Archive for the ‘evangelicals’ Category

Should Compromising Religious Beliefs Be the Price of Citizenship?

December 1, 2016

Yesterday, I posted the content of an email entitled  “Conscience Rights for All” that I had received from Alliance Defending Freedom. Today, I was not able to find a link to the article. However, there is a link at the ADF site which shares an excellent essay on this topic from The Public Discourse website. The post goes into more detail regarding this very important issue and the current battle going on within the courts of our nation.

The Public Discourse: SOGI Laws: A Subversive Response to a Nonexistent Problem.

Excerpt:

The “price of citizenship” in a free society can never include our freedom of conscience. If we surrender that, then we have surrendered free society itself.

Throughout history, every person under every regime has had—in the most elemental sense—the freedom to form a unique set of beliefs and values. But, uniquely, citizens of the United States have long been guaranteed the fulfillment of that freedom. That is, we possess the freedom to live peacefully according to our beliefs and to follow the dictates of our conscience.

This freedom—codified by the First Amendment—is a pre-political right that rests in our dignity as human beings. But the cultural movement for “tolerance” and “inclusion” has reduced freedom of conscience to a lesser-than right, a token that exists subject to the decisions of judges and lawmakers.

In recent years, laws that provide special privileges to individuals based on their self-proclaimed gender identity or sexual preferences have emerged across the country. Commonly known as SOGI (Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity) laws, these legislative undertakings are typically fueled by activist groups and represent a subversive response to a nonexistent problem. Available data confirm there exists no significant social pattern or practice of unjust discrimination against these groups. This is not only because the vast majority of Americans already respect each other and are fair-minded, but also because anyone engaged in baseless discrimination faces the prospect of social and financial consequences brought on by public pressure and boycotts.

SOGI laws, however, use the full force of the law to punish individuals who seek to live peacefully and to work in a way that is consistent with their consciences. Elaine Huguenin, Barronelle Stutzman, Jack Phillips, and Blaine Adamson are just a few of the small business owners who gladly serve all people without exception, but who also face legal punishment because they declined to participate in certain events or to create custom art that would have violated their consciences. In Elaine’s case, she politely declined a request to use her expressive photography skills to tell the story of a same-sex commitment ceremony. Her attempt to remain peacefully true to her faith’s teachings about marriage led to a seven-year court battle that culminated in a ruling by the New Mexico Supreme Court against her and her husband, Jon. One justice stated that the Huguenins “now are compelled by law to compromise the very religious beliefs that inspire their lives,” and added that this compulsion “is the price of citizenship.”

Barronelle Stutzman is a 72-year-old grandmother who faces the loss of her business, savings, and home for referring elsewhere a request by a long-time friend and customer that she participate in the celebration of his same-sex wedding by designing custom floral arrangements for it.

In Iowa and Massachusetts, not only religious citizens but even houses of worship are under attack. Churches currently face government-imposed mandates requiring them to open their restrooms to individuals based on their subjectively determined sex rather than biological reality.

Conditional Surrender Fails to Advance Religious Liberty.

[In] the current cultural standoff, proponents of religious freedom and freedom of conscience simultaneously confront opportunities for victory and defeat. We can either choose to enter the arena and strive valiantly for victory, or we can join “those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat,” choosing to negotiate the terms of our own surrender. Now is not the time to partner with proponents of SOGIs in hopes of catching a few crumbs of liberty that fall from the table. Freedom of conscience is not a token to be surrendered as the price of citizenship in a free society; it is the mark of citizenship and the fruit of a free society.

James Gottry is a lawyer and writer with Alliance Defending Freedom, a Christian legal group founded to preserve and defend religious liberty.

Read it all at:

The Public Discourse: SOGI Laws: A Subversive Response to a Nonexistent Problem.

Related article:

The Federalist: BuzzFeed Wants To Destroy Chip And Joanna Gaines For Being Christian And Wildly Popular.

Hat tips to all links.

There Is A Greater Foundation

July 5, 2016

A young man recently told me that he plans to vote for HiLIARy Clinton.  During a previous conversation weeks ago, I briefly mentioned several of the scandals that she has been a part of  (Benghazi, emails, Clinton foundation corruption etc.) and I told him point blank that she belongs in jail!  I didn’t see the need to repeat my concerns about her a second time.  I instinctively knew that they would fall on deaf ears.

Knowing that I’m a conservative Republican, he asked me who I was going to vote for.  I said, “I just can’t vote for Trump.”  He said, “So, you’re abstaining from voting then?”  I replied, “When it comes to voting for president this year?  Most likely, yes.”

I explained to him that living in ultra liberal California (he likes to call himself “progressive”) means that my vote for any Republican candidate (since Reagan, who I think was the last Republican presidential candidate to win in the state of California) won’t count for the final outcome in this state anyway, so why cast a vote for someone in whom I have doubts about for the highest office in the land?

I read a very good and interesting article on another blog this morning. The blog is named “We The People of the United States”(In Support and Defense of the Constitution for the United States of America) and the essay is entitled What Is True Social Justice?

The author is a Trump supporter. “Miri” makes the point that the GOP Illuminati is frightened by Trump. I think I could agree with that. Many bloggers have written about the not-so-secret “one party system” disguised as Democrats vs. RINOS in Congress. The fact that the RINO leadership in both the House and the Senate have done NOTHING to stop 0bammy’s destructive policies is proof enough for me. In fact, there are rumors that there are GOP elitists (elitists…in their own corrupted minds, that is) who would rather vote for HiLIARy than Trump. As I have written before, Trump would be light-years better than HiLIARy (and 82% of people in a new poll taken in Virginia think she should be prosecuted), but I still think that Trump’s “you’re fired” attitude towards others is troubling.  What’s more disturbing is perhaps it would cause him to never take proper advice from anyone in his future presidential cabinet. We already have that with 0bummer, who has consistently ignored what military officers and advisors have been telling him regarding fighting ISIS for 7 1/2 years!

Not to mention the continued harassment of 0bummer admin’s plan for ‘summer of chaos’ and martial law (revealed through Black Live Matter hacked messages).

In the first link above (WTPOTUS), we read the FACT that 0bummer’s presidency in the White House has been a fascist’s dream!

Excerpt:

According to one definition, fascism

stands for a centralized autocratic government headed by a dictatorial leader, severe economic and social regimentation, and forcible suppression of opposition …

Kagan, who was once a Republican and who is married to Victoria Nuland, must not have been paying attention for the last 7 1/2 years during which Barack Hussein Obama II has placed the U.S. well down the path towards fascism.

We currently have a president who refuses to enforce immigration laws, and other laws as well; who thumbs his nose at Congress, the courts, and the Constitution; whose wife dictates what school children must and must not eat; who uses the power of his office to menace the media; who, as a candidate, formed a “truth squad” that used prosecutors and sheriffs to police what people said about him; who threatens banks and businesses to make them to bend to his will; whose “justice department” warns states that they’d better not try to keep people from using a bathroom (or dormitory, or gym locker room, or shower room) that doesn’t conform with their birth sex, and which threatens citizens that they’d better not say anything on social media that criticizes Islam … Well, you’ve got the picture.

The author goes on and writes:

I do completely agree with Brookings that

distribution based on social justice is the main problem of the world today.

Because through this concept of social justice, communists, socialists, fascists, liberals, and progressives have incrementally instituted our “present system” that features producers from whom wealth is taken and recipients to whom other people’s wealth is given.

There are as many definitions of social justice as there are fish in the sea, but the definition doesn’t really matter. What matters is how progressives use that phrase as code words for Marxist redistribution of wealth.

When Trump met with many evangelical leaders a while back, there was some speculation that Trump may now be “a baby Christian.” Well, I read Marsha West’s recent column over at Renew America (see the links within for explanations of what she is claiming) entitled, “James Dobson reveals who he believes led Donald Trump to Christ,” and I wasn’t really comforted by what I read there.

James Dobson starts off by writing:

Only the Lord knows the condition of a person’s heart. I can only tell you what I’ve heard. First, Trump appears to be tender to things of the Spirit. I also hear that Paula White has known Trump for years and that she personally led him to Christ. Do I know that for sure? No.

So…who is Paula White?

It is no secret that Paula White is a WoF prosperity preacher. Sad to say that any person that rejects the true Gospel of Christ and embraces WoF’s false health & wealth gospel, as she does, is not a regenerate (born again) Christian. In fact, those who have bought into WoF beliefs are caught up in a cult. WoF is not historic orthodox Christianity – not even close! Its teaching on faith is right out of the New Age playbook:

      Faith is a tangible

force

      . This

force

      is released through the spoken word, thus name-it-and-claim-it. When we speak words of faith,

power

      is discharged that will accomplish our desires. Through faith we can have health, wealth, success – anything we want!

 

Moreover…

Alleged laws of the universe can be manipulated independent of God. Does this mean God is subject to the laws He created? According to word-faith theology, yes. (Source)

The prosperity “gospel.”

*Sigh*….

Sounds like something that Trump would embrace because he lives in prosperity and “The Art of the Deal” is his gospel! I’m not saying that there is anything wrong with this businessman’s success, but such success is only temporal. “You can’t take it with you” as we all know, and one day he will stand before Jesus Christ either at the Great White Throne Judgment (if not saved)

 

 

or the Judgment Seat of Christ (if he is saved and redeemed by the true Gospel of Christ).

The book of Jude warns us of the “prosperity gospel” heresy and all kinds of false “prophets” who would skew individuals away from the true gospel of Jesus Christ!

Ms. West concludes her essay:

And if it’s true that it was Paula White, as Dr. Dobson seems to think, then we can surmise from what we know about this woman, that Donald Trump did not hear the true Gospel of Christ from her. Sadly, what he heard instead was the false prosperity gospel that saves no one.

I’ll close with a warning from the Apostle Paul:

      But the Spirit saith expressly, that in later times some shall fall away from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils, through the hypocrisy of men that speak lies, branded in their own conscience as with a hot iron…

1 Tim. 4:1,2

We can hold out hope that one day Trump will be genuinely born again in Christ. Until then, if he is elected this November, we can hope that God will use this secular man (in a similar manner as He used Cyrus in the Bible) to renew and rebuild our currently beleaguered Judeo-Christian nation.

 

A little history about King Cyrus.

2Ch 36:22

Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying,

Ch 36:23

Thus says Cyrus king of Persia: All the kingdoms of the earth the LORD God of heaven has given me. And He has commanded me to build Him a house at Jerusalem which is in Judah. Who is among you of all His people? May the LORD his God be with him, and let him go up!

Cyrus made this proclamation 48 years after the temple was destroyed (2 Chronicles 36:18,19), the year after he conquered Babylon. The book of Ezra tells the story of this proclamation and the return of the exiles to Judah.

Second Chronicles focuses on the rise and fall of the worship of God as symbolized by the Jerusalem temple. David planned the temple, Solomon built it and then put on the greatest dedication service the world had ever seen. Worship in the temple was superbly organized.

But several evil kings defiled the temple and degraded worship so that the people revered idols more highly than God. (Sound A LOT like today…doesn’t it?) Finally, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon destroyed the temple (36:19). The kings were gone, the temple was destroyed, and the people were removed. The nation was stripped to its very foundation. But fortunately there was a greater foundation – God himself. When everything in life seems stripped away from us, we too still have God- his Word, his presence, and his promises.

Hat tips to all links.

Question: Has the Lord chosen Mr. Trump to bring America back from the brink of destruction?

May 21, 2016

The question asked in my previous post –  Is America Under Judgment? – brought forth more than 60 comments of conversation.

Well, I have another type of post to share today that may very well generate another heated debate.

As with any topic, the concept of truth vs. error is involved.

The utilization of discernment and wisdom from God (via His Word – the Bible) will become quite evident!

Watch and listen to the following video (below on this page) that was found in the comment section of a post at Now The End Begins: The Real Reason Why Donald Trump Was Chosen To Be The Republican Candidate For President.

Be sure to read the post, too!

[Note:  Watch and listen to at least 41 minutes into the video (below), but it would be best to listen to the entire video.]

Then, if you are led to do so, please share your thoughts, questions, opinions, and Bible-based commentary about what has been shared in the video in the comment section!

~ Christine

 

P.S. Update and clarification. I grabbed the provocative title of this post from a paragraph at the link shared (Now The End Begins – NTEB) to make a point. But in order to see my point, readers must also view the video (below).

My goal was to provide a possible explanation as to why and how Christians (who currently disagree about why God would instill Trump into the presidency… some are very “pro-Trump,” while others are “anti-Trump”) see the rise of Trump at this particular time in history.

 

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Published on Apr 21, 2016

Rick Wiles interviews retired firefighter Mark Taylor who was given this prophetic revelation in 2011. The Lord has chosen Mr. Trump to bring America back from the brink of destruction. Mr. Taylor wrote this amazing prophecy in 2011 giving us a glimpse of what’s to come and why all who attack Mr. Trump will fall by the wayside. What’s amazing is that this revelation has gone forth to thousands. The wrath of God has come not for the people of America but for the leaders of the establishment. The hour of judgment is upon them. The light has begun to shine and the darkness of evil will prevail no more.

Hat tip: Now The End Begins: The Real Reason Why Donald Trump Was Chosen To Be The Republican Candidate For President.

Excerpt:

I know that Donald Trump is not a Christian, nor has he run a “Christ-like” campaign. But in case you haven’t noticed, America is not a God-honoring nation, in fact we are the opposite. As a nation we murder unborn citizens, we glorify and promote the wickedness of the LGBT agenda, and we defend evil. I believe with all my heart that the judgment of God began to fall with the election of Barack Obama, and this election will not alter that course in any way. For those of you who were Ted Cruz supporters thinking you were going to elect a “Christian president”, his ties with Mormonism and the Dominionist cult movement disqualified him from that. – Geoffrey Grider at NTEB

Some comments from the NTEB site are re-posted below.

Anti-Trump comments:

cn

4 May 2016 at 4:37 pm
Leave a Reply

Could HE be THE ANTICHRIST? When individuals have said that b4 about Presidents/Popes/etc. I just rolled my eyes but this guy . . . his arrogance is so over the top, for some reason he is charismatic (I don’t know why), even tho’ he ‘claims’ to be a Christian, he does just the opposite of what God would want/he lies so easily and people BELIEVE HIM! People blindly trust him, YET he taught his own children not to trust anyone ‘NOT EVEN HIM’! I cannot explain it but when he speaks especially “when America is great again” statements he seems, I don’t know, plastic if you understand me. I had the “opportunity” to meet him back in the 90’s when I worked for a bank that he was dealing with. He was no different then, then now. All the girls were swooning over him. I could not figure out why. I had to walk away. Anyway, I’ve got this strng feeling about him/Antichrist because of his waaaaay over the top arrogance, pride, lies, nastiness and yet people love him. Sigh . . . I hope that I am wrong . . .

Emily

4 May 2016 at 1:47 pm
Leave a Reply

I appreciate the more rational tone of this article, but the logic of Christians actively supporting Trump fails. Jews did not “vote” or give their seal of approval over Cyrus; they were conquered by a brutal nation because of a leadership failure. You say you were worried about “King Cruz” yet you are okay with comparing Trump to King Cyrus? Wow. And when did a man become responsible for his father’s words or beliefs? Last time I checked, each of us is responsible for our own conduct, including every idle word. You impugned Ted Cruz over nasty media articles – many from liberal sites such as Slate – that tried to paint Cruz as a Dominionist based on his father’s preaching. I believe evangelicals have been played. The media used the term like the way they paint evangelicals as radical fundamentalists.

Many of us who supported Cruz did not support him for being a Christian – who knows the salvation of any one person (and how can you judge the state of Cruz’s salvation? How can you say that Cruz is disqualified for “ties” when Trump has much, much worse associations?) – but we supported Cruz because he is the only one of the candidates with a viable shot who is a Constitutional Conservative and one who supports religious freedom. Cruz was hated more by the establishment than Trump – called “Lucifer in the flesh”. Those who support Trump have turned on the Constitution. Trump is a big government progressive. He will not build the wall – especially when he sees the price tag and the debt we are in. And what good is a wall when people can tunnel under, go over, go around, or go through?

The reality is we are facing financial collapse. We are facing nuclear attack. We are facing unprecedented natural catastrophe. The bible states that only a fool longs for the Day of the Lord. Who longs for sinners to be judged, when we should be praying for their redemption? The bible is clear that we will see the abomination of desolation standing were it ought not, and so we must be prepared for some hard times.

We will see churches lose there tax exempt status. We will see churches sued, closed, and pastors put in jail before long. We will see bibles removed from homes – a famine for the word is coming, so hide the Word in your heart.

Ky

4 May 2016 at 3:31 pm
Leave a Reply

Geoff,

What you believe about Trump and what you know are two VERY different things. Trump may very well be what God has in mind to rule America in the last days, (May God’s will be done.) but you have presumed to know the mind of God in this matter, and furthermore, you have supported a known ungodly man for president in the process. I just don’t think you can reconcile voting for him if we had other choices, and we did. The heathen and the ungodly at least have an excuse. You KNOW better. My mother, and quite possibly yours, always said, “Two wrongs don’t make a right.” That is the principle I see in play here. We have tried to reverse one wrong with another. In the grand scheme of things, it could be everyone gets a pass on who they support in elections, but I don’t think so. How do you suppose God will deal with the priests and the pastors that supported Hitler’s rise to power in WWII? Many Christians went to their death for how they handled that election because they refused to go along. We don’t know what Trump will do if he is elected. Some predict he will become a dictator worse than Obama or that he is a Trojan horse. Whatever you may think about Cruz, his track record was one of standing up for the Constitution as well as getting in the face of the RINOS in Congress. Prayer is what is needed now. We have sown our crop and are getting ready to the reap whirlwind.

Geoffrey Grider

4 May 2016 at 3:55 pm
Leave a Reply

You look at Donald Trump in terms of politics, but I look at him in terms of fulfillment of Bible prophecy. When I read my Bible, I see that revival is not coming, and that the end times are upon us.

Ky

4 May 2016 at 6:01 pm
Leave a Reply

Agreed, but that does not mean you desert your ethics in anticipation of what you THINK Christ intends.

Rich

4 May 2016 at 10:51 pm
Leave a Reply

Agreed. Well said KY. Deserting ethics is common among Trump supporters…

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Christine writes:  ***Ultimately, no matter what happens we have the promises of Jesus who will never leave nor forsake His Own!***

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Christine writes:  ***Some additional comments from NTEB to consider***:

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Fights (from NTEB)

4 May 2016 at 1:39 pm
Leave a Reply

Geoffrey, thank you for clarifying your position about Trump. I do believe God will be placing him in power and I do believe we’re in end times. I am so thankful I know who is on the throne!!

 

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Dorsey Lightner (from NTEB)

4 May 2016 at 3:37 pm
Leave a Reply

Very informative. The Bible in correct context Geoffrey. Most Christians are not Bible Scholars and many with great knowledge are way off . I like the pro and Con Question format and your Biblical responses . I do believe The Lords purpose will prevail . Watch and pray , walk in the spirit of truth and love as Jesus walked . So shall we who trust obey and follow Jesus Christ . Titus 2 ; The Grace of God that brings salvation ! The blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior ! Thanks! I will share this because . The world will be shaken in these last days . Many will follow Jesus Christ and many will fall away following lying spirits .

 

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Irene (from NTEB)

4 May 2016 at 8:37 pm
Leave a Reply

So true, Dorsey. This world is getting ready for the greatest shaking this world has ever seen.

 

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Tracy (from NTEB)

4 May 2016 at 3:43 pm
Leave a Reply

Geoffrey, You have written a great article here, and more than likely, if we knew the future, you’ve hit the nail on the head with it. We all know that God uses people in ways that only He sees fit.
Even though critics were going at him in every direction, Trump just kept gaining in the polls. Like some would say, “he’s unstoppable.” God is in control of this.
I have to say again, Hillary is totally evil, to the very bone. Watch her!!

 

 

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Christine writes:  ***Note the contrast between the two writers (Geri Ungurean and Geoff from NTEB) in comments below!***

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Geri Ungurean (from NTEB)

5 May 2016 at 1:00 am
Leave a Reply

Geoff – you said:

“GOD IS PREPARING TO SHAKE THE NATIONS OF THE WORLD, AND I BELIEVE HE IS GOING TO USE DONALD TRUMP TO DO IT.”

I say:

“GOD IS PREPARING TO DESTROY THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND I BELIEVE HE IS GOING TO USE DONALD TRUMP TO DO IT.”

 

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An opinion comment from pam (from NTEB ):

5 May 2016 at 11:08 am
Leave a Reply

We have accepted homosexuality as an alternative lifestyle and this was the final nail in the coffin of the USA. It is being pushed hard through mass media, which Donald Trump is a master manipulator of. We were never going to vote a person that’s not degenerate into the highest office in the land. The media can make the masses believe anything they want, that’s why saturating our souls with Gods Word and growing in His grace and knowledge is the only thing we as a country can do to arm ourselves agains the god of this world. Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are both agents of Satan. This is God’s permissive will, He is allowing this rebellion to take place it should cause Christians mature in the faith to bow in humility NOT to get excited about the divine discipline that’s about to ravage this nation. That’s what is so disturbing for me to see. No humility, just a bunch of I TOLD YOU SO’S. But then this is where we are.

 

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Christine writes:  ***One final comment below where readers can consider whether or not the “prophecy” of the retired fire-fighter is Bible-based OR not; and therefore, whether what he has said in the video is legitimate or not.***

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Gigi (from NTEB)

5 May 2016 at 5:14 pm
Leave a Reply

This morning while reading my Devotional and doing my study, my spirit led me to Jeremiah 23. I am going to write some of the scriptures here which is directed to “Prophets” and encourage you to read the entire chapter.

Thus says the Lord of hosts:

“Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you.
They make you worthless;
They speak a vision of their own heart,
Not from the mouth of the Lord.

I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran.
I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied.
22
But if they had stood in My counsel,
And had caused My people to hear My words,
Then they would have turned them from their evil way
And from the evil of their doings.

God Bless You!

Syncretism Stew

April 17, 2016

Stew…

In the comment section of this post,  I introduced several columns, including Berean Research: Evangelicals Divided, A Movement Fractured, Part 1 written by Marsha West. Upon further research, I found that West’s columns can also be found at Renew America.

I have only read about half a dozen of her essays, but they have all been absolutely on-target for those of us who hold to biblically-based Christianity!

Her column entitled Purpose Driven dismantling of Christianity, Part 1, written back in 2011 caught my eye this morning.

Excerpt:

The real danger to traditional Christianity is not from without, but from within its own ranks. Millions of professing Christians have conformed to the world and have been taken in “through philosophy” and “the tradition of men” and are “not after Christ.” (Col. 2:8) Not that this is anything new. The attempt to blend Christianity with paganism has been going on since the days of the early church. And here we are 2 millennia later, still fighting some of the same battles.

One of the major problems Christendom is combating is pagan spirituality. The pace at which unbiblical pagan beliefs are seeping into evangelical churches is dramatically quickening. Many of the orthodoxy have been sounding the alarm, but few have been listening.

Liberalism, with its false social justice gospel, has also reared its ugly head in the Church of Jesus Christ. The liberal “social justice Christian” sees traditionalists as out of touch with the times. Their clarion call is: The Church must change! The next generation of Purpose Driven pastor’s accuse traditionalists who speak out against change agents of being “haters.” Purpose Driven/charismatic pastor Steven Furtick rapped his disdain for outspoken traditionalists in Hey Haters. “Fall back! It’s a new day!” he rebuked. The orthodoxy’s “day is done.” They are “haters…nit-pickers…black and white…full of opinions, low on the Spirit.” Steven seemed angry, even, well, low on the Spirit. I saw no love emanating from this pastor’s eyes, what I saw was arrogance.

I have been sounding the alarm bells regarding the heresy of Rick Warren over the past several years, but Ms. West does a superb job in listing not only the wrongs of the “purpose driven” Warren in this piece, but also shares the mix of “syncretism stew” that is currently ravaging many local churches (especially, sadly, several mega churches) that were once biblically based!

West writes, “liberals were serving up platefuls of Christian stew” and lulling them into “la la land” through a “blend of Christianity with paganism.”

I know SO MANY PEOPLE that I would LOVE to share this with!  Especially, there is a great need to share this information with Millennials who have fallen for unbiblical pagan beliefs.  However, in today’s twitter and texting generation, an article like this would probably cause their eyes to glaze over and they would not even get past the 140 characters that they are used to reading at any given time.   Sad observation, isn’t it?  And, I know this is true because I have shared previous articles with some 25 to 30-something individuals.  But when I ask “did you read…” I get the usual, “no, didn’t read it yet.”  They probably read the first line or two and perhaps decided to reject what was being said?  Well, maybe some day they will come back to this blog and read the difference between biblical Christianity and the satanic stew being mixed in by the “change agents.”

Ms. West explains what she means by “syncretism.”

SYNCRETISM

False teaching has made inroads through the blending of religions. It’s called syncretism. Syncretism in Protestantism occurred when elements of other religious beliefs were integrated into mainstream denominations. As syncretism takes place fundamental beliefs change.

Those involved in syncretism have a name and a goal:

Grievous wolves (Acts 20:29) masquerading as evangelicals introduced false religious beliefs (abominations) into mainline churches. Many of them are forthcoming about what they’re doing, others not so much. Their main goal is as I stated above, change. The plan (yes, they have a plan) is to dismantle historic orthodox Christianity and usher in a “new paradigm,” a “new kind of Christianity.”

Ms. West lists the ingredients of syncretism stew:

SYNCRETISM STEW

Ingredients:

Darwinian evolution
Eastern religions
Neognosticism
Neopaganism
New Age
Theosophy
Transformation
Simmer for several decades, then gradually turn up the heat and add an abundance of ‘isms’:
Annihilationism
Communitarianism
Cultural Marxism
Ecumenism
Emotionalism
Environmentalism
Freudian naturalism
Globalism
Homoeroticism
Inclusivism
Liberalism/progressivism
Moral relativism
Multiculturalism
Pluralism
Postmodernism
Postmortem evangelism
Pragmatism
Secular humanism
Universalism
Bring to a rapid boil. (For added flavor sprinkle in gimmyism, meism and voyeurism.)

While the isms boil, toss in a whole lotta movements, phenomena, and worldly practices:
Alternative medicine
Angelology
Charismatic
Church Growth
Contemplative
Emergent
Global Peace
Man-centered (self-esteem)
Metaphysical
New Apostolic Reformation/Kingdom Now/Dominionism
New Revelation
Pentecostal
Progressive (social justice)
Purpose Driven
Psychology
Reformed
Revolution
Signs & wonders
Televangelist
Twelve-steps
Universal Reconciliation
Word of Faith (health & wealth)
Turn down the heat and simmer until the flavor of historic biblical Christianity completely disappears.

Serve to the sheep.

Quite a long list…isn’t it?

No wonder there is so much confusion going on in the lives of Christians who do not, and have not, studied the Scriptures in order to recognize heresy, apostasy, and the satanic “stew” being fed to them via the wolves in sheep’s clothing!

I encourage all to read the entire article!

When Christians realize, study, understand, and finally see the following:

“The attempt to blend Christianity with paganism [which] has been going on since the days of the early church.  And here we are 2 millennia later, still fighting some of the same battles.”

…it means that they have taken the Berean road towards discovering the truth within God’s Word through diligent study of the Scriptures so that they can earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.

One more excerpt:

Followers of Jesus Christ are commanded to contend for the faith! Listen to what Jude 1:3, 4 says:

Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ that was once for all entrusted to the saints.

According to Clark’s commentary:

The meaning of the apostle seems to be this: ‘Beloved brethren, when I saw it necessary to write to you concerning the common salvation, my mind being deeply affected with the dangers to which the Church is exposed from the false teachers that are gone out into the world, I found it extremely necessary to write and exhort you to hold fast the truth which you had received, and strenuously to contend for that only faith which, by our Lord and his apostles, has been delivered to the Christians.’

Hat tip: Marsha West at Renew America

Hat tips to all links.

Defining Evangelicals

March 17, 2016

Defining Evangelicals in an Election Year

Last week, I was asked a question from someone of another religion what the term “evangelical” means.  This young man could be labeled as someone who vehemently “dislikes” Donald Trump.  He also self-identifies as “progressive” and if I were to venture a guess, would most likely vote for Hillary Clinton.

I gave a brief answer, but after reading an article from Christianity Today entitled Defining Evangelicals in an Election Year it seems to me that my more “simple” explanation may not have been enough.  However, I have often found that if I get too “wordy” about it,  people’s eyes glaze over and they could easily tune me out.

Evangelicals CAN and DO have a lot in common. However, as Rush Limbaugh pointed out (sometimes quite humorously!) on his radio show back on March 9, 2016, there is a Ruling Class Disconnect on Evangelicals.

I didn’t know about Donald Trump’s connection with Norman Vincent Peale until I read The Theology of Donald Trump.

Read more about Peale HERE.

Excerpt:

Yet as a Christian minister he [Peale] denied that God was a being, saying “Who is God? Some theological being? He is so much greater than theology. God is vitality. God is life. God is energy. As you breathe God in, as you visualize His energy, you will be reenergized!” (Plus: The Magazine of Positive Thinking). As a Christian minister he told Phil Donahue, “It’s not necessary to be born again. You have your way to God, I have mine. I found eternal peace in a Shinto shrine … I’ve been to Shinto shrines and God is everywhere. … Christ is one of the ways! God is everywhere.” He denied the very heart of the Christian faith and replaced it with his doctrine of positive thinking.

When I was growing up, Peale could have possibly been labeled as that era’s Joel Osteen.

For me, relying on God’s Word, the Bible, His Living Word, Jesus Christ, and the guidance of the Holy Spirit is far better than man’s “power of positive thinking.”  The first Three are eternal; man’s “power” is temporary.

Donald Trump revealed a lot about himself regarding his brand of Christianity. The following portion of the article is what stood out most for me.

Excerpt from The Theology of Donald Trump:

2. Sin. Trump reveals that many evangelicals have come to embrace a different idea of sin than evangelicals have in the past. First, sin is now seen less a condition that renders us all “miserable offenders” before a holy God than mistakes good people make that fail to contribute to “our best life now.” Card-carrying evangelicals should have gotten it when Trump announced that he has never asked God for forgiveness because he doesn’t really do anything that would require it. This is problematic from a Christian perspective on several levels.

First, even if we were to reduce sin (a condition) to sins, the latter no longer include multiple divorces, significant past support of the abortion industry, lack of any church membership, and unabashed dedication to a “Me First” ethic. Widespread evangelical support suggests that we’re fine with these practices now—they’re normal.

Second, and even more troubling, “sinners” are now apparently the “others” whose very presence makes us feel afraid and disenfranchised. Deflecting sin from ourselves to others, we have helped to provide a foundation for whatever demagogue can rally people “like us” to self-righteous anger against outsiders.

As the graphic at the top of the page demonstrates:

 

 [When] it comes to statistical prediction, four belief statements in particular proved extremely helpful. We asked a representative sample of Americans whether they agree or disagree with the following statements:

1.  The Bible is the highest authority for what I believe.

2.  It is very important for me personally to encourage non-Christians to trust Jesus Christ as their Savior.

3.  Jesus Christ’s death on the cross is the only sacrifice that could remove the penalty of my sin.

4.  Only those who trust in Jesus Christ alone as their Savior receive God’s free gift of eternal salvation.

Those who agreed with all four statements were also likely to self-identify as evangelicals, thus bridging the gap between belief and belonging. They also attend church on a regular basis—meaning these four questions about belief also correlate with behavior (church attendance).

Though there are many other factors or belief statements many evangelicals would include here, these four, taken together, create a tool that predicts all the other things evangelicals could include.

[The] questions help us reliably identify which Americans hold classic evangelical beliefs.

Those four belief statements are the Gospel of Christ!  It is a good start when sharing who evangelicals are, and if a person wants more information, then we can share more details when they ask to hear more.

I also suggest having the Bible verses handy that support each of the statements.  For example.

Number 1:


2Ti 3:16

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

2Ti 3:17

that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

*******

Number 2:
 Mar 16:15

And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.

Mar 16:16

“He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.

*******

Number 3:
 1Jo 2:2

And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.

1Jo 4:10

In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

*******

Number 4:

Jhn 3:7

“Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’

Rom 5:15

But the free gift is not like the offense. For if by the one man’s offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many.

Rom 5:18

Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life.

Hat tips to all links.


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Faith in Jesus Christ is our response to God's elective purpose in our life. These two truths--God's initiative and man's response--co-exist throughout the Bible. The gospel is "the message of truth" because truth is its predominant characteristic. Salvation was conceived by the God of truth (Ps. 31:5); purchased by the Son, who is the truth (John 14:6); and is applied by the Spirit of truth (John 16:13). To know it is to know the truth that sets men free (John 8:32). Believers are people of the truth (John 18:37), who worship God in spirit and in truth (John 4:24), and who obey the Word of truth (John 17:17). People have rejected, neglected, redefined, and opposed God’s truth for centuries. Some cynically deny that truth even exists or that it can be known by men (John 18:38). Others foolishly think that denying truth will somehow make it go away. Truth determines the validity of one's belief. Believing a lie doesn't make it true. Conversely, failing to believe the truth doesn't make it a lie. The gospel is true because Jesus is true, not simply because Christians believe in Him. His resurrection proved the truth of His claims and constitutes the objective basis of our faith (Rom. 1:4; 1 Pet. 1:3). Truth is our protection and strength (Eph. 6:14). Throughout history, people have tried everything imaginable to gain favor with God. Most turn to religion, but religion apart from Christ is merely a satanic counterfeit of the truth. At the heart of every false religion is the notion that man can come to God by any means he chooses--by meditating, doing good deeds, and so on. But Scripture says, "There is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). That name is Jesus Christ, and we come to Him by confessing and repenting of our sin, trusting in His atoning death on the cross, and affirming His bodily resurrection from the grave (cf. Rom. 10:9-10). There is no other way to God. False religious leaders and teachers talk much about God’s love, but not His wrath and holiness; much about how deprived of good things people are, but not about their depravity; much about God’s universal fatherhood toward everyone, but not much about his unique fatherhood toward all who believe in His Son; much about what God wants to give to us, but nothing about the necessity of obedience to Him; much about health and happiness, but nothing about holiness and sacrifice. Their message is full of gaps, the greatest of which leaves out a biblical worldview of the saving gospel and replaces it with the worldview of postmodernism with its dominant ethical system of relativism. The Bible describes mankind in the end times: “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim. 3:7). Spiritual answers cannot be deduced by human reason alone (1 Cor. 2:14). It’s not that spiritual truth is irrational or illogical, but that human wisdom is defective, because it’s tainted by man’s sinfulness, and unable to perceive the things of God. That is why the Bible is so important. It gives us the answers we can’t find on our own. It is God’s Word to mankind. Scripture is divinely revealed truth that fills the vacuum of spiritual ignorance in all of us. Post-truth is the word of the year for 2016 and also the philosophy of the day, According to the dictionary, “post-truth” means, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Simply put, we now live in a culture that seems to value experience and emotion more than truth. In a “post-truth” world, people make choices based on emotion and experience rather than objective fact. So in a post-truth world, truth is irrelevant. What exactly is a post-truth culture? It’s a culture where truth is no longer an objective reality. It has become subjective. It’s what’s true for me—my beliefs, my opinions, determine my truth. So in our post-truth culture, man determines truth. Man makes himself the ultimate authority. This starting point, which rejects God’s Word and the idea of moral absolutes, makes truth subjective. Truth will never go away no matter how hard one might wish. Christianity is grounded in objective truth. “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32). Objective truth exists because we have God’s Word. In the Gospel of John, Jesus says, “Sanctify them by Your truth. Thy word is truth” (John 17:17), and Paul and James describe the Bible as “the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15; James 1:18). The Psalmist says, “The entirety of your word is truth” (Psalm 119:160). Jesus Himself said, “For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:37). When Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except by me” (John 14:6), He wasn’t expressing His personal belief or opinion. He was speaking the truth, a fundamental reality that doesn’t change from person to person. It doesn’t matter if our culture thinks all roads lead to God. The truth of the matter is “no one comes to the Father but by [Jesus].” This blogs goal is to, in some small way, put a plug in the broken dam of truth and save as many as possible from the consequences—temporal and eternal. "The further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it." - George Orwell

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