On September 11th, Muslim men hi-jacked several airplanes and flew them into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and one of them crashed in rural Pennsylvania due to a passenger uprising that prevented it from hitting its target. This was only the second attack by Muslims on the World Trade Center, and followed a pattern of escalating violence by Muslims against our interests, such as bombing our embassies in Africa and an attack on the U.S.S. Cole.
Since these events, America has conducted military action against three Muslim nations – Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya – while supporting military actions of other nations against some other Muslim nations, namely Ethiopia against Somalia. Further, America would have also attacked Iran by now were Iran not so strong militarily and economically, and may yet attack Iran also down the line if forced to.
So, we are in a war against Islam, correct? A thousand times no. No less than George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Barack Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton and a number of other people in positions of power have made it clear: this is not a war against Islam! Instead, it is a war against terrorism, or a war on terror. In other words, this is not a religious war – for the United States and its principle allies are secular – but an ideological war. So, the United States, and indeed a international community which now must necessarily include the United Nations thanks to their recent resolution authorizing military force in Libya, is committed to waging ideological warfare.
Make no mistake: the problem with Saddam Hussein, Usama bin Laden, Muammar Qadaffi, the Republic of Iran etc. is not that they are Muslims. If you want further evidence of that, witness Peter King’s hearings. Despite the claims of the liberals in the media otherwise, the target was not Muslims as a religion, or as a people or culture who are given over to this barbaric cult born of a demon who abused and entered into M0hammed. (Please note: Christians are to love our neighbors and our enemies, so the teachings of the sermon on the mount of Jesus Christ most certainly applies to our interactions with Muslims.) Instead, it was “radical” Muslims, meaning those who are “anti-American”, or “anti-western” or “anti-democracy.” (Please note: opposing Israel is just fine.)
One may wonder why Great Britain, our most reliable ally in going to warfare in the Middle East, cares about a bunch of anti-American Muslims. Or why the United Nations, which is weakening Iran with sanctions, did the same to Iraq, and now authorized military action against Libya, cares about being “anti-western.” The answer: these things, especially being “anti-democracy”, are merely euphemisms, stand-ins, for opposing the new world order. That is why Abu Mazen, or Mahmoud Abbas, despite being a Muslim terrorist with the blood of innocent Jews on his hands and longtime member of the terrorist P.L.O., is not the target of a war on terror. This Abbas is the leader of a U.N. funded and supported Palestinian Authority, and oft states his desire to create a democracy in Palestine that will be pro-western and pro-United Nations, and a model for other Arab and Muslim regimes. That is why Abbas gets a blank check (both literally and figuratively) from the international community, and Qaddafi gets bombs. (And keep in mind: the international community, including the Bush administration, courted Qaddafi for years, including endorsing his plans to work to centralize the governments and militaries of Africa, before turning on him when he refused to step down in favor of a democratic government.)
So, if being a “terrorist” is not a function of A) your religion, B) your nationality, C) your culture, D) your own membership in a known terrorist organization that affiliates with other terror organizations and regimes and E) your own personal terrorist acts (again, all of which would indict Abbas) but is instead being one who opposes the prevailing worldly ideology, where does that leave Christians who adhere to a legitimate New Testament faith? Precisely.
Rather than going to war against Muslims, the goal is to get Muslims to join the U.N., to join NATO, to join the EU, to participate in these globalist concerns. Muslim Turkey, which persecutes Christians to the outrage of absolutely no one of influence, is very influential in the U.N., a member of NATO and will ultimately join the EU. Right now, a carrot or stick approach is being taken with the Muslim world. Join the emerging world order, and you get a carrot. Refuse, and you get a stick, and replaced with leaders who will take the carrot. Again, this is not a function of the Muslim faith, culture or proclivity to violent jihad. Instead, it is a function of the support for the coming global consensus.
As it is with Muslims, so will it soon be with Christians. Germany, who persecuted legitimate Christians during the reign of Hitler, is now jailing Christians who object to their wicked public education system. One family took their case to the EU on religious freedom grounds, and the EU sided with the German government. At least one African nation is now taking similar actions against Christian parents who homeschool, claiming that it violates the United Nation’s “rights of the child” treaty. Many other examples abound.
Make no mistake: one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter. The day will come when being willing to publicly stand for the freedom from sin that comes from being a bondslave to Jesus Christ will cause you to be labeled a terrorist. This will not be merely because of the stands that Christianity takes against abortion, homosexuality and other moral/family issues. As the movie “The Time Changer” succinctly stated, Satan is not against good morals and values, but he is against Jesus Christ and His church, those who keep His commandments and bear His testimony.
Merely being a Christian will be a crime, whether you are a conservative culture warrior who pickets abortion clinics and hands out tracts at “gay pride” events, or a Christian who is relatively liberal on all points that do not transgress the Bible. And when that day comes, the terrorist will be the Christian, and the war will be against the Christian. These days will climax during the time of the great tribulation, when the anti-Christ will be given power to make war against the saints, and to overcome (most of) them. Many Christians will endure great tribulation, including a martyr’s death. Will you stand in those days?
So, Christian, knowing what the “war on terror” will ultimately lead to, how counterproductive is it, how worldly and revealing the lack of a mind renewed from it, would it be to support this abomination NOW? The answer is yours.
If you are not a Christian, make no mistake: being an enemy of the world and its wickedness is part of friendship with Jesus Christ. The good news is that this world and its wickedness will be destroyed and Jesus Christ and His saints will reign forever! You can be a part of this reign by repenting of your worldliness, your sins and:
This is in response to a question received in the comments area.
It appears that as the ecumenical tendencies of evangelical churches increase, they are adopting more practices associated with Catholicism. While that is a worrisome trend in general, with regards to Lent in particular I cannot find anything with this tradition that transgresses New Testament teaching. It is also true that some Protestant groups have long had this ritual in their backgrounds. Anglicans, for instance, have traditionally celebrated Lent, as have Methodists and Lutherans. Presbyterians, by contrast, generally did not until recently precisely because of its Catholic origins. Other groups and traditions (i.e. Baptists) haven’t, but more so because they aren’t liturgical than because of its origins.
The question is whether the practice of Lent can be separated from the Roman Catholic doctrine of Lent. That is the same question being asked about whether a Christian should practice yoga or other traditions that come from other religions. Apart from the Catholic doctrines, Lent is simply fasting, and moreover fasting in honor of the passion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Certainly, there can be no law against such a thing! I have practiced fasting myself in the past, and will start back in the future, sometime later this year
However, my issue is this: if you want to fast, just fast. (And fast the way that Jesus Christ instructed us to in the gospels!) And if it is to be a corporate fast initiated by the pastor of a local congregation, and the members of that congregation touch and agree on it, even better still. Or if a group of Christians from one congregation or several congregations decide that they want to come together and devote themselves to a time of fasting and prayer without being led to do so by their pastor, again, against such thing there is no law. Indeed, such good works are praiseworthy. And we certainly should not avoid fasting during this time of year just because the Catholics are fasting.
However, in addition to avoiding Catholic doctrines regarding this ritual of theirs, what is the purpose of calling it “Lent”? Why not just call it a fast? If the reason is merely to emulate or show some sort of solidarity with Catholicism, then in my opinion, that is extremely problematic. The Bible verse that I would use is this: 2 Corinthians 6:14 “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?” Now that verse is often improperly applied to marriage (when the opposite is true; instead the Bible states that a believing spouse can often be used by God to convert an unbelieving one, see 1 Corinthians 7:10-16). Instead, this scripture and its context obviously refers to not being in religious communion or fellowship with non-Christians. That means that we cannot and should not emulate their beliefs, ways, traditions and rituals. Of course, in this age of ecumenism, pluralism, diversity, tolerance and other forms of ecclesiastical indulgence and compromise, it is no wonder that this 2 Corinthians 6:14 is applied to an area where it was never intended (ironically, consider the evangelical Christian dating site equallyyoked.com!) and neglected where it actually applies, which is to not keep church company with false religions, apostates, heretics, cultists, and anyone else who is operating beyond the bounds of New Testament Christianity, which most certainly includes Catholics, who do not even use our same canon of scripture.
Along with the National Association of Evangelical’s outreach to Mormons, it is a sign of the times. But make no mistake, it is a time that people serious about 2 Corinthians 6:14 and scripture in general should not join! Again, if your Protestant denomination has a legitimate longstanding Lent tradition of its own apart from Roman Catholicism, that is probably legitimate. But if it is some new thing, some fad that people are joining themselves to, it is perfectly appropriate to ask “why” and turn away!
Sorry for the disproportionate emphasis on the endtimes lately. Rest assured, I am not reverting back to my “Heal The Land With Spiritual Warfare” angry Pentecostal days when I was given to much speculation concerning anti-Christ new world order conspiracies. It is merely that I have finally gotten around to reading an excellent book recommended by the Irish Anglican, which is “Interpreting Revelation: A Reasonable Guide to Understanding the Last Book in the Bible” by the late Merrill Tenney, an evangelical theologian who at one point was under the employ of Wheaton College. Now this Tenney was not nearly objective; rather it was quite easy from reading the book to discern that his beliefs tended towards premillennial dispensationalism/pre-tribulation rapture. Fortunately (for me anyways) Tenney pays little attention to his rapture beliefs beyond “gently” mentioning it as a possibility now and then, and instead deals with other issues using my own preferred methodology, which is literal-historical-redemptive interpretation of Bible texts (a hermeneutic that relies mostly on literal interpretation but allows for symbolic and figurative interpretation where appropriate) supported by responsible prooftexting (interpreting scripture with scripture without using verses out of context in order to support some agenda or bias) and appeals to church history. This makes it possible for me to (mostly) agree with Tenney’s scholarship in “Interpreting Revelation” in spite of my disagreement with his belief in (and in this book advocacy of, however mildly) a pretribulation rapture.
Of particular interest are chapters 8 and 9 of his text, which are “The Chronological Approach” and “The Eschatological Method.” In those, Tenney makes the case – though oddly enough this case was not his intention to make – that premillennialism was the eschatological view adopted based on the Biblical (and extrabiblical) text, and that other systems, particularly preterism, amillennialism, and postmillennialism, were developed for political reasons. (Regrettably, Tenney fails to distinguish between his own modern premillennialism – which includes dispensationalism – and historic premillennialism, or chiliasm. His case would have been much stronger, and dare I say more honest, had he done so. That, and his shocking failure to deal with the objections to premillennialism – his own view – as thoroughly as he did with the systems with which he disagrees actually constitute a greater shortcoming than his occasional stumping for the pretribulation rapture.)
First, preterism. Tenney convincingly credits its development with Alcazar, a Roman Catholic Jesuit friar. This Alcazar was a counter-Reformer, which was a duty of The Society of Jesus in general. He developed preterism in order to refute Protestant attacks on the legitimacy of the Roman Catholic Church, as the Reformers polemically used Revelation to refer to this church and its pope as “Babylon” and “anti-Christ.” His method: claiming that Revelation was written in reference to the early church’s struggle with the Jews (chapters 1-12) and paganism (13-19) and had no contemporary or future application whatsoever. Thus, Alcazar followed after a long line that began at the very latest with Eusebius in marginalizing Revelation for political purposes. What is amazing is that Protestant theologians soon began to adopt for themselves a Roman Catholic system created for the very purpose of opposing – and attempting to destroy – the Protestant Reformation, and many have used it ever since despite knowing its original origin and purpose! Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction.
Next, Tenney deals with the political origins of postmillennialism: Augustine’s need to defend the declining Roman Empire (and the ecclesiastical arm of the church-state) along with it. The idea at the time – first proposed by Eusebius in his “official theology” created to support the political aims of Constantine, to whom Eusebius served as an “advisor” – was essentially that the Roman Empire through its making Christianity the state religion, was the earthly fulfilment of the kingdom of God, and that the empire and its church would grow (whether by conversion or coercion) to fill the earth and thereby fulfil the prophecies concerning the global reign of Jesus Christ. Of course, this doctrine JUST HAPPENED to provide a religious justification for the need/desire of the Roman Empire to wage war, conquer territory and subdue/repress people. When the Roman Empire began to crumble, Augustine had to rework his doctrines somewhat in order to arrive at the position that even though the present political order – the Roman Empire – might collapse, the visible church destined to gain global dominion (and domination) would continue by attaching itself to whatever political, social and economic order that existed (whether the Roman Empire of Constantine’s time, the feudalism of the Dark and Middle Ages, or our current political hegemony) and adapting to fit it.
To pull this off, Augustine had to use an allegorical/spiritual method of interpreting Revelation (and other texts) that allowed him to strip the text of its intended meaning and assign the meaning that suited his purposes, which of course were the purposes of the empire and its state church. In that regards, we can consider Augustine to be a postmodern reader-response deconstructionist sort whom the Marxist scholar Jacques Derrida merely followed after 1500 years later! One of the things that Augustine had to do was deny a literal first resurrection, that of the martyrs spoken of in Revelation 20:4-6, by making the amazing claim that this passage referred to Christian regeneration! Now while Augustine was technically not Roman Catholic (but rather “proto-Catholic”) it is still amazing that so many Protestants followed his eschatological groundwork when it so blatantly involved willfully denying the meaning of scripture in order to contrive an interpretation that suited his political needs. Now, the Reformers were motivated to remain basically loyal to Augustine’s eschatology because of their commitment to his soteriology. The problem is that where Augustine’s soteriology is easily confirmed by a plain reading of the Bible, one has to reject that plain reading in order to adopt his eschatology. The Reformers erred in not being consistent in their hermeneutics, and with regard to the magisterial Reformers in general, were not free of their own political needs in maintaining their own church-states.
Amillennialism, at least according to Tenney, is little more than an improved or more sophisticated and “realistic” postmillennialism. Thus, it follows the same Eusebius-Augustine theological lineage, and ultimately comes to the same conclusions, even if – again according to Tenney – it makes better use of scripture in arriving at them. For instance, amillennialism also generally denies a literal first resurrection. Which is understandable: if the church and the political/economic/military/religious/cultural systems (the world) are one and the same, then who is martyring the Christians that will be resurrected? However, it should be pointed out that amillennialists do generally acknowledge that evil will increase before the return of Jesus Christ, and that Jesus Christ does return to overthrow and judge a wicked worldly system, a wicked ungodly antiChrist system (as opposed to a personal antiChrist). At best, this system is an attempt to reconcile political eschatology with what the Bible actually says. As stated earlier, this was likely done because these doctrines came as part of a larger packaged doctrinal system (i.e. covenant theology).
Then, there is premillennialism. Tenney does acknowledge that premillennialism was not the consensus view of the early church, though he does regretfully understate this fact. However, Tenney does effectively make the case that premillennialism was a doctrine of many Christians from the earliest times in recorded church history, and naming such people as Papias and Justin Martyr (who wrote mere decades after the canon was completed, as early as 115 AD) as well as Irenaeus. Tenney uses the uncanny similarity between the millenarian teachings in Revelation and those in such apocryphal books as Baruch and Esdras IV as evidence of the existence of chiliast beliefs in the first century church. Of course, many throughout church history have used this fact against premillennialism, claiming that it is Jewish propaganda and misinterpretations of prophecy, but that principle is not used against apocryphal and extrabiblical references that appear in other Bible books (i.e. the book of Jasher and the book of the wars of the Lord in the Old Testament; the book of Enoch and the Assumption of Moses in Jude).
Of course, embrace of premillennialism was far from universal in the early church. However, some of that can be attributed to anti-Jewish bias among Gentile Christians (which scripture tells us was developing as far back as when Paul composed the epistle to the Romans), and more still to a lack of a normative canon, and in particular the fact that Revelation appears to have been among the last books to gain widespread circulation and acceptance. However, it is known that vigorous opposition to chiliasm – and in many cases to Revelation itself, including many who wanted to either explain away its meaning and application or keep it out of the canon altogether – did not arise until Christianity became the state religion of the Roman Empire, and that this opposition was motivated by the need to depict the Roman Empire as the fulfilment of God’s kingdom. Tenney’s assertion of this point is by no means unique, but is repeated in any number of books on church history, and in particular those that deal with the debate over Revelation’s inclusion in the canon.
A final positive contribution by Tenney is his debunking the common claim that premillennialism received its modern revival thanks to the works of such spurious characters as Cyrus Scofield. The effects of this contribution is somewhat diminished by Tenney’s failure to acknowledge that at least some of the Christians who began investigating premillennialism had social and political motivations. This was true of certain radical Anabaptists in their violent upheavals in the 16th and 17th centuries, and also of Christians operating in the political, economic and social upheavals in the United States and England in the 19th century. Still, Tenney does identify a list of more reputable scholars who contributed to the revival of premillennialism (including historic premillennialism, which again Tenney regrettably does not distinguish) including Johann Albrecht Bengel, Hermann Olshausen, Heny Alford (definitely a chiliast), Johann Peter Lange (somewhat questionable because of his tendencies towards neo-orthodoxy), Andrew Fausset (another chiliast), Joseph Seiss, Franz Delitzsch and Charles Ellicott. Unfortunately, Tenney does the credibility of his effort in compiling that list great harm by including Plymouth Brethren hyperdispensationalist (a position that challenges the unity of the New Testament by setting Paul’s teachings over against those of the gospels and Acts) John Nelson Darby on his list of “reputable scholars”! (Why Darby and not Scofield, who in some respects is actually LESS problematic?)
So, Tenney’s book, despite its problems, helps one arrive at the conclusion is that premillennialism is the eschatological position that, despite is shortcomings, reflects the Biblical text according to a consistent hermeneutic and early church doctrines, and not the political need to assert that a church-state serves as the kingdom of heaven until the return of Jesus Christ. The former view integrates Revelation into a consistent schema of Old and New Testament thought – and not merely thought related to the apocalyptic/eschatological/prophetic – while the latter makes one wonder why Revelation is in the canon in the first place, and especially its application to contemporary Christians.
When I first started this website, I enthusiastically endorsed Jesus camps, thinking that they were an excellent way to turn children into spiritual warriors – as it WAS initially a charismatic spiritual warfare site – from an early age. Well … WOW WAS I WRONG! Jesus camps use the evil combination of spiritually seductive charismatic slain in the spirit frenzy and dominion theology politics. Instead of teaching children to pray for their enemies, to show kindness to the poor and elderly people, to interpret the Bible and discern doctrines, to worship and praise the Lord in a dignified manner becoming His glory, and to exhibit the fruits of the Holy Spirit, these folks are feeding these children false Christian doctrines and fascist notions of merging church, state, culture, etc. that will makes any of them that internalize this spiritual evil easy pickings for the anti – Christ and moreover very willing workers in the plot to create the climate where the man of sin will take power. The more things like this come out, as well as things with the Jesus Seminar, Mike Huckabee, Jeremiah Wright … Bible believing Christians have to start speaking out. There is something seriously wrong with both the religious right and the religious left, and we have to start boldly opposing it with the Word of God.
ARUSHA, Tanzania – A Rwandan priest has been jailed for life after a U.N. tribunal extended his sentence for ordering militiamen to burn and bulldoze a church with 1,500 people inside. The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda’s ruling came after Roman
Catholic priest Athanase Seromba appealed his 2006 conviction, a statement posted on the body’s Web site late Wednesday said. He was originally sentenced to 15 years in prison.
The tribunal is trying the alleged masterminds of the 1994 Rwandan genocide in which more than 500,000 minority Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed by Hutu extremists over a 100-day period. The tribunal said it convicted Seromba for “his role in the destruction of the church in Nyange Parish, and the consequent death of approximately 1,500 Tutsi refugees sheltering inside.”
Seromba was convicted of leading a militia that attacked the people and poured fuel through the roof of the church, while police threw grenades inside. After failing to kill everybody inside the church, Seromba ordered it to be demolished, the tribunal found.
Thousands of Rwandans have turned away from Catholicism, angered and saddened by the complicity of church officials in the genocide.Priests, nuns and followers were implicated in the killings and some churches were sites of notorious massacres.
The Rwanda war crimes tribunal has delivered 32 judgments, including five acquittals, since the U.N. Security Council established it in November 1994. There are 27 trials under way.
The Vatican and Muslim leaders agreed on Wednesday to establish a permanent official dialogue to improve often difficult relations and heal wounds still open from a controversial papal speech in 2006.A joint statement said the first meeting of “The Catholic-Muslim Forum” will take place on November 4-6 in Rome with 24 religious leaders and scholars from each side.
Pope Benedict will address the group, the statement said.
The announcement came after a two-day meeting at the Vatican with five representatives of Muslims who had signed an unprecedented appeal to the Pope to begin a dialogue.
“We emerged with a permanent structure that will ensure that the Catholic-Muslim engagement and dialogue continues into the future,” said Professor Aref Ali Nayed, director of the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Center in Amman, Jordan.
He told a news conference the forum would be able “to work out issues and an exchange of opinions about important matters”.
Catholic-Muslim relations nosedived in 2006 after Pope Benedict delivered a lecture in Regensburg, Germany, that was taken by Muslims to imply that Islam was violent and irrational.
Muslims around the world protested and the Pope sought to make amends when he visited Turkey’s Blue Mosque and prayed towards Mecca with its Imam.
“For some Muslims the wounds of the (Pope’s) German lecture are not completely healed and there are some Muslims who are boycotting the Vatican … and still feel offended by that quite deeply,” Nayed said in answer to a question.
PAPAL SPEECH STILL HURTS
“Just because we are part of this initiative does not mean that we are not hurt by this, however we must not only dwell on the negative but also dwell on the positive. There have been some recent positive moves by the Vatican,” he said.
After the fallout from the Regensburg speech, 138 Muslim scholars and leaders wrote to the German-born Pope and other Christian leaders last year, saying “the very survival of the world itself” may depend on dialogue between the two faiths.
“Muslims and Christians make up about 55 per cent of the world and there will be no peace in the world unless there is peace between these two communities,” Ibrahim Kalin of the Seta Foundation in Turkey told the news conference.
The signatories of the Muslim appeal for dialogue, called the “Common Word”, has grown to nearly 240 since.
“This whole initiative is about healing, it is about healing the wounds of a very pained and in many ways destroyed world. We have cruelty all over the place, we have wars, we have famines we have massacres, we have terrorist acts, we have torture, we have people who are kidnapped,” Nayed said.
Although Pope Benedict repeatedly expressed regret for the reaction to his speech in Regensburg, he stopped short of a clear apology sought by Muslims.
The Muslim delegation said the forum would meet every two years and alternate between Rome and a Muslim country but would establish structures for regular contacts and links to deal with one member called “an emergency situation”.
Communion. The other night on my TV program, I dealt with the whole issue
of communion. Communion is that wonderful act of remembering the sacrifice
Jesus made as He literally gave His life for the sins of all mankind. I was
actually shocked in looking through my Devotional archives to realize in
nearly 9 years, this was one issue I had never centered a Devotional around.
I have talked about communion many times over the years, but never did a
complete Devotional just on communion. Shame on me! Especially with all
the confusion and poor teaching about this wonderful time when a follower of
Jesus Christ fulfills the command the Lord gave to His followers to remember
Him by partaking of the bread and wine, re-enacting that moment He shared
with His disciples in the Upper Room during the Last Supper.
When we’re dealing with anything, our final authority in all matters is the
Bible. The primary scripture that deals with communion is found in Paul’s
first letter to the Church of Corinth, in the 11th chapter. This passage
refers back to the words of Jesus on the night of the Last Supper with His
disciples. On that night, our Lord broke the bread and said, “This is my
body which is broken for you. This do in remembrance of Me.” After dinner
was over, Jesus took the cup and told His disciples, ” This cup is the new
covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.”
You see, Jesus knew what was about to happen. Jesus knew that in just a few
hours He would be going to the cross to shed His precious blood and give His
life as the one-time, perfect sacrifice for the sins of the world.
What Jesus did that night was give all of those who would follow Him a way
of remembering His finished work on the cross. You know we’re coming upon
the Easter season. It’s that time of year Believers worldwide will reflect
on the great sacrifice Christ made for us. We remember the Last Supper. We
remember that time in the Garden of Gethsemane where he would be betrayed
by Judas. We remember his trial before Pontius Pilate. We remember how our
Lord was beaten, scourged, mocked, spat upon, and eventually nailed to the
cross where He hung and died. The fact is, we need to remember Christ’s
sacrifice for us more than just at Easter. That is the wonderful thing
about communion. It allows us to take time and reflect, to remember the
price Jesus paid for our salvation.
One of the controversies regarding communion is how often a Believer should
participate in this act of remembrance. Jesus simply said to do it in
remembrance of me, and even used the word “often.” The Bible doesn’t give
us a specific time period, once a day, once a week, or once a month. It
really becomes an issue each Believer needs to pray about and let the Holy
Spirit guide you. Most churches have communion once a month. I know of
some churches who observe communion every week. The Roman Catholic church
celebrates communion at every mass. Again, there is no Biblical mandate how
often to take communion. My personal belief is that every Believer should
take communion at least once a month to never go too many days without
remembering the price Christ paid for our salvation.
Another controversial issue surrounding communion is who is supposed to take
communion. In most churches, everyone present is invited to take communion.
That is WRONG! The Bible is very clear regarding who should and should not
take communion. Communion is an act of remembrance for those who placed
their faith in Jesus Christ. Communion is not something a nonbeliever
should participate in. A nonbeliever has no relationship with Christ, so
the observance of communion is a meaningless exercise to that person. The
bread and wine that represent the body and blood of Christ have no special
significance to a person who has not given their heart and life to the Lord.
I’ve had the honor of preaching many times over the years when communion was
being served. I make it clear that communion is a time for those who have
placed their faith in Jesus Christ to examine themselves, repent of their
sins and ask God to forgive them of their sins before they partake of the
bread and wine. One of the reasons I love communion is that it is the
perfect opportunity to allow people who aren’t Believers in Christ to accept
the Lord as their Savior by faith. There’s no better time to give people an
invitation to know Jesus than at the time of communion. After making the
decision to accept the Lord, they can then partake of the bread and wine and
understand the incredible sacrifice Jesus made for them when He shed His
blood and gave His life for their sins, so that they might be able to
receive God’s gift of everlasting life.
Let me share this with you. You don’t have to be in church to take
communion. I’ve taken communion dozen of times in my office. I get a cup
with some grape juice to represent Christ’s blood. I’ll take some bread to
represent His body. I sit down with my Bible and read some of those great
passages in the Gospels about Christ’s crucifixion, and I take communion.
Listen, you don’t need a pastor or priest to give you Communion. Communion
is an act of remembrance for Believers in Jesus Christ. You don’t need a
pastor or priest to stick a wafer or piece of bread in your mouth. You don’t
need a pastor or priest to give you a cup of wine or grape juice. You can
take communion at home, in your office, anywhere. It’s an act of
remembrance each follower of Christ was asked by our Lord to do to remember
It is a time for those followers of Jesus Christ to remember the price He
paid for our salvation, why we are able to be the recipients of God’s gift
of everlasting life. Yes, it’s a great experience when you are with a body
of Believers in a church and you walk up and the pastor gives you the bread
and the cup. Yes, it’s wonderful to be able to share that experience in a
corporate setting with other Believers. But you can take communion
anywhere, and you don’t need a pastor or priest since this is a time for
personal reflection. It’s a time of remembrance. That is why you shouldn’t
go more than 30 days without taking communion since it a reminder of what
our faith is all about. Jesus Christ went to the cross, gave His body as a
one-time sacrifice and shed His blood for the remission of sins. That is
something every Believer should never forget and taking communion often is
Now, let me share one last issue that pretty much is only an issue in the
Roman Catholic Church. It’s the man made tradition of transubstitution where
that church erroneously believes that at the time of communion, the wafer is
transformed into the literal Body of Christ and the cup of wine is
transformed literally into His blood. So when a Catholic goes to the altar
to take communion from the Priest, they believe they are literally partaking
of the body and blood of Christ. Again, it is a man made tradition without
any Biblical support. The bread or wafer, the wine or juice, are simply
SYMBOLS of the body and blood of Christ, not the literal body and blood of
*Note: To all my Roman Catholic friends. I am VERY aware of the attempts
to use certain passages of the Bible to support this man made tradition of
the RC Church. So please, don’t send me links and cut&paste postings on why
this belief is supported by Scripture, since it is not.
I love you and care about you so much. Communion is an act of remembrance
every Believer should do on a regular basis. It is an act only Believers are
to participate in. Not children. Not the unsaved person you brought to
church. Believers! Communion is an act of remembrance. How can a
nonbeliever remember something he or she doesn’t believe in? Unfortunately
most pastors absolutely miss this great opportunity to invite people to come
to know Jesus before offering communion. There is no better opportunity in
the world to invite someone to know Christ than at the time you are
extending an invitation to communion. It gives you the perfect opportunity
to explain WHY a person needs Jesus.
I pray today that you will not ever let more than 30 days pass without
taking communion. I believe it is a very important part of our faith and
spiritual journey. It is the foundation of what our faith is all about. I
don’t care if you have been saved 10 minutes or 80 years, all followers of
Christ need to reflect and remember what our Lord did for us. Even more
important, Christ TOLD US to do this “oft” in remembrance of Him. For the
Christian, communion is a very holy, somber, special time of reflection both
on our life and the sacrifice our Lord made for us. May you be strengthened
and challenged each time you partake of the bread and wine, remembering that
Jesus gave His very life for us, so how can we do anything less for Him?
First Huckabee, then McCain, who was on record in 1999 as stating that he did not want to overturn Roe v. Wade. McCain also has a long record of opposing many of the things on Hagee’s political and religious agendas. This just proves that the guy who denies the Messiahship of Jesus Christ, claims that Jesus Christ was killed by Rome for His political beliefs,prophesied that the United States would attack Iran in 2007 (and is still demanding that we attack Iran!) and preaches dual covenant theology is simply in it for the power and money.
The leader of Russia’s powerful Orthodox Church played down hopes of an imminent reconciliation with Rome in an interview on Monday, saying Catholic missionary activity in Russia prevented the churches from restoring ties.Speculation has flourished about a possible historic meeting between Russia’s Patriarch Alexiy II and Pope Benedict XVI after both sides indicated they were open in principle to healing a centuries-old rift between Western and Russian Christianity.
Russia is by far the biggest Orthodox Christian church and has undergone a big religious revival since the demise of the atheist Soviet Union. President Vladimir Putin, once a KGB spy, is now open about his Orthodox faith.
“Stopping us from restoring relations are some unsolved issues between our churches,” Alexiy told the Polish daily Dziennik in an interview published on Monday. “We have many questions about the missionary and charitable activities of Catholic monks and clergy in Russia and CIS (former Soviet) countries.”
The Russian Orthodox Church, by far the dominant religion in Russia, has sharply criticised the Vatican for creating new dioceses on its turf and has accused Catholic priests of attempting to poach Orthodox believers as converts to Rome. Alexiy said some Catholic clerics “started to see the ex-Soviet Union as a spiritual desert to be dealt with”.
The Catholic Church says it is only doing what is necessary to attend to the needs of Russia’s estimated one million Catholics, mostly of East European or German origin, who were neglected during decades of religious persecution in the Soviet Union. “We have always said that a Russian visit of (former) Pope John Paul was possible only when all the problems between our churches were resolved. Unfortunately, it has not happened until now,” Alexiy said.
“In Russia and Ukraine, Catholics always treated the Orthodox believers more as enemies than as brothers in faith … the activities of Catholics in Russia have created many challenges for the dialogue of our churches.” “These matters need to be resolved”.
In particular, Alexiy criticised Catholic shelters which he said brought up orphans from Orthodox families in the Catholic tradition, saying this “is hurting us exceptionally”. (Please realizethat Roman Catholics wish to do the same to American Protestant children using school vouchers and charter schools in the education system with your tax dollars. It is almost as if the public education system has been turned undesirable in some areas on purpose, and please recall that both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush support charter schools, and more than a few Democrats even support vouchers.)
Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz said last October at a farewell news conference after 16 years heading the Catholic Church in Russia that the Orthodox “could have been better to us”, adding he never sought to convert Orthodox Christians.
Christianity split into two branches in the Great Schism of 1054, when the Orthodox Church broke away from the Roman church in a row over papal authority and the insertion of a disputed clause into the Creed, the central statement of Christian faith.
Ultimately, both these bodies will recognize their mutual enemy, evangelical Christianity, and join forces. The Russian Orthodox church, with the help of the Putin state, has worked mightily to repress Southern Baptist and Pentecostal evangelistic efforts in the nation. For all of Putin’s professions of faith, he is primarily a nationalist, and knows that a major reason for the failure of the Soviet regime was its persecution of religious people. Putin now knows – obviously from studying history – that the state can become much more powerful and nationalistic by co – opting a spiritually empty version of state religion. Let us see … you had Constantinism, the Holy Roman Empire, feudalism, Nazi Germany (not to mention religio – fascist Italy and Japan), the various Islamic states, and oh yes how could I forget “Christian values” America (whether those values be liberal or conservative, they still seem to wind up with our bombing indigent brown – skinned people in places where there tend to be large oil reserves like the Kennedy – LBJ adventure in Viet Nam and the Iraq/Afghanistan nightmare that Bush, Clinton, and then Bush have truthfully had us in since the early 1990s, and that was after our arming Saddam to fight Iran in the 1980s). But the upshot here is that if the Russian Orthodox Church reopens official ties with the Roman Catholic Church, it will be because tsar Vladimir Putin decides that it is in the best interests of mother Russia and on mother Russia’s terms.
So why would Rome be amenable to tsar Putin’s terms? Simple: demographics. The Roman Catholic Church has been virtually bankrupted of numbers and influence in Europe, and is facing a huge challenge from Islam (and also from evangelical Protestant Christianity, though to a much lesser extent). By contrast, the third world portion of the church is exploding in numbers. Not only is this severely hurting Rome in terms of financing and administration, as they are used to transferring wealth from the west to the third world but also largely governing the third world churches from the west, but creates huge challenges for the church doctrinally. The Roman Catholic Church already had to beat back a huge liberation theology challenge coming from Latin America and Africa in the 1980s (the current pope being the one tasked with crushing it with an iron fist), and while liberation theology is now no longer a great threat (ironically because of the collapse of Soviet communism, but also because now that it has largely been accepted within liberal and moderate Christianity and hence no longer has its radical subversive appeal) there are other ways the third world segment of Roman Catholicism is going to assert itself, including demanding official recognition for their local syncretized flavors of Catholicism (first off it isn’t as if the Roman Catholic Church didn’t spend centuries doing this in Europe, and also John Paul got the ball rolling by beatifying plenty of third world shamans, mystics, witch doctors, etc. as “saints.” As a matter of fact, some Roman Catholic observers claim that unless things change, Ratzinger may well be the last European pope for awhile.
And that is why change is precisely what Ratzinger has in mind. Ratzinger said on the day that he was chosen as pope that his primary concern would be rebuilding the European church, and that he chose his papal name precisely for that reason. Doing business with tsar Putin would rapidly increase the number of white Europeans in the Roman Catholic Church, and just as important enrich the Vatican with enough oil wealth to transfer it to the third world churches and keep the third world Vatican loyalists in firm power. The even better part is that as the Russian Orthodox Church is the largest and most influential of the eastern orthodox churches, once they realign with Rome, the other orthodox churches in Greece, Turkey, etc. will have little choice but to fall in line.
So what is in it for tsar Putin? Simple: the Vatican wields considerable political and cultural influence in the nations of a lot of his enemies. Case in point: the United States and its five Roman Catholics on the Supreme Court. Remember the huge backlash when George W. Bush attempted to place an evangelical Christian on the court … Harriet Miers was sacked and replaced with the majority vote Samuel Alito. And YOU, evangelical Christian Republicans, thought that it was about Roe. v. Wade, didn’t you? Or didn’t you figure that the Vatican would be willing to abide abortion for a generation or three if it meant positioning themselves politically for the long haul?
Tsar Putin knows that thanks to the Christian right, influence with the Vatican means influence over America. And the Vatican is more than willing to let Tsar Putin have what he wants, because, well, the Vatican knows that 100 years from now Putin will be off the scene and they will still be around. So long as they will have Russia then they are willing to mollify Putin now.
For Catholic schools in the nation’s capital, it’s feast and famine these days.
Donors have helped the Archdiocese of Washington pump $60 million into its schools in the past decade. In 2004, Congress approved a $14 million voucher that paid tuition last year for more than 1,900 students.
But as in other big cities, shifting demographics have drained D.C. of families who want to send their kids to Catholic schools, even when it’s free. And Congress, which is controlled by Democrats, probably won’t renew the voucher program.
Meanwhile, the city is at the heart of the USA’s quiet love affair with privately run, publicly financed charter schools: One in five D.C. students attend a charter.
Faced with a $55 million long-term deficit and the looming closure of nearly half its schools, the archdiocese awaits approval of an unusual proposal: converting a handful of schools to secular “values based” charter schools that reflect Catholic morality but don’t overtly teach church doctrine.
FIND MORE STORIES IN: Washington | Congress | Catholic | Archdiocese | DC
The bid represents the largest of its kind so far — and though it stands a good chance of approval by the D.C. Public Charter School Board in April, it’s opposed by the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA), which says the schools will lose their greatest strength: their religious character.
“This isn’t a path for everyone,” says archdiocese spokeswoman Susan Gibbs. “But we look around at other dioceses and they close their doors. We couldn’t do that.”
An independent, non-profit board would run the seven proposed elementary schools, with no teaching of Catholic doctrine, no in-school prayer and no religious artifacts on the walls. In fact, none of the proposed charters would be considered “Catholic” schools. Essentially the archdiocese would act as a landlord.
In that sense, it’s similar to arrangements in places such as Buffalo, and Gary, Ind., where church schools have been transformed into non-religious charters.
“We’re sad that they can’t be Catholic schools,” NCEA president Karen Ristau says of the D.C. proposal. “There will be no religious doctrine or celebration of faith or prayer in the school day.”
Though charters enjoy freedom from most regulations on personnel, curriculum, budget and teaching methods, Ristau says religious instruction is still out. “As far as I know, there’s no wiggle room.”
In the past few years, charter schools in Florida, Minnesota and New York that have approached the line between values-based learning and religious instruction have run afoul of critics who say they’re ignoring the U.S. Constitution’s prohibition on government sponsorship of religion.
Ristau calls proposals such as D.C.’s “a temporary solution to a serious problem” facing churches across the nation. Recent data from Georgetown University’s Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate finds that though the percentage of Americans who are Catholic has remained steady since 1995, the number of Catholic elementary schools dropped about 10%; secondary schools have dropped 2.3%.
“At a time when we’re all trying to figure out how to create good public schools in the inner city, it’s a shame that good public schools in the inner city are going away,” says Mike Petrilli of the Thomas B. Fordham Foundation, a Washington education think tank.
Gibbs says the archdiocese is keeping its options open. If neighborhoods change, she says, “We still have the buildings. … In 10 years, we may want to open a Catholic school again.”
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My note: This devotional was written by pastor and televangelist Bill Keller of Live Prayer. I had decided to stop posting Bill Keller’s devotionals that dealt with Mormonism for a time for reasons that I will not get into. But after seeing Glenn Beck exploit the death of Hinckley as an opportunity to promote his religion on CNN last night, I am making a one time exception to my policy. Please note: Keller is right when he says that there is no difference between Mormonism and Islam. So why is the religious right so much more tolerant of one than the other? You know that if Mitt Romney were Muslim, he’d have the same “he is part of a global Muslim conspiracy to take over our government” theories as are circulating about Barack HUSSEIN Obama. I will tell you the reason: race. Mormonism was founded by whites and in America is an overwhelmingly white religion, so they are not only tolerated by the religious right, but are fully embraced by them. Meanwhile, Islam is an Arab religion. That is why the same religious right hypocrites that went nuts over Keith Ellison merely being elected to Congress are actually praying for Mitt Romney to save them from Mike Huckabee, Rudy Giuliani, and John McCain (not that I support any of them either by the way). The way these conservatives, especially Roman Catholics, are claiming that Mitt Romney is the victim of oh so much bigotry after decades of using racism and segregation against BLACKS to build their own party would be hilarious if it wasn’t so evil. (By the way, check out this Roman Catholic pro – segregation site that claims that God never intended for Christianity to spread outside the white race … surprise surprise they like Romney.) It was as if they were saying “Hey evangelicals, Romney is one of us where it really counts, so vote your race, it is more important than your religion!” That is why the same folks on the right who continuously demand that blacks bear the discrimination that we face while picking and grinning about it start braying like Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, and the NAACP whenever Romney’s religion is discussed in any terms other than “oh we can trust Romney to save America because he is a devoted Mormon who believes in Jesus with a beautiful wife and five sons.” Well, again, anyone who doubts that Romney would use the White House to promote his faith not only in America but also overseas (the people that they falsely claim are the cursed seed of Ham and for that reason held them in second class status until 1978 – a fact which conservatives love I bet – apparently are a major mission field for them!) should view Glenn Beck’s performance below.
An evil tool of satan masquerading as a Godly grandfather is buring in hell
for all eternity! Gordon B. Hinckley, the leader of the satanic Mormon cult
is dead at 97. Hinckley saw this cult grow from 9 million members to over
13 million members worldwide during his 12-year reign as its leader. While
Hinckley is already being memorialized as a “great man of God,” the fact is
his life has been an instrument in the hands of satan to help lead the souls
of men to hell by following the false theology of the Mormon cult.
Many people, even Christians will rail against me for being so unkind, but
this only illustrates the problem we have. Even Believers don’t take the
eternal souls of men serious enough. As I state often, this is a battle for
souls. Satan is not playing games and is serious about taking as many souls
into the lake of fire with him as he can. I am saddened at how many
Christians either don’t understand, or don’t want to think about the FACT
that those who die without Jesus, the Jesus of the Bible, will pass from
this life into eternal punishment!
I know some people are outraged that I would be “so mean” to call Mormonism
a satanic cult. I receive emails all the time talking about the great works
they do. First, I have no doubt that most Mormons are fine people, good
people, and do great works. But being a good person and doing good works
does NOT get you into Heaven. Only faith in Jesus Christ, the Jesus of the
Bible, will get you into Heaven. The Mormon cult spends tens of millions of
dollars each year in public relations to portray themselves as “just another
DO NOT LET THEIR ADS FOOL YOU. They are no more a Christian church than your
local mosque is!
The lie of Mormonism that I expose is not a new problem. Paul, himself, had
to deal with the issue of “cults”-those who perverted the Gospel-almost from
the very beginning. He spoke of it often in his writings, as in today’s
anchor verses in his letter to the church at Galatia. This is nothing new.
Here are just a few of the theological issues that makes the satanic Mormon
cult totally inconsistent with Biblical Christianity and why a Mormon is no
more a Christian than a Muslim is. The god of the Mormon cult is NOT the God
of the Bible. Their “god” is named Elohim and was once a man like you and I
who came from another planet. Mormon theology teaches that men can
eventually become a god and have their own planet. When a Mormon talks about
“god,” he is talking about this fictitious god of Mormonism and NOT the God
of the Bible!
This holds true for Jesus. The jesus of Mormon theology is not God incarnate
as the Bible teaches. The Mormon jesus was not supernaturally conceived by
the Holy Ghost, but the natural offspring of their “god” Elohim who had sex
with Mary, meaning he is a created being no different than you and I.
Mormons also teach that their jesus had several wives and children, again,
in compete contradiction to what the Bible teaches. The jesus of the Mormon
cult is also the spirit brother of Lucifer and will return not to the Mt. Of
Olives as the Bible teaches, but to Independence, Missouri to set up his
When a Mormon talks about “jesus,” he is NOT talking about the true Jesus of
the Bible! What Jesus you put your faith in is so critical, since this is
why anyone who puts their faith in the imaginary jesus of Joseph Smith and
the satanic Mormon cult will die in their sins and their souls burn forever
in the flames of hell!
What about the Bible and true Christian churches? Mormons love to use the
Bible and quote from the Bible to support their deception that they are
Christians. The trademark of all cults and false religions, even those who
use the Bible, is that it is NOT their final authority. In the Mormon cult,
their authority does not come from the Bible which they view as incomplete
and not reliable, but the writings of Smith, the Book of Mormon, the Pearl
of Great Price, and the Doctrine and Covenants. These are the writings that
form the false theology of this cult.
Mormons believe that non-Mormons are “abominations.” While they don’t have
the guts the Muslims do to publicly call a non-Muslim an infidel who should
be put to death, a Mormon views a Biblical Christian as part of a “false
religion” and void of all authority.
Like in all cults, the average member hasn’t got a clue what their cult
really believes. You only get to know everything after you have proven
yourself to be a loyal and worthy member of the cult. That is true in the
Mormon cult as well. Most Mormons go to their “church,” sing many of the
same hymns they sing at the Baptist church down the road, give their tithe,
read a few passages out of the Bible, hear a message about being a “good
person,” and go home.
It is only when you get to become a “temple Mormon” that you really learn
all of the deep, dark, beliefs of Mormonism. The Mormon temple rituals are
actually little more than the temple rituals Smith copied from another cult,
Freemasonry! Smith who was involved in the Masonic cult, simply copied and
incorporated their chants, handshakes, and ceremonies when he started the
Mormon cult. These are the same chants, handshakes, and ceremonies Romney
participated in when he took his oath to the Mormon cult above anything
else, INCLUDING THE U.S. GOVERNMENT AND CONSTITUTION!
The average person has no idea that the ultimate goal of the Mormon cult is
to establish a theocracy here in the United States. Joseph Smith, the cult’s
founder actually ran for the Presidency. So did Mitt Romney’s father. This
cult has the very real goal of establishing the “Kingdom of God,” which
means advancing the physical and earthly organization of the multi-billion
dollar Mormon cult.
There is a special room in the Mormon Temple located in Washington, DC that
has been prepared and in place for over 30 years, which will be the seat of
power for the Mormon-led government which will supplant our current
government. This was the vision Smith laid out less than 200 years ago, and
Mitt Romney and those in the hierarchy and leadership of the Mormon cult see
this as the time for that vision to become fulfilled!
I love you and care about you so much. Gordon B. Hinckley was NOT a great
“man of God,” but simply a tool of satan who used his life to lead millions
to the false teachings of the Mormon cult, meaning those poor souls died in
their sins and are in hell for all eternity along with all who reject the
Jesus of the Bible. He did not become a “god” upon his death as Mormons
believe. He didn’t get his own planet full of women waiting to have sex with
him. The moment he died, Hinckley stood before God and because he rejected
Jesus and died in his sins, was immediately cast into hell for all eternity!
I have done my best in a limited amount of time to give you a brief overview
of the false and satanic beliefs of the Mormon cult. I have just barely
scratched the surface, but just in what I have shared with you today, NOBODY
in their right mind could ever believe that a Mormon is a Christian. When
you study Mormon theology and understand the wild beliefs of Smith and this
cult, you need faith greater than I will ever hope to have to believe what
they do. There is no logic to it and there is absolutely nothing they
believe that has any basis in realty or can be proven.
Listen, God gave us free will, and men who live in rebellion to God since
the very beginning have dreamed up the wildest and most ridiculous religions,
and sadly people who were spiritually void chose to believe their lies and
will be lost for all eternity because of it. The danger of Mormonism is that
they are deceptive (just look at their name, the Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter Day Saints) and will lie without conscience just like the father of
lies, satan (John 8:44), to get people to join their cult.
I pray today for those 13 million souls alive today who are following the
lies of this cult, to turn from those lies before they take their last
breath and are lost for all eternity. There is only one Truth, and that is
found in the book God wrote, the Bible. There is only one way to be saved,
and that is through a personal relationship by faith with the Jesus of the
Bible. May those lost in the lies of the Mormon cult denounce those lies
and turn to God’s Word alone and faith in Jesus and be saved so they don’t
end up burning in hell like Gordon B. Hinckley!!!
***ARE YOU 100% CERTAIN WHERE YOU WILL SPEND ETERNITY? The fact is you will die one day. At that moment, you will either spend eternity with the Lord or be cast into everlasting darkness forever separated from God your creator. To know for certain you will be forever with Jesus, go to: http://www.liveprayer.com/bdy_salvatn.cfm
***I am excited to let you know that the Liveprayer Daily Devotional is now
available via AUDIO each day. Simply go to http://www.liveprayer.com/Audio.cfm
Also, you can now listen to the Daily Devotional by phone by calling 1-727-342-5673
(C) Copyright 2008, Bill Keller Ministries. All rights reserved.