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Showing posts from August, 2019

THE FIGHT BEHIND THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE

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By Nancy Bradeen Spannaus - Posted at the Journal of the American Revolution : Put yourself, in your mind’s eye, back in June 1776, specifically, the period between June 7 and July 1. It is precisely at that time that one of the most crucial political battles in the history of the American republic was fought—the battle over whether the American colonists would, as thirteen united colonies, declare independence to the world. Without that bold step—which put every outspoken leader, national or local, at risk of prison or death—the United States of America would never have been born. Yet the chief leaders of the American Revolution had a serious problem. Despite the broad support for Boston against British depredations, a large portion of the colonists–the standard estimates range around one-third[1]–were by no means ready to break with the mother country. Indeed, many even blamed the “radical” Sons of Liberty and other “rabble-rousers” for the troubles with England,[2] even thou

Does Church Discipline Matter?

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Posted at Reformation Scotland: Who these days wants authority–especially if it might restrain your freedom? Church discipline won’t be high on the checklist of many Christians looking for a new church. And ministers and elders worry about driving people away by seeming negative. Does anyone worry about church discipline any more? Isn’t it just up to the individual and their conscience? Church discipline may not matter to many people but it matters to Christ. And that ought to make us think. At the Reformation they said that discipline was one of the signs of a true church. Why? Because it’s one of Christ’s main tests of whether a church meets His approval. James Durham reflects on how when the Lord Jesus Christ emphasises the matter of discipline when He writes to churches in Revelation 2-3. The following is an abridged and updated extract from Durham’s discussion of this theme. He also mentions the great benefit of church government and discipline to individual believers in t

What is Political Sovereignty?

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Reformation Scotland Posted at Reformation Scotland: Political sovereignty is not usually a widely and hotly debated topic. Yet the question of whether the EU undermines sovereignty dominates discussion. How do we define sovereignty and does it matter? We can get some help from past thinkers who have helped to shape our constitutional heritage. Our ideas of political power and its limitations were significantly shaped by Reformed writers. Such principles helped the Covenanters to resist autocratic rule. They remain relevant today. Samuel Rutherford published a key statement of these principles in Lex, Rex (The Law and the King). This book is a hammer blow against state claims for absolute power. It contained such a powerful argument that Charless II ordered it to be burnt by the hangman. Rutherford was charged with treason, dismissed from his post and placed under house arrest. He only escaped execution through being seriously ill. Rutherford said that “he would willingly d

A LESSON ABOUT MEN FOR MARRIAGE-MINDED WOMEN FROM THE MOVIE “HIGH NOON”

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Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly - Wikipedia Posted at Wintery Knight: One of my favorite movies for explaining the differences between men and women is “High Noon” (1952). Here’s the summary from IMDB: Former marshal Will Kane (Gary Cooper) is preparing to leave the small town of Hadleyville, New Mexico, with his new bride, Amy (Grace Kelly), when he learns that local criminal Frank Miller has been set free and is coming to seek revenge on the marshal who turned him in. When he starts recruiting deputies to fight Miller, Kane is discouraged to find that the people of Hadleyville turn cowardly when the time comes for a showdown, and he must face Miller and his cronies alone. The main theme of the film concerns Amy’s decision to break her wedding vows the very day that she makes them. She tells her new husband that he must bow to her will, and give up his male role as protector. When he explains his reasons for standing his ground to her practically (Miller will hunt them down

Did Jesus struggle with his gender and his sexuality? Was he tempted to same-sex attraction?

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Ed Shaw - TGC AU By Elizabeth Prata - Posted at The End Times: This article from Ed Shaw at The Gospel Coalition Australia is causing a stir. It claims that Jesus “struggled” with sexuality, His gender, and temptation to same-sex sin. Shaw said in his interview: TGCA: Tell us about your plans for the youth night on Friday night? Do you see youth as a particularly vulnerable age for confusion on matters of sexuality? Shaw: I’m wanting the young people who come to this event to know that Jesus is the one person that they can fully trust with their sexualities, identities and gender because he is both their Creator God and a human being who knows what it is like to grapple with a sexuality, identity and gender. Jesus struggled with same-sex temptations? Thoughts? Lusts? No. Continue reading...

Pro-abortion & pro-LGBTQ – your tax dollars hard at work

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By Bob Kellogg - Posted at One News Now : Two groups prominent in America's public education community are being taken to task for strategically indoctrinating children in liberal thought and "progressive" political activism. Every summer, the National Education Association assembles thousands of delegates to consider and vote on "new business items" for the teachers' union. Laurie Higgins of the Illinois Family Institute reports one of those items adopted at the NEA convention last month in Houston states unequivocally that the organization supports abortion. "One of their new business items was 'The NEA vigorously opposes all attacks on the right to choose and stands on the fundamental right to abortion under Roe v. Wade ,'" she quotes. Continue reading...

Mexican pastor shot and killed while at the pulpit during Sunday service

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Christian Post By Samuel Smith - Posted at the Christian Post: A pastor in southwest Mexico was shot and killed during a church service on Sunday amid ongoing targeting of faith leaders by criminal gangs. According to international watchdog charity group Christian Solidarity Worldwide , Pastor Alfrery Líctor Cruz Canseco was preaching from the pulpit of the Fraternidad Cristiana church in the town of Tlalixtac de Cabrera in the Oaxaca state when he was shot at point-blank range. Canseco died while he was being transported to a local hospital. His attacker was arrested after congregants prevented his escape. “We extend our deepest condolences to the family and congregation of Pastor Cruz Canseco,” CSW Chief Executive Merwyn Thomas said in a statement. “The fact that he was targeted while in the pulpit is particularly shocking.” Continue reading... 

Christian Genocide in Nigeria: Where Is the Coverage?

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By Tré Goins-Phillips - Posted at Faithwire: You have to wade three or four pages deep into a Google search for “Nigerian genocide” before you see anything from the mainstream press — and when you do, it’s a New York Times story from 1968 , following the country’s civil war. Legacy media outlets have been largely mum on the slaughter of Christians currently plaguing the West African country. The numbers are terrifying and should serve as a wakeup call to believers living in the Western world: Christian persecution is alive and well around the globe. Because of the Islamic terrorist group Boko Haram, which is literally translated , “Western education is a sin,” the roughly 91 million Christians living in Nigeria fear for their lives, and for good reason. In 2018 alone, some 3,731 Christians living in the country were killed for their faith. In fact, a staggering 10 believers are estimated to be killed every day as a result of their religious convictions. Continue reading

Peeking Into the Devil’s Playbook

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Meet the Puritans By Robert Spinney - Posted at Meet the Puritans: Temptation is an issue that Christians rarely talk about these days. Even the word itself has quietly slipped out of religious use, becoming instead a term used to boost sales of perfume and chocolates. Attempting to create an electrifying name that would attract big audiences, television producers titled a reality show "Temptation Island." I know of no musical groups called The Blasphemers or The Compromisers , but one of Motown's most famous groups was named The Temptations . One grocery store chain called its new line of gourmet cookies—you guessed it— Temptations. The word temptation once evoked a sense of seriousness and caution, much as did the words tuberculosis and heresy . To brand something a temptation was to give it the kiss of death. No respectable person would knowingly flirt with temptation. Now it is a word we say with a twinkle in our eye. It would be bad enough if the word tempt

US Dept. of Labor Proposes Rule to Protect Rights of Religious Entities That Contract With Federal Govt.

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By Heather Clark - Posted at Christian News Network:  Published August 16, 2019 WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor has proposed a new rule surrounding federal contractors that would clarify the rights of religious organizations and businesses to make hiring decisions in accordance with their mission and faith. “Today’s proposed rule helps to ensure the civil rights of religious employers are protected,” Acting U.S. Secretary of Labor Patrick Pizzella said in a press release on Wednesday. “As people of faith with deeply held religious beliefs are making decisions on whether to participate in federal contracting, they deserve clear understanding of their obligations and protections under the law.” Specifically, the rule will bring clarity to the existing Executive Order 1246, which prohibits federal contractors and subcontractors that hold contracts of more than $10,000 from discriminating against employees on the basis of race, religion, sex or national origin. In 20

Ill. Governor Signs Bill Into Law Requiring Students to Be Taught About Historical Contributions of Homosexuals

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By Heather Clark - Posted at Christian News Network: SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — The Democratic governor of Illinois has signed a bill into law that requires curriculum for public school students to include information on the contributions of those throughout history who identified as homosexual or transgender. J.B. Pritzker signed House Bill 246 , sponsored by Rep. Anna Moeller, D-Elgin, on Friday. It will go into effect in July 2020. “In public schools only, the teaching of history shall include a study of the roles and contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in the history of this country and this state,” the legislation reads. “Textbooks authorized to be purchased … must include the roles and contributions of all people protected under the Illinois Human Rights Act.” Continue reading...

Obey God Rather Than Man

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© 2019 - SermonQuotes. All rights reserved. By Kyle E. Sims - Posted at Gentle Reformation: In Acts 5:29, Peter tells the High Priest, "We must obey God rather than men." The teaching of this verse is something that should be evident without much explanation. Many are ready to do this on the significant issues. We are willing to go to jail or death rather than reject Jesus, and we would refuse to allow abortion or euthanasia in our family even if commanded to by the authorities. The problem for most American Christians is not significant issues, but the small issues of our day to day life. Peer Pressure is not something that only middle and high school kids face. Adults are still facing the choice of obeying God rather than men in several areas of life. We are asked to do unethical practices in our work life. We are asked to ignore our church's worship service and the Lord's day by our friends and family. We are asked to go to movies or parties that we know a

Leaving the Faith: Reflections of a Prodigal

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The Return of the Prodigal Son (1773) by Pompeo Batoni By Lisa Robinson Spencer - Posted at Reformation 21: By now the firestorm of commentary around Josh Harris' public announcement--that he has not only divorced, but departed from the Christian faith--has died down. People have moved on, but not before delivering a slew of analysis, indictments, pleas, condemnation, and speculation. When the news hit and I observed all the commentary, I too wanted to offer my two cents. However, I found myself struggling to say anything publicly. While I do think there might be some merit to the contributing factors cited, namely that he was never a true believer to begin with, I know there is more to the story than simple pat answers can provide. Now with the news that Marty Sampson of Hillsong fame has announced his departure from the faith, I am compelled to speak. You see, I was a prodigal. I came to Christ in my first year in college in 1982. Though I grew up in a missionary Baptist

How to detect news bias in, sadly, even Christian reporting

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By Elizabeith Prata - Posted at The End Time: "I’ve been a professional news journalist and a newspaper editor. I have also been on the receiving end of news reporting. The Open Letter to Beth Moore published on this blog and here & here , sparked controversy in much wider realms than I usually run. I noticed a range of good-to-bad reporting that I’d like to offer you today as a lesson in detecting news bias." News. Love it. Hate it. Need it. Fake news. Real news. The good old days of news. The bad old days of news. Sigh. We think news should be unbiased, and it should be, but it is a relatively new phenomenon. The golden age of unbiased, pure news was relatively short, a true golden age. During the 1972 Watergate scandal when the President of the United States stood accused of various abuses of power, good journalism came into American scrutiny and vernacular. It was reporters, diligent, honest, unbiased reporters who broke that story, one which led to the

Praying for Presidents: Evangelistic Prayer

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By Clint Archer - Posted at The Cripplegate : For the first 300 years of Christianity there was barely a breather from violent persecution. Roman emperors harangued Christians by confiscating church property, arresting worshippers, and even executing them in arenas like the Colosseum as entertainment. That persisted until the glorious year of 313 AD. Christians were granted by their government an unprecedented relief from persecution and even an encouragement to convert others to their faith. On 28 October, 312 AD Constantine and Maxentius clashed in a military battle outside Rome for the highest position in the Empire. The day before, while mustering his troops, Constantine observed a pattern in the clouds that looked to him like the overlapping of two Greek letters Chi and Rho, what to us would be an X with a P over it. These two letters happened to be the first letters of the Greek word “Christ.” He saw this portent as a divine communiqué in which Jesus was promising him

HOW TO TEST A WHITE CONSERVATIVE TO SEE IF THEY ARE RACIST

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Let’s take a look at the left’s accusations of racism - Wintery Knight Posted at Wintery Knight: I’ve noticed that a lot of people on the left like to cry “racism” whenever anyone disagrees with them about any of their policies. If a conservative opposes Medicare for All, the Green New Deal, banning all guns, infanticide or gay marriage, the response from the left is always to cry “racism”. As if there is no content at all to the conservative worldview. Let’s take a look at this. Here is a Daily Signal column by famous Jewish conservative Dennis Prager: So here is a way to show it is a lie. Ask any white conservative, including one who supports Trump, the following three questions: 1). Do you have more in common with, and are you personally more comfortable in the company of, a white leftist or a black conservative? 2). Would you rather have nine white leftists or nine black conservatives on the U.S. Supreme Court? 3). Would you rather your child marry a black Chr

Jacob Duché: Mixing Religion and Politics During the Revolution

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By Richard J. Werther - Posted at Journal of the American Revolution : In a country in which one of the main constitutional principles is separation of church and state, it is counter-intuitive to find that there are chaplains for the two houses of Congress. Aside from a couple of unsuccessful court challenges, the position has managed to survive into modern times largely due to custom and tradition. This tradition, which dates to the First Continental Congress in 1774, did not start well. Jacob Duché was appointed as chaplain, at least unofficially, for purposes of providing an opening prayer. As Duché strode to the lectern on September 7, 1774, to deliver a rousing prayer in support of the revolutionary cause, few could foresee the twists and turns his life would take, most prominently a national furor over his brief correspondence with Gen. George Washington. The motion to employ Duché, an Anglican Rector, to address the opening of the Continental Congress was made by Samuel

The marketing value of sin

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https://protestant-standard.blogspot.com/ By Andrew McDonald - Posted at The Protestant Standard: The reason that sin sells is because man, in his state of total depravity, desires that which is contrary to God. He does not, and will not desire purity, holiness and conformity to the law of God, but rather he desires ‘all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life’... It is a well known saying that 'sex sells'; the use of sexualised imagery being common in marketing, its intent to attract consumer interest in a particular product or service. Yet we can also say today that ‘sin sells’. The promotion of and identification with that which is sinful, and its use in marketing is increasingly evident all around us. With the advent of every ‘Pride’ celebration the logos of numerous companies are emblazoned with the colours of the rainbow, identification with the LGBT cause being almost ubiquitous, and evidently seen as a necess

The Green Wave

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iB2 News By Meredith Flynn - Posted at iB2 News : Legal pot use will be a growing challenge for Illinois churches When Illinois lawmakers legalized recreational marijuana in June, many lauded the fulfillment of one of Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s campaign promises, and the potential for millions in tax revenue to aid the financially ailing state. Others, like Pastor Steve Ohl, grieved the decision’s potential impact on Illinoisans. Ohl is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Greenview; he also leads an addiction support group. “When I was into drugs and alcohol, there was a void in my heart and I was trying to fill it anyway I could,” the pastor said. Ohl urged pastors to recognize many people in their pews and communities are struggling to fill their own heart-voids, and the road to recovery will probably be harder with easier access to pot. Illinois becomes the 11th state to legalize both recreational and medical marijuana use on January 1, 2020, so now is the time to look t

THE TRAGEDY OF HENRY LAURENS

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By Gabriel Neville - Posted at Journal of the American Revolution: It wasn’t really their fault, they said. Slavery, men of the founding generation liked to argue, was brought to the colonies by Britain. It came via Barbados and the other sugar islands of the Caribbean. Thomas Jefferson and Henry Laurens both blamed Britain and wished the colonies could free themselves of the practice. It was ironic, therefore, that American slavery not only outlasted the War for Independence but also outlasted slavery in the British Empire. In truth it was more than ironic: it was a tragedy that led to additional decades of forced labor and the deaths of well over half a million Americans in the Civil War.[1] Could the abolition of American slavery have come sooner? Maybe. Slavery never existed in the New World without someone also speaking out against it, and antislavery views took a demonstrably large leap forward during the founding era. Christianity, social contract theory, and the very

Government Doesn’t Need to Protect Us From Social Media Addiction

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By Shane Vander Hart - Posted at Caffeinated Thoughts: U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., offered a bill that would ban certain social media features deemed addictive. This is the epitome of big government. U.S. Senator Josh Hawley, R-Mo., on Tuesday introduced The Social Media Addiction Reduction Technology (S.M.A.R.T.) Act . The purpose of the legislation is to “curb addictive and deceptive techniques that tech giants use to exploit users.” So it would ban certain features that are, Hawley says, designed to be addictive such as infinite scroll, autoplay, and “achievements” such as “Snapstreak.” Exceptions to the bill would be “music playlists, social media predominantly designed to stream music, and ‘achievement’ badges that substantially increase access to new services or functionality.” This bill also requires social media to include natural stopping points and have in-app functions to track the time a user spends on social media across devices. The Federal Trade Commission and