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Posts Tagged ‘religion’

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Well folks, I guess I’m going to get political in this post …. with all the biased reporting going on in the media, I felt the need to register  my support for Israel and the truth.  I’m really glad to see that the voices that are pro-Israel are getting louder in the continuing conflict . However, I’m also grieved when naive and uninformed christians condemn Israel on the say-so of  Islam.  Anti-semitism is in full flow again it seems.

The media in general and the BBC in particular have always shown their dislike of Israel. For years now Jeremy Bowen has been demonising Israel in his reporting. And apparently the BBC among others will be broadcasting an appeal by DEC  [Disasters Emergency Committee ] for Gaza today, having previously refused to do so.  Today the BBC stated ” The BBC will continue to report impartially in our coverage of the story in the Middle East”   – are they kidding?  Their idea [or deceit] of unbiased reporting is to show one-sided graphic images and distressing scenes from sometimes ‘staged’ events together with voice- overs giving statistics, comparing casualty numbers as if that all proves Israel is the aggressor and guilty party- deliberately terrorising the innocent.  In the interests of ‘balance’ and BBC non-partisanship , a token Israeli family or govt. spokesperson is tacked onto the end or beginning of the reports.  No real, serious attempt is made to understand or report accurately the true situation. it is all taken at face value, which suits Hamas just  fine.

The world is ‘up in arms’, ironically, because of the reported loss of innocent lives and the appalling suffering of women and children. But has the media been fair and honest in it’s reporting? An Israel Defense Forces[IDF] spokesman says of the casualty figures: ” the UN numbers being reported are by and large based on the Gaza Health Ministry – run by Hamas”  and ” when militants are brought to hospital, they are brought in civilian clothing, obscuring terrorist affiliations”.  There also appears to be video evidence on youtube of ‘staged’ dead body scenarios by Hamas – so who would we rather trust?  Mosab Hassan Yousef, now a Christian, said in an interview :” They don’t care about the lives of Palestinians, or of Israelis or of Americans – they don’t care about their own lives”

Before I ever became a Christian , I too used to believe what the media said about the State of Israel and it’s supposed oppression of the Palestinian people. I always wondered why Israel, themselves so terribly terrorised and persecuted ,would act in the same way towards others – they of all people should show compassion shouldn’t they?  But, like the rest of the world I never understood the absolute deception that engulfs the world and the satanic influence behind it all.  Why would a tiny democratic country like Israel command such hatred ?  Why is the world anti-Israel and not anti-terrorist? Who is the true attacker or defender here?  Has Israel not the right that every country has to defend itself against attack?

Hypocrisy is at it’s height when we make one rule for ourselves and another for Israel!  Would we expect our own govt. to take appropriate action if another country bombarded us with rocket fire or would we just sit back and let rockets fall where they will?  Did we do that when Germany attacked us?  Israel would be very foolish if she ignored the situation – it would be suicide !

Now, the US President is authorising air strikes on Iraq – but hey, that’s ok isn’t it – because ISIS could threaten US interests and Personnel in that country ….  BUT – the US wouldn’t intervene in Syria, even though the ‘red line of using chemical weapons’  had been crossed.  So – self interest is the crossing line after all then? US assets etc must be protected at all costs.

It is well documented that Islam seeks the destruction of Israel, but they also want to build an Islamic Caliphate everywhere in the world – hence Muslims entrench themselves in democratic countries that they really despise. Where they gain local political power their aim is to impose Sharia law for all. They would force all people to become Muslim if they could. And why were they allowed to block the Blackwall tunnel with their Gaza protests? And Tower Hamlets seems to be a Muslim enclave these days….

Israel is a tiny democracy in the Middle East and poses no threat to anyone – she is in a land historically given to her by Jehovah God [ see my previous Post], the God of the Bible, Jews and Christians. Islam follows the ‘god’ Allah  and the religion of Islam where love and mercy do not exist.

Our country’s collaboration with the madness of political correctness reared it’s ugly head again recently with the arrest of Paul Weston, [Liberty GB] because he publicly quoted from Winston Churchill’s book, The River War, published in 1899. It set out Churchill’s views on Islam and it’s threats to societies. How times have changed eh?  I daresay eventually quoting from the Bible will be banned , because it speaks truth and is far removed from ‘political correctness’.  But then , the Christian gospel has always been an offense to those who have no love of the truth.

I admire those who are of a high public profile who are willing to speak out in defense of Israel’s position eg Melanie Phillips and I’m so pleased to see that Rev.TV is  making a stand too – good on ’em I say!

Although I haven’t put any specific links here – an appropriate google search will find most of what I’ve stated if you want to check anything out.

Thank God we know the end of the story and evil will not triumph over Israel … primarily because God will fulfill His own purposes and bring glory to His name with the return of Christ.

May God bless and keep you in these troubled times,    Eileen

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Matt 23:8-12      But be not called Rabbi, for one is your Master, even Christ and you are all brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth, for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be called masters, for one is your Master, even Christ. But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant, and whoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

       At the outset, let me clarify that I am not advocating disrespect or lack of honour towards those who serve the church – I am simply questioning the way our church hierarchical systems are accepted as scriptural, when they clearly are not.

So, having mentioned in my previous post my thoughts and observations of the divisions that exist between ‘Leaders’ and ‘Laity’, it led me to wondering about the title and leadership role of the Pastor and how it became an office raised above that of Elders and how did the Elders become raised above ‘ordinary’ church members?

I’ve been wrestling with this Leadership and authority in the church thing and trying to get what the scriptures actually teach about it –  I hope and pray with the Holy Spirit’s guidance.

As I’ve found so often with other subjects eg the Rapture, there are times when I’ve had to step back from the ‘given’  teachings and look at the scriptures afresh – forgetting all that’s already been taught to me by others.

I’ve found it very helpfull sometimes, when there appears to be a contradiction or conflict, to temporarily set aside a particular verse[s] to try to get an overall picture in a very general way of how the early church viewed things – what they actually practised and taught.

For example – when faced for the first time with the ‘Gap Theory’ for the Genesis account of creation – it was very useful to see if it was in harmony with what the Lord Himself taught and the early church believed.

In the same way – when it comes to the scriptures used by Pastors and Leaders to enforce their authoritative rule over their respective churches [usually as a last resort to shut up dissension]  – Hebrews 13:17 – if we step back to get an overall view of the Lord’s and the Apostles’ teachings and practise – we see that this verse cannot be understood in the   way wordly ideas and hierarchical systems are.  According to Matt 10:25-28 it is to be the exact opposite !

The pattern for the early church is found in Eph 4:1-16 which shows that the church leaders became leaders by virtue of their functions in the Body of Christ via the gifts of God. They are God’s gifts to the Church:  apostles, prophets, pastors teachers, evangelists. They are there as Ministers [Servants] to all the members – themselves included. Nobody is to have the pre-eminence under Christ – He is the only Head. Indeed Diotrephes is singled out for his bad example.  And Paul has much to say about exalting and following particular men in the church. 1 Cor 3:1-11 & 21-23.

In overseeing the church – it must be by mutual submission – functioning for the benefit and welfare [physical and spiritual] of all. There is no authoritative Hierarchy in sight!

So, how come the Pastor in particular has become so elevated to ‘lead’ the church? It simply seems to be a left-over from the priestly systems of the Roman Catholic and Anglican traditions – themselves a left-over from the old Jewish sacrificial system. This was originally instigated by God of course for the sins of the people, but replaced by the Mystery of God in Christ and His once for all time sacrifice – fulfilling  the old covenant and bringing in the new. We are all now priests with direct access to God and we answer to no-one else but Christ our Head.

The church is now to be led by Elders, recognised by their God-given gifts ,  no-one thinking too highly of themselves , submitting and serving one another . What they preach or teach is to be judged by the members and nothing is to be kept secret or hidden.

The fact is that almost all Pastors are the head and in almost total control of their church. Yes- he may consult with and listen to the Elders and Deacons, but his is the ultimate authority and voice in any decisions – right or wrong. There is always that fear of going against God’s wishes by not ‘submitting ‘ to him.

Ironically, there can be a strange supposed humility in showing one’s submission and in some cases even one’s conscience is put in subservience.

Further up the hierarchical ladder is the denomination or power group the individual church is affiliated to, so in his turn, the Pastor and his church come under what has become known as ‘covering’.

In many cases, all this means is that the Pastor will always be supported or backed up should any dispute arise at church level. Covering in other instances becomes something much more sinister and causes all sorts of fear and superstitions. The practise is totally unscriptural as far as I can see. Christ is surely the only covering a believer needs!

Because of this hierarchical system many ‘ordinary’ church members’ God- given gifts lie unrecognised and so the church doesn’t function to its full calling.

By accident I came across a web site for church Leaders and I was truly appalled by the wordly advice it was giving. This should not be so if we are truly following the Lord and being led by His Spirit into all truth.

I am indebted to the many web sites and Blogs that have enlightened me with their insights and obvious concerns about the current state of the church – often confirming the vague suspicions I’ve  had when things haven’t seemed quite ‘right’ to me.

I think the Lord is graciously  forgiving and opening many a believers eye , showing we are not as alone as we sometimes think we are. There are many bad things that invade the internet – but it can be [and is] such a wonderful resource for the truth seeker.

As always, I hope what I’ve written will help and re-assure people. I do not claim to be an expert and this blog is purely my own musings – so please excercise your own God-given judgement and discernment in the scriptures to put me right where you think I am wrong.

Many blessings,    Eileen

PS    I know there are many good, faithful and conscientious Pastors out there. I am in no way doubting their integrity – I’m simply questioning the system they are part of and take for granted.

 

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[ am  replying to Adrian again on a main pagepartly because I’m not sure that people find the comments button easilyI must look up ‘help’ pages to find out how to make comments visible without having to click on a buttonP’raps there’s another Blogger who can tell me?]

1]   Regarding the internet, we do need to excercise some judgement here and I agree that the  Midnight Ministries site doesn’t seem good. In fairness though, I have only read one article but thought it gave a flavour. I don’t know the name of the man in charge but I think he is in as much, if not more error, than the man he seeks to correct – Colin Urquhart. He has departed from the traditional christian teaching on the Person of the Holy Spirit and is very much led by his own prophecies and dreams, so I personally wouldn’t set any store on what he says.

I really only like to promote the web sites that have a genuine concern for the Church and who speak out where nobody else will. They are sites that have come about through need i.e. they have experienced un-challenged error in their own church and have eventually had to reluctantly leave . [ I don’t think the quote from C S Lewis applies here] They then go on to discover that it isn’t just their own church but can see a pattern forming and fitting the Lord’s and the Apostle Paul’s description of something that would happen in the Last Days’.

I think as long as we are keen to exercise Biblical discernment and are grounded in solid, traditional doctrine [ the tradition that Paul spoke of], then we shouldn’t find ourselves being tossed about by all these sites [and preachers] …. it can be quite traumatic to realise that even as a faithful Christian, you have veered off the narrow path and onto a diversion for a time !

Personally I found the best way to channel my own concerns was by way of this Blog. I don’t see it as a ‘Crusade’ in promoting my views, more a hope that God will be gracious with my feeble efforts to help others in their stand against error when they come across it. He deals with us all in His own way and timing. If we are lovers of the Truth then the Holy Spirit has promised to lead us into it.

2]  My views on the return of the Lord have developed over the years. Looking back at the Hippie/Flower Power days, we seemed to be in something of a ‘Revival’ at the time. Young people [ I was in my 30s then  – old  ! ]  especially were very open to the Gospel and spiritual things in general, and although many were drawn into Eastern type religions, many became Christians.

The ‘Rapture’ of the church was a hot topic and gave our evangelism a certain urgency – which I think was a good thing as long as we focussed on the Gospel . However – then, as now, we should not make the error of trying to set dates.

If we study the scriptures, we see that certain things must happen first. In 2 Thess chapter 2 Paul tells the church not to be disturbed by anyone claiming that the ‘Day of the Lord’ is at hand [or ‘imminent’]

We can believe that we are living in the Last Days because of  [as you point out Adrian] prophecies already fulfilled in our life time regarding Israel and also the worsening state of affairs in the world and the church. But to speculate or worse still, to be dogmatic [as some definitely are] before events actually take place is not wise !

That Day will come soon enough  …..  it will take the world totally by dismayed surprise, as a thief in the night, but to us who love and look for His appearing, it will be a day of redemption and rejoicing, with the added bonus that, being alive at the time, means you won’t have to experience physical death …. formidable !

Meanwhile , we should live our lives as the Lord would have us live them ….  abiding in His word so that we know what His will is and waiting patiently for His return.

nb:  In my own examination of the various ‘Rapture’ theories , I notice that the ‘Day of the Lord’  is named in Scripture under several titles  ….  all referring to events on that same Day.

nb 2:  I’ve just had a re-look to see who writes the Midnight Ministries web site and discovered it is Malcolm B Heap. He s a former member of  Herbert W Armstrong’s Worldwide Church of God.  Apparently he had a dream that Diana, Princess of Wales, would be resurrected to validate the authority of Midnight Mnistries   …..  I rest my case .

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Every Christian needs encouragement from time to time when we flag and are not exactly feeling ‘aglow with the Spirit’. This post is I suppose a personal testimony of God’s care and faithfulness, written to those unbelievers who like to think that ‘God’ is a figment of our imagination and wishful thinking. Imagination and wishful thinking can never make something happen  –  but God can and does. Every true Christian knows through Scripture and their personal relationship with God that He accomplishes all things for us and works everything together for our good  – including  the bad things that happen.

After my husband died suddenly four years ago, one of the things I missed most [ and still do of course] was having that special someone to share things with  – Christian things especially. We were very much alike in our tastes and interests as well as our temperaments and sense of humour and did most things together. So it was a huge loss and there was no other person, humanly speaking, who could fill that space.  I know it’s the same for others and it results of course in feeling extremely lonely,  no matter how kind and helpful family, friends and acquaintances try to be.

The reason I’m going into all this is that I was necessarily thrown into the position of sole reliance upon God’s grace in my hour of need and I can honestly say that He never failed me once. Every time I cried out to Him in my desperation and grief, He was always faithful to His Word to comfort those that mourn and He gave me the promised ‘peace that passes understanding’, plus the added strength that I needed for day to day living.

Another thing  I miss is that when I’m feeling poorly or, as was the case very recently, in absolute agony with back pain [ a recurring problem], there is nobody  with me now to sympathise and help me feel sorry for myself  [only joking!].  That isn’t to say that family, friends and neighbours wouldn’t help me out – of course they would – but they’re not always there at 3 o’clock in the morning are they ?? Anyway  – everyone has their own life to live with their own problems and anxieties to cope with  – nobody is immune from life’s trials.

So, yet again I was totally reliant upon God to get me through. I’ve a tendency to cry out to the Lord for either healing and deliverance from pain or to ask Him at least to show me how to cope and help myself  – and experience has taught me that to cry out to the Lord is for Him to hear and answer in His own way – and sure enough – He does.

When you’re in pain, all you want is relief from it and it’s so difficult to shift your mind set from thinking about the pain to focussing on God . But usually when I manage to do just that He gives me a scripture to meditate on. During this latest episode it was ‘ Rejoice evermore.Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.’ [1Thess 5:16-18]  And d’you know what ?  It worked !

Not only that  – as I was puzzling with myself over why I keep getting these back things [ complicated by the fact that I have a Hiatus Hernia too !] and what it really was   – the words ‘muscle spasm’ came into my thoughts. So , in spite of still feeling very fragile, I did a Google search on my ipad and low and behold the info fitted me to a T  ….  including the fact that it’s probably the most severe pain you can suffer and that it can be the result of RSI through sitting at the computer too long !  I’d had a back muscle spasm many years previously, but that was caused  by sneezing so I never associated the other episodes with it – although I knew it must be muscle-related. You may be wondering  if I went to the Doctor ? Well, having been often in the past and not getting any particular diagnosis it becomes something you just live with [ plus pain-killers].

So, in spite of the fact that I probably bring these things upon myself through bad habits [ like Blogging]   – the Lord is gracious and makes me more than a ‘conqueror’ again through Him who loves me  … and all who will turn to Him.

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Two evenings ago [3rd may]  I watched the Late Show on Revelation tv.  Usually it’s very interesting and I like the presenter Howard’s natural, unassuming style. Even his tendency to ramble a bit is quite endearing and sometimes humorous. However  – this time was an entirely different  thing.

To tell the truth – I really didn’t know what to make of it. On their web site the programme is described as a ‘Roundup of significant breaking news which is relevant to Church without Walls and sharing teaching to edify the Body of Christ’.   Putting it mildly, it just didn’t live up to the brief.

All we had was poor Howard complaining about bullies and various things that had happened in his life – plus a few near-expletives – none of which were very edifying. In fact it came across as almost incoherent at times and it was hard to grasp what he was trying to say, partly because he kept  ‘hinting’ rather than being specific about what exactly had happened to bring on his sad mood.  He came across as someone depressed and in need of ‘counselling’    –  there was absolutely no sense of any overcoming in Christ whatsoever !

I must say at times his descriptions were hilarious [ whether this was his sense of humour kicking in or not I don’t know],  but really I question the wisdom of letting Howard loose on us all when he’s in such a mood and suffering goodness knows what !     I know he’s just trying to be himself and honest but there are times when it seems completely inappropriate , in my humble opinion,  but then what do I know ??

I don’t mean this as a personal attack as I like Howard and I know that anyone in the front line as he is, is bound to attract stuff that is hard to bear  – but what an opportunity missed to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ in it all   ……  it left me perplexed.  That old adage ‘ if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen’  comes to mind !  I hope I’m not being too harsh on the poor chap ….

PART 2

My next gripe is about Howard’s [ yes  – Howard again I’m afraid]  apparent accommodation of Roman Catholicism.  On one recent programme he stated that he didn’t think it right that people should equate the Pope with the Antichrist because he’s a good man and  for  Christ not against Him and he stands for the moral good [ or that was the gist].

I was very surprised that Howard made such a basic error in his understanding of the word ‘anti’  as I thought the accepted Christian understanding of the word was it meant ‘in place of’ and not ‘against’ [ in this context]. We all know that one of the Pope’s titles is ‘Vicar of Christ’ or the Voice of Christ.  When the Pope speaks – Christ speaks !  This is the deception of the Last Days apostate Church  –  it’s ok to be ecumenical because the Pope is one of us  –  he speaks out about abortion etc so that makes it legitimate for true Christians to be partners with him for whatever ’cause’.  I can’t help but be amazed at the naivety ….

To add to Howard’s endorsment of Roman Catholicism,  his guest on the Late Show last night was a chap called Cyril Smith.  Now  – it didn’t seem a good start to me that Howard’s introduction of him [ if my memory serves me right] as ‘the nearest thing to a Saint’  – or at least – a ‘Saintly man’ didn’t seem to phase the man at all  ….  the warning bells also sounded when he mentioned his ‘Kingdom Faith’ background.   Anyhow  –  this man is a  Christian who has chosen, he believes by God’s call , to remain a Roman Catholic.  He was told by God [ as was Howard] via prophecy that he would be used to reach people who couldn’t be reached by others.

Now  – it may be that Cyril Smith is right when he says that God wants him to stay in order to bring the Gospel to RCs, but I doubt very much that he would counsel them to leave.  If God wanted him  to stay for a season to reap the Harvest of the gospel , followed by  an ‘exodus’ I would be the first to rejoice.  My problem is that there seems to be a confusion surrounding RCs being ‘Baptised in the Holy Spirit’ and being ‘Saved’….  NB  below.   I suggest that if they are genuinely saved, their own conscience would not be able to tolerate the idolotry and blasphemy of the Mass let alone all the the other diabolical heresies of the RC church. Please understand here that I am not judging or trying to be unkind to ordinary members of the RC church  – they are sincere and are ignorant of the Scriptures for the most part. [That’s the reason they need the Gospel].  But shame on evangelical Christians who should know better .  I would like to ask Howard and Cyril  – what was the Reformation all about ?  It makes complete nonsense of history to dismiss so lightly the Reformers ‘  stand and in some cases loss of life  for the sake of the truth of God’s Word.  It also negates the stand that ex RC Priests like Richard Bennett take in our own time. The end times apostate Church is here alright  – deceiving even the elect !

NB :       Way back in 1964 I got saved in the Charismatic ‘revival’ going on in the CofE.  While still a young Christian, the Church I belonged to held an ecumenical ‘Mission’ , so we had RC monks and nuns visiting and holding meetings.  It was all exciting and wonderful because we thought it a marvelous work of  the grace of God that He was pouring out his Spirit on Roman Catholics too.  BUT  – the big difference was that I fully expected those who were so blessed to  ‘come out of her’.  However to my eventual dismay I realised it wasn’t going to happen –  they were quite happy, thank you very much,  to go along with the notion that as God had baptised them with the Holy Spirit while they were members of the RC church, then that meant it was also an endorsment of the RC system  – aided and abetted by Evangelical Christians I might add.  The truth of God’s Word and the Gospel didn’t come into it at all !

This throws a huge question mark on their ‘Charismatic’ experience being the focus rather than the Gospel of salvation. The cart comes before the horse it seems. A Roman Catholic is ‘saved’ by the sacraments still.  The big  Error , with ecumenical Christians in tow, goes on.  Those who try to make a stand for Truth are just legalistic trouble makers, out of touch with what God is doing, aren’t they ?

Your comments  – in agreement or not are always welcome.         Eileen

PS  – any secular ‘Links’ below are not mine !

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‘For God so loved the world He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life ‘.  John 3 :16

Several times lately, while chatting with family/ friends about ‘religion’ and without me necessarily touching on the subject – they’ve suddenly said a similar thing  – ‘God will forgive me/  not punish me’

Because that statement has cropped up elsewhere as well,  I’m beginning to wonder if God’s forgiveness has featured in one of the many anti-God tv programmes that have been shown recently  – especially on  BBC.

The assumption seems to be that if they are wrong and God exists after all then He will automatically forgive them because God is love and they are good people, have tried to live a good life and have done what they can for others.

My spur of the moment response to these folk has been a bit inadequate, plus I’m conscious of the fact they want to end the conversation quickly. So this is my attempt at a fuller answer:

Firstly, to casually say that God will forgive anyway, shows a total lack of understanding and grasp of the truly sinful nature we’re all born with and the necessity for Jesus’ death on the cross for us. There is a common tendency – especially among Humanists – to believe we are all basically good.  But that is wishful thinking. We only have to look at the evidence of  our own eyes  –  we have to be taught from a very young age to do what’s right and not what’s wrong  –  we need guidance on not being selfish and thinking of others don’t we  – not the other way round !

Until we grasp this basic truth that we are sinners in need of a Saviour then His sacrifice for sins will remain irrelevant to us. And there-in lies the crux of the matter, because to really have God’s forgiveness we have to do it His way. Jesus said He alone is the Way, the Truth and the Life and no-one can go to the Father except through Him.  Those are strong, uncompromising words. It eliminates all our own ideas and opinions doesn’t it?

Forgiveness is not an automatic thing  –  outside of Jesus there is no forgiveness. Religious rituals too are merely man’s way of trying to earn God’s forgiveness and favour – but they are not God’s way.  His justice requires the death penalty  – the sentence was passed in the garden of Eden and applies to every human being ever born afterwards. That includes physical and spiritual death – the physical comes to us later but we are all born naturally rebellious against the idea of ‘God’.  Romans 5:12 ‘ Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world and death by sin; so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned’  We fall at the first hurdle !

In His justice God is also merciful. His temporary remedy was a system of sacrifces to make atonement or reparation, given to the Jews, His chosen people, so that justice is served and frees the repentant sinner. But the sacrifices needed to be made continually because we sin continually ….

True love costs , otherwise it is not proven in action. God proved His love toward us by sending His own Son, Jesus the Christ,  to be the final sacrifice  – putting an end to the sacrificial systems of the Old Covenant for Israel and bringing in a New Covenant for all of mankind. Jesus died as the spotless, innocent Lamb of God – taking the death penalty on our behalf.  Hebrews 10:11,12  ‘And every priest stands daily ministering and offering often the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: but this man [ Jesus], after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God.’

However – it can only be activated by our own personal repentance, acceptance and belief  ‘by faith’  that the gospel is true . That is the way God has chosen it to be.  All of us , faced with the Gospel of Christ, have a choice to make. Are we going to be like the prolific anti-God Richard Dawkins et al and throw God’s gift of eternal life back in His face because, through our spiritual blindness and lack of understanding, we think Christ’s atonement a monstrous , horrible story  – or will we believe and agree with God that our sin is so bad that it deserves His punishment and justice?

Those of us who chose to lay aside our natural pride and  do the latter know the real truth about God’s forgiveness and the resulting new birth and adoption into His family.  God becomes our Father and gives us a peace, joy and love never experienced before. He’s looking out for each one of us – even the hairs on our head are numbered. How different to the pointless, meaningless existence of the unbeliever.

Jesus’ death on the cross was a precious and sweet-smelling sacrifice to God on our behalf. Jesus said He laid down His life willingly for us – He didn’t go kicking and screaming –   John 10: 15,17,18   ‘As the Father knows Me, even so know I the Father and I lay down my life for the sheep. Therefore does my Father love me because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man takes it from me but I lay it down myself. I have power to lay it down and I have power to take it again’.

Jesus knew what He was doing and what would come afterwards  – His glorious resurrection.  Hebrews 12:2  ‘Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God’.

John 10:27,28 ‘My sheep hear my voice and I know them and they follow Me:  and I give to them eternal life; and they shall never perish  …. ‘


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King James Bible Debate

I was hugely disappointed with the KJV Bible debate on Revelation TV on 2nd February, mostly because , as a supporter of said Bible, I felt the cause was very poorly served. Its advocate , Mr J A Moorman, sadly lacked the dynamism and articulation of  Dr J White and sometimes I fear that debates are won by ‘personality’ and not by the truth of argument, especially if that argument isn’t presented as clearly as it could be.

I don’t mean this in any way as a personal criticism of Mr Moorman and anyway – maybe I’m wrong in my perception and the audience ‘out there’  were convinced by his presentation. However – to me he seemed to come over as someone locked in the past , very intellectual, and unable to communicate his case to the ordinary believer. I’m sure he must have had some very good points, but he didn’t quite hit the target as far as I could tell , plus – it didn’t help that he’s a KJ ONLY advocate .

Of course , as I’ve often said before in my Blogs – I’m no scholar or expert – but Bible versions is a subject I’ve striven to read about and tried to understand over some years now because , after all, it’s supposed to be the infallible Word of God isn’t it?  I must say at this point that although I defend the KJV  – it is a ‘translation’ and I think the argument lies more with the original manuscript sources, rather than its [ to some eyes] archaic language  – which I concede can be a barrier to our ease of understanding.

I am not against newer, more up to date translations if they come from the originally ‘accepted’ manuscripts/copies used by the early church.  But most of the versions we have now , from what I’ve read, are from manuscripts that were not accepted as legitimate by the early church. And Dr White admitted there is a lot of  appalling stuff around now.

The argument is made that older manuscripts have been found since the KJV was written so we are now more knowledgeable and wiser,  and older manuscripts must therefore mean they are more reliable. But that plainly can’t be so  – and it worries me that people use this argument to so lightly toss aside the KJV.  So we have a situation where eg the ending of Mark’s gospel [ among other things] is missing from the newer versions .  This is a significant passage doctrinally and if we are saying that it was added later then Christians have been led astray for several hundred years!  That grieves me enormously – especially when I hear Christians say the KJ contains ‘errors’ or ‘mistakes’, when it clearly can be the other way round .

Dr White insisted that he’s a ‘conservative’ and believes implicitly that the Bible is the Word of God  – [ theistic evolutionists say the same but they clearly don’t accept Genesis as written]  – but then says he doesn’t believe the KJV is that word in truth and with every new discovery we must of necessity revise our understanding.  But I can’t bear the thought of  the word of God being on such shifting sands  – it surely must be His unerring word and not just partially His word, waiting to be updated, otherwise we we get confused about which parts are genuine and true  eg  – there’s a likelyhood  that the end of Mark’s gospel will not be treated with quite the confidence we would otherwise have had.

In these Last Days, God’s word is under tremendous attack and a lot of it is coming within the church itself    ……  hmm  – ” hath God said ? ”   I have this enormous sense of unease  ……

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Yet again I find myself at odds with what is currently going on in the Church scene. A ‘political’ campaign is being run and the troops being rallied to let the country know that we are ‘not ashamed’ and wish to stand up and declare, among other things, that we want to take the country back to it’s moral Christian roots.

To that end, even a song with the same title ‘Not Ashamed’ is being promoted and played regularly on Revelation TV [ and probably elsewhere] and Christians are being urged to buy the DVD in order to try to manipulate it into the number one spot in the Christmas Charts.

It all makes my little heart troubled – especially when I see the foolish excitement it generates among those caught up in it. It all goes back to the ‘Latter Rain’ , Kingdom Now, heresies which were once recognised as such by the bulk of the Christian church. Sadly not any more. The vision is to ‘Christianise’ the world before Jesus comes back. So the aim is for a morally upright and righteous government for the people, both believer and non-believer alike, in order to receive God’s blessing on the Country.

Unfortunately it’s the exact opposite of what the Bible tells us will happen in the Last Days. The irony of it is that these very sincere but naive believers are unknowingly becoming part of the End Times Antichrist system and way of doing things.

When a political agenda becomes the focus of the church and not the Gospel of saving souls, compromise with the world follows and union with churches and groups who agree on the moral issues but are the enemies of the Gospel of Christ becomes acceptable and the norm –  the main bed-fellow being the Roman Catholic church.  True Christians who know they are saved by grace alone cannot legitimately yoke themselves with others who are ‘working’ for their salvation [2Cor 6:14]  Ecumenism is the Churches’ worst enemy …..

Sincerity is not enough. It all sounds so noble and who could disagree that our Country is floundering in a sea of immorality and wickedness and that Christians are becoming marginalised and more and more under attack?  BUT – our job isn’t to become self-righteous and use the moral high ground to try to defend ourselves and give ourselves a perceived decent higher profile in the media. Surely the Lord told us to expect persecution and hatred. He didn’t say ‘fight for your rights’ but to just carry on preaching His Gospel, meanwhile turning the other cheek and and loving our enemies.

I’ve mentioned before in a previous Post that I’ve nothing against an individual Christian following their own conscience if they feel the Lord is calling them into the political scene  – especially if they are already there when they were saved. But the Church as a whole has never been called to use politics as a power base to change the world. Certain people at certain times in history may well have been used by the Lord to right wrongs and make their world a better place, temporarliy, for the poor etc. But ‘good works’ are not our ‘raison d’etre’  – the Gospel is.

Revelation TV is very popular in the Christian world and has many excellent programmes. However they seem to see nothing wrong in a huge emphasis on advising Christians to get involved in politics and ‘making their voices heard’  –  indeed, almost looking on it as sin if you do not. They imply that Christians who believe the way I do are really burying their heads in the sand and being somewhat useless to society. eg  ‘so heavenly-minded, no earthly good’ .  My reply is that the carnal has always persecuted the spiritual  … but God forbid that I should sound’ holier than thou’  – that isn’t the intention at all.

Even as I write I know that the majority will completely disagree with me – however – the consequences and end result of involvement with the World , it’s Governments and Religious systems can only mean disaster.  The Church will think it is serving God while in reality it will have served  Antichrist. That is why we are told to ‘come out of her’ – but Christians within it are having such a jolly time that they don’t want to.  Who wants to be unloved and persecuted ?  Well – I’m afraid that is the promised lot of the Christian who is faithful to God’s word and the Gospel. They don’t ask for it – they get it by simply ‘being’.

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Papal Visit

” Enter in at the straight gate: for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:  because straight is the gate and narrow is the way which leads to life and few there be that find it.  Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing  ……   Matthew 7:13-15

Those of you who are kind enough to read my bloggings and ramblings here will know that I’m a great fan of Revelation tv [Sky 581].  On the whole the programmes are doctrinally sound and fair and they preach the gospel at every opportunity. They show a love for and defend Israel and are not afraid to speak out against Islam when the need arises.

However  –  when it comes to Roman Catholicism, they are less clear on what their position is. They appear to see no contradiction in identifying Rome as described in the Book of revelation, but also supporting the RC Church in the here and now.

To my pleasant surprise they held a ‘debate’ on the Pope’s visit, which I missed the bulk of, but what I did see was a robust defense of the Protestant position. The Roman Catholics had declined to send much support for their advocate, so it was a bit one-sided.

But yesterday’s Five Alive Programme was a huge disappointment, not least because the Presenter was a young man I like very much and he staunchly supports Israel.  Those of you are familiar with the history of the RC church will know of their persecution of the Jews.   Anyway  – instead of taking the opportunity to show that the RC church is the enemy of the Gospel of Christ, I was staggered to hear that he had no problems with  the Pope’s visit at all  – far from it  – he positively welcomed it,  because he agrees with the Pope’s pronouncements on the ills of our society !  He also did a great public relations job on a live ‘phone interview with a Roman Catholic MP, who he seemed to acknowledge as a brother in Christ.

I also found it strange that there were no emails read out from anyone who opposes the Pope’s visit. It’s hard to believe that none were sent in. Was there a bit of censorship going on here I wonder? Maybe I’m being too suspicious , but I do know of a chap who had the plug pulled on his programme once, so I have grounds for my suspicions.

Roman Catholicism, just like Islam, has always been ‘political’. They believe they are here to build the Kingdom of God on the earth and take over the world. Unfortunately there is  a faction of born again Christians who have been taken captive to this pernicious deception too and it suits the agenda of those ‘evangelical’ Christians who believe they can change society and the world by joining forces with whatever religion  agrees with them in order to gain a bit more political clout.  If this sounds harsh criticism , let me say that I don’t doubt their sincerity or their well- meaning benevolence :  I just don’t believe it’s Biblical. It is the Lord Jesus Christ who will set up His Kingdom when He returns.

We may feel called as an individual Christian to go into the world of politics in order to serve our community or try to right wrongs, and that’s as it should be,  but the Lord Jesus Christ never called His Church as a Body, to be a worldly political power. The true Church’s mission is to preach the Gospel of Christ to save souls and yes – the more souls saved the more impact there will be on our society by default. But, realistically and comparitively, true believers are always few in number.

However frustrated we are or however strongly we feel [and what true Christian doesn’t?]  about the horrible things that go on because our society has fallen away from it’s Judeo/Christian roots  –  joining together with a false religion to combat those wrongs will never be the right thing to do  –  at it’s mildest , it gives the trumpet an uncertain sound and every fibre of my being wants to cry out that this ecumenism is driving believers along the broad road that leads to the end times false church and destruction.

At the end of his programme the Presenter and young lady with him summed up by saying [loosely paraphrased] they welcomed the Pope’s visit because it was ‘bringing Christianity to the forefront’ and ‘we should be getting involved in politics more and get beyond Doctrines’  …. this is classic Ecumenism is it not?

Personally , if I were an unbeliever witnessing the Pope’s visit and hearing his pontifications on the ills of society, I would most certainly resent the hypocrisy in the light of the current paedophile scandals. It certainly wouldn’t attract me to the Christian cause !  What happened to humility and shame?

In case this is coming across as ‘hostile’ to some people – let me say that I realise there may be genuine born again believers among the millions of  R Catholics out there. However – they are obviously either placing church tradition above the Bible or maybe they think they can change things from the inside ? On the other hand they may be among the many who claim to be baptised in the Holy Spirit and therefore, God is happy with them staying in the RC church. Well  –  I can only leave that with their own conscience when you consider the awfulness of the Mass, the monstrance etc.   The Holy Spirit will lead us into all truth when we are ‘lovers of the truth’  ……

I hope that someone will be bold enough to speak the truth in love on Revelation tv. Maybe I will ask them if they would do a debate on the  ‘Kingdom’ . So far whenever I’ve emailed them [ which isn’t too often] I’ve had an acknowledgement but no replies.

My prayer is that Revelation tv overall will have a spirit of discernment . I realise they walk a tight-rope sometimes on what they can say in our Politically Correct world, but they could have just politely ignored the Pope’s visit rather than openly endorsing it as they have done, which can only have brought confusion into the minds of Christians especially new ones.

NB If you are interested in reading about the RC church I would recommend these :

http://www.bereanbeacon.org                http://www.understand the times.com



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