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Showing posts from September, 2016

“Be Still and Know That I Am God” is Bad News

By Nicholas Davis - Posted at CCC Discover: “Be still and know that I am God.” —Psalm 46:10 Often this verse is used as a source of encouragement, and it is one of the most “liked” verses in the Bible. I remember hearing this verse often in Bible studies back in college and reading it in a daily devotional. Sadly, though, it has become just another cliché Christian phrase that is repeated in Christian circles. Notice to whom this line is directed. It’s actually not an encouraging verse written to Christians . It’s a call to the nations to cease fire and bow down to the Lord who is God. “Be still and know that I am God” is not a great devotional memory verse; rather, it’s a severe warning. Psalm 46:10, in context, is a warning to all of the armies of nations who oppose God and his people. It’s as if God is saying, “Be still! Stop!!! CEASE FIRE! Know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the earth.” In other words, “If you oppose me, I will cr

The State of Theology

Posted at What do Americans believe about God, salvation, ethics, and the Bible? Ligonier Ministries and Lifeway Research partnered to find out. These are the fundamental convictions that shape our society. What do Americans actually believe? The State of Theology data set is rich with information useful for discerning the beliefs of Americans about God, salvation, ethics, and the Bible in a way that goes beyond simple labels and religious affiliations. Read some of our key findings below and explore the data for yourself. Evangelical? Many self-professing evangelicals reject foundational evangelical beliefs. The survey results reveal that the biblical worldview of professing evangelicals is fragmenting. Though American evangelicalism arose in the twentieth century around strongly held theological convictions, many of today’s self-identified evangelicals no longer hold those beliefs. Read more...

What is Heresy?

By Amy Spreeman - Posted at Berean Research: Heresy is a false teaching about the essential doctrines of our faith – the ones we must adhere to, regarding who God is, who Jesus is, salvation by grace, and Jesus’ resurrection. Non-essential beliefs are certainly worth discussing with passion (and love of course), but not to the point where those who hold opposite non-essential beliefs are considered heretical. It is also important to remember that sanctification (our growth in holiness, truth, and wisdom), often is on a different timeline from other brothers and sisters in Christ. So what constitutes a heresy? There’s no better resource than what CARM (Christian Apologetics & Resource Ministry) has put together on the subject. At the bottom of this article is a list of heresies determined by church councils throughout the centuries, with links and explanations: “Heresy is a belief or idea that is in contradiction to orthodoxy. In the context of Christianity, heresy is that whic

Abortion, the Supreme Court, and Civil Idolatry

Details: Published on Sep 26, 2016 Attorney Bradley Pierce addresses the argument that to end abortion we should vote for Republican presidential nominees in order to overturn Roe v. Wade. In doing so, Pierce calls Christians across America to repent of putting more faith in princes than in God. This talk was given at the Stand Fast in the Faith conference hosted by Forge Ministries ( ).

Free Presbyterians Protest False Ecumenism

By Rev. Ian Brown: Protest @ False Ecumenism in St Anne's September 25, 2016 125 Free Presbyterians assembled in Writer's Square opposite the main doors to St. Anne's Cathedral, Belfast, this afternoon. Several famous Gospel hymns were sung, the Scriptures were read, and a message delivered by the Deputy Moderator, Rev. Kenneth Elliott, which exhorted God's people to turn their backs on the kind of compromising signals being sent out by Belfast's cathedral church. ... Read more...

A Word to (Some) of My (Fellow) Internet Calvinists

By Kofi Adu-Boahen - Posted at Entreating Favor: Originally published Oct. 1, 2015. I’ve wrestled with how to say what I’m about to say for close to a year and a half. If there is one group of people who generally fail at self-criticism, it would probably be  Reformed folks. Even now, I’m sure some people are preparing their copies of   The Institutes of the Christian Religion to launch at me in a manner consistent with causing bodily harm. Please, hear me out first. First off, this is not an anti-Reformed rant. I am a card-carrying five-point-Calvinist with a great appreciation for historical, confessional Reformed theology. I don’t agree with every tenet of classic Reformed thought (my view of the covenants would be one example – another would be my view of baptism) but I would say it speaks closest to what I believe as a Christian. In short, guys, I’m on your side. It is exactly because I am on your side, friends and brethren, that I have to call a huddle in session. Fo

Why America Burned Spurgeon’s Sermons and Sought to Kill Him

By Dr. Christian George - Posted at The Spurgeon Center: Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation 154 years ago today, promising liberty to some 3 million enslaved black men and women. Charles Spurgeon also fought the evils of slavery: “[The] hope of deliverance seemed far away, it was God that gave an Abraham Lincoln, who led the nation onward till ‘Emancipation’ flamed upon its banners” ( MTP 29:243). Spurgeon exchanged correspondences with Frederick Douglas, received former slaves into his Pastors’ College and pulpit, and condemned slavery in his sermons and media articles: “I do from my inmost soul detest slavery . . . and although I commune at the Lord’s table with men of all creeds, yet with a slave-holder I have no fellowship of any sort or kind. Whenever one has called upon me, I have considered it my duty to express my detestation of his wickedness, and I would as soon think of receiving a murderer into my church . . . as a man stealer” (Pike, The Life an

Calvin on Civil Government

By Stephen Nichols - Posted at 5 Minutes in Church History: Let’s return to our good friend [John] Calvin and see what he had to say about civil government. The fact is, he had a lot to say. In fact, Calvin ends his magnum opus, the Institutes of the Christian Religion, with a discussion of civil government. In book four, chapter twenty, the very last chapter of the Institutes, Calvin turns his attention to civil government. He opens this chapter with these words: “For although this topic seems by nature alien to the spiritual doctrine of faith, which I have undertaken to discuss, what follows will show that I am right in joining them, in fact, that necessity compels me to do so.” Calvin is telling us that not only should a discussion of civil government be included in his discussion of theology but that it is necessary, it must be there, and so he turns his attention to it. He tells us right off the bat that we need to recognize the distinction between Christ’s spiritual kingdom

‘The Fabric of Our Society’: Federal Appeals Court Upholds Commissioners’ Prayers at Public Meetings

By Heather Clark - Posted at Christian News Network: RICHMOND, Va. — A federal appeals court has upheld the rights of commissioners in one North Carolina county to pray during public meetings, overturning a lower court ruling declaring the invocations in Jesus’ name to be discriminatory. As previously reported , the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and ACLU of North Carolina Legal Foundation (ACLU-NCLF) had filed suit against the Rowan County commissioners in March 2013, complaining that their invocations have asserted that “there is only one way to salvation, and that is Jesus Christ,” and thank the Lord for the “virgin birth,” the “cross at Calvary” and “the resurrection.” “I want my local government to be open and welcoming to people of all beliefs,” Nan Lund, a local resident who was among three plaintiffs named in the suit, stated in a news release announcing the legal challenge. “But when officials begin a public meeting with prayers that are specific to only one r

Muslim Rebels Massacre Christians in Central African Republic

Posted at Morning Star News: Central African Republic (CIA Factbook) NAIROBI, Kenya (Morning Star News) – Muslim militants slaughtered 26 civilians in a predominantly Christian village in the Central African Republic on Friday (Sept. 16), the worst violence in the embattled country in months, sources said. Rebels from the former Seleka group attacked the village of Ndomete, about 220 miles north of the capital city of Bangui, at 8 p.m. and went door-to-door killing Christians, a source in neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo told Morning Star News. Fighting between Seleka, officially disbanded in 2013, and Christian “anti-Balaka” militias has increased in the past year, but government and U.N. officials said Friday’s attack targeted civilians. Violence between Muslim and Christian militias hit nearby Kaga-Bandoro, where the Central African Republic’s U.N. peacekeeping mission reportedly quelled the violence over the weekend, but an area Christian leader cast doubt on the

Constitution History: 'Conspiracy in Philadelphia'

Details: Join host and president of Jerry Johnson as he presents exactly how the U. S. Constitution came about and who and what the founding fathers were opposed to in it's draft. Link: See also: Conspiracy in Philadelphia by Dr. Gary North (.pdf - 353 pages) The NRA (National Reform Association) and the Christian Amendment

Evangelical Misogyny and the Spiritual Oppression of Christian Women

By Michelle Lesley Weak women- always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth. Captives to false teachers. Led astray by their feelings. There is hardly a better way to describe a significant portion – dare I say, the majority – of evangelical women today. There’s plenty of blame to go around.  Satan dresses himself up like a Christian and deceives as many as he can. Women  (and men, too) give in to the temptation to seek out false teachers who will tell them what they want to hear. Pastors fail to fight off, and in many cases, welcome with open arms, the false doctrine and false teachers creeping into their churches. And the false teachers themselves are out to make a fast buck on false doctrine. And the result of it all is a generation of evangelical women held prisoner by Satan in the gilded cage of biblical illiteracy and feel-good “Christianity.” And most of them don’t even know they’re inmates. Read more...

Kaine cites Genesis 1, pope to support gay marriage

By David Roach - Posted at Baptist Press: Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine told the Human Rights Campaign Sept. 10 he advocates "full, complete, unconditional support for marriage equality." Screen capture from YouTube - (Baptist Press) "...because my church also teaches me about a creator in the first chapter of Genesis, who surveys the entire world including mankind and [says], 'It is very good,'" Kaine said, referencing Genesis 1:31 . "Pope Francis famously said, 'Who am I to judge?' And to that I want to add: Who am I to challenge God for the beautiful diversity of the human family? I think we're supposed to celebrate it, not challenge it." -  Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine WASHINGTON (BP) -- In a speech to America's largest pro-gay lobbying group, Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine said the Bible buttresses his support of same-sex marriage. And he predicted the Roman Catholic Ch

Measuring Success in Ministry

By Caleb Kolstad - Posted at The Master's Seminary: How should we define success in ministry? Take a look at the most-celebrated names in broader evangelicalism, and it would be easy to conclude that numerical fruitfulness is what defines ministerial success. But both Scripture and church history remind us that steadfast faithfulness is actually the true measure of success. Consider the prophet Jeremiah, for example, whose tireless preaching was met with little to no visible fruit. Or William Carey, at the outset of his heroic missionary career, who waited years before there was any response to his evangelistic efforts. In today’s post, I would like to consider some of the dangers that come from measuring success by the wrong standard. Read more...

Decision Making & “I Have a Peace About It”

By Eric Davis - Posted at The Cripplegate: A professing Christian was in a rough marriage for many years. It came to the point where they felt as if they could not take it anymore. Divorce entered the thoughts. They sought counsel from other Christians. Some opened Scripture, some didn’t, and some prayed. Though no biblical grounds for divorce, it came to the point where they could not see how God would want them to be unhappy in marriage. The marriage did not bring feelings of peace and comfort. So, they went through with the divorce on the grounds that both they and their close Christian friends “had a peace about it.” Perhaps you’ve said it. “I have a peace about it.” Sometimes it takes on a different form. “I have prayed about it, so it’s God’s will.” Or, “I have a peace about it, so God is calling me to…” Those words are often-assumed gateways to what God wants me to do in the throes of life. But, is my “peace” God’s enthusiastic permission slip for my “it”? Is my prayer and

Genesis 3:16

By Sam Powell - Posted at My Only Comfort: …And thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee (Gen 3:16 KJV) The publishers of the ESV recently announced that they have changed their translation of Genesis 3:16 to this: …Your desire shall be contrary to your husband, but he shall rule over you. I believe this translation to be in error. In this brief post, I shall attempt to explain my reasons. First, a confession. At one point not too long ago in the past, I also succumbed to the same faulty reasoning. In the paper “Promoting a Biblical Sexual Morality”, of which I was the primary author, I wrote the following: Second, the curse was on her relationship with her husband. “Thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee” (Gen. 3:16). Her intense longing would be directed towards her husband. The preposition translated “to” primarily indicates motion towards or into. Metaphorically it is used for “against”. Her longing, instead of a covenan

Transgender restroom bill applied to Mass. churches

By David Roach - Posted at Baptist Press: BOSTON (BP) -- A Massachusetts government commission's claim that churches may be subject to the state's transgender restroom bill has drawn expressions of concern from local evangelicals. "The United States Constitution has been understood since the founding of our nation as specifically protecting the rights of churches to function in keeping with their deeply held religious beliefs," Terry Dorsett, executive director of the Baptist Convention of New England, told Baptist Press in written comments. "Any attempt by a small vocal activist group to strip churches of that right should be vehemently opposed by all people. If they can take a church's right to practice their faith away, imagine what else they can do." At issue is a document released by the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) Sept. 1 explaining how a ban on gender identity discrimination in public accommodations adopted in July

America Remembers Lives Lost as Nation Marks 15th Anniversary of 9/11 Terror Attack

By Heather Clark Posted at Christian News Network: NEW YORK — The nation paused on Sunday to remember the nearly 3,000 lives lost 15 years ago when Islamic terrorists launched a coordinated attack on two World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon, and hijacked a fourth plane destined for an unknown location. Memorial services were held in New York and Washington today, as well as in a Pennsylvania field where passengers aboard Flight93 lost their lives after valiantly fighting their hijackers. “It’s all very beautiful because you are surrounded by people who are going through and feeling the same thing you are going through,” Nancy Shakouri, sister of Dennis Scauso, a firefighter who lost his life helping others, told reporters. “We can’t imagine being anywhere else on this day.” Read more...

3 in 4 Evangelicals Don't Want Pastors Endorsing Politicians from Pulpits

By Bob Smietana - Posted at Christianity Today: Since the 1950s, the IRS has banned preachers from endorsing candidates during church services. Donald Trump has pledged to eliminate the ban , calling it his “greatest contribution to Christianity” if he is elected president. However, most Americans—including evangelicals—seem to like the status quo. Four out of five Americans say it is inappropriate for pastors to endorse a candidate in church, according to a newly released report from LifeWay Research. Three-quarters say churches should steer clear of endorsements. For the most part, Americans with evangelical beliefs agree that pastors and churches should abstain from using their resources—including the pulpit—to campaign for a particular candidate. Seventy-three percent say pastors should abstain, while about 65 percent say churches should abstain. Read more... HT: Sermon Audio

Politically Incorrect?

Editor's Note: This article appears to have been originally written during the 2008 Presidential Election season, but its truth is timeless. AW By Phil Johnson - Posted at Grace to You: Matthew 20:25–28; Luke 10:21; John 6:37; John 10:27; Romans 13:1-4; 1 Corinthians 1:21-25; 1 Corinthians 2:2; 2 Corinthians 5:20; Galatians 2:21; Galatians 3:21; 1 Peter 1:23 If you came thinking I’m going to tell you how to vote this year, or suggest ways to mobilize your people to sway elections in your home town, you are probably going to be disappointed. In fact, those of you who know anything about me might be surprised that I’m even dealing with a topic like this one. I was frankly surprised when the guys who organize these seminars assigned me this session. Election-year politics are not really my cup of tea. And I don’t mean I’m not interested in the subject. I mean that I purposely try to keep my distance from it. There’s a good reason for that. Before I became a Christian, I

The Blog in Our Eyes

By Nathan Busenitz - Posted at The Cripplegate: What principles should guide Christians who interact on blogs (and other social media)? This article was originally published several years ago on Pulpit as a multi-part series. I’ve updated it slightly and republished it here because I believe it is still a helpful reminder for those who regularly communicate online – either through blogs or other forms of social media. At times, the blogosphere can be notoriously nasty — a breeding ground for slander, gossip, misinformation, bickering, name-calling, arrogance, and quick-temperedness. Even Christian blogs can sometimes deteriorate into something between a tabloid and a talk show, built on a few provocative tidbits of juicy news and the massing of ignorance in response. Armed with anonymity and eager for an audience, bloggers (meaning both those who post and those who comment) often shoot first and ask questions only after they’ve trashed other people and embarrassed themselves. So how

Our Lawmakers Will Not Be Able To Wash The Blood Of Christians From Their Hands

Posted at Voice of the Persecuted: ( Voice of the Persecuted ) What in the world is going on with our lawmakers? While the Western media puts all the focus on our election, their silence covers up the continued persecution and genocide of Christians. Is it any wonder that a large majority in the U.S. are still ignorant that persecution is even taking place, today? Iran is increasing pressure on Christians, even raiding their family outings, beating and arresting them on trumped up charges of attempting to overthrow the government. ( Read more ) Iran continues to violate international human rights agreements and treaties, whose signatories are supposed to respect basic rights such as the right of religious freedom, personal security and dignity, the right to be free from arbitrary detention, the right not to be subjected to torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, the right to humane conditions of detention, the right to a fair trial and the righ

CREC Review Results: Will We Ever See Them? By Natalie Greenfield - Posted at A Voice Regained: Nearly one full year ago, on October 3rd, 2015, Christ Church (located in Moscow, Idaho and pastored by Douglas Wilson)  announced they were launching an internal review to look into the possible mishandling of two sexual abuse cases that had occurred approximately a decade earlier. Within a few weeks of the announcement, two members of the review committee emailed me and asked several questions about my sexual abuse case and how the church had handled it. While I was uncomfortable answering those questions via private correspondence, and though I felt very strongly that an external investigation was required, I wrote a series of three blog posts addressing the questions I was asked. Those can be found here: Part I : Part II :

'Sex Change' Surgery is Toddlers' Choice: Schools

Posted at Culture News: Gay/Transgender Agenda advocates advancing the government-backed "Safe Schools" program are heralding "transgender" preschoolers who choose sexual mutilation surgery prior to kindergarten as well as their doctors who perform the procedures in Australia. “We have a number of students who are going through gender transition in our schools, with the youngest being a four-year-old at the moment.” -- Gregory Prior, Deputy Secretary of School Operations, New South Wales (NSW) Department of Education Read more... 

What to do when the Worldlings Sneer!

King Hezekiah prays By Bob McEvoy - Posted at The Salty Scivener: Text . Isaiah 36 Marching on while the worldlings sneer… It’s a popular hymn, and it is certainly true in part. Christians constantly face a tirade of abuse from the world. In this narrative, we see the opening gambit of the Assyrians. It is to demoralise the people in the city, to prepare them for their surrender. 1. The Sneering Spokesman! Let’s just look at some of the mocking sneers from this Assyrian ambassador. Who are you trusting now? V4-5. What confidence have you! Are you still trusting in:- Egypt? V6 Where are they? He uses an illustration of a brittle reed. Egypt is like that reed, totally unreliable, unable to help, causing pain to those who depend upon its supposed strength. So, then are you trusting in… God? V7 Now here is something really interesting. This Rabshekah has an elementary understanding of theology, – just enough to get it wrong! He has been watching Israel, and wa

Time for Reflection: 'Why Churches are Unfriendly and Cliquish'

By Joe McKeever - Posted at “When a stranger resides with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. The stranger who resides with you shall be to you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself; for you were aliens in the land of Egypt. I am the Lord your God” ( Leviticus 19:33-34 ). I stood before the congregation holding two letters in my hands. “Both came to my office this week. I thought you’d like to hear what they say.” “The first letter is from a member who moved several hundred miles away last year. She is missing this church. She wrote, ‘The churches here are not friendly like our church back home. No one speaks to visitors. I miss our loving, friendly congregation.” I said, “Do we have a friendly church?” Heads nodded all over the building. “Well, then, listen to this.” “Dear pastor. We visited your church last Sunday and not a single person spoke to us. You have a most unfriendly congregation. We will not be back.” The people sat th

China: Five Christian prisoners released ahead of G20 summit

By Carey Lodge - Posted at Christian Today: China has released five Christian detainees in Zhejiang province after four months in prison for protesting a church demolition. The five, Ji Qingcao, Ji Qingcou, Ou Jinsi, Mei Xueshun, and He Lijing, are all members of Yazhong Church in Wenzhou, and were arrested in April on charges of "obstructing government administration" and "disturbing public order". They had been involved in a protest over the planned demolition of another church, Guankou Church, in September last year. A local Christian told human rights charity China Aid that the five had been released on August 28, and suggested it could have been due to pressure ahead of the upcoming G20 summit in Hangzhou. Read more...