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Showing posts from October, 2023

The Curse of Cowardice

By Rev. Dewey Roberts - Posted at Vanguard Presbyterian Church: On May 8, 1758, Samuel Davies preached to the militia being mustered in Hanover county, Virginia as a result of the French and Indian War (1755-1763). He had three years earlier preached a similar recruiting sermon at the raising of an independent militia for CPT Overton, the first such militia raised in response to the defeat of General Edward Braddock at Fort Duquesne, near modern-day Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. On this latest occasion, Davies took Jeremiah 48:10 as his text, “Cursed be he that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully; and cursed be he that keepeth back his sword from blood” (KJV) for his sermon, “The Curse of Cowardice.” As a result of Davies’ message, the quota for the company was raised immediately and many would be volunteers were regrettably turned away. Following that sermon, Davies attempted to retire to Shelton’s Tavern, across the road from the Hanover Courthouse where he had just preached. The sol


 Posted at Reformation Scotland: Published October 26, 2023 Songs written thousands of years ago take on renewed relevance as we respond to the recent outbreak of vicious hatred in the Middle East. Psalm 87 was written in a time of despondency as the sheer scale of the necessary rebuilding effort sank in, complicated by the hostility of the surrounding enemies and the weakened condition of the people. However, in his commentary on this psalm, David Dickson identifies reasons to take comfort and be encouraged even in the midst of this grim situation. People from Egypt, Iraq, Palestine, Lebanon as well as Israel will be spiritually reborn into the family of the covenant Lord, bringing them into a position of the highest honour as well as eternal safety, and displaying the Lord’s wonderful love and power. The promise that He will do this in His own time gives us hope for solid peace eventually. When God loosed the captivity of the Jews by Cyrus, few of them returned from Babylon. The work

Breakpoint: 'Age of Consent in an Age of Discontent'

 By John Stonestreet and Jared Eckert In a win for LGBTQ, new bill places agents of the state between parents and children as young as 12 years old. Published October 27, 2023 A new California law signed by Governor Newsom on October 7 will enable strangers to lead children 12 and older on matters of mental health and their home life without requiring any parental consent. It’s a bizarre irony for a state that’s also suing the corporation Meta for harming children under age 13 through its social media platforms, based on the assumption that children are too vulnerable to resist the effects of social media. Evidently, children can’t resist their phones, but they should be able to make massive decisions about their minds, bodies, and family relationships without their parents’ consent. The new law, Assembly Bill 665 , expands an existing law that only applied to minors aged 12 and older with private health insurance. The new law includes minors aged 12 and older who are covered by publ

Baptist Press: 42 states, D.C. sue Meta on accusations of harming children, teens

By Diana Chandler Published October 25, 2023 SAN FRANCISCO (BP) — Meta’s social media platforms including Facebook and Instagram intentionally target children and teens with features that harm mental health, attorneys general in 42 states and Washington D.C. said in lawsuits Oct. 24. A group of 33 states including California, New York, Pennsylvania and Illinois filed a federal lawsuit jointly in the Northern District of California, while nine states and Washington D.C. filed individually, according to press releases and court filings. Depression, anxiety, insomnia, body dysmorphia, unhealthy prolonged use of sites, and interferences with education and daily life are alleged results of Meta’s manipulative algorithms and other features targeting youth as their brains are still developing. Meta “has profoundly altered the psychological and social realities of a generation of young Americans,” the joint lawsuit alleges. “Meta has harnessed powerful and unprecedented technologies to entice,

Christian Co-ed Kidnapped, Forced to Convert in Nigeria

Student Dorcas Adedayo Adekanola is still missing after Kaduna State University personnel abducted her and forced her to convert to Islam.  (Campus Watch Mission)  Posted at Morning Star News: University aiding in forcible Islamization, watchdog group says. Published October 25, 2023 ABUJA, Nigeria ( Morning Star News ) – Personnel of Kaduna State University have aided in the kidnapping and forcible conversion to Islam of a Christian student, according to a campus watchdog group. Dorcas Adedayo Adekanola, a 20-year-old, first-year chemistry student at the university, was an active member of the Fellowship of Christian Students when other members noticed her absence last month, according to leaders of Campus Mission Watch (CMW). Her parents received a phone call on Sept. 20 from Christian students saying they were distressed that she was acting strange before her disappearance. “She was always looking scared, which shows she was being threatened by the Islamists on campus,” CMW leaders

The Slow Death of the Christian West

By Pastor Benjamin Glaser - Posted at  Thoughts From Parson Farms: How Paganism Has Re-Emerged Through the Failure of the Church to Be Faithful Excerpt: "In our prayer and worship help today we are going to talk about the world in which we live today and how the same men tasked with building up have been working to destroy and tear down. We are now experiencing the results of this evil. In some sense the reappearance of the strong gods, the pagan culture we left a millennia or more ago is all a result of men abandoning their responsibilities in accordance with the Fifth Commandment. Everything comes back to the law of God, and whether society will bow their knee to Christ or seek to be their own god. Psalm 2 and other passages warn us as to the consequences of such. I get calls/texts regularly from folks both within and outside the congregation about why we see such rampant licentiousness and sin in the world today. On one hand the earth has been so since the days of Adam’s fall.

Israel, the West, and the Failure of Nerve

By David de Bruyn - Posted at Churches Without Chests: Relevant to the current situation in Israel, Richard Weaver, author of Ideas Have Consequences , has one of his gems of sagacity embedded in his characteristically dense prose: “It appears, then, that culture is originally a matter of yea-saying, and thus we can understand why its most splendid flourishing stands often in proximity with the primitive phase of a people, in which there are powerful feelings of “oughtness” directed toward the world, and before the failure of nerve has begun.” “Before the failure of nerve has begun”. The failure of nerve is the steady weakening of resolve, as fear and reluctance begin to triumph over boldness and resolve. Weaver is saying that cultures are at their strongest when filled with a deep sense of their purpose, morals, and beliefs. When they still possess a unified way of looking at the world, cultures act boldly, deliberately and assertively, believing their worldview is justified. Early Gr

The lack of moral clarity over Israel is clarifying.

Photo by Taylor Brandon via Unsplash .  By Shane Vander Hart Published October 19, 2023 Antisemitism in the United States has been festering for years and it is now on full display following the Hamas attack on Israel. One thing we can state about the lack of moral clarity over Israel by some on the left and the right is that we know where they stand. The antisemitism is front and center and has been festering for years. In academic ciricles, elite institutions have developed environments that have placed students so within a bubble that the students likely believed their view of Israel is mainstream. Hence we have the Harvard University students groups releasing a statement blaming 1400 deaths during the Hamas attack in southern Israel on the Israeli government. Continue here.

Thinking Christianly about Israel

 By Joel Ellis - Posted at The Kuyperian Commentary Published October 14, 2023 The recent attacks by Hamas on the State of Israel and the rapidly expanding war in the Middle East that has followed have prompted many Christian preachers and pew-warmers to try their hand at theo-political punditry. This, by itself, is not necessarily a bad thing. The last few years have rightly undermined confidence in the competence of credentialed experts in many fields. We should bear in mind, however, that the fact the experts are making it up as they go is not an argument for the superiority of uninformed and ill-thought out opinions. Many dispensationalists, predictably, see the latest violence in Israel as a fulfillment of biblical prophecy and harbinger of the last days. The fact this is how they have interpreted every instance of violence involving Israel since their particular prophetic perspective appeared in the mid-1800s does not seem to dim their enthusiasm and confidence in reading the tea

Hospital blast in Gaza kills hundreds

 By Dr. Jim Denison - Posted at The Denison Forum: President Joe Biden arrived in Israel this morning to show support for Israel. His trip comes less than a day after a horrific blast at Al-Ahli Baptist Hospital in Gaza, which was sheltering thousands of displaced people when it was bombed. More than five hundred people were killed . Palestinian officials blamed Israeli airstrikes, but the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) “categorically” denied any involvement in the attack, blaming a “failed rocket launch” by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, a rival militant group in Gaza. President Biden likewise assigned blame to “the other team,” not Israel. Independent analysts who reviewed footage of the explosion also supported the IDF’s denial. Meanwhile, a different kind of conflict is continuing in American society. Many critics of Israel have claimed for many years that they “colonized” their land from its rightful Palestinian owners and that the state continues to “ oppress ” the Palestinians.

Gaza's oldest church shelters Christians, Muslims after false rumors of destruction: report

Palestinian Christians attend the Orthodox Christmas mass at the Church of Saint Porphyrius in Gaza City on January 7, 2023. MAHMUD HAMS/AFP via Getty Images (The Christian Post)  By Jon Brown - Posted at The Christian Post: Published October 17, 2023 A Greek Orthodox church in Gaza that was falsely rumored to have been destroyed amid the ongoing war between Hamas and Israel is reportedly sheltering people of multiple faiths seeking safe haven from the conflict. The Greek Orthodox Church of Saint Porphyrios, the oldest church in Gaza, was rumored on social media last week to have been damaged during Israel's shelling of the region, according to The Associated Press . Church officials confirmed that the church, which is in the al-Zaytun section of Gaza’s Old City, was unharmed by the Israeli bombing of the Hamas-controlled territory, the AP reported. Continue here. Update 10.21.2023: Ex-congressman says several relatives died in Gaza church blast | World News ( Upd

Three Congregations That Grew During The Covid Lockdown

By Dr. R. Scott Clark - Posted at The Heidelblog: Published October 16, 2023  Three congregations that reportedly grew during the Covid lockdowns in 2020: Christ Church in Moscow, ID; Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, CA; and Trinity Church in Scottsdale, AZ. These three congregations have a few things in common. Each is led by a powerful personality: Doug Wilson , John MacArthur , and Mark Driscoll respectively. Each of these pastors has been controversial in one way or another, some of which have been chronicled in this space. All of them, to one degree or another, generated controversy over their reaction to the Covid mandates. All of them too took a very public stand in defiance of public health regulations. Comments in a recent article on Driscoll’s congregation in Scottsdale capture well what happened: Driscoll’s ministry in Phoenix grew rapidly during the COVID-19 lockdowns in 2020. After just a brief closure in the pandemic’s earliest days, Driscoll made the decision to o

Denison Forum: 'Teenager shot in Hamas attack that killed his parents will keep the bullet in their memory'

 By Dr. Jim Denison “Mom and Dad, they sacrificed their lives to save me,” sixteen-year-old Rotem Matias told CNN yesterday. When the Israeli-American teenager and his parents were attacked by Hamas terrorists last Saturday, his mother died trying to shield him. He was shot but survived and will keep the bullet removed surgically from his stomach “as a memory to never forget” his parents and the other victims. Every Jew in Israel and around the world old enough to remember Hamas’s invasion will never forget it. After more than thirty trips to the Holy Land, I can tell you that this tiny country is interconnected in ways Americans cannot understand. Nearly everyone knows someone who was directly affected by the atrocities of October 7. Now we are learning that Jews around the world could be victims of Hamas. The terror organization’s head is calling for a Global Day of Rage today in which Muslims across the globe would “fight against the Jews.” The former leader of Hamas is similarly

Ministry Watch: 'In New Letter, US Evangelical Leaders Support Israel’s Right to Self-Defense'

An Israeli mobile artillery unit fires a shell from southern Israel toward the Gaza Strip, in a position near the border, Oct. 11, 2023.  (AP Photo/Erik Marmor)  By Bob Smietana Southern Baptists and other evangelical leaders call on policymakers to protect the lives of innocents and say Hamas is the enemy, not Palestinians. (RNS) — Addressing policymakers at home and abroad, American evangelical Christian leaders responded Wednesday (Oct. 11) to the attacks on Israel by Hamas by issuing a letter calling for moral clarity, both supporting Israel’s right to defend itself and proclaiming the need to protect the lives of innocent civilians. “In the wake of the evil and indefensible atrocities now committed against the people of Israel by Hamas, we, the undersigned, unequivocally condemn the violence against the vulnerable, fully support Israel’s right and duty to defend itself against further attack, and urgently call all Christians to pray for the salvation and peace of the people of Isr

Culture Watch: 'On israel, Hamas and the Left'

 By Bill Muehlenberg Published October 11, 2023 The latest on the situation in Israel: With 300,000 reservists called up, and tanks positioned along the border with Gaza, it seems it will be just a matter of time before Israeli forces enter Gaza to seek to rescue the many hostages taken, and to try to finally eradicate the evil that is Hamas. The Hamas Charter specifically states that it exists to destroy Israel. No nation can live with such murderous thugs so close. The massacres of civilians on the weekend was proudly done by Hamas and its Iranian backers. What we witnessed was not just horrific war crimes, but crimes pure and simple. Israel of course has no choice but to go after Hamas, no matter how difficult it will be. Hamas specialises in embedding itself in civilian populations, using hospitals, schools and residential areas as their base of operations and munitions manufacturing – it is their hiding place. Sadly therefore there will be civilian casualties in any Israeli incurs

Breakpoint: 'The Atrocities of Hamas and the Reality of Evil'

By John Stonestreet and Timothy D. Padgett Published October 10, 2023 Examining different worldviews of evil and why we must work and pray to bring God’s right understanding in this moment.  On Saturday morning, October 7 , in a highly coordinated attack on Israel, the Islamic terrorist group Hamas fired thousands of rockets, overwhelming the nation’s Iron Dome defense system, and sent hundreds of heavily armed militants, breaching the border. In addition to soldiers at military outposts, civilians, including women and children, were also targeted, in neighborhoods, at bus stops, and at public events. By the end of the day, at least 900 Israelis had been killed and 100 kidnapped, making it the worst day of slaughter of Jews since the Holocaust. Images and videos poured in from the attack, documenting atrocities that are difficult to stomach. Though some have likened this to 9/11, as Joel Rosenberg pointed out, for Israel’s population of fewer than 10 million, 900 killed is equivalent

Christian Post: 'At least 11 Americans killed in Hamas attacks on Israel; report says Iran plotted the assault'

Israeli emergency responders inspect the site of a rocket attack in the southern Israeli city of Ashdod on October 9, 2023. Israel relentlessly pounded the Gaza Strip early Monday as fighting raged with Hamas around the Gaza Strip and the death toll from the war surged above 1,100.  AHMAD GHARABLI/AFP via Getty Images By Anugrah Kumar, Christian Post Contributor Update at 4:30 p.m. ET on Oct. 9, 2023:  The death toll rose to at least 11 American citizens killed in Hamas' attacks on Israel Saturday. It's also believed that Americans are among those being held hostage by the terrorist group. In a statement released by the White House on Monday, President Joe Biden said: “As we continue to account for the horrors of the appalling terrorist assault against Israel this weekend and the hundreds of innocent civilians who were murdered, we are seeing the immense scale and reach of this tragedy. Sadly, we now know that at least 11 American citizens were among those killed — many of who

Christian Citizenship Bible Study

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you have rejected knowledge, I reject you from being a priest to me. And since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children. (Hosea 4:6,  ESV) Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. (Acts 17:11, ESV) Editor's Note: When receiving this lesson I was part of a Bible study that had begun as a possible OPC church plant in my local community. When we found there was not enough local interest in the OPC, we continued the group Bible study under the leadership of Pastor Ray Morton of the Sparta (Illinois) Reformed Presbyterian Church (RPCNA). I do not know the author of the study, but I believe the principles presented are historically Christian and Biblically sound. If anyone has any additional information on this study or the author, please contact me. Thanks! - Angela Wittman Under

Culture Watch: A Review of 'Five Lies of Our Anti-Christian Age' by Rosaria Butterfield

 By Bill Muehlenberg Published October 5, 2023 Crossway, 2023. Rosaria tells it like it is – we must heed her important words: The latest book from Rosaria Butterfield is essential reading. The former lesbian and women’s studies professor has of course now rejected her former postmodernism and sexual radicalism, having become an evangelical Christian. She is now a homeschooling mom living with her husband (a Presbyterian pastor) and 4 children in North Carolina. She is one of the most cogent and incisive analysts today of where modern culture is at – especially in its sexual dimensions – and how God’s people ought to respond. I have written about her before, including this piece: Although this book is penned especially with a female audience in mind, both sexes will find so much of value here (and yes, there are only two sexes!). She insists that until the church starts obeying the Lord and

Kevin McCarthy removed as Speaker: Unprecedented events and foundational truth

 By Jim Denison - Posted at the Denison Forum: Published October 4, 2023 House lawmakers voted to remove Kevin McCarthy as speaker yesterday afternoon, the first time in US history that a speaker has been voted out. Rep. Patrick McHenry (R–NC) was then named the new temporary leader of the House. He closed the chamber and set a goal of voting on the next speaker next Wednesday. House business has been put on hold until then. This while Donald Trump’s civil fraud trial continues in Manhattan, the first time a former US president has ever faced such charges. Meanwhile, another unprecedented event is unfolding away from the headlines with ramifications that are even more foundational for biblical Christians in a secularizing culture. Continue here. See also: Gaetz didn't do House Conservatives any favors | Shane Vander Hart

FBI warns about global satanic pedophile cult

By Anugrah Kumar - Posted at The Christian Post: Published October 2, 2023 FBI warns about global satanic pedophile cult seeking to destroy Judeo-Christian Western society The FBI has issued a public warning about violent online groups that target minors on messaging platforms and encourage them to live-stream acts of self-harm and produce child sexual abuse material. The warning comes after the discovery of a satanic cult. The FBI’s advisory , issued last month, is the first formal mention of a group known as 764, an offshoot of the Order of Nine Angles, a violent, subversive amalgam of esoteric Hitler worship, satanism and Wiccan tenets, by any American law enforcement agency. The agency learned about the group after the arrest of Angel Almeida, a 23-year-old resident of Astoria, Queens, on gun possession charges in November 2021, according to The Guardian . The groups target minors between the ages of 8 and 17, particularly those with mental health issues, the FBI said, adding they