Wednesday, December 31, 2014

#UNBROKEN GRACE, LOVE AND FORGIVENESS - THE MESSAGE OF THE AGES THE LET US

While reading several reviews of the movie #UNBROKEN, a few things struck me about the difference between the followers of the Way of Truth and everybody else. Unbroken is the biggest surprise hit movie of the Christmas 2014 series and is based on the actual life of Louis Zamperini. Zamperini was born of Italian immigrants and became a US Olympian athlete in the famed 1936 Olympics where the great Jesse Owens showed up the folly of Adolph Hitler's master race.

Later on, Zamperini became a bombardier during World War II where he flew B24's over the Pacific, only to be shot down by the Imperial Japanese army and captured. Imprisoned, beated, tortured and worse by the most cruel types of humans who paralleled the nazis, Zamperini survived and a decade later was still full of revenge against his captors.....that is, until he met the world's greatest modern evangelist Billy Graham and Christ changed his life.

The current movie, directed by Angelina Jolie, does an excellent job of Zamperini's Japanese camp years but this full testimony to the Power of Christ - CAPTURED BY GRACE - can be seen for free here and ordered for a simple donation as a DVD, if you wish to share with others.

What is striking about this true life testimony to the Power of Love and forgiveness is the reaction of the two men who were on opposite sides of that war. Zamperini was full of hate and revenge against the brutal Japanese yet when Christ changed his life, he went out of this way to avoid even embarassing the family of his chief captor and persecutor - Matsuhiro Watanabe. (CLICK HERE TO SEE WATANABE's 60 MINUTES INTERVIEW FROM OVER A DECADE AGO). Watanabe did not have that same humility or spirit of repentance and/or Christian love in him, as he was not redeemed by the Savior and died an unrepentant man. In fact, he blamed his actions in the WWII Japanese prison on nationalism, rather than personal sin - the prerequisite to becoming a child of the King.

One man demonstrated the Power and Love of God, and on the other side, the other demonstrated the Pride and Loathing of the god of this world, through extreme nationalism and messed up priorities.  

One man had the peace and love that passes ALL understanding, the other passed the buck. 

One man (Louis Zamperini) lived a full life (he died in 2014 at age 97) and found out what a new study was released from the Austin Institute for the Study of Family and the Culture on Christmas Eve 2014 proved: that people who attended worship services regularly were almost twice as happy than does who did not. According to the survey here, 45 percent of weekly worshipers are more able to cope with life and be happier. In the opposite direction, those who reported as "very unhappy" were twice as many and in the group which never goes to any service at all! (You can read the entire survey here).

As a new year begins and we reflected on what is truly important in life, and how we should live any remaining years, let us resolve to start here:  (1 John 4: 7-11)Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to bethe propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

And when this love - this "agape" - pours out of us, we would have demonstrated to the entire world, and especially those who need our grace and forgiveness, which ONLY comes from our relationship with the Father - through the Son Jesus Christ- the world would have known that we are truly His. This will be the testimony of the Message of The Ages, the Manifestation and the Love through the Incarnation, when God came to dwell with one, first as a baby and then to give us all the offer of Eternal Life, when He paid it ahead for mankind, on the Cross of Calvary.
#Glory To His Name! 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

EXODUS FROM THE TRUTH? ...(A REVIEW OF LATEST MOVIE ON MOSES)


(Image courtesy Google Images)
The problems with modern Hollywood trying to make Bible movies to reach the majority interested in viewing Faith and Family movies are multifold. As with anything we do, we must believe in any product in order to have impact, authenticity and success.  Unlike the popular epics like the 1956 "TEN COMMANDMENTS" (Cecil B. DeMille) or even Mel Gibson's Passion of the Christ of from a decade ago, the current crop of "bandwagon-on-the-Bible-movie" producers have basically two things in mind: money and agenda, rather than narrative.

Cecil B. DeMille and Gibson's made their blockbuster (in impact and financial succcess) movies for a reason - to tell some of the stories of the Ages, that have forever impacted humanity. A lot of their actors did not necessarily believe in God or the Bible. However, they understood accuracy and appreciated the intelligence of their audiences and demographics (mainly Christians here and around the world). DeMille himself would spend 2-3 years researching, for instance, the Bible BEFORE he got the script together to begin shooting film. The result was the biggest Bible movie ever produced.

The thinking behind two massive Bible-based super-flops out of Hollywood in 2014 is the opposite of the classic film-making of DeMille and the golden age of Hollywood! The first flop one was NOAH, starring Russell Crowe (an avowed atheist). These film makers took so much liberty with the truth and the Bible which both serious Christians and Jews are familiar with, that it was offensive to just about anyone with some bible knowledge.  Now comes Ridley Scott's EXODUS - Gods and Kings". While thinking about this new movie which was released on December 12, 2014, a series on the Great Flood of Noah's era, which NBC TV did over decade ago came to mind. The fiction in this one was so out there, that Saturday Night Live did a stinging parody skit on it, later on that same week which just about sent the NBC TV series into oblivion.

It is against this background we take a look at EXODUS - Gods and Kings (2014) starring Christian Bale (as Moses) and directed by Scott, and produced by FOX. 

While most of us refused to see NOAH, even on DVD due to its outrageous content, we had a little better hope for this latest version of the EXODUS from Egypt by the Israelites, led by the great Moses. Even when actor who played Moses- Christian Bale, Moses' character- and called him a sociopath and barbaric, I thought it may be worth watching to see if Hollywood learned from the mistakes of the Russell Crowe dark fictional version of Noah.  So how did they do? To wit....

THE ENTERTAINMENT:
The Real 3D version of it was technically a winner and it was the best part of the movie.   It was also the most authentic feature of the film as the viewer actually felt him/herself observing what Director Ridley Scott wanted to portray as his interpretation (A plus here).  One actually felt oneself sitting in Pharaoh Rameses’ military strategy session, or down in the quarry at Pithom or even the hair-raising chariot-around-the narrow cliff pursuit by the Egyptians of the departing millions led by Moses across the Red Sea. The visual of the formerly parted Red Sea was a powerful scene as the blue water crashed own on Rameses and of all people “Moishe” (Hebrew for Moses). 

Now we know these things did not happen. It is also telling that Ridley Scott and his production team did NOT show the Red Sea actually parting (to begin with) but showed the escaping Israelites wading through knee deep water. This is typical of people who do not believe in God, the God of the Bible or the Power of God. It is my contention that they really MEANT not to show the Parting of the Red Sea, because to do that will validate the Holy One. But in order to have some semblance of truth in their Exodus from the Truth, they had to show the sea returning to its level. Even with its success here, in the special effects department, I found myself cringing at what biblical outrage they will commit next. It is obvious that the people involved in this movie intended to disrespect and dismiss the God of the Bible, they profess to be filming.

THE ERROR:

Apart from the mostly accurate Passion of the Christ and the few errors of commission (and omission) in Mark Burnett/Roma Downey THE BIBLE record-setting History Channel series in the Spring of 2013, almost anything of historical worth made by mainstream liberal Hollywood lacks in biblical Truth. Their obsession with their agendas permeates every single piece of work they seem to put out, of late.

There were so many errors in "EXODUS", that it would be pointless to list them all. Since Hollywood has no respect for the Christians and Jews to whom they allegedly aimed this movie, they forget that we know the Scriptures and so do gazillions of people from the last 4000 years plus of recorded history! Some examples: God is not a 11 or 12 year old snarling wise guy of a young boy. Pharoah did not look like a linebacker for Rutgers or the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. The rivers running red with blood had nothing to do with vicious reptiles sent by a mean 12 year old God....and on and on. It was pointless to sit around and read the credits to see who the technical advisors  were to these guys. Either they did not advise accurately on the truth of the narrative or their input was ignored.

THE EFFECT: 
From word out of Hollywood, more Bible "epic" (failures?) are in the making. God alone knows what they will do to any remakes of the classic "Ben-Hur" and even a new one based on Pontius Pilate (starring Brad Pitt). While Ben-Hur was a tremendous extravaganza starring the incomparable Charlton Heston, it was still fiction. However, Pilate is well known as the man who executed the Lord Jesus on Cross, knowing He was an innocent man. The history of Pilate is available to anyone willing to do research. The Romans kept meticulous records. 

This kind of historical research which the greatest movie producer - Cecil B. DeMille - is known for, is not done these days. They are others listed on the horizon, however after these two debacles, where Exodus with Christian Bale took in less than $40 million in its first two weeks, after costing $185 million to make, they will be rethinking about releasing some of these future failures. In the meantime, expect more independent Christian-based Faith and Family films to score as big as GOD's NOT DEAD, the surprise hit of 2014....bigger than Noah was in America. The after-market on God's Not Dead was both huge, as well as under the Hollywood radar as hundreds of churches bought licenses to show the movie to their congregations across America. 

This is the grassroots that affect what mainstream Hollywood puts out and they know a Faith-based movie when they (we) see one. With better distribution and more mainline actors like Nicholas Cage (LEFT BEHIND); Lee Majors (Six Million Dollar Man) and the upcoming block buster in three months with Cybill Shepherd, PURE FLIX  will become established as the Christian movie company to be reckoned with. The dynamic Christiano Brothers (Rich and Dave) are also on the move with their relevant movies starring well known TV actors like Harry Anderson (Night Court) and Clarence Gilyard (Walker, Texas Ranger).

So in the final analysis, what is the effect of all of these unbiblical "Bible" epics (touted by Hollywood trade papers as the "Year of the Bible Movie")? The effect will be to make the smaller, more intentionally 100% Christian movie producers more established in the huge Heartland Market, where the little white wooden church on the corner still sits and where Aunt Bessie and Uncle Leroy got married and own the same King James Bible for the last 60 years. Hollywood can't make this one up.

Here is the upcoming movie from PURE FLIX, which is the follow-up to God's Not Dead, and is called "DO YOU BELIEVE":



Saturday, December 20, 2014

INTERESTED IN FAMILY TREES? (A Look at the Most Famous Tree of All)

Genealogy is a BIG business  these days. At any one time, it is estimated that a third of the western world (mostly in North America) is trying to trace own roots and build a family tree, based on those findings. There are a host of solid and reputable ancestry companies out there like Ancestry.com and my personal favorite – 23andMe.com, which I have actually used. They use DNA lab tests to match the amazing structure of the Genome in order to trace roots back thousands of years! I have discovered long-distance relatives from Europe and South East Asia to the Americas and all over and back. There is nothing surprising about any of this, including some of my roots back to so-called Neanderthal man! There are other people who discovered pirates, Vikings and other such "upstanding" members of the outlaw community to their embarrassment. However this is the chance one takes when you look at "where did I come from".

Speaking of that, in the end, we, who are called by His Name, believe fully in the Origins of the Species also known as the Book of Genesis. We are ALL related through the first sinner - Adam - and ultimately his descendant Noah. Noah, his wife, his three sons and their wives were the only survivors of the Great Flood which cleansed the earth after God wiped out the entire corrupt world population and rebooted. Noah's three sons were told to go forth and multiply across the fruited plain, which eventually happened. Most of us are either directly descended from Ham (the darker peoples of Africa etc.) or Shem (the Semetic people of the Middle East etc.) and Japheth (the father of the Europeans and Indians). That is all there is and any doubters should take their doubt up with the Creator, Whose earthly genealogy we will now examine.


The Jews (descendants of Shem) were an exclusive people by calling and finally by sinful/prideful nature. Matthew (the first listed Gospel, since the Gospel of Mark is the earliest written one) writes his Gospel to the Jewish people. He knew they were all sticklers for records and who belonged to which of the Twelve Tribes of Israel.  He knew the Pharisees kept the ancient genealogical records of the Jews who had come back from the Babylonian exile and often made up what they could not prove. So Matthew wanted to set the record straight about the genealogy of Jesus Christ to a people who based their entire existence, and unfortunately - their salvation - on only being descendants of Abraham.  

Some of the ancient records of the tribes which made it out of Jerusalem before Nebuchanezzar torched Solomon's Temple down to the ground, so God could finally cleanse Solomon pagan indulgences and its blowback, survived ONLY until 70 AD. This is the year when the Roman General Titus fulfilled Jesus' prophesy from Matthew 24 and so completely destroyed the Temple that the Roman soldiers were scraping melted gold off the huge rubble. All tribal records, from the Twelve Tribes were destroyed forever, except in the Books of God which will be opened one day for Judgment before the Great White Throne.

The only surviving record, therefore, is the one which the Lord Himself wanted preserved for this Age. It is found in Matthew 1 and here are the first six of 17 verses: 
The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham: Abraham begot Isaac, Isaac begot Jacob, and Jacob begot Judah and his brothers. Judah begot Perez and Zerah by Tamar, Perez begot Hezron, and Hezron begot Ram. Ram begot Amminadab, Amminadab begot Nahshon, and Nahshon begot Salmon. Salmon begot Boaz by Rahab, Boaz begot Obed by Ruth, Obed begot Jesse, and Jesse begot David the king. David the king begot Solomon by her who had been the wife of Uriah....(Verses 1-6)
CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL AND ONLY REMAINING GENEALOGY OF THE GREATEST JEW OF ALL TIME - JESUS.

Each of those sentences and names in these six verses are lifetimes and episodes which are rich in Faith and a lot of sin. Matthew held back no punches. We just have to look at the inclusion of Tamar here, from whence the Tribe of Judah came. Judah was tricked into having immoral relations with her after some graphic text in Genesis involving Onan and his brothers who passed away. And what about Rahab, the pagan prostitute? Well, how did she end up int the bloodline of the Savior Jesus Christ?

She believed in the God Who had delivered Israel from Eygpt and led them through the Wilderness for forty years. In days where there was no mass media and telegrams, word had gotten out of the Power of that God Who parted the Red Sea and other wonders. Rahab ran a brothel in pagan territories yet believed that same God instead of the pagan gods of Canaan and Jericho. She rescued Joshua and Caleb and later on was the mother of Boaz,  the husband of another woman who was a pagan- Ruth, from pagan Moab! Who was Moab? Moab was the offspring of the daughter of Lot, who had immoral relations with her own father after getting him drunk in a cave, after Christ destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah and saved only Lot and his family.


You see where this is heading. The average self-righteous pharisee/priest or intellectual lost-to-perdition pinhead in those days quickly brushed over these findings in their genealogy. We would too. In fact, we were all pagans and rebels and lost ourselves, until God in His Mercy saved us by His Grace and nothing we did, less we should boast. You and I have more in common with Rahab, the former harlot and Judah who besmirched God's name than the older brother in the parable of the prodigal son. He represented the pharisees. 

Then there in the final verse above, we see Verse 6: "David the King begot Solomon by her, who had been the wife of Uriah"! David's sin of adultery, stealing another man's wife (when he already had more than two himself) and THEN setting up Uriah the converted and saved Hittite to be killed, made it into the genealogy of Christ too! There was no sugar coating, no double entendre, no nothing - David had a son, who was King Solomon by another man's wife. So when my friends trace their lineage back to plundering Vikings and even unsavory sorts, remember this - it is NOT where you CAME from but WHERE YOU ARE GOING!

This brief look at the lineage of Christ from where Joseph and Mary came perfectly aligns with Scripture which reveals that Jesus is the Son of David and can thus claim the Throne. We know that Joseph is just the faithful step-father of the Lord, even though he would later go on to have children of his own with Mary. The most famous of Joseph's real children are James and Jude, whose books are at the end of the New Testament.  Mary is also in the lineage, which authenticates everything. The study of this entire passage of 17 verses will take more than a short blog post and there is a reason I stopped here at King David and his abominable sin with Bathsheba and against Uriah and God. The reason is - we are all full of sin and deserve eternal punishment from dragging the Name of God through the filth and mud.

However, if we all surrender our lives in the total realization of our complete helpless, total depravity and worthlessness before Holy God, repent and seek forgiveness from all of that and accept Master, Creator, Lord and King Jesus Christ as our Savior, we too will inherit the blessings which came from such flawed human beginnings. America is the place of new beginnings. In fact the entire western hemisphere offers this to anyone, like nowhere else ever in history. On this continent, men and women can start anew and build respectable and prosperous lives. But there is only one way to build a life and legacy that counts and that is if Jesus, the Son of David, the Son of God, is YOUR Advocate, YOUR Savior, YOUR Lord. Amen. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

2000 YEARS LATER - WHERE IS THE PANIC?

Oh that some of our modern day appointed ‘shepherds of the flock’ would be troubled and panicked, for the right reasons rather that sit and waste the Good News or even worse, treat the church of Christ like some small business to be managed, with these men as their  “CEO’s”.  In Matthew 2, we saw that Herod and all Jerusalem (meaning his “co-conspirators”) – the religious leaders – were in a panic (or troubled) when they discovered the prophesies had come through after hundreds of years and the Promised One was here.  I am sure if you asked any of those religious leaders – the Pharisees (priests); theologians and others – they would all claim they were eagerly awaiting for the Messiah.  Yet, when it finally happened,  we know from history they did not want to give up their power, prestige and possessions.

Well, the Messiah is getting set to return again, and we have almost the same principles of turf-protection, instead of proclamation of the Wrath which is to come, and therefore, the Wonder and Willingness of the Wonderful Savior to forgive all who seek after Him!  We know not the hour or the day or year, but each day is one day closer and Jesus DID give us a command for such a time as this. We are “go and make disciples”.  A disciple is first someone who is saved and born-again into the family of Christ. You know the saying: “born once, die twice but born twice, die once”. This is the main and only qualifying entry point to becoming a disciple.   You are either born again and know it, or you ain’t.  You and I, in our mortal state, cannot just “trust” or convince ourselves that we are saved into eternal life. We have to KNOW that we know that we know and lately, that is not going too well.

Barna Research just released (in early December 2014), some staggering figures as to the state of the unchurched in America and it is worse than ever. Who is to blame? Well – who else? The church and its leaders are to blamed first of all, and then those in America who call themselves Christians, due to the fact that they were born here.

The Ten Facts about America's Churchless - courtesy the George Barna Research company can be viewed and studied HERE.  Just briefly, here are the 10 main headings:

 1. The number of unchurched people in America would make the 8th most populous country in the world.
2. In the past decade, more people in the U.S. have become churchless than live in Australia or Canada.
3. The vast majority of America’s churchless have attended a church.
4. While the churchless are primarily men, the percentage of women in their ranks is on the rise.
5. The unchurched in America tend to be less educated than the churched.
6. The Pacific Coast is home to the largest percentage of churchless per capita.
7. The unchurched are more likely to be unmarried.
8. The younger a person is, the less likely he or she is to attend church.
9. Unchurched adults are more likely to be white.
10. The majority of the churchless in America claim Christianity as their faith.

While the numbers are obviously important in this new paradigm as we see them steadily declining, what should concern us is the reason behind the decline. Just looking at these major headings, which Barna's people went deeper into (click the links above and read), we can note some really troubling things.

Brief Analysis of the Barna Survey Results:
-  Re: Item #3: many of the churchless (or "nones") used to go to church.

-  Item #4: men, especially mostly married men, walked away and left their wives to take care of the spiritual "needs" of their children. We know from multiple surveys, studies and just plain facts, that if the father in the nuclear family leads mom and the kids to church (a real bible-teaching church, that is), the chances of the children being saved and living a life of faith is still currently over 60%. If it is only a single mom, with the father of those children just walking away from her, in spiritual cowardice, that percentage drops down dramatically to below 15%!!! This is where the western hemisphere is caught in a slide towards a bottomless pit of despair.

-  Item #5 of Barna's findings of this intensive multi-pronged survey found that the least educated a person is, the more likely they are to be unchurched! This flies in the face of the liberal charge that a Christian is an ignoramus to "believe all the stuff in that 'old book'"!!! First of all, this finding proves that Christianity is the only religion which is transparent, can be debated without violence and the only belief system where the Spirit of the Living God indwells a true believer to confirm this Testimony! Are there uneducated who are being saved? YES - by the droves! What I suspect is driving this discovery is the decline of the urban church due to crime, hopelessness and politically motivated preachers, combined with the rise of the suburban church - where the majority of the Christian population resides. This has been so for over 50 years and just stayed that way.

- Finding #6 which discovered that the left (or Pacific) Coast of the USA is the most unchurched area in America does not surprise anyone. The land mass from Oregon to Orange County is home to the New Age movement, the amoral high tech and basically anti-Bible Silicon Valley region, the Hollywood elite and the cultural extreme left as well as the horrible pornography capitol of the world, in the San Fernando valley.  There is not just ignoring of Christianity here, but outright hostility against the people of Christ. As always - there is a huge remnant due to the sheer size of this population, yet these churches stand out as they are so few: Shadow Mountain (David Jeremiah) and Grace Community (John MacArthur) Churches come to mind. 

- Findings #7 and #8 are so sad and troubling, each one of us who are committed to Christ for eternity should first weep, then pray for these people. Because the society has devalued the nuclear family (mom, dad, kids) and holy biblical marriage, with the help of married and divorced people, the percentage of young unmarried people is climbing to staggering numbers. They are not only not getting married,  they live in sin (shacking up) and if they do go to church, they hear nothing from these modern preachers, which convict them of their positional transgression against Holy God.  An education pastor of an area mega-church told me that was their biggest problem in their church, yet nothing is done to address it. Compounding this is the lack of parental leadership in training up a child in the way he/she should go so he/she would not depart from it when they grow older.

-  Number 10 has to be the funniest thing ever....if it were not so sad! Previous Barna (and the secular Pew Center Research poll) confirmed that only between 9%-11% of so-called evangelicals have a Biblical World view. Then over 57% of young evangelicals, showing the shame of political correctness), have said publicly that "there is more than way to heaven, than Jesus Christ". Yet, in any national survey, these same people will describe themselves as "Christians" when asked.  To these folks, Christianity is a label which applies only to those who are native born Americans, and therefore, since their grand parents were saved and/or went to church and were therefore, Christians, these people consider themselves "Christians" by extrapolation. One thing they are not aware of - God does NOT have any grand-children. We are either sons and daughters of the King or not.

These terrible facts are heart-wrenching about the present state of "Jerusalem" which is troubled about wrong things, just like its predecessor as recorded in Matthew 2:3 ("When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him."). These are the results of the modern day equivalent of the religious leaders who are more in line with the times and its culture, than the Christ and His pending Return. Can this be turned around? With God, anything is possible, but the scale of revival needed to turn this titanic of a spiritual destruction around requires leadership. Where would the leadership come from if not the under-shepherds of Christ - American pastors? Is this really going to happen? Time will tell, because as long as there is life, there is hope.  However, it can actually come from the prayer warriors of America and evangelists who study the Scriptures and weep for the lost souls, (as we just saw represented in this new shocking Barna survey). So, let's get to work - now!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

TROUBLED WITH HEROD BEFORE THE WISE MEN - BUT NOT NOW?

Ancient Jerusalem At Night 
"When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him." (Matthew 2:3)
Two years ago, I addressed this most overlooked verse of the "Christmas story" here:  and showed why the so-religious types - the Jewish rabbis/scribes/pharisees and the Sanhedrin - were in a virtual panic when the 'wise men' from Persia followed the Star of Bethlehem straight into Jerusalem. These corrupt rulers of the Temple, Judaism and everything that moved in the social life of Jerusalem and Judah, could smell their corrupt reign and association with the ruling Roman Empire could be in danger. They were correct, of course. Christ was born around 3 BC and less than 75 years later, the Roman General Titus would surround Jerusalem and fulfill Jesus' Prophesy of Matthew 24, by burning it down. All the followers of the Way (or Christians) were taken out of that city before Titus destroyed it and moved to a safe region in what is now Jordan called Pella (a beautiful protective valley there)!

Now we know why the religious rulers of Jerusalem were "troubled" as Matthew 2:3 says. They knew the prophesy from Micah 5:2 (recorded in Matthew 2:5-6), which says: "
So they said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it is written by the prophet:
‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
Are not the least among the rulers of Judah;
For out of you shall come a Ruler
Who will shepherd My people Israel."

Now, as evil and lost as these guys where, they knew what the Lord had said from the Sacred Scriptures and were wise to discern it. They did not follow what it said, but went in the opposite direction. They knew the Scriptures inside out and comparatively better than most today. Yet they did know know what to do as that prophesy mean the Promised One was now here! So what about today?

The Lord has shown that oh, how He wished His people, His under-shepherds (today's Pastors) and other religious leaders, would be troubled. But apart from a small remnant who are lone voices crying out in the loud noisy wilderness of Zin/Sin, today's parallel to the religious rulers seem to want to get along with the various Herods of culture, political correctness and anything worldly. We already saw what the top five concerns of American pastors were from a long two year extensive survey released in the Summer of 2014 by Barna Research.   Here are the top five concerns:
- ATTENDANCE 
- GIVING
- NUMBER OF PROGRAMS 
- NUMBER OF STAFF
- SQUARE FOOTAGE

The wise men do not have to show up on camels any more for the modern day version of the rulers of Jerusalem to be "troubled". Why? Because they don't care! Look at what their top five concerns are! Does anyone see the following words in these top five: Salvation; Hope; Repentance; Discipleship; Holiness?  
I suppose if you dig deep enough they will show up down the list, after the Wednesday night potluck and the new wardrobe for the "worship music" superstars for Sunday morning. After all these body-fitting jeans cost, what, about $100 a piece?!

So, all through the previous thousand years, HaShem - the Name above all Names - had promised in every prophet from David to Isaiah to Daniel, Micah and Malachi - that the Branch, the Messenger, the HaMaschiach- the Messiah was on His Way. The LORD told them exactly where YAHWEH was going to be born - Bethlehem - yet they blew it? Why? For the same reason western and American pastors think attendance; bank accounts and a good live streaming in HD is more important than the Gospel and people's souls.

It is too numerous to list the outrages committed by the so-called under-shepherds of Christ who are trying to make this more complicated than it is. The timeless, pure and Holy Word of God is what it is. All these men have to do is follow what it says, prove themselves to be workmen who are not ashamed and proclaim it- come what may. But by remaining silent in an empire of evil, where the rulers and powers of the air are now completely in charge, they have not protected their sacred duty. They not only remain silent when the Name of the Lord is dragged through the mud in cultural rut-gut like movies and music, but some of them even get paid to go along with it. Some of the "technical advisers" of the failed and abominable NOAH movie, starring an atheist named Russell Crowe, were actually mostly California preachers. They swore up and down it was a good biblically based movie and we should go see it....or "give it a chance". When even Glen Beck was laughing at it about 20 minutes in, we knew it was bad from his review.


There are consequences to being more troubled with the ruling class of this world and not the Ruler of the Heavens. Next, we will look at the fruit of this spiritually deadly negligence as Barna research's new survey shows a new indictment against today's church system.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

REMEMBER IN DECEMBER - PEARL HARBOR DAY, 2017




DECEMBER 7, 2017
He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore. (Isaiah 2:4)

The fruit of that righteousness will be peace; its effect will be quietness and confidence forever (Isaiah 32:17)
Love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other (Psalm 85:10)

Let the mountains bring peace to the people, And the hills, in righteousness (Psalm 72:3). 
In his days may the righteous flourish, And abundance of peace till the moon is no more (Psalm 72:7).
Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13)

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21).
(Google Images)

Thursday, December 4, 2014

THE GREATEAST SHOUT-OUT EVER (OR RAPTURE READY!)

This is the main reason why Christians should not be caught up in the culture, corruption and condition of society and why we are called to Holiness, being set apart for a latter day of Glory.  This concept also demands a direct and complete comprehension of General Grace and Goodness of God as well as the Saving Grace He dispenses to those who repent and accept Jesus as Lord.  Just briefly, General Grace is what God gives to all – air to breathe; rain for the crops; a home and a job and even all kinds of wisdom and wealth. 

As for the latter, think of men like Einstein (atheist); or even a libertine like Hugh Hefner: or all those Hollywood and tech billionaires; or the oil sheiks in the Middle East with the golf faucets and private jets. Their fame, wealth and extravagant, immoral living are only for a fleeting time in this life, for which they will be held accountable before the Holy One on the Great Day of the Lord. Now, they may not believe this is coming, but it is. In fact the majority of people in the western world think that those of us who believe in the so-called “Rapture” are touched in the head and off our collective rockers. They even say the word “rapture” is not even in the Bible! They are correct! The word is NOT. Rapture is the English word for the Latin translation the Bible (Jerome’s Vulgate) for being "caught up". 

We read, directly from the LORD to His messenger Paul in 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 "For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord"

So there IS going to be a taking out of God's True People.  That also means there is going to be a leaving behind of fake Christians, cultural Christians, professing with their mouths-not-their-hearts "Christians", in fact anyone who does not have sins forgiven and have possession of Jesus Christ as LORD of their lives will be left behind. This is not some extremist wishful thinking or made up story. This is literally - Gospel! Here is the Creator Himself: "....and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be. Then there will be two men in the field; one will be taken and one will be left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one will be left.… (Matthew 24:39-41).

People in the mainline liberal protestant and other eastern churches disbelieve that at their own risk.  The main reasons for the declining mainlines churches and the Eastern Orthodox churches for not fully engaged in this Truth revolve around a total lack of knowledge of Full Counsel of God through Scripture, the Deity of Christ and the lack of understanding of what being "born-again"/rejuvenation really means.

This is the church. What about the many billions who refuse the free offer of Grace and the Gospel? What about those from the other "religions" and cults? Surely a Good God would not send them to hell, would He? Surely, some of these people passed laws giving people free housing in projects and public assistance to survive and do so for social justice. Surely, God (if He exists according to the atheists) would give all these and the atheists, and the blasphemers, and the persecutors a pass? 

There is no foundation for that wishful thinking, anywhere and in any theology. We fully expect the unredeemed to speak like that, but increasingly, more and more evangelicals are lining up with the rest of the perishing world and buying that "everybody gets in" fiction. In fact, more and more of them in today's mega-churches - almost 60% according to George Barna - are saying there are other ways to the Jesus Who said "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life...no one comes to the Father but through Me".

There is much more to this event of the ages, which is one day closer each day. More qualified people than I have addressed this fully and more in-depth, but this brief analysis is just to give hope to those who feel alienated from their hometowns and states and even the various countries, who read this blog on a regular basis. Whether you are under the boot of the resurgent communist party of Cuba, Russia or China....or secularist persecution in Europe/North America...or those of the moon-god religions of the east, there IS coming a day when the Midnight Cry will ring out from the Holy Angels. 

There is coming a day when the Master and the Commander in Chief of Heaven's Armies - Jesus - will say to His legions: "Go get my children". That day, will be the day, when all this insidious political correctness; all this evil; all this hatred against Christians in Nigeria, Iraq, Kurdistan, Syria, Pakistan, India, China, Iran, Cuba, Venezuela and even in so-called "enlightened" countries of the West....that will be the day when Jesus will separate His sheep (us in the church) from the rest and we will be in a state of eternal bliss, all together in the Presence of His Royal Majesty, forever and ever, amen.


Monday, December 1, 2014

THERE IS COMING A DAY.....(as the old Gospel song says)

Some Church Signs say it all!

A whole lot of Christians have been feeling like second or third class citizens in the greatest country in the world - America, founded as it is, on Christian principles. It does not matter if the country was founded, constitutionally, as a Christian country or not. The fact remains that the Foundations of America had its roots in the Gospel, Evangelism and the Bible. The country did not gain independence with just a war, but it was the great preachers and the Great Awakenings of the time which fired a new birth of Freedom.

The great George Whitfield, the British spirit-filled Methodist, who preached the Doctrines of Grace and Freedom in Christ up and down the Thirteen Colonies, leading thousands and thousands to Salvation and the famous Jonathan Edwards, were the catalysts. The numerous churches that benefited from these men's crusades and open air preaching, brought the message to villages and towns and even cities. This was actually the Christian fuel which energized the colonists and THEIR own preachers - the men who would later become known as the "Black Robe Regiment" (BRR). The BRR were the preachers of the American Revolution, who influenced their congregations (most of whom were in the rag-tag Continental Army) and their families into thinking that this cause of Freedom was in accordance with God's Will. Indeed, the British Red Coat Army was virulently anti-Christian in function and had no compunction about burning down a church or three if they got in their way during this American War of Independence.

There is a whole lot more about the rich Christian history and background of the American Experience from which we can learn. There are so many viewpoints on the US Constitution and its interpretation. However what matters most to us even more,  is not just the historical aspect of the Great American Christian Experience but what God says. 

Here is where the seeds of the movement to separate God from His people began in this country - with Paine and one of his fans, Jefferson. In fact, Jefferson's letter to the Danbury Baptists, in response to the lack of protection on the Connecticut Constitution for religious liberty, which was used to promote the idea of "Separation of Church and State", which is now accepted. 

Just like the created right to an abortion, the notion that Thomas Jefferson was promoting the "separation of Church and State" is an overreach derived from a poorly constructed sentence, exclusively extracted from his reply to the Danbury Baptists: "I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature would "make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof," thus building a wall of separation between Church and State." What that letter implicitly implies is the government would not create a state religion as existed at the time in England, from whence the Baptists came. What the secularist, atheists and their sort used was the last portion of the sentence "building a wall of separation of Church and State".

Now there has been an extremely troubling mindset for decades, if not the last two centuries, which may have overflowed from one of the founding fathers himself. That man was Thomas Paine, the "conscience" of the American Revolution and drive for the freedom which created the greatest country which ever existed - the USA. After the War was over and the new Republic was in full swing, under President George Washington, the British-born Paine went over to France to fully indulge in his lifestyle - Atheism! His work "The Age of Reason" (1794) set Europe ablaze in furthering their rejection of the Gospel and Christianity and became popular with deists in the US like Thomas Jefferson, Ethan Allen and Benjamin Franklin - all heroes of the War of Independence. Jefferson and Franklin were not averse to religion in public life as they saw it as necessary for the public good. However, while the elites loved the atheists and his venom against Scripture and Jesus Christ (just as they do today), there was a backlash against Paine. He was called a "demi-human arch beast", "a loathsome reptile" and "an object of disgust, of abhorrence, of absolute loathing to every decent man except the President of the United States (Jefferson)". (Source: Wikipedia).

Charles Darwin took Thomas Paine's Age of Reason to heart and those in the evolution theory movement took his atheism to the extreme. Darwin's immediate family was so stunned that they created a story around this death that he died a Christian. Those in the secular humanist and atheist movement also took Jefferson's seemingly innocuous words to the extreme and are attempting to shut down any mention of Jesus in public life; the Bible and its moral/spiritual truths. It is always the case when a leadership movement in any sphere, conducts himself in an unworthy manner. His descendants and followers take it to the extreme of evil. Such was the case with King Solomon whose 1000 plus wives and concubines were mainly pagan and idol worshippers. Solomon's sons saw how he lived and worshipped the devil more than their father did, resulting in the Kingdom of Israel splitting into two with ten of the twelve tribes eventually being wiped off the earth, by the Assyrians in the 8th century BC.

It is against this backdrop which we find ourselves in the 21st Century. It is against the backdrop we get signs like the one above, where Christians and students of the Word of God - the Bible - know what is eventually coming down the pike. In a sense, this church sign pictured above is absolutely correct. 


In the next post, we will examine what the Rapture is, is not and why this sign addresses a truth which many would rather sweep under the carpet.