweet and lighthearted way and we are so excited to be able to share it with you!

Working on this film has been a true labor of love for us both, and we need your help to make it the best it can be. Your donation will enable us to hire an extremely talented composer and sound designer to create a unique, original soundtrack for our film.

We are so grateful for any contribution you can make, be it a donation or simply sharing the project and spreading the word! As tokens of our gratitude, we’ve assembled exciting packages of rewards including stickers, t-shirts, custom Heart plushies by SquishyHappies, artwork by the film’s creators, and more!

Thank you so much! This project is very dear to our hearts, and we can’t wait to share it with you!

All our love,

Beth + Esteban (source) (Click to Site)

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