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Showing posts from August, 2018

Rep. McCarthy: Don't Blame Algorithms for Social Media Censorship

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By Susan Jones - Posted at CNS News : (CNSNews.com) - House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), appearing on Fox News Thursday night, said he doesn't buy the explanation that social media platforms rely on "algorithms" to sort their content. "Social media today is the modern-day town hall," McCarthy told Laura Ingraham: Sixty-seven percent of adults get their news from somewhere on social media. But let's just play that out. You see Prager University that puts out conservative videos. But one happened to be about Israel with Alan Dershowitz. One happened to be about baseball with George Will. Well, you know what? Facebook wouldn't show those because they said YouTube rated them similar to pornography. ... Read more here. 

​What Data Is Your Child’s School-Issued Google Drive Account Collecting?

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By Shane Vander Hart - Posted at Truth In American Education : Springfield Public Schools , the school district for the third largest city in Missouri, are at the center of a frightening breach of data privacy. Any student or staff member with a district-issued Google Drive account could have personal data compromised. Cheri Kiesecker at Missouri Education Watchdog reported earlier this month: What is reportedly happening with Springfield Missouri Public School’s use of Google Drive offers a rare glimpse into Google’s potential to collect data. School-issued student Google accounts connect to Google Drive which can allow for the ability to Auto-Sync devices to Auto-Save passwords, browsing history and other digital data points from numerous devices used by a single user. For students in SPS this could include digital data from non-school related accounts. Read more here. 

Rebirth of the gods

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Image Source: Wikipedia By Dr. Peter Jones - Posted at Reformation 21: When I moved to the United States from Great Britain in 1964, I thought I'd died and gone to heaven. America seemed so Christian then. The only dark blot on the landscape was that people feared the rise of Marxism throughout the world. Communism was the great threat, the political expression of what we call "atheistic humanism." Two years after I had arrived in America to study theology, I was asked to be part of a seminar on the "Death of God" movement. Some time ago, there was a group of so-called theologians describing the death of God, and it was taken seriously enough to be part of a seminar in a theological school. The whole point was (as expressed by one of its leading theologians, T.J.J. Altizer) that God had so completely incarnated himself in the world by the act of dying on the cross that he liberated man from any alien transcendent divine power. As we sat around, my prof

Army chaplain Squires cleared of all charges

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By Brandon Elrod - Posted at Baptist Press : FORT BRAGG, N.C. (BP) -- The U.S. Army has dropped its investigation against Southern Baptist chaplain Jerry Scott Squires, fully exonerating the major of all charges today (Aug. 24). Squires, who had been charged with discrimination against a lesbian soldier who wanted to attend a marriage retreat, handled the situation in accordance with military policy and followed the guidelines of his denominational authority, the Army said. "This is great news for both Chaplain Squires and all of the military chaplains who are serving our men and women the U.S. Armed Services," said Gen. Douglas Carver, executive director of chaplaincy at the North American Mission Board (NAMB). "It is a significant victory for all who support and defend the freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, especially regarding the freedom of religion." Squires had been charged with unlawful discrimination and dereliction of

A Facebook Story

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By Don Sucher - Posted at American Thinker : I am a regular Facebook user. Not a typical one, I expect. You'll see only an occasional family picture post from me, and absolutely no photos of kittens. No, nor those little "Hallmark Card" (as I call them) posts, either – the touchy-feely "feel good" ones with Snoopy, rainbows, hearts, unicorns, and flowers along with a bit of "ain't life sweet" poetry. No, I post different types of things. Themed postings under titles such as "My Morning Read" – often a thoughtful post, not a few of which are links to articles here on American Thinker. Or shorter posts, often with irony, under the heading "My Daily Uh Huh." Some weeks back, a Facebook friend – someone I never met face to face but with whom I share several interests including a love of traditional Western values and music-making – wrote to say he had a received a message from Facebook with a few short questions about w

The Sexual Revolution Hits Another Speed Bump

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By Tim Challies - Posted at Challies.com : Well, it looks like the sexual revolution has hit another speed bump. As it continues its long press toward completely redefining all we’ve ever believed about gender and sexuality, it has encountered a pretty significant issue. This issue appears to prove that many people are expressing loyalty to the revolution outwardly while actually denying it with their deepest and truest desires. Let’s take a quick look, then consider some of the implications. A recent study by two Canadian researchers attempts to “describe the demographic characteristics of individuals who are willing to consider a transgender individual as a potential dating partner.” The researchers wanted to know whether people discriminate against transgendered people when it comes to romantic or sexual interest. How would they know whether such discrimination exists? Well, according to the terms of the sexual revolution, if transgendered people are truly the gender they i

The Mess The Church Is In Now

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Posted at The Outspoken Tulip : Few Christians disagree that the visible church is corrupt. It’s pretty much impossible to ignore the moral compromises infecting all denominations, as well as independent churches as scandals proliferate. Social media only makes matters worse. Some “discernment blogs” (particularly Pulpit & Pen) absolutely delight in reporting every negative tidbit they can find. To be honest, scandal sells. Admittedly, sometimes we need to name names. I have boldly written about Beth Moore, Rick Warren, Sarah Young, Matthew Vines and others who inject false teaching into evangelical circles and thereby distort the Gospel. Additionally I have addressed popular trends like Holy Yoga, direct revelation, seeker-sensitive churches and the Social Justice Movement many times on this blog. I will continue doing so when I believe situations warrant such articles. The visible church is unquestionably a mess. We often forget, however, that the visible church has always

'China Takes Extreme Measures to Wipe Out All Traces of Jesus, Christianity'

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Image Source: CBN News By Tré Goins-Phillips - Posted at CBN News : A massive crackdown on religious freedom has for years been underway in China, where churches are being demolished, Bibles confiscated and posters of Jesus replaced with imagery of President Xi Jinping. In China, the communist government sees the spread of the Christian faith as a Western threat to their culture and way of life. In 2016, Xi said, “We must resolutely guard against overseas infiltrations via religious means.” The Chinese government wrote religious freedom provisions into its constitution in 1982, but that hasn’t slowed the oppression of Christians living in the restrictive country. Read more here.

The Counterbalance: Explaining James Madison

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By Geoff Smock - Posted at Journal of the American Revolution : The charge was leveled often in his own time, as it has been ever since: James Madison is and was a hypocrite—a man inconstant in principles; “a mind mired in confusion and inconsistency, or perhaps even one suffering from schizophrenia or tainted by dishonesty.”[1] This judgment is only a recitation of the verdict first rendered by Madison’s greatest political partner turned bête noire, Alexander Hamilton. Confused and indignant at Madison’s opposition to him and his programs as secretary of the treasury, Hamilton’s only explanation was that his character was motivated not, as he had long believed, by an inner spirit of “candour and simplicity and fairness,” but instead was of a “peculiarly artificial and complicated kind.” If this seems a bit uncharitable, it is at least understandable. Hamilton’s lamentations (came only four short years after his and Madison’s great partnership in The Federalist essays—which i

China: 'Pastor summoned for questioning during church intrusion'

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Uniformed officials raided Bible Reformed Church on Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018, and can be seen here filming people gathered there. (Photo: ChinaAid) Posted at ChinaAid : (Guangzhou, Guangdong—Aug. 20, 2018) A repeatedly persecuted house church in China’s southern Guangdong province was holding a service yesterday morning when more than 10 law enforcement officers broke into it without permission and ordered the pastor, Huang Xiaoning, to stop preaching. In reply, Huang asked that they show respect rather than cut off his preaching. “You don’t know the severe transgression you have committed by interrupting the sacred worship,” he said. “I will cooperate with you after my sermon.” A few minutes later, a person from the fire department interrupted him and said Huang was summoned to the fire department for interrogation because of the building’s fire prevention problems, an excuse often levied against churches to keep them from meeting. After a conversation, Huang agreed to be

Church Growth, The Theology Of The Cross, And The Theology Of Glory

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Contemporary Church Worship Service - Wikipedia By Dr. R. Scott Clark - Posted at  The Heidelblog : When I entered the evangelical world in the mid-70s there was much talk and teaching (and guilt manipulation) about personal evangelism but not much talk of church growth. A decade later, however, when I went to seminary, it was all the rage. I expected to study Scripture, to learn Hebrew (I did Greek in university), systematic theology, church history, homiletics, and pastoral theology. I was completely unaware of the so-called “church growth” movement. My earliest experience in a Reformed church was in a small German-Reformed congregation from the wrong side of the tracks. The “successful” and “influential” churches in my hometown tended to be on what was temporarily, “church row” on the east end of town. Meanwhile, my little German Reformed (RCUS) congregation moved toward the center of town where it has been ever since. There we talked about Scripture, doctrine, the Christian

House-Church Members in Iran Reportedly Sentenced to Year in Prison

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Bushehr, Iran, on coast of Persian Gulf. (Wikipedia) Posted at Morning Star News : (Morning Star News) – A convert from Islam in Iran said he and 11 other Christians were sentenced to a year in prison for “inclination to the land of Christianity” among other charges, according to Mohabat News. “Interrogations were obviously indicating that they were looking for confession to communications with [those] abroad, especially America, Britain and Israel,” the Christian, identified as Payam Kharaman, told Mohabat, which focuses on human rights abuses in Iran. Mohabat reported last week that Kharaman and 11 other members of a church in Bushehr, a port city in southwestern Iran, were sentenced to one year in prison on charges of “propaganda activities against the system and in favor of Zionist Christianity through holding house meetings, evangelism, and invitation to Christianity and inclination to the land of Christianity.” Kharaman and the other Christians were jailed for three years

How Can I Forgive that Man?

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By Dan Doriani - Posted at Place for Truth : "I know what the Bible says, but how can I forgive that man, after everything he has done? And he isn't even sorry." It is a familiar question or comment, and perhaps the second most common and difficult that pastors hear (trailing only "How could God let this happen?") Both ask for help explaining suffering; the second addresses great sins and offenses: "How can I forgive that man?" This question is more complex than it seems and the answer has several aspects. Indeed Jesus spoke to it several times. Two passages might appear to stand in tension at first, and seeing how they fit together is essential. In Luke 17:3-4 , Jesus says, "If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, 'I repent,' you must forgive him."  In Matthew 6:14-15 , he says, "For if you forgive othe

Setback for US Pastor Brunson as Turkey Retaliates Against Trump

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By Benjamin Gill - Posted at CBN News : American pastor Andrew Brunson has received another setback as he remains detained by the regime in Turkey. A Turkish court has rejected an appeal to release Brunson and lift his travel ban. The pastor is at the center of an escalating spat between the US and Turkey. The US government is demanding that Turkey release Brunson, saying he's being held captive based on false accusations of spying. The Trump administration has slapped the Turkish regime with tariffs and sanctions for holding the US citizen captive. In retaliation, Turkey is now hiking tariffs on American cars to 120 percent and increasing duties on alcohol to 140 percent. Fruit, coal, and makeup are also affected. Read more here.

The Problem With Mr. Jones

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By Doug Evans -  Posted at Asleep No More : By now you've heard of the left wing shut down of Alex Jones, bull horn of the InfoWars website. I am not a fan of Alec Jones, I've seen a total of maybe 10 minutes of his raucous bluster and came away feeling like I lost IQ points. YouTube, Facebook, Apple podcast, and Spotify all removed Alex Jones' content from their sites stating that he violated "Community Standards". Oddly, Twitter who is the loudest liberal crybaby of social media sites did not shut him down stating that his content there, the same content on YouTube, Facebook, Apple podcast, and Spotify, did not violate their policies. Twitter shuts down conservatives constantly for posting far softer content that the bellicose clamor of Mr. Jones. Very interesting. Alex Jones is not a conservative like you and I would consider a conservative, he calls himself a "paleo-conservative" a title which I claimed for myself about 1.4 seconds after th

Police in India Demand Money to Release Falsely Accused Christians, Sources Say

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Pastor Biswas Das as police take him into custody. (Morning Star News) Posted at Morning Star News : Christians arrested for praying in their home. HYDERABAD, India (Morning Star News) – About an hour before midnight on July 31, three policemen and a Hindu neighbor barged into a Christian woman’s house in northern India and ordered her and her husband to either give them money or go to jail. The couple was immersed in prayer with their children and two other Christians in their home in Uttar Pradesh state’s Sarai Gunja village, in Jaunpur District. They worshipped in their house every night, and they had been fasting for three days, said the Christian woman, Anita Rajak. The officers told them they couldn’t pray in their house and had come to arrest them, Rajak told Morning Star News. “We are praying in our own house,” she told them. “Why would there be an arrest for praying inside one’s own house?” Read more here. 

A Tale of Two Confessions

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By Jesse Johnson - Posted at The Cripplegate : In the past month, two prominent pastors have had their private sins publicly opposed: Bill Hybels and Art Azurdia—one nationally known and whose fall was front page news, the other known only inside of evangelical circles and his fall reported largely on social media. Both demonstrated conduct contrary to the qualifications of 1 Timothy 3, conduct that disqualifies them from being elders. Both committed adultery, and the fall of both men will obviously bring shame on the name of Christ. But there is one huge contrast between these two situations—namely, how their respective churches responded. In the case of Hybles, the accusations against him were not handled biblically and the potential harm for not only the families involved but for the church herself has been increased by that failure. In the case of Azurdia, his church followed the Biblical pattern for situations like this, and while his conduct will certainly cause some to que

Eight Reasons We Need the Puritans

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Gallery of famous 17th-century Puritan theologians: Thomas Gouge , William Bridge , Thomas Manton , John Flavel , Richard Sibbes , Stephen Charnock ,    William Bates , John Owen , John Howe and Richard Baxter (Source: Wikipedia ) By Jeff Robinson - Posted at Banner of Truth : For many years before entering vocational ministry, I worked as a journalist in the dog-eat-dog world of secular media. While working as a reporter for a metropolitan daily newspaper in Georgia, one of my more progressive colleagues teased me good-naturedly about being a ‘conservative boy’ from a small town in the sticks of North Georgia. She said, ‘You know what you are? You’re a Puritan!’ At the same time, I didn’t really know what to make of this remark. Today, I would see it as a high compliment. In the minds of many, Puritanism equals scrupulous rules-keeping, dour Christianity, or, as the inimitable American journalist H. L. Mencken famously quipped, ‘Puritanism is the haunting fear that someone,

A Biblical Viewpoint on "Gay Christianity" by Dr. Rosaria Butterfield

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Link: https://youtu.be/xVjj_dDAxLA See also: What is wrong with gay Christianity? What is Side A and Side B anyway? (Rosaria Champagne Butterfield)

Prosperity Gospel Taught to 4 in 10 Evangelical Churchgoers

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By Bob Smietana - Posted at Christianity Today : For some Americans, dropping a check into the offering plate at church is a bit like having a Discover Card. Both offer a cash-back bonus. About a third of Protestant churchgoers say their congregation teaches that God will bless them if they donate money. Two-thirds say God wants them to prosper. One in 4 say they have to do something for God to receive material blessings in return. Those are among the key findings of a new study  on “ prosperity gospel ” beliefs from Nashville-based LifeWay Research, which surveyed 1,010 Americans who attend a Protestant or nondenominational church at least once a month. Read more here.

CHRIST'S LAW AND IMMIGRATION

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By Andrew Myers - Posted at Log College Press : RPCNA minister James Mitchell Foster (1850-1928) served as pastor of a congregation in Cincinnati, Ohio for nearly a decade before assuming the position of Secretary of the National Reform Association (the same position which this writer currently occupies). Among his many writings is a remarkable study of the kingship of Christ entitled Christ the King (1894). In this book Foster examines many aspects of Christ's mediatorial kingship, considering those who came before him as typical representatives, and his kingly rule especially as it relates to the state and society. Many particular societal issues are specifically addressed by Foster in this volume, including the subject of immigration, a matter concerning which 19th century American Covenanters and other Presbyterians were very concerned to address (see William Speer's writings here , for example). The perspective from which Foster examines this and many other t

Revoice, Evangelical Culture, and the Return of an Old Friend

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By Dr. Carl Trueman - Posted at MOS - Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals : With moving job and house in the last two months, I was only vaguely aware of the Revoice Conference until a few weeks ago. The suddenly my phone started to light up as friends forwarded me tweets and blog posts and interviews, pro and con. Finally, at the weekend a whole pile of very disturbing soundbites landed in my inbox from various sources. I have yet to listen to the talks so cannot offer any criticism of them but I have noticed that, in all the critiques I have seen, a couple of key dots have not been connected: those between Revoice and the general culture of Big Eva. (For new readers, if any such exist, Big Eva is not a large German who works in border control for the Bundesrepublik but my term for the network of large evangelical organizations and conferences that seeks to shape the thinking and strategy of the American evangelical churches. She used to be a regular in this column but has