Jesus Christ Is Lord

That every knee should bow and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father!

Posts Tagged ‘america’

America’s Occult Past And Present From Joseph Smith To Joel Osteen!

Posted by Job on October 27, 2009

DUIN: Halloween spurs tales of the occult

Two key excerpts:

“Dubbed the Burned-Over District, the region was the perfect incubator for Mormon founder Joseph Smith, a well-known clairvoyant before his famous visions. His family owned magical charms, divining rods, amulets and other esoterica. “

Next …

“Plus, a lot of mystical subcultures have gone mainstream and have been Christianized. Mr. Horowitz did a brilliant job of tracking down how positive thinker Norman Vincent Peale borrowed his core self-help philosophy from a religious movement called New Thought.

“I listen to [megachurch preacher] Joel Osteen frequently on Sunday mornings,” the author said, “and he’s giving sermons that are discourses in positive thinking. He’s standing on the shoulders of an occult tradition.””

Further proof that no nation, America included, can be a “Christian nation” for “founded on Christianity” or “founded on Christian principles.” The road to destruction is easy and wide and has many entry points, but the road to heaven is narrow and rough and can only be entered by the cross of Jesus Christ!

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A Question For Premillennial Dispensational Rapture Believers Focused On Israel: How Long Is A Generation?

Posted by Job on September 25, 2009

For those who believe in the rapture and also believe that the modern state of Israel is the fulfillment of Bible prophecy and a sign that the end of the church age is at hand and the great tribulation draws nigh, I must ask you: how long is a generation? This is relevant because premillennial dispensationalists have seized upon the “this generation shall not pass until all these things are fulfilled” statements of the Olivet discourse endtimes prophecy of Jesus Christ (Matthew 24:34, Mark 13:30, Luke 21:32) to assert that the the great tribulation will start within a generation of 1948 when Israel became a nation again.

Now first, this poses a problem. Finding a Bible prophecy that would support the idea that Israel would re-established as a nation in the year 1948 is difficult to support. I will say categorically that no such prophecy exists in the New Testament, and it takes very creative interpretations to support the existence of such prophecies in the Old Testament. Further, the fact of Israel’s being established as a nation in 1948 is not something that was declared or revealed by God through a Christian prophet or by an angel delivering a message to a Christian. So, the basis of Israel’s existence as a nation does not come from any divine authority, not the Bible or any prophetic utterance!

Now this has nothing to do with the debate on whether Israel has the right to exist. Instead, it has everything to do with the beginning of the prophetic calendar with respect to this nation. If the great tribulation must happen within a generation of Israel’s being established as a nation, on whose authority did this event happen in 1948? Why, not God’s authority, BUT BY THE AUTHORITY OF THE UNITED NATIONS! Indeed, by man’s authority. Where it was AN ACT OF GOD that declared Israel’s status as a nation at the time of the Exodus, it was AN ACT OF MAN THAT AS FAR AS WE KNOW HAS NEVER BEEN CONFIRMED BY GOD TO THE CHURCH that declared Israel to be a nation in 1948. And it is the height of irony that many of the very same people who consider the United Nations to be a tool of the coming anti-Christ (but not America, even though America is a charter member, a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council, and the U.N. headquarters is in America, and America is the #1 source of funds for this body, no America is “a Christian nation” with Christian – actually most freemason, deist, unitarian, and enlightenment rationalist – founding fathers!) accept the UN’s testimony that Israel is again a nation rather than God’s, and start their prophetic clock based on Israel’s the date of recognition by the same anti-Christ UN!

But alas, that is another issue altogether. But let us take for granted that the U.N. was acting on God’s behalf and doing God’s will, and that their recognition of Israel in 1948 happened according to God’s providence. (I readily admit that there is much precedent for such a thing happening all over the Bible. The key difference: those things were declared as such by prophets and were able to be verified as fulfilled prophecies. For instance, the prophets gave the exact time that the Jews would remain in Babylon AND the name of the king who would free them. It is because of the precise and literal nature of these fulfillments that God-hating atheists claim that said prophecies were written after the fact.) If that is so, when does the generation time clock expire? How long is a generation?

Now this issue has gotten some premillennial dispenationals into trouble. First premillennial dispensationals went by the modern western idea of a generation – 20 years – and stated that the great tribulation would begin by 1968. After it did not, it was revised to the older and better – but still worldly and western – idea of a generation, which was 40 years. So, it was stated that the great tribulation would start in 1988.  An example of this trouble:

“Only if the Bible is in error am I wrong, and I say that unequivocally.  There is no way Biblically that I can be wrong; and I say that to every preacher in town. ( Edgar Whisenant, 88 Reasons Why the Rapture is in 1988).”

But even calling a generation 40 years is wrong, because it is not the Biblical definition. So the question must be asked: what is the Biblical definition of a generation? The answer: there isn’t one. At least, not one that can be described in a hard fast set number of years. Example: consider the time that Israel spent in Egypt, a period of about 400-440 years. According to Genesis 15:15-17, that was four generations! Genesis 15:16 in particular: “But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full.” So in this instance, a generation would have had to have been at least 100 years, possibly longer.

So does that settle it? Well, no. The Bible also speaks of the time spent by Israel wandering in the desert as a generation See Numbers 32:13 and more specifically see Psalm 95:8-11 “Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my work. Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known my ways: Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest.”

So obviously a Biblical generation does not refer to any fixed period of time. Some Bible scholars have tried to resolve this by claiming that a generation refers to everyone living during a period of time. When the last person who was alive during that period dies, then the generation ends! Well, Bible examples make that problematic. For one, when the Israeli exodus generation passed, Joshua and Caleb were still alive. Further, to use the preterist/amillennialist view, there were most certainly still Christians alive after the generation or age of which Jesus Christ was addressing in the Olivet Discourse ended in 70 A.D., as they included none other than the apostle John! In addition to John, it is well known that the many Jewish Christians did not die during the Roman siege of Jerusalem, but remembered the warnings of Matthew 24-25 and similar, obeyed Jesus Christ and fled, many of them taking the gospel with them. We know this because the refusal of Jewish Christians to die defending Jerusalem (and yes, the fact that the Jewish Christians were told to leave Jerusalem and obeyed doing so should give modern dispensationals who put so much modern emphasis on that city some pause!) was one of the primary reasons why Jewish Christians were made the scapegoat for the destruction of the nation, expelled from the synagogues, and ostracized by the Jewish people a few decades later.

Now there are some who refer to a generation as an age, specifically an age in salvation-redemptive history. That is consistent with the idea that the sojourn in the desert constituted a spiritual age, as did the end of the Jewish age with the destruction of the second temple in 70 A.D. Regarding the latter, the church age had not yet started when Jesus Christ spoke for He had not yet gone to the cross, resurrected, ascended, and sent the Holy Spirit. However, that still leaves the problem of the four generations in Egypt! Had it been referred to by scripture as a single generation, it would have been easy to harmonize that reference with the generation in the desert and the generation of the time of Jesus Christ’s first advent as major periods in salvation history. However, it does not, so we cannot.

Thus, the conclusion must be reached is that there is no way to know how long a true generation is, that is one that fits Biblical and prophetic purposes. For that reason, we should respect Matthew 24:36, Matthew 25:13, Mark 13:32, and perhaps best Acts 1:7, which reads “And he [Jesus Christ] said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.” Thus, even if the creation of Israel in 1948 was the beginning of the generation that will include the great tribulation, none of us has any idea how long that generation shall be. Instead, only the Ancient of Days, God the Father Himself, knows! So, it is best for Christians to be content with the duty of comfort ourselves with and sharing with others the gospel of Jesus Christ! Repent sinners for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!

The Three Step Salvation Plan

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A Question For Premillennial Dispensational Rapture Believers: Explain The Fifth Seal In Revelation!

Posted by Job on September 25, 2009

Revelation 6:9-11 reads

And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled.

The Word of God for the elect people of God. Glory be to God.

For my premillennial dispensational brethren who believe in a pretribulation (or prewrath) rapture that spares the church from the time of sorrow, please explain this text. Who are those slain for the Word of God? Are they Christians? And when will these Christians be slain for their testimony? Does it refer to those believers slain in times past, whether in the Old Testament or at the time that Revelation was written? Or does it refer to believers slain during the great tribulation? (If so, how can any Christian stand under persecution, even martyrdom, without being emboldened by the Holy Spirit, which according to premillennial dispensational doctrine has to be taken from the earth along with the church? Please recall the difference between Peter and the apostles before the Comforter – cowering and fearful and running from their lives – and afterwards – bold and brave witnesses even unto death. As a matter of fact Peter himself went from being the worst – the one who denied Christ three times – to being the boldest. And how can anyone even be saved during the great tribulation without the work of the Holy Spirit? Recall: the Holy Spirit was indeed present during the time of the Old Testament saints. Indeed, the Bible states that the earth’s very existence cannot so much as even be sustained without the Spirit of God.) Or does it refer to believers slain during all ages, from the first (Abel) until the last before the return of Jesus Christ?

To interpret this passage with scripture, let us go to another one in Revelation that touches the martyrdom of the saints, which is Revelation 18:24. Please recall that this chapter refers to the fall of Babylon,  which since the Tower of Babel incident and particularly since the destruction of the temple in 586 has been used to symbolize people and systems that rebel against and oppose God and persecute His elect covenant people, and that Revelation extends this symbolism with personification, describing all that opposes God as a harlot (prostitute), which in this verse is called “her”:  And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth. Now as much as I love my King James Version, allow me to quibble with their translation of “kai” to “and” in the phrase “and of all that were slain upon the earth.” Many times, “kai” is just used for emphasis, as an amplifier of degree or a focus of attention. This text should probably read:

“And in her [Babylon] was found the blood of prophets and of saints, indeed all [prophets and saints] that were slain upon the earth.”

However, if you go with the King James Version, which granted carries much more weight and authority than my own, and all which follow its tradition on that text, then “and of all that were slain upon the earth” simply means that in Babylon was the blood of every person that has been murdered, all innocent blood that has been shed. This means that the prior clause “And in her was found the blood of prophets and of saints” means that “the prophets and saints” (a  New Testament idiom which refers to old covenant and new covenant believers) which means that the blood of Stephen and all other Christian martyrs ever since is contained in Babylon. So with reference to the elect the meaning is the same: the blood of everyone killed because of their faith in God is in Babylon.

So, if we interpret Revelation 6:9-11 with Revelation 18:24, when the fifth seal was opened the martyred souls viewed under the altar should very likely be interpreted to include every Christian martyr since Stephen. This would support the idea of a church that has always been under continuous tribulation. Such an interpretation would be consistent with, indeed fulfill the words of Jesus Christ in John 15:18-20.

If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me.

The Word of God for the people of God. Glory be to God.

Now one can hardly claim that those words were only aimed at the apostles. Those words are for all Christians for all time. So what basis is there for believing that there will be a rapture to save the church from a persecution that A) Jesus Christ said that we would face and B) Jesus Christ sent the Holy Spirit to empower us to withstand? Now this is not an endorsement of the historicist, preterist or amillennial position that there will be no seven year literal great tribulation. Instead, it is to say that if there will be such a seven year literal great tribulation, the church will be present for it just as it has been present for all other tribulations, the “lesser” tribulations.

Now the prewrath (and mid-wrath) rapture adherent does have Revelation 3:10, which reads “Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth”, in his favor. However, that could be fulfilled in a number of ways, including 1) a place of refuge (which ironically rapture believers commonly propose will exist for those who will saved during the great tribulation … again these people will have to be saved despite the absence of a church to preach the gospel or a Holy Spirit to perform regeneration) or 2) death. Do not let the “death” option astonish you, but instead study the scriptures, especially the Old Testament but also in the New Testament. It is a consistent theme that death is a way of being preserved, saved, spared from times of great evil … to be absent from the troubles of this world and present with God! Perhaps the best example of this is the death of Abijah, son of the wicked king Jeroboam, who died according to God’s will so that he would not be corrupted by Jeroboam and also not share in their judgment in 1 Kings 14. A New Testament example: at the time that he wrote Philippians 1:20-26, Paul viewed death as being removed from the extremely trying circumstances that he was living and exchanging it for a better fate. In that passage Paul stated “to die is gain”, but it appears that the rapture adherents have transformed it into “to be raptured is gain.”

So, the idea that there must be a rapture in order for Christians to be spared martyrdom seems to be inconsistent with Biblical revelation. It is also an idea that only makes sense for Christians living in the west. Practically everywhere else in the world, Christians face persecution: marginalization, poverty, disease, imprisonment, death. There are two doctrinal systems that have the effect of promoting the idea western Christians should have no part in what Christians in Indonesia, China, Iran, Palestine (and Israel!), India and Mexico (where Roman Catholic/pagan syncretists are persecuting Protestants) by simple right of geography of birth: pretribulation rapture and covenant theology. Pretribulation rapture teaches that Christians not currently under persecution now will never have to face it, because persecution will only come to “the good parts of the world” (i.e. “Christian nations” or “western nations” or “non-socialist nations” … you know, what Glenn Beck was referring to) when the anti-Christ (which 8% of New Jersey residents regard Obama to be) takes over it.

Now ask yourselves … why is it that Christians can be persecuted in some places (including Israel … and read this too!) now without the anti-Christ, but it requires the anti-Christ to happen in others (especially America)? Or that the saints in other places (and times, including in the west … remember the 30 Years War and the Anabaptists?) are not spared persecution, but only the modern American saints are? Only the idea that contemporary western (especially American and possibly British!) Christians are somehow better than Christians living in other times and places, and this fact would be due to America having some special status before God as a unique elect covenant nation, giving us special status within the Body of Christ. Of course, the Bible makes it clear in the Roman and Corinthian epistles that there is no special group or people with a special status, special favor, or special standing before God in the Body of Christ, but instead that we are one Body. Further, the Bible makes it clear that those who are accounted greater according to rank or authority (not standing or value) demonstrate this through being servant roles that cause us to A) serve those who are of lesser rank and authority and B) endure even greater persecution than those who are of lesser rank and authority. So, even if America did have some special standing before God, instead of our being wealthy decadent privileged Laodiceans, we would be poor, oppressed and serving everybody else! If you deny this, read the Beatitudes of Jesus Christ!

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (Keep in mind, the version in Luke reads “Blessed are the POOR!”)
Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

The Word of God for the people of God. Glory be to God.

Now earlier I mentioned the covenant theologians, from whom the modern concept of the “Christian nation” originated. Covenant theologians believe – or at least believed – that people in “Christian nations” would or should be spared persecution only because in a church-state Christians would control the government, economy, military, police, and religion in a theocracy after the manner of Old Testament Israel. That is why such extreme theonomists and reconstructionists as Gary North and Rousas John (R. J.) Rushdoony deny that the Beatitudes and the Sermon on the Mount apply to Christians, instead stating that it only applied to Jews living in that time. (Curiously, hyperdispensationalists believe the same.) While I believe the covenant theology position to be in error, this statement is aimed primarily at premillennnial dispensationalists.

So if America were this special, Christian nation, it would be marked by our poverty and service, not by our decadent delusions of religious nobility which makes us believe that we are somehow exempt from the sufferings of Christians living in Belarus or Namibia, or for that matter the Christians of the early church. After all, when Paul wrote his statement insisting that those in the Body of Christ were equals, the statements were direct AGAINST two groups of people: the Jewish Christians in the Roman church and the wealthy Christians in the Corinthian church. The Jewish Christians regarded themselves to be superior to the Gentile Christians because of nationality, and the wealthy Corinthian Christians regarded themselves as superior to the poorer believers because of their riches. The Holy Spirit inspired Paul to tell both groups that they were wrong. So, then, how can we justify believing that a rapture will come and rescue us from the type of persecutions and deaths at the hands of Muslims that are going on all over the Middle East, Asia and Africa right now, such as the two million Christians that were killed in Sudan, many of whom were tortured, raped, doused with gasoline and set on fire, had their limbs chopped off, or were sold as slaves because they refused to renounce Christianity?

Ironically, the world, including the media, the activists, and the government of our own “Christian nation”, did their level best to ignore this genocide, choosing instead to focus on Muslims murdering other Muslims in Darfur. And let us not forget that the term for which the word genocide was originally invented and applied to, that of the Armenians by the Turks, is still not recognized as such by the U.N. or by the government of our “Christian nation.” It is still more ironic when you consider that the Armenian genocide happened in the same general area that the letters in Revelation were sent, in the Turkey region. That persecution kicked off what was the bloodiest period of Christian persecution in history, the 20th century, that saw 45.5 million Christians killed!

So if there were any geographical or political entity within the Body of Christ that had special status, it would be those Christians because of their poverty and persecution who would come first, not us . It is those to whom the Beatitudes of Jesus Christ were addressed, and premillennial dispensationalism completely rejects that truth for the belief that the rapture will save Christians not yet under persecution from ever having to experience it because the saints who have it easier are the ones who fulfill Revelation 3:10! Never mind that the rich church that was not facing persecution was Laodicea, and the church that Revelation 3:10 was addressed to was Philadelphia. Why was the promise of Revelation 3:10 given to the Philadelphians? It is in Revelation 3:8, which reads “I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.” The Philadelphia Christians were being persecuted, and similar to the Sudanese Christians, they refused to yield to the persecution by denying Jesus Christ. In other words, they refused to do the same as the apostle Peter did THREE TIMES before he was empowered by the Holy Spirit, yet dispensationalism teaches that this Holy Spirit will be taken away, and those converted during the great tribulation will have to face the greatest time of sorrows ever without it, and will yet somehow stand? How? Why? Because of their free will? Or because of their inherently good human nature untainted by original sin? Followers of Reformed/Calvinist believers in the rapture like John MacArthur and Albert Pendarvis (the latter’s bookstore sells the Scofield Reference Bible) have to answer these questions! In any event, those who claim that Revelation 3:10 refers to Christians being raptured to escape persecution have to deal with the fact that the text was in reference to a Philadelphia church that was enduring it!

Make no mistake. I believe in a bodily literal return of Jesus Christ which I believe will occur after a literal great tribulation which will include a literal and personal anti-Christ. However, I also believe that the church will endure this tribulation, and that we need to be preparing ourselves and those who will follow us in the faith for it in a manner that is consistent with scripture as opposed to believing that we – or our WESTERN descendants – will have an experience of escaping it that will be unique to Christians living in other times and places. At the very least, someone must explain why western Christians alone should enjoy this pleasure!

The Three Step Salvation Plan

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Ravi Zacharias and Jack Hayford Joined Noted Pulpit Pimps John Hagee, TD Jakes And Joyce Meyer To Pull Off Pray For Peace Of Jerusalem Event!

Posted by Job on October 6, 2008

Two cannot walk together unless they be agreed.

Major Global Prayer Initiative for Jerusalem Peace Begins

Millions of Christians from around the world are expected to take part in the Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem on Sunday. The annual event, observed each year on the first Sunday of October, boasts support from many prominent Christian leaders including T.D. Jakes, Jack Hayford, John Hagee, Sunday Adeleja, Ravi Zacharias, Michael W. Smith, and Joyce Meyer.

These leaders and thousands of others have signed a document calling for global prayer for Jerusalem and all its inhabitants. “As Christians and believers in the Word of God, we have a responsibility to pray for the peace of Jerusalem,” wrote Joyce Meyer of Joyce Meyer Ministries. (As Christians, you are also supposed to discern who you pray WITH.)

“America and Israel have been friends and allies for many years now and today we must continue to stand in support of Israel,” she added. “As the body of Christ we must ask God to bring them not only peace in the natural, but also peace spiritually through relationship with Jesus Christ.” (So Joyce Meyer is now among those claiming that our temporal political alliances are spiritual aims of the eternal kingdom of heaven. In other words, typical religious right ideas that are quite frankly not much different from the left wing flavor of amillennialism, the social gospel.)

The prayer initiative takes its calling from Psalm 122:6. which states: “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: ‘May they prosper who love you.’” (So are we to fulfil that scripture by praying with occultists, Satanists, Hindus, and Buddhists? Or only with other Christians? And are we to make a big political and media spectacle of obeying scripture? Or did not Jesus Christ say that such smacked of Phariseeism?)

Besides the event in Jerusalem and in local churches worldwide, the DPPJ will also feature a 24-hour global prayer conference on Sunday. Last year, more than 700 people dialed-in from 14 nations to the prayer line to unite in intercession for Israel.

“To pray for the peace of Jerusalem is to pray, ‘Lord, let your Kingdom come and Your will be done on earth, not only in the ultimate revelation of His King coming from Heaven, but in the present revelation of God’s peace as it comes into our hearts in a troubled world, to bring to the heartbeat center of the world, something of a peace that alleviates the tensions, the hatred, the bombings, the torments,” wrote Dr. Jack Hayford, co-chairman of the Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem.

This year, more than 200,000 churches in 175 nations will participate in the largest Israel-focused prayer event in history, according to the DPPJ Web site. The Jerusalem Celebration will be broadcasted live across 192 nations through GOD TV. (Please note: GOD TV was the Todd Bentley promotion central channel)

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The Bailout Passed! The United States of America Is Officially Dead

Posted by Job on October 3, 2008

Well, the United States is gone. Teddy Roosevelt got the ball rolling, and George H. W. Bush finished it off. And did you see where California needs a $7 billion bailout? Amazing. This is just further proof that we cannot put our trust in the things of this world, but can only trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. Incidentally, the flag waving religious right, what are you going to put your trust in now?

Revamped economic bailout picks up 20 votes in House

The Three Step Salvation Plan

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The Idolatry of America: Is Patriotism The Evangelical’s Mystery Babylon?

Posted by Job on May 7, 2008

Frightening stuff! Link To The Idolatry of America Article

Some things: pictures of Jesus Christ on the cross WITH GEORGE BUSH’S NAME ON THE NAILS! And this passage exposing Bush’s blasphemy:

Consider Bush’s speech at Ellis Island on the first anniversary of the September 11 attacks. In his remarks, the president described the United States as the “hope of all mankind” and asserted that this “hope still lights our way. And the light shines in the darkness. And the darkness will not overcome it.” Marsh bristles at this passage, which alludes to the prologue to the Gospel of John but modifies its message in a crucially important respect. Whereas the New Testament describes God as the light that will not be overcome by the darkness that surrounds it, Bush ascribed divine agency to America. For Marsh, this substitution is unforgivable–nothing less than the idolatrous “identification of the United States with Christian revelation.”

And how “Christian values” led to the Holocaust:

The most intellectually stimulating pages of Marsh’s book concern the theological antecedents of this troubling transformation. Relying heavily on Karl Barth’s classic workProtestant Theology in the Nineteenth Century, Marsh tells the story of how German Protestant theologians responded to the skepticism of the eighteenth-century Enlightenment by jettisoning much of Christian orthodoxy and refashioning a rump Christianity in which faith was based on subjective feeling instead of the objective truth of revelation and religious worship was defended in terms of its social utility. Before long, this “liberal” theology was all the rage, teaching modern men and women that they could continue to enjoy the psychological comfort of religion while embracing scientific discoveries that seemed to undermine the authority of the Bible, and that it was unnecessary for them to choose between political freedom and the political establishment of religion. In Europe the churches became, in effect, ministries for moral edification, administered and regulated by the state for the sake of inculcating virtues that contributed to the well-being of the nation. Marsh delights in the irony that, despite their boundless contempt for “liberalism” in all its forms, right-wing American evangelicals think about God in a way that marks them, in the decisive sense, as liberal Protestants. As Marsh mischievously puts it, “It strikes me as a noteworthy turn of events that our patriot preachers and court prophets remain our most zealous proponents of the liberal theological tradition.” Just as nineteenth-century German theologians tailored God to fit the psychological needs of the rising bourgeoisie and the political needs of the Rechtsstaat, so twenty-first-century American evangelicals take their theological cues not from the Bible or the Church Fathers but from Karl Rove and Michael Gerson.

Genuine Christian faith, by contrast, begins and ends with Jesus Christ, who “comes to us from a country far from our own.” In order to adopt the otherworldly standpoint of Christ, believers must lay their “values, traditions, and habits at the foot of the cross.” The Christian then begins his life anew as a citizen, first and foremost, of the city of God, with his “unholy nature … infused with God’s holiness.” From the perspective of this genuine follower of Christ, the profane faith of American evangelicals, which worships American power in the name of God, fails to confess “Christ as Lord” and ends up “incarcerating Christ in our own ideological gulags.”

Not a fan of Karl Barth, whose theology I find to be unorthodox and I regret far too influential on evangelicals, but check this out:

Which is not to say that Marsh adopts an explicitly anti-political position. Rather, he champions those who, in his judgment, bring the stringent moral teachings of Christ most fully to bear on political life. Once again Barth serves as an admirable example. Although Barth’s early formulation of neo- orthodoxy, in his various editions of the Letter to the Romans, appeared to counsel an abandonment of politics altogether, the triumph of National Socialism in Germany, and even more the collusion of the Protestant churches in Hitler’s rise to power, led him to reconsider his position. Less than a year after the Nazis seized control of the German state, Barth took a courageous stand in writing and disseminating the Barmen Declaration, which firmly rejected the Nazification of German Christianity, and in helping to organize the Confessing Church, which went on to play an important role in resisting Hitler. As punishment for his political activities–including his refusal to swear an oath of loyalty to Hitler–Barth was first forced to resign his professorship at the University of Bonn and then was expelled from Germany.

How interesting that one of the issues that George H. W. Bush used to defeat Michael Dukakis was Dukakis’ refusal to sign a bill THAT WOULD HAVE FORCED PUBLIC SCHOOL CHILDREN TO PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE TO THE AMERICAN FLAG!

Even more dramatic is the example of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the German pastor and theologian who organized and led the Confessing Church, joined the resistance movement against the Nazis, and even participated in a failed plot to assassinate Hitler–an act for which he was sent to a series of concentration camps and eventually executed by hanging in April 1945. Marsh discusses Bonhoeffer in the first paragraph of his book, and returns to him again and again in later chapters. In starkest contrast to the obsequiousness of American evangelicals, who eagerly prostrate themselves before political power, Bonhoeffer risked and ultimately gave his life rather than bow down before evil. Here, Marsh means us to conclude, is an example of authentic. Christian piety in action.”

Again, not a fan of Bonhoeffer, but still, so many evangelicals, to borrow from 1 Timothy 6, take godliness for gain, a prosperity doctrine of money and POWER. Scripture calls such people perverse rebellious reprobates. 

And how about the many millions of evangelicals who voted for Bush in 2004–are they the moral equivalent of the “German Christians” who added a swastika to the cross, incorporated Nazi racism into Christian theology, and sought to form a unified German Protestant “Reich Church” under the leadership of the Fuhrer? The author of this piece says no, the Bible says YES. Ever hear of the anti – Christ, people?

Consider Marsh’s treatment of Daniel Coats, the former American ambassador to Germany. In the months prior to the invasion of Iraq, Coats was invited by the Lutheran bishop of Berlin-Brandenburg to read the Sermon on the Mount–including its admonition to “bless those who curse you and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you”–at a commemorative service for (you guessed it) Bonhoeffer. Coats, an evangelical Protestant, turned down the invitation, according to Marsh, “out of respect for the evangelical president’s mission in Iraq.” Once again, an American Christian had placed his devotion to Bush ahead of his devotion to Christ. Or so it seems to Marsh, who tells us precisely how Coats should have responded to the invitation: “How I wish he had exclaimed, ‘Of course, I will read from the Sermon on the Mount. I have no other choice. The refusal to read would amount to a renunciation of my faith, and I can never allow my service to the nation to compromise my loyalty to Jesus Christ.'”  

Yeah, you got a problem with that? See, this article ultimately dislikes Marsh and his thesis. Which shows that even in the case of people that are too liberal for my liking such as Marsh, the world hates Jesus Christ and will always rejects someone who tries their best to forsake all and faithfully love and live for Him. In reviewing a book that criticizes conservative Christians for compromising their beliefs in the pursuit of worldly conservatism, Linker is moved to offense because Marsh leaves no room for Christians to compromise for LIBERALISM. Linker is fine with Marsh stating that evangelicals should have never made support for George W. Bush a part of their religious faith, but he opposes the notion that Jesus Christ cannot be profaned in order to make the case to support Barack Hussein Obama. Linker is fine with saying no to James Dobson and Pat Robertson and attributing it to Jesus Christ, but he wants to reserve the right for Michael Spong, Katharine Jefferts Schori, and Jeremiah Wright to co – opt him. This shows, Christians, why we cannot go aside to the left or to the right, for the way is narrow and the gate is strait!

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Is God Cursing The US Economy As Judgment On America’s Wickedness?

Posted by Job on May 4, 2008

My note regarding Bill Keller’s devotional below: There was a time when I would have replied “YES!” But if this is the case then was the Great Depression the judgment of God? If so, for what sin on this nation’s part? Did Haiti, Africa, eastern Europe, etc. anger God? If so, how? And then you have the fact that communist China is having an economic boom. The socialist EU is lifting eastern Europe out of poverty. Venezuela, Russia, and several Middle Eastern nations are experiencing great prosperity by virtue of the $120 a barrel oil prices. Does communism, socialism, Islam, and the persecution of Christians that goes on in many of these nations please God, and are they receiving God’s blessings based on it? That is why we Christians have to be very careful when dealing with these types of things. The irony is that Keller himself has presented that message in the past when he stated that he doubted that Hurricane Katrina was God’s judgment against the city of New Orleans.

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How God could use the economy as an instrument of His judgment on the United
States.  God’s judgment can come in many forms.  Most people think of God’s
judgment as what we read about in the Book of Revelation when His wrath is
poured out on the world in the final days through devastating natural
disasters that will affect huge percentages of the world’s population.  We
also think of how God judged the children of Israel in the Old Testament
when He allowed their enemies to take their land and enslave them.

However today, I want to take a look at another form of God’s judgment that
is also in the Bible, but one that most people never really think about, and
that is the economy.  I personally feel that using the economy is not only
the most likely form of God’s judgment on this nation, but would be easily
the most devastating since it will affect the lives of each person in some
way.

The first issue to discuss is why would we even be talking about God’s
judgment on the United States?  My friend, you don’t need to be much of a
Bible scholar to know that this nation is not only due God’s judgment, it is
OVERDUE God’s judgment.  In the Book of Deuteronomy the Bible warns,” If you
ever forget the LORD your God and follow other gods and worship and bow down
to them, I testify against you today that you will surely be destroyed.”

As I have told you many times, the promises in God’s Word are true but so
are the warnings.  This nation was founded on the Word of God and the hope
of Jesus Christ.  God blessed this nation abundantly, but over the past 232
years we have squandered those blessings and now live in complete rebellion
to God and His Word.  Just the fact we have abandoned God and have turned to
the false gods and idols of this world, is enough for God to pronounce His
judgment on this nation!

Sadly, in addition to worshipping the false gods of the world, we are living
in utter rebellion to the Truth of God’s Word.  Sexual sin is rampant.  Men
treat other men in the most inhumane ways imaginable.  People worldwide turn
to drugs and alcohol for strength.  Human life that can only come from God
is no longer respected or valued.  The greatest example of that is the fact
that we legally slaughter over 4,000 innocent babies in this nation every 24
hours.  That fact alone demands God’s judgment on our nation!

As you read through the Old Testament, we see the children of Israel turn
from God to the false gods of the world.  We see them living in rebellion to
God in every way imaginable.  At some point, God says enough is enough and
pours out His wrath and judgment on Israel.  That judgment came in many
forms, but usually it was allowing the enemies of Israel to take their land
and the children of Israel into captivity.  Sadly, it was only AFTER the
judgment of God fell that the people would repent and turn back to the God
of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

PLEASE HEAR ME CLEARLY.  IF GOD SPARED NOT HIS CHOSEN PEOPLE FROM HIS
JUDGMENT, WHY WOULD ANYONE EXPECT THAT HE WILL SPARE THIS WICKED AND
APOSTATE NATION HIS JUDGMENT???

My personal belief is that God’s judgment on this nation will come through
the economy.  I remember distinctly back in he mid 80s when I was running
from God and very heavily involved in trading some stocks, but mostly
commodities and futures, how precarious the whole economic system really
was.  Now you have to remember, this was back in the mid 80s when the United
States was clearly the dominate economic power in the world and the US
dollar was the gold standard all currency was judged by.

Fast forward just 20 years later and the world’s economic landscape has
dramatically changed.  China is clearly the dominate financial power today,
the booming economies of the UK, Japan, and the United States have been
replaced by India and many Middle Eastern nations, and the floundering US
dollar is no longer the monetary standard the world looks to.  The weak
dollar, sagging US economy, and what is now clearly a global economy in
2008, has all made the possibility of God using the economy to judge this
nation even more likely.

This is not complicated to understand.  I know economics can be
intimidating, but this is actually very simple.  Anyone who drives
understands the pressure of gas at nearly $4 a gallon.  With China, India,
and other nations using so much of the world’s energy resources, it wouldn’t
be a stretch to see gas at $10 a gallon.  With the population of the world
growing at the current rate, most people have no idea how precarious the
food supply is becoming.  We walk through our grocery stores with shelves
stocked full of food, but it wouldn’t take much for you to see many of those
shelves empty.

The US financial markets have always been more tenuous than most people
understand.  For the most part, they are one big ponzi scheme, lots of hype
with very little of substance to back-up any of the numbers you see.  We
have already seen the effects of this with the Internet bubble bursting in
2000, the failure of Enron and WorldCom, and the current nightmare the
housing market is going through.  If foreign money ever pulled out of the US
markets, it would cause stocks to tank, sending a ripple effect that would
be felt thought the brokerage and banking industries as hundreds of
trillions of dollars could be wiped out in days.

The point I am trying to make today is that it would not take much, a few
tweaks here and there for our economy to unwind and this nation to
experience a time far worse than even the great depression of the 1920s.
God would not have to do much to use the economy as a form of His judgment
on this nation and it would affect every man, woman, and child alive.  Most
people would be reduced to living like some people in other parts of the
world, simply living from day to day trying to acquire the basic needs of
life to survive.

I love you and care about you so much.  I am not trying to scare you today,
but to prepare you.  Prepare you that life as we know it at this moment
could change very easily and very suddenly.  Now is the time to get serious
about your faith and become bold in sharing that faith with others.  I know
God’s judgment is coming, I know we are living in the last days, and I know
Jesus is coming at any moment.  That is why I have worked so tirelessly,
especially these past 9 years since Liveprayer began, since I know that God
has raised up this ministry for this moment in human history.

A great revival is about to be unleashed on this nation and the world.  It
won’t be a revival of people chasing miracles, but a revival of souls as the
lost come to repentance and turn to Jesus.  They won’t need signs and
wonders to excite them, they will already be moved as they see the world
around them crumbling and realize that they need something bigger than
themselves to hold on to.  There will always be those with the hard hearts
who will curse God with their last breath, but hundreds of millions of souls
will bow their knee and confess Christ as their Lord and Savior by faith!

Never fear.  If you are child of God, no matter what form God’s wrath and
judgment on this nation takes, we have nothing to worry about since our
citizenship is not of this world.  We have a Heavenly home awaiting us.  Our
only job during these few years is to do all we can to bring as many people
to Heaven with us.  This is the time, now is the moment, our opportunity to
make our lives count for Christ is at hand.  May we be found faithful as we
take our stand for Him in these last days.

Also, I know from our daily emails for prayer that many people have already
been feeling the effects from the economic slowdown we are experiencing.
Many have been hurt by the problems in the housing sector.  Many hurt by the
increased cost of gasoline.  Many simply struggling to meet their monthly
needs.  Please know that I will be praying for you today and for the Lord to
not only meet your every need, but bless your finances and give you FAVOR as
you are faithful and obedient in that area of your life.  Amen!

In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,
Bill Keller bkeller@liveprayer.com

***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 or 1-845-510-2722.

(C) Copyright 2008, Bill Keller Ministries. All rights reserved.

Posted in abomination, abortion, abortion rights, Christianity, devotional, gay rights, homophobia, homosexuality | Tagged: , , | 7 Comments »

AMERICANS’ TRUE RELIGION: SECULAR HUMANISM

Posted by Job on November 6, 2007

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By Dennis L. Cuddy, Ph.D.
November 5, 2007
NewsWithViews.com

(Note: On October 23, 2007, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1955, titled “The Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007.” Section 899A of the bill defines “violent radicalization” as “the process of adopting or promoting an extremist belief system for the purpose of facilitating ideologically based violence to advance political, religious, or social change.” Nowhere in the legislation is “extremist” or “violence” defined, so you can imagine how the government could even use this bill to imprison people like the founders of this nation! Also, overnight between this past Saturday and Sunday, Pakistan’s President Pervez Musharraf declared what amounts to martial law. Look at my previous articles regarding the importance of Pakistan.)

You hear many people today saying what a mess this country is in. That’s because while surveys show most Americans claim to believe in Biblical religion, in practice, a growing number of younger people are really secular humanists. Why?

While young people’s values are shaped by the media, music, etc., the only thing they are required to do is go to school. And most of them attend public schools, where secular humanism exclusively has been “preached” for decades. How did this come about?

For the last two centuries, there has been in the U.S. a battle between the Biblically-based values of the American Revolution and the secular humanists’ values of the French Revolution, which emphasized Adam Weishaupt’s Illuminati philosophy of “do what thou wilt.” One of the leading proponents of the French Revolution was the Marquis de Lafayette, who brought Madame Francoise d’Arusmont (Fannie) Wright to the U.S. in the early 1800s. Here, she joined with Socialists Robert Dale Owen and Orestes Brownson secretly to take over America. According to Brownson, who later converted to Christianity, they wanted to establish a “national, rational, republican education, free for all at the expense of all, conducted under the guardianship of the State” with the purpose of separating children from what they considered the “negative influence” of parents. In terms of values instruction, they wanted to impart to the students values different from those of their parents, and this would come to be known as secular (not God-centered) humanistic education which emphasizes naturalistic evolution as well as moral relativism and situation ethics via values clarification techniques.

A few years after the plan of Owen, Wright and Brownson was begun, Karl Marx in 1844 authored ECONOMIC AND PHILOSOPHIC MANUSCRIPTS, which stated: “Communism begins from the outset with atheism. . . . Communism, as fully developed naturalism, equals humanism” (see Naturalism chart). The next decade, Auguste Comte in 1851 began to author a series of volumes on his SYSTEM OF POSITIVE POLITY, with a “positivist” philosophy in which man, not God, would decide for himself what’s right or wrong.

During the last half of the 19th century and into the 20th century, this philosophy became dominant among American intellectuals, including educators and jurists. As these individuals in the 20th century gained control of American higher education and the federal courts, the philosophy began to spread, even to public elementary and secondary schools.

In 1930, Charles Francis Potter authored HUMANISM, A NEW RELIGION, in which he boasted: “Education is thus a most powerful ally of humanism and every American public school is a school of humanism. What can the theistic Sunday schools meeting for an hour once a week and teaching only a fraction of the children, do to stem the tide of a five-day program of humanistic teaching?”

Three years later, Potter signed the first HUMANIST MANIFESTO (1933) as did John Dewey, the “Father of Progressive Education.” The MANIFESTO’s first affirmation stated: “Religious humanists regard the universe as self-existing and not created.” Secondly, it affirmed that man is a product of naturalistic evolution. Humanist Sir Julian Huxley, UNESCO’s first director-general, would later explain that humanism’s “keynote, the central concept to which all its details are related, is evolution.”

In 1954, former president of the American Humanist Association Lloyd Morain, and his wife Mary (a director of the International Humanist and Ethical Union, which has 4 million members), authored HUMANISM AS THE NEXT STEP, which declared that “Humanism is the most rapidly growing religious movement in America today.” With all of these references to humanism as a “religion,” it was no surprise when the U.S. Supreme Court in Torcaso v. Watkins (June 19, 1961) listed “secular humanism” as a non-theistic religion.

One would think that with the Supreme Court’s “separation of church and state” rulings in the early 1960s banning school prayer and Bible reading, secular humanism would also be banned from public schools. This, though, was not the case. When a case eventually was brought before federal district Judge Brevard Hand, he sided with parents in their desire to ban this “religion” from public schools (see “Judge Bans Humanist Textbooks,” THE WASHINGTON POST, March 5, 1987). However, his decision was reversed at the federal Appeals Court level, which was dominated by a Positivist philosophy. This was despite the fact that even liberal WASHINGTON POST columnist Colman McCarthy in “Textbook Case Look Again” (April 5, 1987) wrote of Judge Hand’s decision about the school texts being challenged, saying “this highly relativistic and individualistic approach constitutes the promotion of a fundamental faith claim opposed to other religious faiths.” So much for “government neutrality” !

As the decade of the 1960s closed, leading educator Ted Sizer wrote in FIVE LECTURES…ON MORAL EDUCATION (1970) that “Christian sermonizing denies individual autonomy….Moral autonomy…is the ‘new morality’ toward which we are to guide ourselves and other people….Clearly the strict adherence to a (moral) ‘code’ is out of date.” Three years later (1973), HUMANIST MANIFESTO II was published and declared: “Ethics is autonomous and situational, needing no theological or ideological sanction.”

Three years after that, THE HUMANIST (January-February 1976) published an article by Sheila Schwartz expressing her thankfulness “the crazies (fundamentalists) don’t do all that much reading. If they did, they’d find out that they have already been defeated.” Then, the very next issue of THE HUMANIST (March-April 1976) contained an article by Paul Blanshard, in which he remarked : “I think the most important factor leading us to a secular society has been the educational factor. Our schools may not teach Johnny to read properly, but the fact that Johnny is in school until he is 16 tends to lead toward the elimination of religious superstition. The average child now acquires a high school education, and this militates against Adam and Eve and all other myths of alleged history.” Textbooks followed this same philosophy, as in the early 1970s, PERSPECTIVES IN UNITED STATES HISTORY informed students that “the God of the Judeo-Christian tradition was a god worshipped by desert folk…clearly man-created.”

The year after Blanshard’s article appeared, THE HUMANIST (January-February 1977) published an article by Sidney Hook, in which he explained that “human beings can be influenced to examine critically their religious beliefs only by indirection, (by which) I mean the development of a critical attitude in all our educational institutions that will aim to make students less credulous to claims that transcend their reflective experience.” And 3 years after that, Morris Storer (director of the American Humanist Association 1975-1980) declared in his book HUMANIST ETHICS (1980) that “a large majority of the educators of American colleges and universities are predominantly humanists, and a majority of the teachers who go out from their studies in colleges to responsibilities in primary and secondary schools are basically humanists, no matter that many maintain a nominal attachment to church or synagogue for good personal, social or practical reasons.”

The point in using all these quotes is to show that humanists’ control of American education and the values our children are taught in public schools is not an accident. If you need any more proof of this, the following quote by H. J. Blackham, a founder of the 4-million-member International Humanist and Ethical Union, should suffice. In THE HUMANIST (September-October 1981), he proclaimed that if schools teach dependence (in a moral sense) on one’s self, “they are more revolutionary than any conspiracy to overthrow the government.” Blackham was absolutely right, and this is exactly what the religion of secular humanism has done. It has become most Americans’ new religion, and that is reflected both in government (e.g., Supreme Court legalizing abortion) and in most Americans’ personal lives.

Humanists have not hidden their agenda, as John Dunphy’s prize-winning essay was published in THE HUMANIST (January-February 1983), and proclaimed that “the battle for humankind’s future must be waged and won in the public school classroom…between the rotting corpse of Christianity…and the new faith of humanism…(and) humanism will emerge triumphant.”

Unfortunately, humanism has “emerged triumphant” in the U.S. today. Not too long ago, the Josephson Institute of Ethics polled more than 20,000 middle and high school students and found that an amazing 47% acknowledged that they had stolen something from a store in the past 12 months. Do public school teachers and secular humanists tell students to steal? No, but they do say the student is an autonomous moral decisionmaker who should make up her or his own mind about what is right or wrong based on the situation. This could lead some students to say, “Most of the time I don’t steal, but that store owner ripped me off on the price of a sweater, so in this situation I didn’t see anything wrong with shoplifting something from him.”

Yes, secular humanism has become the new religion of most Americans today whether or not they realize. You think not? Ask yourself how many Americans cheat on their taxes! Public school textbooks actually have promoted this philosophy, as HEALTH COMMUNICATING SERIES asked first-graders: “Do you think there is ever a time when (cheating) might be right? Tell when it is. Tell why you think it’s right.”

The consequence of abandoning Biblical principles will be our “destruction.” Remember that in Philippians 3, Paul is talking about “the enemies of the cross of Christ,” and verse 19 reads: “Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.”

There is a famous quote about men and women becoming accomplices to the evils they fail to oppose. This is something of a paraphrase of the last part of Romans 1:32, and it applies to Americans and their new religion of secular humanism today. Shortly after the Iraq war began, a poll showed two-thirds of Americans supported torturing prisoners in wartime. Subsequently, the horrors of Abu Ghraib were made public. The American people basically invited this evil, and since God holds nations accountable for their actions and nations cannot be punished after this life, can’t we expect God to punish the U.S. and its people here in this life?

All of the so-called Christians who humanistically rationalize torture based on situation ethics should ask themselves what Jesus would say about this. You say you’re not one of those supporting torture, so you’re all right. Well, do you check to see from where the TV, radio, shirts, jeans, etc., which you buy come, so you’re sure they are not from Communist China, which tortures and kills Christians? If you buy products from China, you are supporting a torturing and murdering dictatorship, and what would Jesus say about that?

 

If I were a reporter at one of the current presidential debates, I would ask the candidates (and the millions of viewers watching) the following: “If Hitler and the Nazis controlled Germany, Austria, Poland, etc., today, and acknowledged murdering millions of Christians and Jews, would you have a trading relationship with them, supporting their economy and military?” After the gasps of unbelief from the candidates and viewers subsided, I would then ask: “Well, if you wouldn’t trade with Hitler, when are you going to end our trade with Communist China, which we all know has murdered tens of millions of innocent people, including many Christians whose body parts have been harvested to sell to Americans and others for implants?”

Remember Thomas Jefferson’s warning: “Indeed, I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that His justice cannot sleep forever.”

© 2007 Dennis Cuddy – All Rights Reserved

 

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