End Times and Current Events

General Category => End Times => Topic started by: Mark on November 02, 2011, 07:04:22 am



Title: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on November 02, 2011, 07:04:22 am
California Church Preaches Gospel at the Bar

Churches, like businesses, are always trying to attract new faces. Some use tactics like providing coffee and sweets, or they boast a variety of different ministries for all age groups. Others have worship bands of rock star proportions and lots of digital technology to keep parishioners entertained. But a new church in San Jose, Calif., has a very different approach – it provides beer for attendees – after the service, of course.

rest: http://www.christianpost.com/news/california-church-preaches-gospel-at-the-bar-beer-replaces-coffee-59980/?



Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: akfools on November 03, 2011, 09:46:24 pm
California Church Preaches Gospel at the Bar … Beer Replaces Coffee

Churches, like businesses, are always trying to attract new faces. Some use tactics like providing coffee and sweets, or they boast a variety of different ministries for all age groups. Others have worship bands of rock star proportions and lots of digital technology to keep parishioners entertained. But a new church in San Jose, Calif., has a very different approach – it provides beer for attendees – after the service, of course.
Related

Bill Jenkins, a native Londoner, calls his month-old church plant in northern California Urbanlife. They meet in downtown San Jose in a bar call the Loft Bar and Bistro at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday mornings. He told The Christian Post he wants to create “a safe environment for a dangerous message.”

Ninety-two percent of the population in Santa Clara County, where San Jose resides, is unchurched. The majority of people there have rejected traditional forms of church. So Jenkins wants to provide church in a new way.

“Most people that come to ours [church] wouldn’t touch a traditional church with a barge pole,” he said.

So he has made Urbanlife as unchurch-like as possible. Their website backs it up. “Urban life is a community of faith with no religious rites, rituals or man-made rules to trip you up,” it states.

But that doesn’t mean they don’t subscribe to any theology, even though the hour-long service doesn’t follow much of an order of worship. It’s simple, with Jenkins preaching a short message and then breaking the 20 or so attendees into small groups to talk, and later return as a large group to discuss what they talked about.


Since Jenkins is a former firefighter, he said his message this past Sunday tied in with the basic principles of fire. To have a fire you need three sides to a triangle: oxygen, heat and fuel. In his message, he compared the Christian life to a triangle, with fuel being the connection to God, oxygen being the connection to other believers and heat what we display to others outside the church.

After the service, people stick around and have a drink at the bar. Jenkins said this is where the real ministry takes place. People want to talk about their faith and their doubts. He likens it to his experiences with local pubs back in England and says he wants to create an atmosphere like it in San Jose. The local pub is “the hub of the community, where people feel comfortable.”

Jenkins was ordained in the Baptist Church in England, and then later, when he moved to the United States, he was ordained at an independent Christian church in South Valley, San Jose. He says Urbanlife church subscribes to the Nicene Creed and the Lausanne Covenant, but he would characterize them as evangelical with a “small e.”

Even though this past Sunday was only the fledgling church’s fifth Sunday, they have already become active in two different ministries around the area. Jenkins doesn’t want to become “another Christian country club.” He said he wants to focus heavily on discipleship with his members.

“Come on,” he said to this reporter, who offered to visit the unconventional church if in the area, “I’ll buy you a pint.”

http://www.christianpost.com/news/california-church-preaches-gospel-at-the-bar-beer-replaces-coffee-59980/


Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 03, 2011, 10:05:46 pm
1Co 6:9  Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
1Co 6:10  Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

1Co 5:11  But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat
.



Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: Kilika on November 04, 2011, 06:42:39 am
No words are more true BA. Thank you Jesus.

I think one of the obvious questions one should ask, is what this guy is advocating doctrinally sound?

Short answer, in my opinion, yes. Jesus did the exact same thing. Was He drinking alcohol when sitting at meat with publicans and sinners? Don't know, but even if He did, it would have been in moderation and not as a drunkard, be it beer or wine.

Believers meet wherever they meet. It's not about the place they meet, but what they do when they meet, which is fellowship. Part of this discussion I think includes...

18   For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it. 
19   For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you. 
20   When ye come together therefore into one place, [this] is not to eat the Lord's supper. 
21   For in eating every one taketh before [other] his own supper: and one is hungry, and another is drunken. 
22   What? have ye not houses to eat and to drink in? or despise ye the church of God, and shame them that have not? What shall I say to you? shall I praise you in this? I praise [you] not. 
23 ¶ For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the [same] night in which he was betrayed took bread: 
24   And when he had given thanks, he brake [it], and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. 
25   After the same manner also [he took] the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink [it], in remembrance of me. 
26   For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come. 
27 ¶ Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink [this] cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. 
28   But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of [that] bread, and drink of [that] cup. 
29   For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. 
30   For this cause many [are] weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. 
31   For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. 
32   But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. 
33   Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another. 
34   And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come. 
1 Corinthians 11:18-34 (KJB)


Thank you Jesus.

And notice verse 32. Is that not proof salvation cannot be lost? What father doesn't chasten their child? Though the kid acts up, they are still a son.

"And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together." Romans 8:17 (KJB)


Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: akfools on November 05, 2011, 03:25:12 pm
Nigeria: 'Church' Promises Free Alcohol, Cigarettes, Funky Music
    

IT will be a rare spectacle this Friday, November 4, when a Christian ministry devoted to the conversion of people considered as gross sinners holds its "Guys Night" in Lagos.

Smoking, drinking of alcohol and dancing to immoral music - all of which are considered sin by much of Christendom - will not only be tolerated at the event but would indeed by actively supported by the organisers.

'At the show, booze will be free and cigarette free too; even food will be served freely while music of all kinds will also be played. There will also be other side attractions such as drinking competition, dancing competition, eating competition, fashion parade and testimony night,' said Lizzy Mbanaso, the founder and head of a Christian ministry known as Nice Time Club.

'People that are expected are the drunkards, prostitutes, drug addicts and all those that are considered to be wayward because God told me He cares for these set of people,' she added.

Providing further details of the programme, Evangelist Mbanaso said: 'When they come, we will spice it up with drama, concert and talk shows. They will feel at home and enjoy themselves before we now chip in the word of God. At the end we will do alter call after which we hand them over to church pastors who will further counsel them on how to follow the Christian life.'

The event is scheduled to hold at hospitality facility on Ekoro road in the Abule Egba area of Lagos.

It is Evangelist Mbanaso's wish that some of the expected converts would be drafted to the Living Faith Church (Winners Church), where she worships while in Lagos.

'But my problem is that you can't force them to attend certain churches,' she said.

She also spoke of 'several attempts' she had made to speak with the Winners General Overseer, Bishop David Oyedepo, on the project but disclosed that she 'has not been given audience yet.'

Originally from Cameroun and a secretary by profession, Evangelist Mbanaso is married to an Abia man from Umuahia.

She started her unusual Christian ministry in 2008 but is holding it in Lagos for the first time.

The woman who professes to becoming a born-again Christain in 1994 as a Secretarial Administration student of the Oko Federal Polytechnic, Oko, Anambra State, says she got a divine revelation to start the ministry during a journey from Lagos to her base in Umuahia, while returning from a Christian programme.

Her words: 'I decided to preach in the bus I entered. As I was ministering, I decided to have a short prayer and in that spiritual session, a tiny voice said to me that I should open a nightclub.

'I was surprised because I didn't know anything about club and I have never gone to club before.

'As I was wondering on what to do, that same voice said again that I should do it for the drunkards, drug addicts, prostitutes and those considered to be wayward.

'It further said, "Just gather them together, give them what they want and allow them to feel free, play music after which food and beer would be served." '

Mrs Mbanaso believes that, that tiny sonorous voice belongs to God Almighty and to further fulfil this mandate, the secretary turned evangelist started out in 2008 to host prostitutes, drunkards, smokers and drug addicts in Abia State.

Many men of God and some close associates have tried to dissuade Mrs. Mbanaso from this project but she has forged ahead with it out of the conviction that her commission is directly from God.

Asked whether she has plans to open a formal nightclub in the future, the evangelist said: 'It will not necessarily be a nightclub but it will be something like a drinking joint where people will be allowed to drink and also listen to the word of God through the television and audio tapes.

At times I will give these drinks out for free say ones in a week.

'This is because, I know quite well that beer is not the worst sin; there are many other sins.

'In the process the ones that give their life to Christ will be taken to church. When they settle down in the church, I will help them by making sure I impact some of the skills which I have already acquired such as hairdressing, fashion, catering amongst others.'

Born and wedded in the Methodist Church, Mrs. Mbanaso has soft spot for people who are in one bad habit or the other.

Most of her friends are some of the notorious sinners whom she converted.

'The people I am close to are wayward people. I have soft spot for wayward people. My closest friend today is a drug addict who I converted to become a Christian,' she said.

Narrating how she makes contacts with drug addicts, smokers and prostitutes, the only daughter in a family of five from her mother in a polygamous family said that most times she goes out of her way to seek them out.

'At times, I dress and paint well like a prostitute and just walk into the hotel and stay with them. At times I use the media too to reach out to them.

'Before I go make sure that inform my husband so that he would be aware. Thank God I have a wonderful husband who understands and supports me,' she told The Moment On Sunday.

The evangelist said that from her interactions with prostitutes, she has noticed that most of them are not there because they want to but because of circumstances.
Relevant Links

   
'Because we are born-again does not mean that we are better. So nobody should just sit down here and be condemning them. It is just God's grace.

'Most of the men of God today were just like that and somebody has not spoken to them, they will not be saved. These prostitutes always have challenges that took them there,' she stated.

Mrs. Mbanaso said that when prostitutes become born-again, they make great preachers because they have seen it all.

She also declared that nobody that is bad really desires to be bad, adding that Nigerians should form the habit of bringing them closer to themselves so as to make them have hope.

'When we do this, this crime that we are talking about in this country will be reduced to the barest minimum.

'Let us help ourselves and let Nigeria encourage these set of people and make sure that they come back to life,' she stated.

http://allafrica.com/stories/201110300012.html


Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: Mark on November 11, 2011, 01:29:16 pm
Swedish Lutheran church hosts 'techno Mass'

Churchgoers aren't expecting quiet meditation when they enter the Church of All Saints in Stockholm. Instead, they'll be raving to strobe-lit techno sounds.

This is no cosmic sect, but the latest effort by Sweden's Lutheran church to attract young congregations in a country where church attendance has been dwindling for decades.

Olle Idestrom is organizing Friday's "techno Mass" service for the second time. The 28-year-old priest says the feedback has mainly been positive.

And it seems to work. Unlike at traditional Sunday services where several pews remain empty, Idestrom had to turn away techno Mass worshippers a week ago.

http://www.wandtv.com/story/16018338/swedish-lutheran-church-hosts-techno-mass


Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: akfools on November 12, 2011, 07:29:52 pm
Swedish Lutheran church hosts 'techno Mass'


    Churchgoers dance in the pews during a techno Mass at the Church of All Saints in Stockholm, Sweden, Friday Nov. 11 2011. Rev. Olle Idestrom, not shown, organized the techno Mass for the second time and has been forced to turn away worshippers from the full church. It is the church's latest attempt at attracting young congregations in a country where attendance at services has been dwindling for decades.

STOCKHOLM (AP) — Simon Klemenjak does some street dance moves and throws his hands up in the air to cheer on the crowd before he starts singing to the techno beat in front of the altar in the Church of All Saints in Stockholm.

Instead of praying silently and singing gentle hymns, the congregation inside raves to techno sounds in ultraviolet lighting at Friday's "techno Mass" — more like a disco at a youth center than a service conducted by the Lutheran church.

"It was an awesome feeling," an ecstatic Klemenjak, 21, said after his performance of the song "Never Leave Me", which has been independently composed by youth at the church in Swedish capital's hip Sodermalm district.

It is the church's latest attempt at attracting young congregations in a country where attendance at services has been dwindling for decades.

Olle Idestrom organized the Mass for the second time, and says the feedback has mainly been positive.

"There is already a hip hop Mass, there is a rock Mass and a jazz Mass," the 28-year-old priest said. "But it is mainly club music that we listen to and that we like dancing to, so it felt like a natural choice."

And it seems to work.

Unlike at traditional Sunday services in Sweden where several pews regularly remain empty, Idestrom had to turn away worshippers at the first techno Mass in April.

There was extra seating Friday night at the church, which has a normal capacity of 400.

The service started with organ music and choir singing but soon broke into powerful techno beats to loud approving claps, shouts and cheers. People jumped up and danced at their seats while disco lights swirled over the ornamented wooden ceilings.

"It was superfun, it was really kicking, I didn't think it would be this good before I came," said Ella Schwarz, 15. "The church isn't really my kind of thing, but after this it seems like it is great," she said.

Lawyer Caterine Hogman, 46, says she was impressed with the arrangement and thinks it is good the church does something positive for young people.

Over the past 10 years, membership in Sweden's Lutheran church has fallen 13 percent and attendance at regular Sunday services plunged 50 percent to 4.6 million visits last year, worrying the clergy.

The church in Sweden has become increasingly progressive.

In 1958, it allowed its first female priests, and two years ago ordained its first openly gay bishop, Eva Brunne, and gave priests the right to wed same-sex couples.

Idestrom says his modern Mass is a further development on the road of progress.

"People say this is exactly what the Church of Sweden needs," he said. "We need to develop the services so that we have a service also for people, mainly from the younger generation, who like this kind of music."

But not everyone is happy about the development.

"There are more than enough entertainment halls in the city to cover all tastes. Let the church remain a place for quiet contact with spirituality," said Dan Kareliusson, a representative of the nationalist Sweden Democrats party.

Par Sandberg, a spokesman for the Stockholm diocese, says congregations manage their activities independently and attitudes vary greatly within the Church of Sweden.

"We are a democratic people's church, it is a little different from the Catholic Church for example, where they might have a different set of rules," Sandberg said.

"There are those who maybe wouldn't organize a techno Mass, but on the other hand we have churches that organize something called desert Mass ... characterized by the Coptic tradition," he said. "There are churches who have U2 Masses, where they play music by U2, some have animals — horses and dogs and donkeys — and we have motor cycle Masses."

http://news.yahoo.com/swedish-lutheran-church-hosts-techno-mass-173343364.html


Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: seekingtheanswers on November 12, 2011, 10:55:28 pm
sheesh we're supposed to be seperate. :-\
i wont be surprised if they installed stripper poles in there


Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: Mark on November 13, 2011, 07:04:50 am
sheesh we're supposed to be seperate. :-\
i wont be surprised if they installed stripper poles in there


Christians Pole Dance for Jesus in Texas
http://endtimesandcurrentevents.freesmfhosting.com/index.php/topic,1171.0.html



Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: akfools on November 14, 2011, 04:43:25 pm
In Inver Grove Heights, a church for those who never liked church

The pastor preaches in designer jeans and skateboarding shoes.

He tweets links to his blog and chats with churchgoers on Facebook.

As members walk into the movie theater or auditorium for services, the pastor and his wife are in the front row, singing along and pumping their fists to loud pop music, played by a live band featuring electric guitars.

Suburban megachurches, move over. There's a hipper game in town.

"We know a lot of people have left their mainline churches because it's boring," said Tory Farina, 31, lead pastor at High Point Church in Inver Grove Heights. "They felt they were forced to go. We want them to love it....Our Sunday services feel like a concert."

High Point, which currently meets in an Inver Grove Heights movie theater, is a small portion of an exploding religious movement in the Twin Cities and nationally.

More than 4,200 people attended services at four campuses of Apple Valley-based River Valley Church last Sunday. It is the 17th-fastest-growing church in the nation, according to rankings compiled by Outreach Magazine.

Roseville-based Substance Church, started with help from River Valley, has gone from 30 college students in 2006 to almost 2,500 people attending worship services last weekend. And 70 percent of those people are younger than 30.

The churches are designed to reach the next generation, but their success is what's getting the attention of some more traditional church leadership.

"Religious leaders are
very worried about how they're going to attract that generation," said Penny Edgell, sociology professor at the University of Minnesota. "Any group that gets that generation will have done something that will have transformed the American religious scene."

THE UNCHURCHED GENERATION

One in four members of the "millennial" generation, which includes people born after 1980, are unaffiliated with any particular faith, according to a 2010 Pew Research Center study.

That compares with 20 percent of Generation X members at the same age. The percentages were much lower for previous generations.

However, millennials still pray, possibly even at a higher rate than the previous generation. Forty-five percent of those under 30 surveyed by Pew said they prayed daily, compared with 40 percent of the same age range in the 1990s.

"Research shows this generation is interested in spiritual things," Edgell said. "They just don't seem to like organized religion."

That's why 11 years ago, six pastors in the southeast United States decided to help other, like-minded clergy start Christian churches that could draw a new generation. Since then, the group has helped "plant" more than 200 churches in the U.S., including High Point and Substance.

The churches generally follow a formula for service, which includes a contemporary rock band and a sermon that feels more like chatting with a buddy. The churches meet anywhere, usually leasing auditoriums or theaters from local performing-arts groups or colleges. They have slick websites, complete with highly produced videos, often set to rock music.

"One of our basic missions is attracting the unchurched," said Michael W. Smith, executive director of the Association of Related Churches. "We are creating a service where the unchurched can feel comfortable and hear a message they can relate to. Weekend messages are often centered on a topic rather than a verse of the Bible."

There's a buzzword among ARC members: "Relevant."

Their service is relevant, pastors say, referring to rock music. The message is relevant, with sermons that are peppered with funny videos, often made by an in-house creative arts team. Pastors preach about marriages, raising young children and the power of positive thinking, and young, energetic clergy use examples from their own lives.

Even the dress code is relevant. Worshippers show up in shorts, flip-flops, even ball caps.

But, ARC officials are quick to point out, their pastors are ordained with the Assemblies of God, a more traditional Pentecostal denomination.

The message still focuses on Christ.

"The doctrine is the same, but the method has changed," Substance church Pastor Peter Haas said. Substance has
Corinne Skellenger of St. Paul praises the Lord during Sunday morning worship service at High Point Chrch in Inver Grove Heights, on November 6, 2011. (Pioneer Press: Scott Takushi)
grown so quickly, its Saturday night service is basically Haas, 36, recording a video message to play at four of seven Sunday services.

"I physically could not preach at all the campuses," Haas said. "But the funny thing is, people love it. It's church outside of the box."

About a half-dozen ARC churches are now among the fastest-growing and largest congregations in the country, members say.

'FREER TO REALLY WORSHIP'

On a recent Sunday in the Inver Grove Heights AMC movie theater, Terry and Jessica Pearson welcome worshippers at High Point Church with handshakes and smiles.

The couple, aged 30 and 29 respectively, are stationed in front of three tall, tastefully designed screens that read "Find Your Place," "Develop Your Faith," and "Live Your Potential."

Farina, the pastor, mills around the doughnut-munching, Caribou coffee-sipping crowd, outfitted with a slim, white microphone that fits behind his ear. Dressed in an untucked cowboy shirt with pearly buttons, carefully faded jeans and slick leather shoes, Farina is relaxed, making small-talk and mingling like he's at a house party.

His wife, Elizabeth Farina, a petite brunette, wears skinny jeans, brown knee-high boots, a teal cowl-neck top and gold medallion earrings. She, too, bustles from group to group, flashing a toothy smile. A few minutes after the appointed start time of the service, the pair enters the auditorium filled with members standing, dancing and crooning along with the band.

The Farinas take their place in the front row, punching the air with their fists and singing along as a guitarist plucks a turquoise-and-white Stratocaster alongside two keyboardists, another guitarist, a bassist and a drummer. The stage is outfitted with 10-foot white polka-dot screens. Not a crucifix or candle is in sight.

A few songs later, band members take their seats in the audience and announcements are made. Elizabeth Farina implores the crowd to help support the church's move to a new building in Eagan, likening giving to bargain shopping.

After a comedic video introduction, Tory Farina takes the stage and launches into a talk about toxic thoughts. He uses the popular book, "Eat This, Not That," to make his point, imploring his flock to "think this, not that."

About 125 audience members chuckle along, rapt with attention. He keeps it short, about 20 minutes, then encourages guests to pray with pastors stationed in the aisles. A few do.

Tearful members return to their seats, the band plays another song and that's it. The service is over.

"It means a lot more than going to anyplace we went before," Nancy Olson-Engebreth said, wiping tears from her eyes. "I just feel freer in service to really worship. It's a unique and refreshing outlook as to what church can be."

Olson-Engebreth said she and her husband, John Engebreth, previously attended traditional Christian churches. She explained why talking about High Point makes her so emotional:

"It's just, having always gone to church, but never having this feeling," she said. "It's different."

"But good different," her husband added.

BOUNDLESS GROWTH

Church "planting" isn't new. Baptists have been starting new, small local churches and letting them grow for decades.

In addition, the Emergent church movement began practicing alternative worship methods, including contemporary music and video sermons, before ARC came along.

ARC churches marry the two ideas, adding their own spin aimed specifically at millennials. But the group provides something more important than guidance: cash.

"We say, 'Let us help you on the front end,' " the ARC's Smith said. "It costs anywhere from $80,000 to $100,000 to start a church. We help them with the goal of becoming a self-sustaining church. We resource them so they are not alone. They start off stronger."

About 93 percent of ARC churches are going strong five years after they began. Smith said the national average for a new church lasting five years is between 20 percent and 40 percent.

Once a church is self-sustaining, it is expected to give back to the organization to help start more churches.

Pastor Rob Ketterling started River Valley Church in Apple Valley 16 years ago with a Bible study group in his living room.

Ketterling, 46, joined ARC shortly after its inception.

"It was one of those things that guys like myself around the nation said: 'We were doing it the hard way. Let's give them a financial start,' " Ketterling said.

River Valley now has four campuses, and more than 4,000 people attend Sunday services.

Their rock band writes its own music and recently released a CD that hit the Billboard chart.

The church's growth, Ketterling said, is boundless.

Ketterling has guided Substance and High Point, giving them a solid start and remaining as an adviser. He recently helped two pastors start a church in Northfield, called Canvas.

But he's looking even further. A couple of pastors in Valencia, Spain, have been replicating the River Valley model for three years. River Valley, he said, recently made the decision to help fund the church.

"There will be a River Valley in Valencia, Spain," Ketterling said.

Two of River Valley's campuses are church buildings given to them by dying traditional congregations.

One, in Faribault, had 40 members when the church gave its million-dollar building to River Valley. The building now swells with 400 guests on Sunday mornings.

In Minnetrista, the church was down to 12 people. Now, 200 attend.

Ketterling said it wasn't surprising that the churches decided to give away their infrastructure.

"It's like, you're an organ donor," he said. "In the event that you're dying, you're willing to give everything you have so someone else can live."


http://www.twincities.com/ci_19317332?source=most_viewed


Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 14, 2011, 05:09:43 pm
Yeah, these churches seem to just popping up all over the place.

At the local mall in my area, there's one of these so-called "churches" in the mall, where this church rents space from the movie theater inside. It was last year, I think, when they first started, and I met 2 of the people who were advertising the church in front. They looked like your typical, ordinary-looking, average-joe, plain-jain hillbilies, so things seemed to be OK at first. They talked about preaching truth, etc. And at one time we were on the same page when we ended up talking about the heresies of the NIV(!). However, once they said they read the NEW King James, red flags started popping up. No, I don't want to make a bible version issue in this thread, but for these people to see the heresies of the NIV, I was very surprised they embraced the New KJV.

Anyhow, as time went on, I would pass by to look in the room from the outside every time I was at the mall. Pretty much typical corporate marketing/ear-tickling/Emergent kind of stuff. No mention of the blood atonement of Jesus Christ at Calvary in their advertisements at all. And pretty much promotes "community". And yes, they do say how they "started off as a bible study in a home".

Seriously, if these home churches had any discernment, they wouldn't be going farther than outside of their home, much less invest alot of $$ into renting space at a mall(which is VERY expensive). Pt being that sometimes I wonder if these churches like mentioned in the OP that are just popping up everywhere and out of nowhere are being funded by the Illuminati. Yeah, when that church advertised themselves when they opened last year(the one in the mall in my area, that is), they sure were pretty clever in putting a couple of average joe/plain jane hillbilies to greet everyone. They sure fooled me.


Title: Re: Apostacy
Post by: Kilika on November 15, 2011, 04:07:59 am
Quote
But, ARC officials are quick to point out, their pastors are ordained with the Assemblies of God, a more traditional Pentecostal denomination.

And THAT is their problem! Churchianity by any theological color is still churchianity.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 02:52:44 am
Church Flash Mob FAIL

Relevance fail. Flash Mob fail. This church self-help center needs to jettison the cheesy and badly executed attempts at relevance and do what Christ has called the church to do, proclaim repentance and the forgiveness of sins in Jesus name.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYEClqF9cw0&feature=player_embedded


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 02:54:00 am
Northpoint Thriller?

We're beginning to wonder if Seeker churches are places for people without talent to pretend that they're TV stars so that they can have the pseudo-experience of living out their Hollywood dreams.

One thing is certain, these churches are like a perpetual never ending Jr. High drama production...A VERY EXPENSIVE perpetual never ending Jr. High drama production.

Why do we say they're expensive? Because the cost of admission to these churches is 10% of your gross income (a.k.a. the tithe). Ask yourself this question, if you make $60,000 per year is it worth $6,000 for you to sit through these 3rd rate Jr. high level drama productions followed by a self-help pop-psych pep-talk with 4 to 5 Bible verses ripped from context? Does God really expect you to sacrifice 10% of your income to support this?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=kX1Sjajl550


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 02:55:11 am
Blessing Zone?

Is there any doubt left that the seeker-driven pastors are teaching a different religion? This isn't Biblical teaching. This is something completely foreign to the Historic Biblical Christian Faith.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=6rKHMsY18Xo


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 02:56:11 am
Ozzy Osbourne's Crazy Train at NewSpring Florence

"Praise and Worship" time has hit a new low thanks to Perry Noble and the "praise" band at his Florence multi-site.

Here's video of Ozzy Osbourne's Crazy Train being performed in a "church" service.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=ppAUR-UEOnM


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 02:57:48 am
Are Magic Circles Being Taught by Zondervan & Mark Batterson??

Watch this video and ask yourself a few questions:

Why would Zondervan, a Christian publishing company, be publishing a book and small group curriculum based on a story from the Jewish Mishnah?

What exactly is the difference between what Batterson and Zondervan are promoting and a Magic Circle?

Where does the Bible teach us to employ "Prayer Circles"?

Where does the Bible teach us that if we employ Prayer Circles that God will multiply miracles to us?


http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=_fEcMtG7lxA


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 02:59:49 am
Move Over Worship Time, The Monsters are Coming to Getcha

Does anybody remember that not too long ago people would spend time in church praising and worshiping the LORD? Now, church has become a place where your up and coming starlet can get some much needed 'stage time'. Don't worry we're sure that God understands how important it is for your daughter to get some practice under her belt before next year's American Idol auditions. From the sound of it, she really needs it.

Thanks again goes to Circus by the Glades for yet another relevant exhibit here in the Museum of Idolatry.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=p0-P_yUS9RU


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:01:03 am
Gilligan's Island- St. Andrew's United Methodist Church Omaha

This doesn't make Christianity more relevant but less relevant! And it ruins Gilligan's Island, which was already bad enough.

This will not attract people to church but will drive them away!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=97pGpNySI7U&feature=player_embedded


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:03:34 am
Circus Church...Literally

Church Circus by the Glades performs a sermon series to thrill and entertain.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hBVXe02S2kU&feature=player_embedded

(http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6145/6208325926_571d11e181.jpg)

http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6004/6207821653_9599689d6d.jpg

(http://farm7.static.flickr.com/6003/6207814279_8d14b28ac0.jpg)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:04:41 am
Love Your Unsaved Neighbor by Beating the Snot Out of Him!

Nothing quite captures the love that Jesus has for the world like a Mix Martial Arts smack down in your church's parking lot.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51MhplShvEM&feature=player_embedded


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:06:02 am
Holy Rollers-The True Story of Card Counting Christians

Maybe these guys can use their winnings to open a Christian Strip Club?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=i3s4o6gAQRk


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:07:26 am
Naked Old Church Men Calender

In the famous words of Gollum, "It burns us!"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7FX7AdAIxcY


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:09:05 am

The Real Talladega Nights Prayer


Really?!?!?!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=J74y88YuSJ8


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:09:57 am
Sympathy for the Devil???

This was performed in Northpoint Church Adult Youth Group, Springfield, MO on Easter Sunday, 2011.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Dz7hYUjoPzQ


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:10:48 am
Flash Eucharist??

You've heard of Flash Mobs, well here we have a Flash Eucharist.

There is only ONE word for this: Blasphemy

These liberal, gay affirming "clergy" may want to consider what scripture says regarding the Eucharist:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=XHY4K6Tr_EA


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:11:49 am
More Communion Blasphemy

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=nK8avF2t6UY


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:12:58 am
Sexpirament???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=YMCWEdHbPd4


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:18:50 am
I'm Jesus, Riverland man says

A COUPLE who say they are Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene have set up base in Queensland's Bible Belt. Story Here.

http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/south-australia/im-jesus-riverland-man-says/story-e6frea83-1226055976446

(http://crosebrough.typepad.com/.a/6a00e54eea61298833014e888346a7970d-500wi)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:23:54 am
F'd Up Sermon Series??

Brickcity Community Church's pastor thinks this is an appropriate way to market their church.

http://www.bccwired.com/

(http://crosebrough.typepad.com/.a/6a00e54eea61298833014e601a6fe2970c-500wi)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:43:39 am
Jesus Will Cure Your Lame Sex Life?
(http://crosebrough.typepad.com/.a/6a00e54eea612988330133f2978719970b-popup)

Talk about sermon leftovers! Cornerstone Christian Fellowship in Chandler, AZ is hopping back on this tired old band wagon. These types of sermon series were all the rage in the Purpose-Driven scene back in 2007. What are they thinking? How can Cornerstone stay relevant if all they're doing is the same things they've already done? This should be named "My Church's Lame Sermon Series". But, since they're really going through with this we thought we save a few of their artifacts and exhibit them here at the Museum of Idolatry.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nOjO-rtJZ4s&feature=player_embedded

The website put up by Cornerstone, MyLameSex.com actually promises that God will help people improve their lame sex lives. Seriously, has Jesus now become the Dr. Ruth of religious leaders? If people's sex lives don't improve with the help of Jesus can folks at Cornerstone get there tithe money back? Here's the quote from the site:

    "Is your sex life what you hoped it would be? Does something inside of you believe it could be better? And is better ultimately about a new technique or the latest lotion?

    Is it possible that what we don’t know about sex itself (about how men and women are wired), is actually what we really keep stumbling over? Is it possible that the one who created sex would actually have some insights into sex?

    Surprisingly, God is pro sex and wants us to have an exciting and deeply fulfilling sex life. The problem is that most of us only experience a second rate imitation of what God intended it to be!

    Would you be willing to keep an open mind and open heart while we have a conversation? All you have to lose is your lame sex life.

This is what happens when churches think that preaching the gospel, the good news of Christ's substitionary death on the cross for our sins is not enough, so they feel like they have to spice up the message by adding some more exciting worldly elements to the message. The message of the cross doesn't need sex added to it to make it more appealing. Furthermore, Jesus NEVER promised that if you believe in Him that the sex in your marriage will improve. In fact, believing in Jesus has caused many marriages to fail.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:45:46 am
Cathedral of Hope in Dallas says it will host 'gay Jesus' play

More information on this abomination is available by clicking here.

http://religionblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2010/04/cathedral-of-hope-in-dallas-sa.html

(http://crosebrough.typepad.com/.a/6a00e54eea612988330133ecd201b7970b-500wi)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:47:00 am
Safe Sex the Sermon Series!?!?

Billed as, "Biblical Protection for Maximum Pleasure" this sermon series ought to be a hit with the pagans. Thanks Church on the Journey for taking church marketing to a new low.

(http://crosebrough.typepad.com/.a/6a00e54eea61298833014e60e893ff970c-800wi)

Oh and here's the best part. This is what is on the other side of this post card mailer. That's quite a mixed message! Would you bring your child to an Easter Egg hunt advertised with Safe Sex?

(http://crosebrough.typepad.com/.a/6a00e54eea61298833014e60eb9b55970c-800wi)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 03:49:05 am
Low Flying Cherubim?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7u-eoR2wK9I&feature=player_embedded


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on November 25, 2011, 05:32:38 am
 :o wow, good job Rick Warren. Im sure your master the Devil is well pleased.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: akfools on November 25, 2011, 02:48:49 pm
Sexperiment Locations

http://vimeo.com/32600533


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on January 17, 2012, 07:26:49 pm

Rick Santorum's evangelical endorsement: Was the voting rigged?
http://news.yahoo.com/rick-santorums-evangelical-endorsement-voting-rigged-124100306.html

Religious conservatives get together hoping to form a united front against the moderate Mitt Romney — and instead, wind up embroiled in a "civil war"

Rick Santorum got a potentially important boost over the weekend when a prominent group of evangelical Christian leaders voted to join ranks and back the ex-senator's presidential campaign. But Santorum might not benefit as much as he would like. The endorsement has become tainted by controversy, with religious conservatives who support Newt Gingrich charging that the vote was rigged. So instead of presenting a united front, says Ralph Z. Hallow in The Washington Times, the meeting touched off a what some evangelicals are calling a "civil war." Here's what you need to know:

What was this gathering all about?
After Mitt Romney swept Iowa and New Hampshire, a group of more than 100 influential evangelical leaders got together for an emergency meeting in Texas to discuss the race for the Republican presidential nomination. According to Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, a "supermajority" decided to back Santorum, a staunchly anti-abortion Catholic, in the hope that a unified evangelical vote could help derail Romney and result in the nomination of a more reliable conservative.

So why the controversy?
Several religious conservatives who attended the meeting said there was no consensus to back Santorum. One participant — Bush administration evangelical-outreach official Doug Wead, a Ron Paul supporter — said the event was nothing more than a pro-Santorum stunt. "The organizer was for Santorum, the person who created the invitation list was for Santorum, the emcee was for Santorum," Wead said. Gingrich supporters said the vote had been "manipulated," and one participant even accused Santorum supporters of ballot stuffing.

Do Gingrich's supporters have a legitimate complaint?
"This wasn't a clean sweep by Santorum," says David Brody at CBN.com. "Gingrich clearly had evangelical support in the room," so his backers have every right to point out that evangelical leaders aren't endorsing Santorum with one voice. It doesn't matter which candidate evangelicals back anyway, says Steve Benen at Washington Monthly. This emergency anti-Romney scheming is "almost certainly too late to make a difference." And now, with all this in-fighting, evangelicals are probably giving a boost to Romney, rather than Santorum.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on January 21, 2012, 06:13:11 pm
Whatever happened to choosing KING JESUS CHRIST? >:(

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/evangelical-dilemma-south-carolina-adulterer-mormon-192225610.html

1/20/12

The evangelical dilemma in South Carolina: adulterer or Mormon?

For South Carolina conservatives, especially evangelical Christians, the 2012 campaign season is the year of magical rethinking. Look at the frontrunners:
 
If you want a president with a legacy of marital fidelity, you're going to have to work around Newt Gingrich's adultery.
 
If you believe that Mormons don't really qualify as Christian, you may find yourself struggling with Mitt Romney.
 
Of course, there's also Rick Santorum and Ron Paul. Then you just have to convince yourself either man can win; the probability fluctuates from week to week.
 
It's a schism that can be seen all over the state. I've seen it among my own kin, spread across the Carolinas and Tennessee, where certain ones among them have begun weighing the possibility that while the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is indeed a cult, maybe some Mormons can be Christians, and maybe the former Governor of Massachusetts is such a person.
 
Besides, what's the alternative? Four more years of The Barack and Michelle Show? Christian, please...
 

This is about as close to compromise as you can get in a family with deep roots in old-time religion and limited government, and which holds a general all-round disdain for Democrats in high office. Just last month, in fact, my Chattanooga cousin-in-law published a postmodern political treatise titled "Everything Obama Knows About the Economy." It consists of 150 blank pieces of paper, and proved to be quite the stocking stuffer.
 
The book's thesis would have no doubt resonated among the Republicans gathered in late December at Newt Gingrich's Town Hall rally at the Blue Marlin Restaurant in Columbia. But even here there was disagreement over just what to do about re-occupying the White House.
 
"I think it's ironic so many Christians want an adulterer to run the country," said college student Carl Maass, one of two protestors standing outside the roped-off area, holding a handmade sign that said "No Fat Cat Zone."
 
But for those eating shrimp and grits under the tents, this is no time for purism.
 
"When you start looking for perfection in a candidate, you don't have a candidate," said Karen Ruff. "You give it to Obama. And Newt has been very upfront about acknowledging he has made mistakes in the past. He's had to ask forgiveness for some things." (Not that that hasn't made him incredibly defensive about his mistakes, as witnessed during Thursday night's debate.)
 
The bigger question, given Romney's current vulnerability in the South Carolina primary, is whether a Mormon can ever gain traction in such an evangelical-heavy state. Will Folks, who made national headlines in 2010 when he became the first of two men to claim to have had an affair with married gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley, is skeptical. (Haley denied both accounts, went on to become the state's first female governor and recently endorsed Mitt Romney. The governor has since become a standard target on Folks' political blog.)
 
Haley was raised Sikh, a non-Abrahamic religion founded in the Punjab region, but now identifies as Christian she successfully weathered scrutiny of her conversion during her own election. Could Haley's circumstance mean an easier path Romney? Is it possible that his Mormon background ultimately will not be a factor among South Carolina evangelical conservatives?
 
"The question is, does that segment of the GOP carry the same clout that it once did?" Folks said over coffee. "For example, in 2000, I don't think a Mormon candidate would have even bothered to campaign in South Carolina, because it was the zenith of the Christian coalition. They have fallen off the map in subsequent elections. That Bible-thumping segment of the Republican electorate probably reached its nadir in the 2010 cycle."
 
Randy Page, an evangelical Christian, said the vast majority of Republicans will line up behind the nominee for obvious reasons. Giving the power of appointments and the bully pulpit back "to Obama and the liberal Democrats is not somewhere they want to go," he said.

Romney rolled into the state with a comfortable lead, but Gingrich's fiery performance in Thursday night's debate may push him to the win. The primary is upon us. As the song from the Broadway hit The Book of Mormon puts it, the only latter day is tomorrow.
 
Rodney Welch is a writer in South Carolina. He reviews books for the Free-Times in Columbia, S.C..


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on January 22, 2012, 06:52:21 am
Whatever happened to choosing KING JESUS CHRIST? >:(

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/evangelical-dilemma-south-carolina-adulterer-mormon-192225610.html

1/20/12

The evangelical dilemma in South Carolina: adulterer or Mormon?

For South Carolina conservatives, especially evangelical Christians, the 2012 campaign season is the year of magical rethinking. Look at the frontrunners:
 
If you want a president with a legacy of marital fidelity, you're going to have to work around Newt Gingrich's adultery.
 
If you believe that Mormons don't really qualify as Christian, you may find yourself struggling with Mitt Romney.
 
Of course, there's also Rick Santorum and Ron Paul. Then you just have to convince yourself either man can win; the probability fluctuates from week to week.
 
It's a schism that can be seen all over the state. I've seen it among my own kin, spread across the Carolinas and Tennessee, where certain ones among them have begun weighing the possibility that while the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is indeed a cult, maybe some Mormons can be Christians, and maybe the former Governor of Massachusetts is such a person.
 
Besides, what's the alternative? Four more years of The Barack and Michelle Show? Christian, please...
 

This is about as close to compromise as you can get in a family with deep roots in old-time religion and limited government, and which holds a general all-round disdain for Democrats in high office. Just last month, in fact, my Chattanooga cousin-in-law published a postmodern political treatise titled "Everything Obama Knows About the Economy." It consists of 150 blank pieces of paper, and proved to be quite the stocking stuffer.
 
The book's thesis would have no doubt resonated among the Republicans gathered in late December at Newt Gingrich's Town Hall rally at the Blue Marlin Restaurant in Columbia. But even here there was disagreement over just what to do about re-occupying the White House.
 
"I think it's ironic so many Christians want an adulterer to run the country," said college student Carl Maass, one of two protestors standing outside the roped-off area, holding a handmade sign that said "No Fat Cat Zone."
 
But for those eating shrimp and grits under the tents, this is no time for purism.
 
"When you start looking for perfection in a candidate, you don't have a candidate," said Karen Ruff. "You give it to Obama. And Newt has been very upfront about acknowledging he has made mistakes in the past. He's had to ask forgiveness for some things." (Not that that hasn't made him incredibly defensive about his mistakes, as witnessed during Thursday night's debate.)
 
The bigger question, given Romney's current vulnerability in the South Carolina primary, is whether a Mormon can ever gain traction in such an evangelical-heavy state. Will Folks, who made national headlines in 2010 when he became the first of two men to claim to have had an affair with married gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley, is skeptical. (Haley denied both accounts, went on to become the state's first female governor and recently endorsed Mitt Romney. The governor has since become a standard target on Folks' political blog.)
 
Haley was raised Sikh, a non-Abrahamic religion founded in the Punjab region, but now identifies as Christian she successfully weathered scrutiny of her conversion during her own election. Could Haley's circumstance mean an easier path Romney? Is it possible that his Mormon background ultimately will not be a factor among South Carolina evangelical conservatives?
 
"The question is, does that segment of the GOP carry the same clout that it once did?" Folks said over coffee. "For example, in 2000, I don't think a Mormon candidate would have even bothered to campaign in South Carolina, because it was the zenith of the Christian coalition. They have fallen off the map in subsequent elections. That Bible-thumping segment of the Republican electorate probably reached its nadir in the 2010 cycle."
 
Randy Page, an evangelical Christian, said the vast majority of Republicans will line up behind the nominee for obvious reasons. Giving the power of appointments and the bully pulpit back "to Obama and the liberal Democrats is not somewhere they want to go," he said.

Romney rolled into the state with a comfortable lead, but Gingrich's fiery performance in Thursday night's debate may push him to the win. The primary is upon us. As the song from the Broadway hit The Book of Mormon puts it, the only latter day is tomorrow.
 
Rodney Welch is a writer in South Carolina. He reviews books for the Free-Times in Columbia, S.C..


Psa 67:4  O let the nations be glad and sing for joy: for thou shalt judge the people righteously, and govern the nations upon earth. Selah.

Pro 21:1 ¶ The king's heart [is] in the hand of the LORD, [as] the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will. 

Dan 2:20   Daniel answered and said, Blessed be the name of God for ever and ever: for wisdom and might are his: 
Dan 2:21   And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding: 

Rom 13:1 ¶ Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. 


Just saying.....


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on February 06, 2012, 07:17:52 am
This was an article about Mitt Romney, yet the views expressed in this article fit this topic. Im only popsting the parts for the thread, full link at bottom.

Evolution of Religion

We first need to look at the beliefs of the Mormons. Mormons are expected to believe that their first prophet, Joseph Smith, discovered golden plates, inscribed in an unknown ancient script, in a hillside in upstate New York in the 1820s. He then translated them with the help of magic stones, discovering that they contained an alternative Bible. Smith published a translation of these plates in March 1830 as the Book of Mormon, named after Mormon, the ancient prophet-historian who compiled the book. According to this book, Jesus visited America after the crucifixion for the purpose of taking his message to the descendants of ancient Israelite tribes who had lived there for centuries, forgotten by history and unknown to modern archaeology. The Garden of Eden was actually in Missouri. They believe that a man can have many wives (maybe Mitt will also need a shadow plane like our own President for all the extra wives?). The Mormons were shunned by the other pioneering Americans and finally settled in Salt Lake City in Utah where the Church of the Latter Day Saints still has its headquarters today.
 
Rick Perry (one of the other Republican Presidential Candidates), claimed that Romney was "not a Christian" and that his election would "give credibility to a cult". Nowadays the Church of the Latter Day Saints is considered too large to be classified as a cult, but it’s certainly very far removed from the beliefs of mainstream Christian Churches. Mitt was born a Mormon, and has remained active in the church and has contributed millions of dollars to the church – his current donations for 2010 and 2011 are in the order of $2 million a year.


And that’s why I say that we should be aware of whom Mitt Romney is and what a Mormon believes. Now the questions that needs to be answered is, can a man who believes in, and follows the crazy teachings of Joseph Smith, be considered a suitable candidate to lead the largest and most powerful nation on earth?
 
But to answer that question we need to look at some of the beliefs of the mainstream religions. It took 300 years for Christianity to go from an obscure cult to being the dominant religion of the Roman Empire. Surely to the Romans it would have sounded as crazy as what the Mormons beliefs sound to us today? A guy being swallowed by a giant fish – and then living inside it? A huge boat that carried two of every living creature on the planet during a flood that covered everything? Magic bread that turn into the body of your God when you eat it? Forbidden fruit that ruined the lives of all your descendants? A virgin giving birth – after being conceived by God? A planet that was created only 6,000 years ago, despite an overwhelming body of evidence to the contrary from every relevant scientific field? A God who sacrifices his Son to himself to save the world from the punishment he himself is planning to deliver?  And it’s not only Christianity that has these crazy beliefs.


But – with time these beliefs are altered to suit a more rational way of thinking – call this evolution. Time means some of the more crazy ideas are adapted and modified. Thus "Our Savoir is returning within a generation" turns into "Our Savoir is returning one of these days." (A concept that the Jehovah Witnesses are only considering now at their founding fathers forecast dates keep passing and no Savoir appears). Even the fundamental concept of creation goes from “God created the entire universe out of nothing in six day” turns into ‘’God created matter and energy and the laws of physics and let them unfold into life as we know it.” So is Mormonism (or Jehovah's Witnesses, or Scientology, or any other relatively new religion) really any crazier than the mainstream varieties of Catholicism or Baptism, Hinduism or Buddhism, Judaism or Islam?
 
This process of evolution is continuing in religion. Think how views on homosexuality have changed in the last few years. In our parents’ generation – no church would have accepted any form of homosexual relationship as it’s specifically been listed in the Bible as a sin – and yet nowadays it’s normal to see homosexual couples attending church openly together. There are even openly homosexual people practicing as ordained ministers. Even the church accepting heterosexual couples living together out of wedlock would have been unheard just a couple of decades ago. A child born out of wedlock would not be allowed to be baptised – forever banishing that child to hell as they had not been protected by the magical waters administered by a priest. The Catholic Church is even considering allowing their priests to get married and lead a normal sexual life, much of the debate as a result of the recent exposure of priests being found expressing their sexual needs in unnatural relationships with underage congregational members. How can people claim to follow the Bible if they change the rules every few years to adapt to the changes in society? In the end it comes down to business – a church which has lost touch with its people will loose its source of income and be forced to close. People are always looking for more comfortable ways to express their faith – and thus we see the rise of the Charismatic Churches with their hip music and realise that they are satisfying a need in the modern TV generation to be entertained. The more traditional Churches are thus also adapting their service orders to fit in to the more modern world.

http://www.news24.com/MyNews24/Evolution-of-Religion-20120206


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 06, 2012, 08:07:51 am
^^^

Yes, I get these same reactions when I try to warn others about the leaven infiltrating churches today...

1) I told my mom about a pastor she's in touch with(explained it all in the Prayers Request forum) over how he has a Starbucks Coffee shop in his megachurch, and pointed out scripture concerning it - and she pretty much rationalized the same thing, and said how all this money they're making is going to Christian missions.

2) I also told her how the Emergent Church was wrong to do all these "Leadership" conferences with ungodly people like Kenneth Starr, CEO of big companies, etc giving speeches to these pastors, and she also didn't have a problem with it.

3) I also told her how the Emergent Church this pastor is involved with allows alot of modern day hip-hop music, and she was like, "You don't understand how alot of these kids come from broken homes and this pastor got them saved, the pastors should let them do what they want for a bit".

4) I commented to someone how Rick Warren endorses gay pastors, and he was like, "What if my son was gay?!".  ::)

Yeah, alot of this stuff, Starbucks Coffee, rock music, other people's "study materials"(ie-Warren's PDL), etc, you name it that were condemned in the churches even when I was growing up as a Gen X boy in the 1980's are somehow being accepted today even by today's "elderly".

Seriously, for so many years of my life, when I and others around me would do wrong, our parents and other elders were quick to rebuke and correct us. Now? It's as if when we do the same to these minister leaders that are getting out of line, their response is, "It's WRONG to criticize". ???

I think some people in end times circles have a misperception that it's largely the Emergent Church that has lead this "falling away" - it goes WAY back. 501c3, for example, is something alot of these end times watchers overlook grossly(ie-on one message board I used to frequent, I got met with hostility even by the nice posters when I brought this up). And don't forget about these spiritual fornication and drunken holidays like xmas and ishtar.

One more thing, concerning Romney - when he does win the GOP nom, we will see how the "evangelical right" react. It was one thing for them to support Reagan and Bush Jr, and then McCain, but if they end up giving in to supporting Romney, then their true colors are really going to come out.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 12, 2012, 11:25:31 pm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dktoMuFMCBs&feature=channel_video_title


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 19, 2012, 12:12:12 am
As for this "judge ye not, lest ye be judged..." passage that Churchianity warps for the worst - believe it or not, the SECULAR WORLD over-uses it more than its own good as well. Rock stars have used it as lyrics in their songs. Public schools have indoctrinated these "no intolerance" messages to kids. The PC running rampant on college campuses, and recently I've seen "fight intolerance" ads on tv.

Jesus warned a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump - Churchianity has gone from "judge ye not lest ye be judged..." to inviting these wolves and putting them on pedestials. Look what the Emergent Church/Purpose Driven movement has done to the church buildings. Even a couple of Freemasons in the pews will affect the entire congregation. Worst of all, the 501c3 tag has brought these church buildings back into bondage - ye cannot serve 2 masters, and ye cannot have fellowship with unrighteousness.

Does Churchianity know what "love" is anymore? Too bad the NIV and other perversions replaced "love" with the KJV word "charity" - HUGE difference, as charity means agape love for Jesus Christ AND others. love...not so much, really.

The secular world is pushing for global un1ty. The modern-day church is getting hooked into ecumenicism. They're both the same.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 19, 2012, 07:20:14 am
I have a question about "falling away"...

5 years ago, I saw a Christianity segment on CNN, and one of the stories they talked about was how a young couple were former churchgoers when they were children, but when they went to college, they quit going to church(and withdrew interest in Christianity, or Churchianity to put it more like it), and when they got married and had a baby, they started going to an ecumenical unitarian church. Can't remember everything they said, but pretty much this couple said after they graduated from high school, church just didn't interest them anymore.

Pt being that when "falling away" is described as a whole, do you think it's individuals who were once had the faith but decided to depart, or maybe a SYSTEM going on as a whole, like Churchianity of today? I mean for example, this couple sounded like they were merely window-shopping church goers when they were kids to begin with.

I was once in this system growing up as a kid - go to Sunday school, attend the service, both times heard lukewarm messages and "had fun"(while at the same time remembering gleaming through bible passages and something felt like it didn't add up), and then after the church service the youth groups would go out and see secular movies, go bowling, and do other "fun" secular things. And then go back to the public school for 5 days learning stuff that you don't hear within the church walls.

Ultimately, as time went on, everything just went stale and even I withdrew interest for some time - it was as if you could do these things the other 6 days of the week in the secular world.

Anyhow, was just wondering. Some say it's the Emergent Church that's leading the "falling away", however, it's only been like 10-12 years since they've had their influence, and if these churches that do they studies were really true to the faith, the pastors wouldn't have even given a second thought in yoking up with them. So it's as if they've already been leavened for quite some time.


Title: God’s Ten Commandments Get Updated By Laodicean Scholars
Post by: Christian40 on March 07, 2012, 03:31:42 am
An updated version of the Ten Commandments?

“Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.” Deuteronomy 4:2

Greetings from the church of Laodicea: Weeks after we all have been shaken by the news of the Wycliff Bible’s “updated” version of the God’s Word, we are again seeing another apostasy rising to full bloom. God’s very own words which He Himself commanded not to be changed are now being “updated” and preached by hundreds of churches across Great Britain.

From the Telegraph - The religious rules, which Christians believe were etched onto tablets by God and given to Moses, have been modified to use up-to-date language and principles. Inspired by last year’s riots, the new vows include “manage your anger”, “know God” and “catch your breath” and are understood to be used in more than 600 churches in Britain.

The original “thou shalt not steal” has become “prosper with a clear conscience”, and the lengthy “thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain” becomes “take God seriously”.

The commandments, designed by popular evangelical preacher J John, have been praised by religious leaders for bringing practical advice to modern congregations.

Using short, simple language interspersed with slang, the new rules have now been released on a DVD called “Just 10 for churches”, aimed at providing guidance.

The tenth commandment, for example, has altered the Biblical “thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s” to just “find contentment.”

“Thou shalt not commit adultery” have been edited to “affair-proof your relationships”, and “honour thy father and thy mother” has altered to “keep the peace with your parents”.

Updates said to make everyone understand and connect with the Ten Commandments positively

J John claims his commandments enable “everyone to understand God’s timeless principles on how we should live” and said he was inspired to write them by last summer’s riots.

He said: “Along with a lot of people I think about the way that we live nowadays and what leads people to do the sort of things that happened in the riots – whether or not we have forgotten something about a good way of living.”

The Reverend Paul Roberts, 54, vicar of St John the Evangelist in Old Coulsdon, Surrey, which dates back to 1210 AD, is among those using the new commandments.

    He said: “It’s basically a way of presenting the Ten Commandments to help people connect with them in a positive way. ”Rather than just seeing them as a list of things you shouldn’t do, it is meant to help people live as God intended for our good.

    “Unlike the dos and don’ts most people imagine when quizzed about the maker’s instructions, the message is meant to be both a challenge and an encouragement.”

Wayne Dulson, 40, minister of Loughton Baptist Church, Essex said: “People really engaged with the Ten Commandments in a new and fresh way.

“People now see these commandments not as a set of rules but as a template for living so that we experience God’s best for our lives.

“All ten commandments were extremely challenging, especially as the series helped us see them in the context of modern day living.

“People keep telling me how just10 has made them think much more about how they live their lives and also how much they have learnt about the commandments as they found out things they never knew before.”

“A modern take for a modern audience…”

Steve Jenkins, spokesman for the Church of England, said they supported new ways of communicating and added: “The Book Of Common Prayer is very clear that the faith needs to be taught afresh in every generation.”

Even former Conservative Shadow Home Secretary Ann Widdecombe, who left the Church of England after objecting to women priests, has backed J John’s rules. ”I’d say it’s not a patch on Moses but not a bad set of rules really,” she said.

“What he’s trying to do is offer a modern take on the original to explain it to a modern audience, which is fine as long as he doesn’t dispense with the original.”

http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/blog/?p=9085


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 16, 2012, 01:40:46 am
Yeah, these elections are rigged, however, whether it is or not, it's a fact that the GOP's core voting base are "evangelical" ie-Churchianity folks. Up until 2008, this core base of the GOP was ALWAYS ENTHUSED when it came to showing up at the voting booths on election day.

Could this be part of the "falling away"? Yeah, there are consequences when you put your trust in men...


GOP Enthusiasm Has Fallen Steeply Since 2008

http://news.yahoo.com/gop-enthusiasm-fallen-steeply-since-2008-190226417.html

Republicans are less enthusiastic about having Mitt Romney or Rick Santorum as their potential presidential nominee than they were four years ago about Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., according to a Gallup survey released on Thursday. For conservatives, the lackluster numbers are a worrying sign that the party’s already bitter primary fight has sapped voter enthusiasm and left the GOP weakened for the fall battle with President Obama.

Gallup reported that just 35 percent of Republicans surveyed said they would vote enthusiastically for front-runner Romney if he becomes the party’s standard-bearer. Similarly, 34 percent said they would enthusiastically support Santorum, his main challenger for the nomination and the preferred choice of the most-conservative Republicans.

That represents a precipitous drop in excitement from 2008, the poll found. In a survey released in early February of that year, 47 percent of Republicans were enthusiastic about the prospect of backing McCain, a 12-point difference from Romney's numbers today.

The same poll found that the former Massachusetts governor has not been able to increase excitement about this candidacy since his first run for president four years ago, when he competed in the primary with McCain, the eventual nominee. Exactly 35 percent of Republicans said they would wholeheartedly back Romney in 2008, the same percentage who would do so now.

The enthusiasm deficit could be indicative that Republicans remain deeply divided over their presidential prospects. Santorum, Pennsylvania's former senator, has appealed to the party’s tea party and evangelical wings, while Romney’s base is made up of the party’s upscale, secular voters. Both have struggled to broaden their appeal among Republicans outside of their core constituencies.

But the poll did find at least one prospect that excites GOP voters: voting against Obama. If Romney is the nominee, 42 percent of Republicans said they would support him but would consider their vote mainly one cast against the president; 40 percent said they would be casting their vote against Obama if Santorum is on the ballot.

If Romney is the nominee, 19 percent of Republicans said they would either support Obama or not vote. With Santorum, that number creeps up to 22 percent.

The Gallup poll surveyed 457 Republicans and Republican-leaning independents from March 8-11. It has a margin of error of +/- 6 percentage points.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Hischild on April 15, 2012, 11:53:35 pm
I'm Jesus, Riverland man saysA COUPLE who say they are Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene have set up base in Queensland's Bible Belt.
This is the first "false saviour" story I have heard since Jim Jones.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: tennis shoe on April 16, 2012, 12:03:24 am
This is the first "false saviour" story I have heard since Jim Jones.

Oh, it’s been going on for a long time.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_people_claimed_to_be_Jesus

Here's a recent "pastor" in Miami.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos%C3%A9_Luis_de_Jes%C3%BAs


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Hischild on April 16, 2012, 10:57:14 pm
The only person on the list I've heard about is David Koresh.  The rest I never heard of, including the Miami pastor.

So this means that part of the prohecy is being fulfilled (there will be false christs and false prohphets).

Good to know, sad for them.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on April 17, 2012, 12:12:49 am
"Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist cometh, even now are there many antichrists; by which we know that it is the last time." 1 John 2:18 (KJB)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: tennis shoe on April 17, 2012, 12:37:53 am
"Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist cometh, even now are there many antichrists; by which we know that it is the last time." 1 John 2:18 (KJB)

Interesting that there are two words used in the NT.

5580. pseudochristos, psyoo-dokh'-ris-tos; from G5571 and G5547; a spurious Messiah:--false Christ.

Translated as “False” (IMO “counterfeit”)

500. antichristos, an-tee'-khris-tos: from G473 and G5547; an opponent of the Messiah:--antichrist.

This is a spirit (singular, ruling?) identified here:

1 John 4:3  And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

I’m wondering if these are different entities with missions that obviously complement each other.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Hischild on April 17, 2012, 12:46:07 am
5580. pseudochristos, psyoo-dokh'-ris-tos; from G5571 and G5547; a spurious Messiah:--false Christ.
  Is this from a study bible?  (Trying to figure out the G5571, etc.)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: tennis shoe on April 17, 2012, 12:54:57 am
  Is this from a study bible?  (Trying to figure out the G5571, etc.)

Strong’s Concordance. G=Greek. 5571 is the word's reference number.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on April 17, 2012, 03:48:51 am
Interesting that there are two words used in the NT.

5580. pseudochristos, psyoo-dokh'-ris-tos; from G5571 and G5547; a spurious Messiah:--false Christ.

Translated as “False” (IMO “counterfeit”)

500. antichristos, an-tee'-khris-tos: from G473 and G5547; an opponent of the Messiah:--antichrist.

This is a spirit (singular, ruling?) identified here:

1 John 4:3  And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

I’m wondering if these are different entities with missions that obviously complement each other.

No, one and the same. That Strong's can get you sidetracked when trying to understand what only the Spirit can reveal to you.

As I understand it, the "spirit of antichrist" is simply not believing, so anybody who does not believe is antichrist. But it references in the singular; "...heard that antichrist cometh...". At least to me that appears to be a singular. So I believe there is the spirit of unbelief/antichrist, and there will be in the last days a specific entity the Antichrist, the beast out of the earth, the one who will be propped up by the second beast out of the sea, the False Prophet.


Title: The State of the Bible 2012
Post by: Mark on April 17, 2012, 05:19:49 pm
The State of the Bible 2012

Survey: Americans Believe Bible, Book of Mormon Share Same Spiritual Truths

Should the Quran and the Book of Mormon be on par with the Holy Bible? In disturbing findings that shed light on the state of Christianity in America, about half of Americans seem to think these three books are fairly interchangeable.

Indeed, on the heels of Gallup’s assessment of the religiosity by state, American Bible Society is releasing in-depth findings from its State of the Bible survey. The survey details Americans’ beliefs about the Bible, its role in society, its presence in U.S. homes and more.

According to the survey, conducted by Barna Group on behalf of American Bible Society, 46 percent believe the Bible, the Quran and the Book of Mormon are different expressions of the same spiritual truths. An equal number disagree.

In some better news, the study also reveals 47 percent of American adults believe the Bible has too little influence in society today. Only 16 percent believe it has too much influence, with the remaining adults expressing neutral opinions.

What’s more, 55 percent read the Bible to be closer to God, but that’s down 9 percent from just a year ago. And although 79 percent believe they are knowledgeable about the Bible, 54 percent were unable to correctly identify the first five books of the Bible.

“Findings from The State of the Bible 2012 survey show Americans desire to read the Bible more and turn to it for the answers to life questions but have an increasingly less reverent view of its contents,” said David Kinnaman, president of Barna Group.

Indeed, 62 percent of adults age 66 and older believe the Bible contains everything a person needs to know about living a meaningful life, dropping to 54 percent among boomers (age 47 to 65), 44 percent among those age 28 to 46, and dropping even further to 34 percent for those age 18 to 27.

On average, 85 percent of U.S. households own a Bible, and the average number of Bibles per household is 4.3. Thirty-six percent of Americans read the Bible less than once a year or never while 33 percent read the Bible once a week or more.

“In order to further our efforts to make the Bible accessible to people in a way that best fits their lives, it is imperative that we have a firm grasp on the views and actions of Americans around the Bible,” says Lamar Vest, president of American Bible Society. “While the message of the Bible is unchanging, how we deliver it is ever changing. The State of the Bible 2012 helps us to better understand how Americans are interacting with God’s Word.”

http://www.charismanews.com/culture/33220-survey-americans-believe-bible-book-of-mormon-share-same-spiritual-truths


Title: Re: The State of the Bible 2012
Post by: Hischild on April 17, 2012, 05:41:31 pm
Survey: Americans Believe Bible, Book of Mormon Share Same Spiritual Truths
  When it looked like Romney was going to be the candidate, I looked up what mormonism was on wikipedia and the explanation they gave came very close to christianity.  I thought the foundation of mormonism was based on christianity.  Of course they went wrong with the multiple wives way of life; not sure they're doing that these days.  Then of course, there's that other issue where the founder saw what sounds like a vision.  It could have happened.

Ok, now, sock it to me!  :)


Title: Re: The State of the Bible 2012
Post by: Mark on April 17, 2012, 05:44:48 pm
  When it looked like Romney was going to be the candidate, I looked up what mormonism was on wikipedia and the explanation they gave came very close to christianity.  I thought the foundation of mormonism was based on christianity.  Of course they went wrong with the multiple wives way of life; not sure they're doing that these days.  Then of course, there's that other issue where the founder saw what sounds like a vision.  It could have happened.

Ok, now, sock it to me!  :)

start here and then just follow the rest
http://endtimesandcurrentevents.freesmfhosting.com/index.php/topic,2580.0.html

rest
http://endtimesandcurrentevents.freesmfhosting.com/index.php/board,21.20.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: tennis shoe on April 19, 2012, 12:09:25 am
No, one and the same. That Strong's can get you sidetracked when trying to understand what only the Spirit can reveal to you.

As I understand it, the "spirit of antichrist" is simply not believing, so anybody who does not believe is antichrist. But it references in the singular; "...heard that antichrist cometh...". At least to me that appears to be a singular. So I believe there is the spirit of unbelief/antichrist, and there will be in the last days a specific entity the Antichrist, the beast out of the earth, the one who will be propped up by the second beast out of the sea, the False Prophet.

I see them as closely related. One cannot agree with the pseudochristos spirit unless one has first agreed with the antichristos spirit...wouldn't make sense the other way around. It would logically follow that if Christ wasn't the savior, then people would look elsewhere, including to themselves. This has happened and is happening now.

I do agree with the rest of your assessment though. "Spirit of antichrist" active since NT. THE Antichrist (inhabiting one human) TBA.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Christian40 on April 19, 2012, 04:54:54 am
The State of the Bible 2012
According to the survey, conducted by Barna Group on behalf of American Bible Society, 46 percent believe the Bible, the Quran and the Book of Mormon are different expressions of the same spiritual truths.

No offense but someone would have to be demented to believe that.

Quote
An equal number disagree.

Quote
And although 79 percent believe they are knowledgeable about the Bible, 54 percent were unable to correctly identify the first five books of the Bible.

Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy

These people are pretty lazy if they dont that.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on April 19, 2012, 06:25:45 am
No offense but someone would have to be demented to believe that.

I dont know, most people in America have no idea what the Bible actually says. They learn it from TV and the news and well that isnt acurate at all. I think the numbers to low in my opinion.

Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy

These people are pretty lazy if they dont that.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 19, 2012, 08:47:22 am
^^

And throw in all those 501c3 pastors who got their training from these corrupt seminaries using perverted version whom people largely listen to as well.

Even my current pastor once said Christians and Muslims worship the same God, how Masons aren't bad people, and referred to God as the "All Seeing Eye" once.

No, he's not a Mason, but I think he is brainwashed in the current corrupt SBC system, as many other SBC/"denomination" pastors have been.(Yeah, I know, I've talked about leaving my current church, but will talk about it in its respective thread)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on April 19, 2012, 09:08:00 am

Even my current pastor once said Christians and Muslims worship the same God, how Masons aren't bad people, and referred to God as the "All Seeing Eye" once.


so do Catholics...
http://endtimesandcurrentevents.freesmfhosting.com/index.php/topic,1837.msg5595.html#msg5595


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 07, 2012, 05:04:39 pm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMMJ18eJBTI


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 08, 2012, 11:45:13 am
Thanks to Mark for posting this in the Shout Box

http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/the-fastest-growing-religion-in-america-is-islam

5/1/12

The Fastest Growing Religion In America Is Islam

Do you know what the fastest growing religion in America is?  It isn't Christianity.  According to the latest U.S. Religion Census that was just released on May 1, 2012, the fastest growing religion in America is Islam.  The data for the census was compiled by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies, and the results were released by the Association of Religion Data Archives.  From the year 2000 to the year 2010, the census found that the number of Muslims living inside the United States increased by about 1 million to 2.6 million - a stunning increase of 66.7 percent.  That is an astounding rate of growth.  Meanwhile, most Christian denominations had rates of growth that were far below the overall rate of population growth in the United States, and some Christian denominations actually lost members.  Sadly, when Barack Obama once said that "we are no longer a Christian nation" he wasn't too far off the mark.  Christianity is rapidly losing influence and other religions such as Islam are rapidly gaining members and building new places of worship.  As other major religions such as Islam continue to grow in the United States, it is inevitable that this will reshape America in many different ways in the years ahead.

So what about other religious groups?

How did they fare according to the U.S. Religion Census?

Well, the following are some of the growth rates for major religious organizations from the year 2000 to the year 2010....

Mormons: +45.5%

Evangelical Protestants: +1.7% (far behind the overall rate of population growth)

Catholics: -5.0%

Mainline Protestants: -12.8% (an astounding decline)

But it was Islam that experienced the most explosive growth.

According to Ihsan Bagby, a professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Kentucky, there were about 1,200 mosques in America back in the year 2000.

According to this new census, there are now 2,106.

All over the United States we are seeing "mega-mosques" being constructed, and in many cases the funding is coming from overseas.

And these mega-mosques are not going unused.  In some areas of the country, Islamic communities are experiencing absolutely explosive growth.

The following example comes from a recent USA Today article....

Quote
Imam Muhammad Musri, president of the Islamic Society of Central Florida, saw growth explode by a whopping 473 percent in and around Orlando's Orange County, according to the RCMS study, and he thinks the growth is actually double the 10,000 new Muslims reported by the study.

He said Muslim growth has been fueled by a wave of post-9/11 converts, American-born children of immigrants having kids of their own, and jobs in the booming medical industry. In central Florida, he said, Muslims are just following everyone else in search of "better weather, cheaper prices, cheaper homes."

A lot of this growth is being fueled by immigration.  A survey conducted by the Pew Research Center back in 2007 discovered that 39 percent of all adult Muslims living in America were immigrants that had arrived in the United States since 1990.

This rapid influx of Muslims is reshaping communities all over America.  For example, Muslim students now account for approximately 10 percent of the total number of students in the New York City School District.

And all over the country many school districts are now changing their school calendars to observe Islamic holidays.

In fact, in Dearborn, Michigan football practices are actually scheduled around Ramadan.  The following is from a Fox News article....

Quote
In Dearborn, Mich., where schools are closed on both the day before and the day of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, the predominantly-Muslim football team has switched its two-a-day summer practice schedule to 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. during Ramadan, so that Muslim players -- who fast while the sun is up – won't be forced to practice in the heat without drinking water.

The move received little backlash in Dearborn, because most of the football players are Muslims.
Dearborn is located just outside of Detroit, and it contains one of the densest Arab communities outside of the Middle East.  Each day, the local mosque's call to prayer can be clearly heard all over the city.  Dearborn is a clear example of why we can no longer call America a "Christian nation".

But Islam is not the only non-Christian religion that is growing rapidly in America.

The latest U.S. Religion Census found that non-Christian groups grew by 32 percent overall from the year 2000 to the year 2010.

Meanwhile, as I have written about previously, the decline of Christianity in America is accelerating.

Back in 1990, one survey found that 86 percent of all Americans identified themselves as "Christian" of one sort or another.

By 2008, only 76 percent of all Americans identified themselves as "Christian" of one sort or another.

Meanwhile, atheism and the "not religious" are experiencing huge gains in numbers.  For example, the U.S. Census Bureau says that the number of Americans with "no religion" more than doubled between 1990 and 2008.

Even many of those that still apply the label of "Christian" to themselves are not very committed.  The latest U.S. Religion Census found that approximately 150 million Americans are not actively engaged with any religious community at all.  That is nearly half of the population.

So America is changing.

It is becoming less religious and it is becoming less Christian.

What is your opinion about all of this?

Please feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below....


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 10, 2012, 10:05:55 pm
No, I'm not saying what they're doing is wrong, per se, but it's the DECEPTIONS around this that these groups don't see. Seriously - yeah, this could hurt Obama, but look who his OPPONENT is! It's not like Obama's opponent has any kind of out-wardness of being Christian. Churchianity and these pro-family groups really need to be careful in terms of the pits of deceptions around them.

1Pe_5:8  Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

http://news.yahoo.com/gay-marriage-rivals-see-gains-obama-remarks-225332792.html

Gay-marriage rivals see gains from Obama remarks

NEW YORK (AP) — From the left and the right, rival sides in the gay-marriage debate claimed they would reap Election Day benefits from President Barack Obama's long-awaited declaration that he supports same-sex couples' right to wed.

For some gays, however, the politics were secondary to an emotional embrace of what they viewed as history in the making.

http://news.yahoo.com/gay-marriage-adds-complexity-swing-states-221516283.html

Gay marriage adds complexity in swing states

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — President Barack Obama's support for gay marriage adds a new layer of complexity for voters — especially independents — in battleground states that will decide the race for the White House.

While the economy is certain to dominate the campaign over the next six months, gay marriage could have an impact at the margins in key states from Colorado to Ohio to Virginia by influencing voter turnout among important constituencies, among them minorities, young voters and evangelicals.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 12, 2012, 02:59:05 pm
Oh boy...we'll see how many Baptist/Protestant organizations get on the Romney/Mormon bandwagon before the Nov Prez election.
http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/05/12/11676215-mormon-romney-delivers-commencement-speech-at-baptist-university?lite

Mormon Romney delivers commencement speech at Baptist university

By Andrew Rafferty, NBC News

LYNCHBURG, Va. -- Delivering a commencement address at the country's largest Christian school, presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney on Saturday defended traditional marriage and said there is common ground between his Mormon faith and that of the largely evangelical crowd.

Speaking to more than 30,000 packed into Liberty University's football stadium, Romney drew his loudest applause from his proclamation: "Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman."

But it was one of the few specifics the former Massachusetts governor gave at the deeply religious campus.

Liberty's decision to invite Romney, a Mormon, to deliver the commencement at the Christian school founded by Baptist Minister Jerry Falwell drew criticism from some on campus who feel Romney's beliefs contradict the school's teachings.  The university offers a theology course that describes Mormonism as a cult.  ::)

Romney only alluded to his faith, telling the crowd: "People of different faiths, like yours and mine, sometimes wonder where we can meet in common purpose, when there are so many differences in creed and theology. Surely the answer is that we can meet in service, in shared moral convictions about our nation stemming from a common worldview."

The candidate's religion was never directly addressed, but the school's chancellor and son of its founder, Jerry Falwell Jr., seemed to scratch the surface of some of this community's concerns in his introduction of Romney.

"My father often preached that Christians should vote for the candidate whose positions on the political issues are most closely aligned with their own," said Falwell. "Not the candidate who shares his or her faith or theology. We are, after all, electing a commander-in-chief, not a pastor or religious leader."

While many in the audience were impressed by the 20-minute address, especially Romney's hardline stance in support of traditional marriage, there was also acknowledgment that his Mormonism will make it more difficult for the Republican to fire up young evangelical voters.

Members if the Class of 2012 frequently cited that, personally, religion did not disqualify anyone from the White House. But many were also quick to add that they knew others who did not share their view.

"I think that he did a really great job, considering he came in front of thousands of people that he knew disagreed with certain things," said Sara Colein, who graduated Saturday. Still, the Maryland native was quick to acknowledge Romney's problem with the crowd here is "the fact that he is a Mormon and certain differences we have when it comes to Jesus Christ."

Stephen Jones, also a member of the Class of 2012 said, "I think the one thing that is going to be the glaring problem is going to be the deity of Jesus Christ."   

Still, Jones, added, "I think that, if you compare him to Obama, I think yes, we'll side with him a lot better than we will Obama."

Speaking at Liberty University is a right of passage for conservative politicians, who come here to pay homage to an important block of the Republican Party.  Former GOP presidential hopefuls Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann and Herman Cain visited the school in the fall, each touting the importance of God and reinforcing their commitment to the evangelical values preached at the university.

But leading up to Saturday's address, Romney advisers made clear the candidate would not go in depth on the issues. "It is a speech for the graduates and their parents," one adviser said.

And though it had more political implications than his campaign originally let on, it was, largely, a graduation speech.

"Today, thanks to what you have gained here, you leave Liberty with conviction and confidence as your armor. You know what you believe. You know who you are. And you know whom you will serve. Not all colleges instill that kind of confidence, but it will be among the most prized qualities from your education here," said Romney. "Moral certainty, clear standards, and a commitment to spiritual ideals will set you apart in a world that searches for meaning."


Title: Evangelical Students Give Mormon Romney a Warm Reception
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 12, 2012, 07:33:19 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/evangelical-students-mormon-romney-warm-reception-202732072--abc-news-politics.html

5/12/12

LYNCHBURG, Va. - When Jacob Pearce sat down in his folding chair near the 50-yard line on Liberty University's football field, he said he was holding his breath.
 
Pearce told ABC News his nerves weren't due to his impending graduation, but instead because of the chosen commencement speaker: presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney.
 
"I was holding my breath when they announced him," Pearce told ABC News. "I was just hoping there weren't any 'boos.'"
 
Pearce's fear - which was not realized here today - was shared by many of his classmates, more than a dozen of whom were interviewed by ABC News. Most, like Pearce, had resoundingly positive things to say about Romney's address, regardless of their pre-event jitters.
 
Many shared concerns that their classmates wouldn't be respectful of the politician's Mormon faith, the values of which differ greatly from those of many of the students enrolled at the evangelical university.
 
"I was worried he was going to get a bad reception," Pearce said. "But it was really good. [Romney] steers away from really specific religious things."
 
Romney never mentioned his Mormon faith by name during his speech, instead referencing broadly the differences of his faith and those 30,000 audience members packed into the stadium, remarking, "People of different faiths, like yours and mine, sometimes wonder where we can meet in common purpose, when there are so many differences in creed and theology."
 
The answer, Romney said, was to "meet in service" and "shared moral convictions."
 
Aides to Romney had prefaced the speech by warning that it "wasn't a speech about Mormonism," adding that the former governor would talk about the "big picture of how Judeo Christian traditions" can make for a good life.
 
Mary Hunter, another student who graduated today, shared some of Pearce's reservations about the speech, but described Romney's speech as "awesome."
 
"I know not everyone as excited about him being here, but I was one of the ones really got into it," she said.
 
Hunter said that she doesn't have a "lot of feelings" about Mormonism, and "we all worship the same God in my opinion."
 
"He is very strong in his faith and we need someone who is going to be strong in their faith to lead this country," she said.
 
Sarah Colein, another graduate, said she had been "curious" as to how Romney would handle their differing faiths during the speech, and thought he did a "good job" reaching a balance.
 
"Yeah, there are things I don't agree with necessarily, but I think he did a good job," she said. "I was definitely curious as to the way he was going to approach the university, knowing that there are certain differences we have, like certain beliefs we disagree with."
 
Graduate Lindsey Burnette described Romney as "Christ-like," and fellow graduate Daniel Rodriguez said he believes Romney has "moral grounds that are important to the evangelical society," both offering the candidate strong endorsements among a population he's straining to appeal to.
 
A few audience members did say that they would have preferred the university to have chosen someone other than Romney to give the address, among them parent John Willis, who said he thought the speech was "calculated."
 
"I think it was calculated. He said the right things," said Willis, who said he voted for Rick Santorum in the Virginia primary. "There was a lot of political speech, but that's to be expected for this situation."
 
Willis said his view of the candidate was buoyed by his affirmation that he believes marriage is a union between a man and a woman, a viewpoint Romney reasserted during his speech here, sparking a standing ovation from the crowd.

"I would have preferred [the university] to get someone more closely aligned with the Baptist directives as a speaker rather than Gov. Romney," Willis said. "But I'm leaving with a positive new respect for him."


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 14, 2012, 10:49:34 pm
http://ephesians511blog.blogspot.com/2012/05/breaking-news-to-apostate-church-in.html

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DqtwRiiqYCE/T6vFKvSDY7I/AAAAAAAACw8/RKT5r7icK70/s1600/POST5102012A.jpg)


Title: Look at these GRADUATE DEGREE programs at this bible seminary!
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 18, 2012, 12:49:17 am
Saw this off of a bible seminary web site(a Baptist one at that) which lists all the Graduate Degree Programs, some of these are really eyepopping...

 • MDiv Standard
 • MDiv Distance Learning Track
 MDiv with Specialization in Biblical Languages This is a joke, right ???
 • MDiv with Specialization in Biblical Studies
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Apologetics
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Thought
 • MDiv with Specialization in Evangelistic Church Growth
 MDiv with Specialization in Expository Preaching So there's many flavors of preaching now ???
 • MDiv with Specialization in Leadership (Concentration in Pastoral Leadership)
 • MDiv with Specialization in Pastoral Ministry
 • MDiv with Specialization in Philosophy [formerly: Philosophy and Ethics]
 • MDiv with Specialization in Worship Ministries (Preaching Concentration)
 • MDiv--Church Ministry Track (Concentration in Pastoral Ministry)
 • Graduate Certificate in Biblical Preaching
 • Graduate Certificate in Biblical Languages
 • Graduate Certificate in Biblical Studies
 • Graduate Certificate in Bi-Vocational Ministry
 • Graduate Certificate in Christian Apologetics
 Graduate Certificate in Greek Studies
 • Graduate Certificate in Hebrew Studies

 • Graduate Certificate in Pastoral Ministry
 • Graduate Certificate in Church Leadership
 • Graduate Certificate in Theological and Historical Studies
 
Chaplain
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Pastoral Care
 • MDiv with Specialization in Counseling (Non-Licensure Track)
 • Graduate Certificate in Pastoral Ministry
 • Graduate Certificate in Church Leadership
 
Evangelist/Minister of Evangelism
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Evangelistic Church Growth
 • MDiv with Specialization in Church Planting: North American Track or International Track
 • MDiv with Specialization in Islamic Studies [new Specialization]
 • Graduate Certificate in Evangelistic Church Growth
 • Graduate Certificate in Church Planting
 
Minister of Education
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education
 • MDiv with Specialization in Leadership (Concentration in Ministry Leadership and Administration)
 • MDiv--Church Ministry Track (Concentration in Church Staff and Ministry Leadership)
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education (Concentration in Leadership and Administration, Generalist, Educational Foundations)
 
Minister of Music/Worship Leader So now it's wrong to stick with the traditional hymns ???
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Worship Ministries (Music Concentration)
 • MDiv with Specialization in Church Music
 • Master of Music in Church Music
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education (Concentration in Church Music)
 • Master of Arts in Worship Ministries
 • Graduate Certificate in Worship Ministries
 
Christian Counselor Psychologist
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Counseling (Licensure Track) [formerly: Counseling]
 • MDiv with Specialization in Counseling (Non-Licensure Track) [formerly: Psychology and Counseling]
 • MDiv with Specialization in Pastoral Care
 • Master of Arts in Marriage and Family Counseling
 
Teacher/Writer
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education
 • MDiv with Specialization in Biblical Languages
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Thought
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Apologetics
 MDiv with Specialization in Islamic Studies [new Specialization] So now they're training future pastors to preach from the Qu'ran from the pulpits? >:(
 MDiv with Specialization in Philosophy [formerly: Philosophy and Ethics] So you can get a secular degree from a bible seminary now?  >:(
 • Master of Arts (Biblical Studies)
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education
 • Master of Arts (Theology)
 • Master of Theology (Prerequisite: MDiv or equivalency)
 • Graduate Certificate in Christian Apologetics
 • Graduate Certificate in History of Christianity
 • Graduate Certificate in History of Christianity (Advanced)
 • (Or other specialized areas of study)
 
Minister to Children
 
 • MDiv in Christian Education (Concentration in Childhood Education)
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education (Concentration in Childhood Education)
 
Minister to Youth/Recreation-Wellness ??? New Age?
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education (Concentration in Youth/Recreation-Wellness)
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education (Concentration in Youth/Recreation-Wellness)
 
Collegiate Minister
 
 • MDiv (Collegiate Ministry Track--One year internship)
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education (Concentration in Collegiate Ministry)
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Apologetics
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education (Concentration in Collegiate Ministry)
 • Graduate Certificate n Christian Apologetics
 
Minister to Adults
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education (Concentration in Adult Education, Gerontology)
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education (Concentration in Adult Education, Gerontology)
 
Minister to Women
 
 • MDiv in Christian Education (Concentration in Women’s Ministry)
 MDiv with Specialization in Women’s Studies Promoting Feminism ???
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education (Concentration in Women’s Ministry)
 
Social Work Ministry
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education (Concentration in Social Work)
 • Master of Arts in Christian Education (Concentration in Social Work)
Graduate Certificate in Church Community Ministries
 
International Missionary
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education
 MDiv with Specialization in Church Planting (International Track)
 • MDiv with Specialization in Missions
 MDiv with Specialization in Missions Strategies [formerly: People Group Strategies]
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Apologetics
 • MDiv with Specialization in Islamic Studies [new Specialization]
 • Master of Arts in Missiology
 • Graduate Certificate in Christian Apologetics
 • Graduate Certificate in Church Planting
 • Graduate Certificate in Islamic Studies
 • Graduate Certificate in Islamic Studies (Advanced)
 • Graduate Certificate in Missions
 • Graduate Certificate in Missions (Advanced)
 
North American Missionary/Church Planter/Minister of Missions
 
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Education
 • MDiv with Specialization in Church Planting (North American Track)
 • MDiv with Specialization in Missions
MDiv with Specialization in Leadership (Concentration in Pastoral Leadership)
 • MDiv with Specialization in Pastoral Ministry
 • MDiv with Specialization in Urban Missions
 • MDiv with Specialization in Christian Apologetics
 • MDiv with Specialization in Islamic Studies [new Specialization]
 • Master of Arts in Missiology
 Graduate Certificate in Bi-Vocational Ministry NOONE can serve TWO masters!
 • Graduate Certificate in Christian Apologetics
 • Graduate Certificate in Church Planting
 • Graduate Certificate in Islamic Studies
 • Graduate Certificate in Islamic Studies (Advanced)
 • Graduate Certificate in Missions
 • Graduate Certificate in Missions (Advanced)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 24, 2012, 12:18:58 pm
http://articles.cnn.com/2010-01-21/world/religion.mega.church.christian_1_mega-churches-worshippers-joel-osteen?_s=PM:WORLD

Mega churches mean big business

1/21/2010

Mega churches across the United States are becoming increasingly popular which is not only bringing thousands of worshippers together, but also billions of dollars in profit.

From self-help books to CDs and DVDs, mega churches are becoming big money makers for the pastors and ministries they are a part of.

Mega churches are extra-large churches that can accommodate upwards of 15,000 people and are common among members of the evangelical Christian faith.

Scott Thumma, professor of sociology and religion at Hartford Seminary told CNN that "the mega church on average has about $6.5 million in income a year."

"If you put together all the mega churches in the United States, that's easily several billion dollars."

Many ministers in the evangelical faith have become superstars in their own right -- Joel Osteen is one in particular.

Osteen is a pastor at the Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas and his televised service reaches over seven million people each week across the United States and around the world.

The Lakewood Church which Osteen is in charge of has a yearly budget of more than $80 million, but church officials deny that it's about money.

"We hear the criticism a bit, but we don't hear it as much as you think we would," Donald Iloff Junior, advisor for Lakewood Church said.

"One thing you find very absent is the asking of money and never once have we asked for money or donations on television."

However, some critics argue that it's hard to be both a pastor and someone in charge of a yearly budget in the tens of millions.

"When you have pastors thinking of themselves as CEOs, it's hard to tell the difference between a pastor and P-Diddy," Jonathan Walton, Assistant Professor of religious studies at the University of California Riverside told CNN.

The way the sermon is told at these mega churches has also completely changed.

"The plasma screen TVs have replaced crosses, Power Point-like presentations of the words of songs and liturgical practices have replaced the hymnals," Walton said.

"This really resonates with a younger generation."

The average age of a mega church worshipper is 40 years old -- 13 years younger than at a traditional church.

Mega church worshippers tend to not only be younger, but also more diverse.

"One thinks of them as a homogeneous group of white suburban American, but in fact when you go to most of the mega churches, you're going to find diversity of age, income and education levels," Thumma said.

"You can also find racial diversity because in almost 30 percent of these mega churches across the country, you have 20 percent or more integration of ethnic groups so it really is quite staggering."


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 29, 2012, 09:51:52 pm
FYI, Tony Perkins is part of the globalists...

Family Research Council, Tony Perkins, To Sup With Gay Marriage Activist

5/29/12

http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/blog/?p=9374

Associated Press

NEWTON, MA – They’re on opposite sides of the “gay marriage” issue, but the executive director of the Family Equality Council and her female partner have invited the president of the Family Research Council and his wife to dinner.

The Family Equality Council’s Jennifer Chrisler says she mailed the invitation to Tony Perkins, whose Family Research Council has led campaigns to define marriage as only the union of a man and a woman.

Chrisler says she and her wife have 10-year-old twins whom they take to church and Sunday school and try to teach Christian values, so she hopes getting together over dinner will show Perkins that their families have a lot in common.

Family Research Council spokesman J.P. Duffy says Perkins has told CNN that once the invitation arrives “he and his wife will find a time that works.” Click here for source.

Related Scriptures:

Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. (2 Corinthians 6:14-17)

For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient. (Romans 1:26-28)

Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us. (2 Thessalonians 3:6)



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 30, 2012, 09:58:48 pm
Disclaimers: this article does NOT use the KJV, but nonetheless a good read, and this is an old 10+ year old article.

http://www.cuttingedge.org/news/n1527.cfm

TITLE:SALVATION ARMY IN BED WITH ROME!

Subtitle:  Coming One World Church Headed by the Pope Claims Yet Another Victim:  The Salvation Army!!  Yet another huge sign the End of the Age spiritual deception and unity is upon us.

Every year we see them standing outside the stores, ringing their bells, asking for donations to help the poor. We give freely believing that they will not only feed them with food for their bodies, but food for their souls. They are the Salvation Army. Their name alone makes one believe that the thrust of this movement is to get men saved, to spread the precious gospel seed of Jesus Christ. They reach out to the drug addict, the drunkard, the homeless, the poor and needy. I’m sure that Ephesians 5:11 has been preached on more than one occasion to those drunkards who wanted to go sit in the bar and spend their last dollars on alcohol instead of their needy families:

“And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

This command was not just for the drunkards, prostitutes or thieves, but to all who call upon the name of our Lord Jesus. Some evils are obvious, some are not so obvious, but evil is evil and darkness is darkness and the command is the same, “have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness” and “reprove them”.

We recently received a letter from one reader, James Sundquist, who attended a Salvation Army church for two years, ministering in music, preaching, teaching a Bible study, and praying with and for them. His reason for attending this church was “that they still sang many songs about the Blood of Jesus and the urgency of the Great Commission.”

When James got a flier in his mailbox, depicting a Roman Catholic Cardinal conducting services at one of the main retreat services of The Salvation Army, he said, “My heart just broke. I was in total shock.” His initial thought was “There must be some others in our local church as well as the Salvation Army in general who might have received that brochure and were equally disturbed by this infusion of the RC in the church.” James was in for his second shock! “I could find NONE who were dismayed or concerned. NONE who were thankful that I had exposed this heresy. And as Paul said ‘are there NONE wise among you’?”

James wanted to be faithful and give the man responsible for having a Catholic cardinal preaching at a Salvation Army pulpit every chance to repent. He followed Matthew 18 and privately went to him explaining that the doctrines of Rome are idolatrous and blasphemous. The man did not care, so James wrote to his superiors to voice his concern. To his dismay, they took up the cause of Roman Catholicism and defended them as “Christian brothers”. James felt completely undone. He explains:

“A further problem in the Catholic-like hierarchy of the Salvation Army, is that there is not a mechanism for enforcing compliance when a leader goes astray, but simply watch in horror as a captain drives his ship right on to the rocks. You can confront a brother (Captain) but there is no accountability to ensure compliance if he is acting unbiblical [sic].”

This weakness of a hierarchical organization is the major reason the original Christian Church was not set up that way, but rather as individual local churches.  Satan has been able to corrupt and lead astray all churches who organized themselves as a hierarchy.

James confesses,

“It is only out of love for the people of God and the Salvation Army and obedience to Scripture that I, with great heaviness of heart, am making it public. It was the LAST resort. We are no longer able to give financially either to the Salvation Army because in our hearts we would be funding an unholy alliance. I know that a host of Christians in other denominations give to the Salvation Army. BUT I AM CERTAIN THAT MANY OF THEM WOULD NO LONGER GIVE TO THEM IF IT WERE MADE KNOWN TO THEM THAT THE SALVATION ARMY HAD MADE THIS UNHOLY ALLIANCE WITH ROMAN CATHOLICISM. We must not be deceived, a little leaven does not leaven just a little of the lump, but the WHOLE lump!”

James certainly knows his Scripture, for the Apostle Paul does warn that just a "little leaven" [false teaching] ruins the whole lump of dough.  Yet, most Catholics and too many Christians put up with truck loads of false teaching without leaving the church.  Man seems to have an unlimited capacity to find excuses for evil and corrupt teaching, especially at this End of the Age when an exceedingly powerful demonic spirit of false spiritual teaching is sweeping the entire earth.

James struggled with this decision and considered it to be a great personal tragedy;

“I have loved the people of the Salvation Army and many of them have loved me and been a great refuge to me. And many will feel betrayed by me for making this public. But the betrayal has already occurred when they invited the Roman Catholic Cardinal to minister to their sheep. And in the end I have not done them a favor by simply looking the other way. I am sure they hope I will simply go away. But Christians forfeited that option when they became Christians!”

In desperation, James wrote to us:

“Dear Rebecca, I note with great gratitude your exposes of Roman Catholicism on your website. In this regard, I invite you to read and make known to your readers the following: I am enclosing a website which reveals that Roman Catholicism has sadly invaded the Salvation Army. At the Montclair Salvation Army Corps we received a brochure and picture of Cardinal Bernard Law conducting an ecumenical service at Salvation Army's Old Orchard Beach Pavilion on July 21. (Ecumenism is a leaven of apostasy that has invaded a large percentage of all Protestant denominations, but I never thought it would invade the Salvation Army. William Booth would turn over in his grave!!). James Sundquist”

more


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on May 31, 2012, 10:25:47 am
GOOD ARTICLE!!!


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 05, 2012, 08:33:53 am
Is the GOP ready for its own gay candidate?

6/5/12

Spinners and Winners
 
Richard Tisei is running for Congress with an unusual resume. He's a Republican from Massachusetts who is pro-choice, openly gay, and in favor of gay marriage. And yet despite running diametrically opposed to  where most of the party is on social issues, Tisei is considered by top Republicans to be one of the top GOP candidates challenging incumbents this election
 
"I consider myself a live and let live Republican. I think the government should get off your back, out of your wallet and away from the bedroom," Tisei says. On social  issues he says the parties needs to "have advocates on both sides of the isle or you're never going to have true equality."
 
And Tisei is even willing to do something most Republican candidates for Congress never do - - same something positive about President Obama.  Tisei praised Obama for saying his position on gay marriage has evolved and he now favors it.
 
"I'm glad he has evolved to the point right now. He went through the same process I think most Americans are right now. They're interacting with a lot of gay people and they're recognizing, you know, that everybody should be treated fairly under the law…. I think it was an important step and I'm glad that he did it," he says.
 
Tisei even thinks his fellow Massachusetts resident, Mitt Romney, might evolve on the issue of gay marriage, too.
 
"I think the country as a whole is. I mean everybody knows gay people now… and it's really broken down barriers and given people the chance to interact. I think most Americans are fair, and they understand that everybody should be treated equally under the law, and we shouldn't discriminate against anyone, and I do think that as time goes on that will be the majority view in this country."
 
But on economic issues like health care, Tisei is lock step with most Republican candidates.
 
"Definitely repeal it, I think it's a job killer….it's going to bankrupt the country."  he said.
 
But he is in favor of the health care plan in Massachusetts that then-governmor Romney pushed through and that has many similarities to the Obama health care law passed by Congress.  "What we did in Massachusetts isn't necessarily going to work in other states. Every state's different and I think Governor Romney's right, every state should be able to come up with their own solutions and ultimately that's what we're going to need in the country to solve some of the healthcare problems."

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/power-players-abc-news/gop-ready-own-gay-candidate-101938870.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on June 05, 2012, 12:46:42 pm
I've always had the impression that the Salvation Army was Catholic-driven.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 02, 2012, 12:26:04 pm
Brannon House talked about how Obamacare could lead to religious ecumenism over the long haul...

http://news.yahoo.com/gop-voters-final-health-care-law-143118921.html

GOP: Voters will have final say on health care law

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican congressional leaders said Sunday that voters — not the Supreme Court — will have the final word on President Barack Obama's health care law come November. And they are betting that the law's unpopularity will be enough to drive Democrats from power.

The White House's response? Bring it on.

"We've got one last chance here to beat Obamacare, and we can do that in the November election," said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, calling the law the "single worst piece of legislation" passed in modern times.

White House chief of staff Jack Lew countered that he believes most Americans want to put the health care debate to rest.

"I actually think the American people want us to focus on the economy, on creating jobs and moving forward," said Lew.

Republicans and Democrats have been wrangling for the upper hand in the health care debate since last week's Supreme Court ruling upholding the law's mandate that individuals buy health insurance or face a penalty. Chief Justice John Roberts, a conservative, provided the pivotal vote in that decision by ruling that the penalty was legal under the government's taxing authority.

While technically handing a political victory to Obama, Roberts' ruling invigorated Republicans eager to cast the law as a new tax.

"The American people do not want to go down this path," said House Majority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio. "They do not want the government telling them what kind of insurance policy they have to buy, and how much they have to pay for it, and if you don't like it we're going to tax you."

Democrats refute the characterization of the law. Lew said the mandate would impact only 1 percent of Americans — those who can afford health insurance but refuse to buy it.

"This is a penalty on free riders," said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.

Yet public opposition to the health care law remains high. Forty-seven percent of respondents in a recent Associated Press-GfK poll said they oppose the law while 33 percent said they support it.

However, much of the polling does find strong support for individual elements, like allowing young adults to remain on their parents' plan to age 26. Some Democrats see that as an opening to reframe the debate.

Republicans say they believe last week's ruling by the high court gives them fresh ammunition to attack Obama — and the Democrats who support him — in the upcoming election because of the health care bill's connection to jobs. The GOP says the law puts onerous mandates on industry that could stifle job creation.

"I think it's intertwined with the economy, and I think it's an example where Washington doesn't get it," said Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., of the health care bill.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Sunday that Republicans, including Mitt Romney, are "being the mouthpiece of the health care industry" and that the bill will actually improve the economy.

"The costs were unsustainable," she said of the current health care system. "It's a competitiveness issue for business and for our economy. So we had to (come) to a place where we lowered costs to all concerned, and that we again take it down a path where we continue to lower costs."

If given control of the Senate next year, McConnell said he would support using budget reconciliation rules to repeal the health care law. Doing so would prohibit Senate filibusters and require only 51 votes to succeed. In 2010, Republicans lambasted Democrats for relying on these rules to pass the health care bill, calling their tactics unusual and hyperpartisan.

McConnell said he'll do whatever it takes to repeal the law.

"I'm confident they're going to give us the votes to repeal it," he said of the American public.

The House is scheduled to vote to overturn the law on July 9. The vote will largely be symbolic since the Democrats control the Senate. But it will put lawmakers on record for the upcoming political campaign.

McConnell and Lew spoke on "Fox News Sunday." Boehner, Schumer and Coburn spoke on CBS' "Face the Nation." Pelosi spoke on NBC's "Meet the Press."



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 07, 2012, 03:01:25 pm
It's amazing how the masses(including myself) have been deceived into thinking we have to "attend" a "church building" every Sunday to get our ticket into eternal life.

Even if the pastor preaches lukewarm messages, even if the church is lukewarm, even if the church does abominable things, even if there are Freemasons in the pews/on the pulpits, etc, etc...we have to somehow be there to "be an example to others". If we do anything else outside of "being an example"(for example, showing scripture to the pastor if he's out of line, or to the deacons and Sunday School teachers for that matter too), then we're "judging" them.

Really? So if acting like a "good person" would be a "good example" to get people to repent? Is that how you feed sheep, just "being nice" to them and giving out junk food candy?

It's come to a point where it's like attending a carnival every week, or even worse, it's giving men and women an impression nowdays to find their "future spouse".


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 16, 2012, 01:38:08 pm
didnt you say you had a starbucks coffee shop in your church? right next to the merrie go round, and oarnge julious


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 16, 2012, 01:45:27 pm
didnt you say you had a starbucks coffee shop in your church? right next to the merrie go round, and oarnge julious

No, not at mine, but at a megachurch in the metroplex who's pastor/"missionary" we crossed paths with 3 years ago.

But LOL - today's "church" has literally become a carnival and a mega-mall, hasn't it? BTW - even though there's mostly old, "conservative" folks at my church, the pastor has all but let in that Christian "Rock" music b/c the young youth ministers wanted to. It's as if today's pastors have been feminized, largely b/c of the perverted bibles they've turned to.

I know I should leave that church(it's a long story, and have explained my situation before). Nonetheless, alot of the things they do has gotten me a bit mad.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 16, 2012, 01:51:00 pm
Mega-Churches Offer Prayer, Play, Shopping

Americans are known for their love of "super-sizing" -- from French fries to cars to houses -- and on this Easter Sunday, many Americans are celebrating on a much larger scale, in huge congregations known as "mega-churches," where people can do much more than just worship.

These mega-churches are places where members can not only pray, but work out in a gym, eat at a food court or browse in a bookstore. And they are becoming more popular across the country.


All-in-One Churches
For the Ellis family of Plano, Texas, church is not some chore to attend to on Easter Sunday. It's not even just a Sunday outing. The Ellises spend as much time at Prestonwood Baptist Church as they do at their home.

"In our family we almost kid, because we spend so much time up here, just because we love it," said Johnson Ellis. "There's just a lot of fun things up here."

Prestonwood is not a simple church -- its sprawling campus covers 140 acres.

Dad works out at Prestonwood, and mom, Beth, teaches religion. The kids, Graham and Sheridan, hang out in the children's section, and their older sister, Landen, goes to school at Prestonwood and sings in the choir.

Prestonwood has sports fields, an arcade, small bible-study groups and a bookstore on what is called Main Street. There is even a food court where the Ellises frequently eat, complete with a Starbucks.

For the Ellis kids, church is actually fun.

"It's not like, 'Oh, gosh, I have to go to church and be bored and have them spit scripture in my face,' " said Landen. "It's like it's fun and they make it great to learn."


Worshipping With Thousands
Prestonwood's worship center seats 7,000, but even that isn't big enough to hold all of the members.

Every weekend, there are three services to accommodate Prestonwood's membership of 24,000 people.

"It's like a small town in a big city. And what a blessing to be able to come together with people with like values," said Beth Ellis.

The Rev. Jack Graham is astounded by the seemingly unending flood of people wanting to join the church.


"It truly is remarkable to me," the pastor said. "I give an invitation every week, invite people to come forward to accept Christ or to join the church. And they just keep coming forward."


Mega-Churches Are Big Business
Mega-churches are booming all over the country, not just in the South.

Scott Thumma, a theologian at Hartford Seminary, compares the phenomenon to shopping at a place like Wal-Mart.

"Just as if you go to a Wal-Mart, you can get all of your lists done in one place, it's sort of one-stop shopping for spirituality as well," Thumma said.

He estimates there are about 850 to 900 mega-churches in the United States now -- each one with more than 2,000 members. That's about 10 times as many as there were in the 1970s.

Mega-churches are also mega-businesses. Prestonwood's annual budget is $25 million, and members are expected to tithe at least 10 percent of their income.


Consumerism Run Amok?
Not everyone has bought into the idea that bigger is better when it comes to church.

Randall Balmer, a theology professor at Barnard College in New York says, "It is in many ways consumerism run amok."  

Balmer worries these mega-congregations are too isolated and emphasize consumerism over public service.

"I worry about a congregation so enmeshed into say, for example, a suburban, white, middle-class mentality," he said. "I worry that the full gospel isn't being communicated to these people."

Prestonwood Looks to Get Even Bigger
But the Ellis family says community service is a huge part of what they do here. They agree the size of the place can be overwhelming at first, but for their family, they say, it works.

Beth Ellis says Prestonwood is just keeping up with the fast pace of American life.


"You know, the culture is giving our kids a lot of fast-paced media and all different things that are moving along," she said. "Why can't the church keep up and do the same thing for our kids and for us?"

Johnson Ellis says Prestonwood has been good for family stability.


"Beth and I have been married for about 19 years here in a couple of months," he said. "Really the church is part of the glue, I think, that holds our family together."

There are other practical concerns surrounding mega-churches, such as traffic and the fear that they are putting smaller churches "out of business."

Graham argues that getting more people interested in religious services can only be good for all churches. And Prestonwood is hoping to do just that and looking for ways to expand its 24,000-member base.



http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Business/story?id=617341&page=1


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 16, 2012, 02:35:14 pm
Quote
"It's not like, 'Oh, gosh, I have to go to church and be bored and have them spit scripture in my face,' " said Landen. "It's like it's fun and they make it great to learn."

 ??? Sounds like this person DOESN'T want to do bible study, PERIOD.

1Ti 4:1  Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
1Ti 4:2  Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 16, 2012, 02:44:04 pm
Quote
"It's not like, 'Oh, gosh, I have to go to church and be bored and have them spit scripture in my face,' "

Just amazing.. you would think that these church people would pick up just a little respect for the Lord. But then i was the same way before i was saved, but i didnt proclaim to be a Christian either.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 16, 2012, 02:48:30 pm
Just amazing.. you would think that these church people would pick up just a little respect for the Lord. But then i was the same way before i was saved, but i didnt proclaim to be a Christian either.

That's the point(in comparison to then and now) - back when I was a boy in the 80's, pretty much all of the PROFESSING unbelievers stayed home on Sundays. Now? It's as if Anton Lavey can walk up to any pulpit in these "churches" and be greeted very kindly.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 16, 2012, 03:07:49 pm
Confidence in U.S. Churches Hits All-Time Low
But organized religion still ranks higher than U.S. citizens' confidence in public schools, banks, and television news.


A fresh update to Gallup's annual "Confidence in Institutions" survey reveals that only 44 percent of Americans today have "a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in 'the church or organized religion.'" Americans ranked organized religion at the top of their confidence list almost every year from 1973 to 1985. Now it is tied with the medical system.

However, such a low vote of confidence is relative in this survey. Trust in organized religion still ranks fourth out of the 16 institutions tested, including public schools, banks, and television news -- which also hit all-time lows in June's poll.

Protestants have more confidence than Catholics, with 56 percent of Protestants expressing "a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in the church/organized religion," compared with only 46 percent of Catholics polled.

CT has commented on American confidence in organized religion many times, including: a defense of organized religion by senior managing editor Mark Galli; a book excerpt from Tony Campolo's Letters to a Young Evangelical; an author Q&A with Kevin DeYoung on Why We Love the Church, which tied for CT's best church/pastoral leadership book of 2010; and a Her.meneutics post analyzing the implications of Jefferson Bethke's "Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus" viral YouTube video.

http://blog.christianitytoday.com/ctliveblog/archives/2012/07/us_citizens_con.html?utm


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 17, 2012, 09:16:45 am
Just to throw this out there too - look at the other religious sects that are experiencing a falling away as well...1) Over time when many of Jevohah's Witnesses prophecies didn't come to pass, membership declined. 2) What if Romney doesn't win the Prez election? Oh yeah, potentially many in the Mormon cult will leave b/c they saw the "White Horse Prophecy" didn't come to pass. 3) RCC - with all the pedifile scandals, nuff said.

Ultimately, this is setting the stage for the Antichrist to emerge.


http://www.torontosun.com/2012/08/09/canada-the-world-less-religious-now-than-in-2005-report

Canada, the world less religious now than in 2005: Report

8/9/12

Canada is one of many countries experiencing a significant decline in religiosity, according to a new report that found the number of people around the world who claim to be religious dropped 9% since 2005, while atheism rose 3%.

More than 51,000 men and women in 57 countries were asked, "Irrespective of whether you attend a place of worship or not, would you say you are a religious person, not a religious person or a convinced atheist?"

The Global Index of Religion and Atheism found 59% of respondents think of themselves as religious, 23% as not religious and 13% as convinced atheists.

China has the largest population of atheists (47%). Ghana has the largest population of people who consider themselves religious (96%). Meanwhile, Ireland, once above average in religiosity but rocked by numerous child sex abuse scandals involving the Catholic church, had a drop in those claiming to be religious - from 69% to 47%. Only Vietnam saw a bigger decline, from 53% to 30%. Canada is ninth on the list, with a 12% drop.

The study also found that religiosity declines when people prosper.

"People in bottom income groups are 17% more religious than those in the top income groups. The richer you get, the less religious you define yourself," according to the study.

The study was conducted by WIN-Gallup International between November 2011 and January 2012, with a margin of error of 3-5 percentage points at 95% confidence level.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on August 21, 2012, 03:17:22 pm
Author Argues 6 Reasons Why Mormons Are Beating Evangelicals in Growth

An author with an evangelical blog has argued that there are six reasons why the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is growing faster than evangelical churches in the United States.
In a post titled "6 Reasons Why Mormons Are Beating Evangelicals in Church Growth," David French of The Gospel Coalition listed: Mormons have bigger families, lower divorce rates, share their faith more frequently, are less selfish, have more demanding church leadership, and are more "orthodox."

"No evangelical can call Mormons 'orthodox' in terms of the Apostles' Creed and biblical canon. But they are orthodox within their own, distinct faith tradition," wrote French, an attorney who also contributes works to the National Review Online and the blog Patheos.

"In other words, members of a Mormon church tend to know and believe their faith. Go to a typical evangelical church – like my own Presbyterian congregation – and you'll find very wide theological divergence."

French painted a different picture for evangelicals.

"Our churches face a demographic crisis," he said. "Young people are leaving, even the Southern Baptist Convention is losing members, and when you drill down deeper – comparing church attendance with population growth – the picture looks even more bleak."


Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/author-argues-6-reasons-why-mormons-are-beating-evangelicals-in-growth-80299/#g68joPbI11gCK0fG.99


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 21, 2012, 05:06:08 pm
Author Argues 6 Reasons Why Mormons Are Beating Evangelicals in Growth

An author with an evangelical blog has argued that there are six reasons why the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is growing faster than evangelical churches in the United States.
In a post titled "6 Reasons Why Mormons Are Beating Evangelicals in Church Growth," David French of The Gospel Coalition listed: Mormons have bigger families, lower divorce rates, share their faith more frequently, are less selfish, have more demanding church leadership, and are more "orthodox."

"No evangelical can call Mormons 'orthodox' in terms of the Apostles' Creed and biblical canon. But they are orthodox within their own, distinct faith tradition," wrote French, an attorney who also contributes works to the National Review Online and the blog Patheos.

"In other words, members of a Mormon church tend to know and believe their faith. Go to a typical evangelical church – like my own Presbyterian congregation – and you'll find very wide theological divergence."

My last employer was a Mormon(as well as his big family), I believe.

When he was doing taxes for his son's father-in-law, I remember both of us had a brief discussion of one of the NT books. At first, I was 99% sure they were Christians. But it wasn't until over the long haul that for several reasons, I realized they were Mormons. Point being that alot of these pseudo-christian cults like the Mormons, JW, 7th Day Adventists, etc don't exactly come out and say they are just that. Don't know their intentions, but it's as if they're very secretive of their associations, but at the same time are effectively coming off like they have good understanding of the bible. We've had these same experiences over on PPF.

Anyhow, thought I would add this b/c even though the warning signs are all over the place concerning these cults(ie-even the MSM does a good job exposing them), somehow alot of people, including myself, end up ignoring the neon warning lights and getting deceived when they appear to speak decent doctrine initially.

Quote
"Our churches face a demographic crisis," he said. "Young people are leaving, even the Southern Baptist Convention is losing members, and when you drill down deeper – comparing church attendance with population growth – the picture looks even more bleak."


Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/author-argues-6-reasons-why-mormons-are-beating-evangelicals-in-growth-80299/#g68joPbI11gCK0fG.99

I saw a news report recently over how the Emergent Church is attracting alot of young people - pretty much alot of these young people admitted they were "fed up" with all this political nonsense from the "religious right", and wanted to try something "new". Well guess what...the "religious right" and the EC have alot of connections b/w each other. The Southern Baptist Convention has Emergent Church leaders as members(ie-Rick Warren, Beth Moore and Dallas Willard). Don't be deceived about the SBC "going down the pit". It's been ALL BY DESIGN to help usher in this OWR.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 04, 2012, 01:27:35 pm
Oh boy...how many times have we been down this "But Christians need to VOTE in this coming election!" road before? ::)

And let's not forget too that Romney supports the NDAA bill as well.


http://entertainment.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/09/04/13645398-chuck-norris-america-faces-1000-years-of-darkness-if-obama-wins-re-election?lite

Chuck Norris and his wife Gena made a YouTube video encouraging evangelical Christians to oust President Barack Obama, with Norris warning that the nation stands on the brink of "socialism or something much worse."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=WFLNmThRMNQ

Gena Norris also quotes a 1964 speech by Ronald Reagan, saying that failed actions "will sentence (our children) to take the first step into a thousand years of darkness." Reagan gave the speech on behalf of then-presidential candidate Barry Goldwater, who went on to lose to Lyndon Johnson by one of the largest margins in history.

In the video, Norris warns that the nation "may be lost forever if we don't change the course our country is taking."

Norris also says "our great country and freedom are under attack," while Gena says that 30 million evangelical Christians failed to vote in 2008, resulting in Barack Obama winning the presidency by 10 million votes.

Norris is far from the only celebrity to interject himself into political discourse recently. Actor Clint Eastwood captured headlines by pretending an empty chair was President Obama at last week's Republican National Convention, and singer Ted Nugent has issued numerous controversial remarks about Obama in the past months.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Boldhunter on September 04, 2012, 09:07:17 pm
I know the LORD is in complete control, but I am saddened every time I learn of new person(s) who are deceived. Before Rick Warren became known in his more recent years as part of the Emergents, I used to love to visit his church on occasion, and it almost sickens me to recall how much I used to tell unsaved friends what a great church Saddleback was (It did USED to be scripturally based in Jesus death on the cross and His resurrection, His blood as the remission for sins) - - Same thing with Billy Graham (which I only learned about here) -
Will someone give me links to Billy Graham's gospel message/alliance so I can further educate myself? Thanks :-/ My heart breaks for the LORD because I know he loves His church so much!

One more question: Is it a "sin" not to vote? Because I don't see ANYONE with a Godly mindset I can endorse


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 04, 2012, 10:02:32 pm
I know the LORD is in complete control, but I am saddened every time I learn of new person(s) who are deceived. Before Rick Warren became known in his more recent years as part of the Emergents, I used to love to visit his church on occasion, and it almost sickens me to recall how much I used to tell unsaved friends what a great church Saddleback was (It did USED to be scripturally based in Jesus death on the cross and His resurrection, His blood as the remission for sins) - - Same thing with Billy Graham (which I only learned about here) -
Will someone give me links to Billy Graham's gospel message/alliance so I can further educate myself? Thanks :-/ My heart breaks for the LORD because I know he loves His church so much!

Yeah, myself having grown up in the Churchianity/denominational/organized religion atmosphere...it was as if the praise of men went BEFORE the praise of our Almighty Creator. Sure, these "churches" would preach saved by grace through faith in Jesus alone, but ultimately they have been VERY SUBTLE when all was said and done in terms of getting the flock to worship men like Warren and Graham.

Rule of thumb - anytime any of these "evangelicals" get alot of airtime and/or their weekly sermons are on some mainstream network(ie-Charles Stanley's Sunday sermons can be seen on the Lifetime Channel now), a BIG red flag should be raised. Remember Jesus Christ and his Apostles were poor(Jesus didn't have a place to lay his head down on), and the only thing they received were their NEEDS(food, clothing, and a place to stay) when they went around preaching the gospel. But it seems like today's "prominent" evangelists are millionaries b/c they "deserve their blessings".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axxlXy6bLH0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5WWUoXuvYgQ

Billy Graham Exposed: One-World Aspirations
http://www.jesus-is-savior.com/Wolves/billy_graham-freemason.htm

Quote
One more question: Is it a "sin" not to vote? Because I don't see ANYONE with a Godly mindset I can endorse

Hhhhmmm...let's look at some of our "conservative" people...

Mitt Romney is a Mormon, and his running mate Paul Ryan is a Catholic.
John McCain's current wife happened to be his former mistress, while Sarah Palin's church is a speaking in tongues Pentacostal one.
George W. Bush is a Yale Skull and Bones alum, as is his father and grandfather Prescott.
Bob Dole is a 33rd Degree Mason, as was his '96 running mate Jack Kemp(or he might have been 32nd).
Ronald Reagan was a 33rd Degree Mason.
Gerald Ford was a 32nd Degree Mason.
Pat Buchanan(who worked as aides for Nixon and Reagan) is Jesuit-trained.
Pat Robertson is a 33rd Degree Mason.
Jerry Falwell was bought off for $50m by the Illuminati(this is according to former high level witch John Todd).
James Dobson has ties to the Vatican.
Gary Bauer(like the rest of the religious right folks) attacked the King James Bible(falsely accusing King James of being a homosexual).

The list goes on - personally, it's pretty obvious that it would be a SIN to VOTE in these elections - Apostle John says that we would be a partaker in their sins if we invite them into our homes and bid them Godspeed. Yeah, if we go around saying we have to get Republicans into office to "Christianize" America...we would be doing exactly as John warned not to do. And it would also be hurting our witness of the gospel to others as we'll be labeled as arrogant, conservative Republicans instead of humble Christians serving our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

As for all of this talk that Republicans in office = conservative, pro-family USSC justices = Reaganite economy...here are the FACTS...ALL FIVE of the justices that voted to uphold Roe V Wade in 1992 were GOP APPOINTEES(3 of them were by Reagan/Bush I). EIGHT of them were GOP APPOINTEES(and the lone Democrat appointee voted against it). And guess what...both of Bush II's appointees are PRO-Roe V Wade!

A good economy if Romney/Republicans are in office? Remember Reagan's Handlers's tripled the national debt throughout the 80's. Yeah, very good unemployment numbers et al, but at the big expense of letting the national debt go out of control, which is why it's at the $16t level it is now. The borrower is a slave to the lender...


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on September 05, 2012, 04:01:26 am
Quote
The list goes on - personally, it's pretty obvious that it would be a SIN to VOTE in these elections

Technically, no it is not a sin to vote. Christians are forgiven and no longer live under the law of sin and death. We can however do things that are unedifying/sinful because of the flesh.

What would be wrong is getting involved in secular matters at all. That's the world, which we are not to be a part of.

We are a "new creature" and the "former things are passed away". That includes voting. The system is rigged anyway, so voting is useless. And anyone who thinks voting can change things is deluded and haven't got a clue about what's really going on in the world.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 20, 2012, 09:36:57 am
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/sep/16/evangelical-supporters-of-romney-gather-at-summit-/#ixzz270F39cH7

Evangelical supporters of Romney gather at summit

Share values with Mormon candidate


9/16/12

Quote
He wasn’t there but Mitt Romney got some love over the weekend at a Washington, D.C., gathering of more than 2.000 evangelical Protestants representing a demographic that proved crucial to electing the last four Republican presidents.
 
Many of the born-again Christians at Family Research Council President Tony Perkins‘ annual Values Voter Summit — some from as far away as the California — are recent converts to the Romney presidential quest. They said in interviews that they have put aside their doubts in favor of what they say is a man who, though a Mormon, shares their moral values and political aims despite the doctrinal differences between his faith and theirs.
 
“I know I said a few months ago that I would never vote for a Mormon, but my husband and I and our friends are so far past that now,” said Kim Bengard, whose San Clemente, Calif., home is three doors away from what was President Nixon’s “Western White House.” “I have come to understand that Mitt Romney supports my values. We’re really pleased with him.”
 
Retired federal worker Bob Nelson, a Gaithersburg evangelical activist, said he didn’t mind Mr. Romney’s absence this year, because the former Massachusetts governor had addressed the two previous Values Voter Summit gatherings.

http://www.voanews.com/content/evangelical_christians_reconcile_anti-mormonism_with_romney_choice/1510571.html

9/18/12

Evangelical Christians Reconcile Anti-Mormonism With Romney Choice

Quote
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH — Evangelical Christians have long regarded Mormonism with suspicion. But many evangelicals are now trying to reconcile supporting a Mormon candidate for president while rejecting the teachings of his faith's 19th century American prophet, Joseph Smith Jr.
 
"Joseph Smith had 34 wives, 11 of whom were currently married to other men when he took them as wives!" says Rob Sivulka, who goes for the jugular in his polemic outside the headquarters of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
 


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on October 09, 2012, 09:36:44 pm
One-Third Of Adults Under 30 Have No Religious Affiliation


One-fifth of American adults have no religious affiliation, and this number is increasing rapidly.

The number of Americans who do not identify with any religion continues to grow at a fast pace. One-fifth of the U.S. public – and a third of adults under 30 – are religiously unaffiliated today, the highest percentages ever in Pew Research Center polling.

In the last five years alone, the unaffiliated have increased from just over 15 percent to just under 20 percent of all U.S. adults. Their ranks now include more than 13 million self-described atheists and agnostics (nearly 6 percent of the U.S. public), as well as nearly 33 million people who say they have no particular religious affiliation (14 percent).

This large and growing group of Americans is less religious than the public at large on many conventional measures, including frequency of attendance at religious services and the degree of importance they attach to religion in their lives.

But the survey may be affected by a differing view of the words “religion” and “spiritual.”

A new survey by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion & Public Life, conducted jointly with the PBS television program Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly, finds that many of the country’s 46 million unaffiliated adults are religious or spiritual in some way.

Two-thirds of them say they believe in God (68 percent). More than half say they often feel a deep connection with nature and the earth (58 percent), while more than a third classify themselves as “spiritual” but not “religious” (37 percent), and one-in-five (21 percent) say they pray every day.

With few exceptions, though, the unaffiliated say they are not looking for a religion that would be right for them. Overwhelmingly, they think that religious organizations are too concerned with money and power, too focused on rules and too involved in politics.

The lower the age group, the less likely people are to be affiliated.

The growth in the number of religiously unaffiliated Americans – sometimes called the rise of the “nones” – is largely driven by generational replacement, the gradual supplanting of older generations by newer ones.

A third of adults under 30 have no religious affiliation (32 percent), compared with just one-in-ten who are 65 and older (9 percent). And young adults today are much more likely to be unaffiliated than previous generations were at a similar stage in their lives.

In addition, this report contains capsule summaries of some leading theories put forward by scholars in an attempt to explain the root causes of the rise of the “nones.” These theories run the gamut from a backlash against the entanglement of religion and politics to a global relationship between economic development and secularization.

http://washington.cbslocal.com/2012/10/09/study-one-third-of-adults-under-30-have-no-religious-affiliation/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 09, 2012, 10:17:24 pm

Quote
Two-thirds of them say they believe in God (68 percent). More than half say they often feel a deep connection with nature and the earth (58 percent), while more than a third classify themselves as “spiritual” but not “religious” (37 percent), and one-in-five (21 percent) say they pray every day.

Yes, this likely explains the boom in the megachurch industry nowdays, and all of the Postmodernism doctrines from the Emergent Church that's infiltrated Baptist walls too. Churches were pretty lukewarm when I was a boy in the 80's(when the MTV/Pepsi generations started), but HARDLY ANYONE back then would have even given 2nd thoughts in terms of letting Rob Bell junk come into their doors.

Quote
With few exceptions, though, the unaffiliated say they are not looking for a religion that would be right for them. Overwhelmingly, they think that religious organizations are too concerned with money and power, too focused on rules and too involved in politics.

Hate to say it, but there's some truth to this. Modern-day Churchianity is more concerned with building new buildings, funding unecessary albeit fleshly programs, abiding by their 501c3 status instead of serving the Lord with all of their heart soul mind and strength, and yes, them falling for the "religious right"'s deception since 1979 has not only planted some rotten seeds, but has turned off and divided alot of people ultimately.(ie-I know these elections are rigged, but you can't deny Obama rose to power largely b/c of all the rotten fruit Bush/Cheney did, and wasn't held accountable by their own team)

PBS recently did a piece on the Emergent Church, and the young people they interviewed said how they wanted to "try something new"(para) b/c they got fed up with all of the politics going on in the church.

I know all of this is prophecized to come to pass(as part of the falling away), but nonetheless it's sad to see how the gospel preached is being hindered b/c of the wolves infiltrating the walls. It's been all by design too(ie-Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson et al are/were good friends with Rick Warren and other New Age Postmodern pastors - so you can see all of the Hegelian Dialect going on).

Quote
The lower the age group, the less likely people are to be affiliated.

The growth in the number of religiously unaffiliated Americans – sometimes called the rise of the “nones” – is largely driven by generational replacement, the gradual supplanting of older generations by newer ones.

A third of adults under 30 have no religious affiliation (32 percent), compared with just one-in-ten who are 65 and older (9 percent). And young adults today are much more likely to be unaffiliated than previous generations were at a similar stage in their lives.

Again, not a surprise - the previous Baby Boom/Gen X crowd were caught up in this rock n roll/sexual revolution/public school without the word of God deceptions, and not to mention too 501c3/other perverted versions like the NIV, etc have dominated the church buildings post-WW2...that it came to a point where the current generation was really never shown the true word of God.

And no, I'm not trying to single them out and act like I'm better than them, b/c for a long, long time I too was caught up in all of these schemes from Satan, before I got saved.

Mat 24:32  Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:
Mat 24:33  So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.
Mat 24:34  Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
Mat 24:35  Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on October 10, 2012, 05:57:56 pm
Denominational loyalty imploding?

Christian commentators and researchers reacting to a recent study on religious demographics in the U.S. say the findings reveal more than is being discussed about the downtrend in Protestantism.

A new religious demographic survey from the Pew Forum asserts that a record number of Americans profess no religious affiliation, and that Protestants are now a minority in America. The study is being widely reported as showing that a growing number of people are rejecting at least organized religion, that Protestants are receding in importance, and that America is becoming more and more secular.

But Mark Tooley, president of the Institute on Religion & Democracy, points out another important aspect of the statistics - one he says is being essentially ignored.

"The study also shows that most of the religious unaffiliated still believe in God and still pray -- and although very few have commented on it at all, it also shows that about the same percentage of Americans are still attending church regularly, close to 40 percent, which remarkably has remained the same across 80 years now."

Tooley says the Pew survey does not mean necessarily that America is going the way of Europe and deserting religion. "I think the study mostly just illustrates the implosion of denominational loyalties and affiliations, especially among the mainline Protestants, but among Protestants and evangelicals as a whole," he offers. "Even those who are very devout increasingly don't express any strong loyalty to any particular denomination or tradition."

Tooley concludes that "what the study illustrates should not be exaggerated."

A need to reach across generations

The same Pew Forum poll shows a disconnection between youth and the church, suggesting that one-third of adults under age 30 have no religious connection. LifeWay Research's Ed Stetzer tells OneNewsNow people do tend to show a connection with religion as they go through phases of life.

"But there are some disconcerting numbers here, and it's not the first one, but where we see a lesser commitment and interest in things of faith to young adults and youth," he remarks. "And I think it reminds us that as Christians the need to redouble our efforts to engage and reach across generations."

The key to that, he believes, is discipling children within the framework of the family.

"We've shown studies at LifeWay Research where we've found the number-one correlative factor to students being engaged and remaining engaged in church and ministry and life is having two parents who are married, who go to the same church, and who are engaged in the spiritual formation of their children," the researcher explains.

"And so I think we don't want to ever lose sight that this is not just a church issue, though it is; this is [also] a family issue. That's the fundamental unit of discipleship."

Stetzer believes Christians should examine "how we live as agents of God's mission; how do we seek to be those who represent Christ in our community -- not simply those who go to church on Sunday, but people who represent [Christ] and live for him every day."

http://www.onenewsnow.com/church/2012/10/10/denominational-loyalty-imploding?utm


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on October 10, 2012, 06:35:35 pm
Quote
A new religious demographic survey from the Pew Forum asserts that a record number of Americans profess no religious affiliation (that ain't a bad thing!), and that Protestants are now a minority in America. The study is being widely reported as showing that a growing number of people are rejecting at least organized religion (that ain't bad either!), that Protestants are receding in importance, and that America is becoming more and more secular.

America more secular? Uh, when wasn't it secular?  ::)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 10, 2012, 07:24:37 pm
Being from Texas here - there are LOTS of these big megachurches. Not just in my metroplex, but pretty much across the state as well. They're very lukewarm, I mean VERY. With their rock n roll music, Postmodernism theology, Orange Juliuses, Starbucks, "experiencing" white water rafting films, etc, etc. It's these same megachurches that are largely non-denominational. Yeah, the Independent Fundamental Baptist churches are non-denominational too(which is a good thing, although IFB churches are starting to enter treaturous Apostate waters now).

Like Kilika says - organized religion was never a good thing to begin with, however, you can't deny that all of this was BY DESIGN to begin with. It's come to the point where our current generation of young people are running off to these megachurches that not only do not preach the word, but has been nothing but a form of escapism venue ala a movie theater or a shopping mall. Like I mentioned in a previous post - the current generation of young people, in a piece PBS did on the Emergent Church, admitted that they were angry over politics entering their organized religion churches as children, that they wanted to "try something new"(para). While I tend to feel the same way, at the same time I do NOT empathize with them b/c they should have dug into their King James Bibles for answers.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on October 13, 2012, 06:29:47 am
Am Spectator: A Secularizing America?

A new Pew Research Center study of America's evolving religious demographic asserts that nearly 20 percent of Americans are now religiously unaffiliated, while historically dominant Protestants are now under 50 percent. The headlines have understandably cited the study as proof of America's secularization. The truth is probably more complicated, more interesting, and a little less disturbing to religious America. Two-thirds of the religiously unaffiliated still believe in God, and 20 percent of them pray daily. A significant minority among them even regularly attend formal worship. Atheists and agnostics, although purportedly growing...   

MORE: http://spectator.org/archives/2012/10/10/a-secularizing-america


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 13, 2012, 10:59:32 am
Am Spectator: A Secularizing America?

A new Pew Research Center study of America's evolving religious demographic asserts that nearly 20 percent of Americans are now religiously unaffiliated, while historically dominant Protestants are now under 50 percent. The headlines have understandably cited the study as proof of America's secularization. The truth is probably more complicated, more interesting, and a little less disturbing to religious America. Two-thirds of the religiously unaffiliated still believe in God, and 20 percent of them pray daily. A significant minority among them even regularly attend formal worship. Atheists and agnostics, although purportedly growing...   

MORE: http://spectator.org/archives/2012/10/10/a-secularizing-america

Wasn't it just 10 years ago when these same POLL GROUPS said some 80% of the American public categorized themselves as evangelical Christians?

No, it wasn't exactly accurate then(as the modern-day church was very dead then as well), but it's as if these poll groups are saying this country has done a 180 in only a span of a few years. ::)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 15, 2012, 09:58:46 am
http://news.yahoo.com/enthusiasm-rises-romney-obama-track-retort-040209299--abc-news-politics.html

Enthusiasm Rises for Romney; Obama Has a 'Right-Track' Retort

Obama trails by 11 points among whites, but comes back with a vast 73-18 percent lead among nonwhites. Romney's Mormon religion looks to be no impediment among evangelical white Protestants, a core Republican group in which he leads by 81-17 percent. (Obama did better in this group against McCain.) The contest has tightened among white Catholics, a swing group in some elections, albeit with Romney maintaining a numerical (not statistically significant) edge. (McCain won this group by 5). And independents, frequently another swing voter group, divide by a closer 48-42 percent, Romney-Obama.

http://news.yahoo.com/mormonism-voter-enthusiasm-concern-evangelicals-190931883--election.html

Mormonism, voter enthusiasm concern evangelicals
By RACHEL ZOLL | Associated Press – Tue, Oct 9, 2012

NEW YORK (AP) — Evangelical leaders worried that Mitt Romney's Mormonism could suppress conservative turnout on Election Day are intensifying appeals for Christians to vote.

In poll after poll, evangelicals have overwhelmingly said they would back the Republican presidential nominee despite theological differences with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. But what had been thought of as a hypothetical question for American evangelicals for years, Southern Baptist leader Al Mohler said recently, is now a reality with this election and is being tested in a contest that will likely be decided by slim margins.




Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 02, 2012, 08:57:08 am
Chuck Baldwin
11/1/12

http://chuckbaldwinlive.com/home/archives/5229

A Word About The Elections

With the 2012 Presidential election just a few days away, it is almost superfluous for me to engage in any kind of in depth discussion, as most people cannot, for the life of them, get past the political theater that is currently crescendoing to a climax. Therefore, I will simply provide readers with a few passing thoughts regarding the elections next week.
 
I think Mitt Romney will somewhat comfortably win the Presidential election. This will cause “conservatives,” Christians, and most Republicans to go into a state of deep hibernation, which will allow Romney to wreak havoc upon the Constitution and liberties of the people. In 2012, Barack Obama is the “Boogeyman” that must defeated at all costs. But the fact is, with the exception of Romney’s more business-friendly approach to economics, the differences between Obama and Romney are negligible.
 
As I have noted in previous columns, the differences between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are miniscule on virtually every salient issue. They both supported TARP; they both supported Obama’s economic stimulus package; they both supported so-called assault weapons bans and other gun control measures; Obama has an “F” rating from Gun Owners of America, while Romney has a “D-” rating from GOA; neither man supports a balanced budget; neither man opposes foreign aid; they both supported the bailout of the auto industry; they both have a track record of being big spenders; they both fully support the Federal Reserve; they both oppose a full audit of the Fed; they are both supporters of universal health care; both men are showered with campaign contributions from Wall Street; neither of them wants to eliminate the IRS or the direct income tax; both men are on record as saying the TSA is doing a “great job”; they both supported the NDAA, including the indefinite detention of American citizens without due process of law; they both supported the renewal of the Patriot Act; they both believe that the President has “executive power” to assassinate and kill; both support the “free trade” agenda of the global elite; they are both soft on illegal immigration; they both support NAFTA and CAFTA; they both have a history of appointing liberal judges; they both believe the President has the authority to take the nation to war without the approval of Congress; and neither of them has any qualms about running up more public debt to the already gargantuan debt of 16 trillion dollars.
 
Judge Andrew Napolitano nailed it when he said, “Barack Obama loves Big Labor; Mitt Romney loves Big Business; but they both love Big Government.”
 
Steve Baldwin (no relation) agrees. Steve is a former California State legislator and former Executive Director of the Council for National Policy. He said:
 
“As someone who was asked by one of the presidential candidates to investigate Romney’s gubernatorial record, I can assure you there is little in Romney’s background to suggest he will be a Reagan-type president willing to undertake bold action to save our economy and restore our culture. I know every bill he signed and every statement he made as Governor. I know who his appointees were and the liberal vision that governed his actions. As Massachusetts Governor, he sided with the big government types in every crisis he faced. Indeed, he repeatedly sold out constitutional rights–freedom of religion, the 2nd amendment, etc., every time he had the opportunity to do so.
 
“He raised taxes on the private sector, destroyed job creation when he implemented RomneyCare, and came out in support of amnesty for illegal aliens. Most of his judicial appointees were to the left of Obama’s two appointments to the Supreme Court. As governor, he led the country in advancing three of the left’s most sacred issues: Cap and Trade, socialized medicine and gay marriage. Romney even supported Obama’s bailouts and the useless $8 billion stimulus. And he’s hostile to the notion of engaging in serious budget cuts, telling one reporter, ‘I’m not going to cut $1 trillion in the first year.’
 
Let’s not also forget that Romney’s advisors actually met with Obama’s advisors on a dozen occasions to assist them with designing ObamaCare! It’s no surprise that Romney is refusing to call ObamaCare a tax, even though it’s the largest middle class tax hike in American history. The reason for this is because, while governor, his RomneyCare plan–the model for ObamaCare–was attacked as a tax and he argued it wasn’t.
 
“In other words, ObamaCare has been taken off the table as a campaign issue because Romney is afraid of being portrayed as a hypocrite for his past statements on this issue. This is reason number 167 why Romney should never have become our nominee.
 
“I don’t care how his campaign portrays him today, his record as Governor is far more indicative of how he will govern than his campaign sound bites. If you’re not familiar with what I am disclosing about Romney, it’s because the truth about Romney was kept from Republican voters. Yes, the conservative movement sold out to Romney. Starting in 2004, Romney created a slew of PACS and foundations that funneled thousands of dollars to hundreds of conservative groups, think tanks, grass roots leaders and GOP entities.
 
“In return, many of these entities that normally would have attacked Romney during the presidential primary went silent or even promoted him. I’ve tracked all of Romney contributions to conservative and GOP groups and it’s disgusting. It means that the leadership of our own conservative movement is up for the highest bidder and cannot be trusted to do the right thing. Even National Review, the nation’s leading conservative publication, took money from Romney and for the last six years blocked all articles critical of Romney. Instead, they published a slew of articles portraying him to be a conservative superstar. It was all phony and I can prove it.”
 
Even though Romney will promote at least 85% of the Obama agenda, conservatives have no fear or trepidation of Romney because he is a Republican, whereas Obama scares the pants off of them because he is a Democrat. Ah, don’t you just love partisan politics?
 
Therefore, as I said, absent massive vote-fraud, Romney will be our next President. But he will do NOTHING to stem the tide of coming disaster. Romney will be a military hawk of the highest order. And while corporations doing business with the military-industrial complex will reap huge profits, America’s continued foreign interventionism is going to bring us to the brink of World War III. Furthermore, it is the “we are at war” mantra that is used to justify a burgeoning police state in America, which Romney will enthusiastically continue to implement. And unlike the Democrat Barack Obama, the Republican Mitt Romney will have little resistance–except from a Democrat-controlled Senate.
 
Republicans will maintain control of the House of Representatives, which is probably a good thing; Democrats will probably control the Senate. Between the two, I had much rather have Republicans control the House, because trying to find honest-to-God freedomists among Republican US senators (you could count them on two hands) is like trying to find hen’s teeth. Again, Romney isn’t going to appoint freedomist judges anyway, so that argument is moot. But if the first six years of this century proved anything, it proved that neither major party in Washington, D.C., can be trusted with control of both chambers of Congress and the White House. That is a recipe for disaster!
 
At this point, I must remind readers that the reason Barack Obama was elected to begin with was due to the eight years of the phony-conservative G.W. Bush administrations. Americans were disillusioned and angry over Bush’s huge spending habits at home and his military adventurism overseas. I predict a Mitt Romney presidency will have the same effect. As with G. W. Bush, Mitt Romney will disappoint and anger the American electorate, which will pave the way for another leftist (Hillary Clinton?) to prevail in 2016.
 
“And the beat goes on.”
 
At some point–maybe toward the end of Romney’s first term–the chickens are going to come home to roost. Neither major party has the guts to do what it takes to put America on a solid financial footing. They are both beholden to too many parasites that are sucking the life’s blood out of our country. And neither party will do a darn thing to stop this fascination with empire that is putting our troops in killing fields all over the world. The result: it’s only a matter of time before the inevitable happens. And just about anybody with half a brain knows it!


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 14, 2012, 03:36:45 pm
Disclaimer: House doesn't use KJV verses in this article, but nonetheless it's a very good read...

http://www.worldviewweekend.com/worldview-times/article.php?articleid=9027

Posted: 11/10/12

How The New Religious Right Assisted in the Re-Election of President Obama And Are Hastening God's Judgment of America

Opinion and commentary by Brannon Howse

Note: I call this new generation of pro-family leaders the "New Religious Right" because I do not believe many of the now deceased leaders of the Religious Right from the 1970s, such as Dr. D. James Kennedy and Dr. Adrian Rogers, would agree with the theological and doctrinal compromises made by many of today's NRR leaders.

Please understand that this article is written out of my Biblical concern for the church and in defense of the Gospel. I have endeavored to be as gracious as possible. A few years ago I had to repent of raising the flag above the cross and I want to speak from my mistakes and plead with you not to make the same mistake and thus waste the precious time we have left for what will really count for eternity. With that being said let me tell you as lovingly as I can that I believe pro-family groups and evangelicals that united up with false teachers for one prayer rally and spiritual event after another in hopes of defeating Obama not only failed politically but they also failed Biblically. Thus, I believe the New Religious Right bear some of the responsibility for the re-election of President Obama and for what appears to be God's hastening in His giving our nation over as described in Romans chapter one.

God's Word tells us in 2 Corinthians 6:17 that if Christians unite with false teachers then God will not welcome, receive, or have favor on them. God has not shown favor with the re-election of President Obama and I believe one reason is due to the Biblical compromise of the New Religious right and modern-day evangelicalism in aggressively uniting up with false teachers in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

In an August 2010 article I warned the New Religious Right that they were going to hasten God's judgment on our nation with their unbiblical spiritual enterprises, with New Age Mormon Glenn Beck in clear violation of 2 John 9-11, 2 Corinthians 6:14, and Romans 16:17. Beck's Restoring Honor Rally was described as a spiritual event by Beck Himself. It was in 2010 that I wrote:
 
The compromise by evangelical leaders and pastors by spiritually uniting with "all faiths" with the theme of "looking to the one god", as described by Beck, has laid the foundation for untold numbers of self-professing Christians to now embrace pluralism and pagan spirituality. Pastors and evangelical leaders literally locked arms with all faiths, including Imams, in a spiritual endeavor despite the clear Biblical warnings of 2 Corinthians 6:14.
 
Again in August of 2011, I warned the New Religious Right about taking part in and organizing Governor Rick Perry's "The Response" prayer rally that included a mixture of the New Religious Right and some of the world's most popular false teachers. In a 2011 article I warned:
 
I do not believe this event will aide in reclaiming the country, restoring liberty, or prosperity and it certainly will not prompt God to bless America. I believe such an event will actually hasten God's judgment on our nation…God is watching and I contend that our efforts are being thwarted by God as Divine judgment for setting aside Scriptural warnings and uniting with false teachers in spiritual enterprises intertwined with our Christian activism. 

In my book Grave Influence that was published in 2009, I wrote that God was giving America over as described in Romans 1. Romans 1:28 tells us that one of the signs that God is giving over a nation is that they become debased. Debased means that they don't pass the test spiritually and one of the signs of a debased mind according to Romans 1:32 is that people lack discernment. Why is it that we have so many people, including religious leaders, lacking discernment?

When the New Religious Right and evangelicals unite up with false teachers then I believe that this is proof they lack discernment. In my latest book Religious Trojan Horse I wrote:

If embracing false teachers is how you reclaim the culture I don't want to be a part of it. Besides, there is no reclaiming the culture apart from God. Romans 1, explains that compromise and uniting with those who embrace and promote pagan spirituality is how you destroy a culture and speed up God's judgment. When God finally brings judgment upon America, I believe you will be able to point to some of America's favorite "evangelical" and pro-family leaders and say, "you and your organizations are as responsible, if not more responsible, for the Divine judgment on our nation than any secular company or organization in America, because you gave credibility and rise to Satan's number one tool-false teachers-to wage war against Satan's number one earthy adversary, the true Church." 

Let me give you some examples of why I believe this is a true statement:
 
·        Jerry Falwell Jr., on Glenn Beck's radio program in 2010 declared, "If we don't hang together we'll hang separately. I mean, that's what my father believed when he formed Moral Majority, an organization of Mormons, Catholics, Protestants, Jews, people of no faith. And there are bigger issues now. We can argue about theology later after we save the country. " [source]
 
 
 
·        Just a few days before the Presidential election, The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association removed the reference to Mormonism as a cult from their website. [source]
 
 
 
·        In 2012, Shirley Dobson appeared on New Age, Mormon Glenn Beck's radio program to talk about prayer and God. In the process, she praised Beck for his "great job" and "good work." Again, how can Beck's promotion of another Jesus and another gospel be a good work, and why do "evangelical" leaders seem eager to compromise the admonishments of 2 Corinthians 6:14, Romans 16:17, and 2 John 9-11? [source]


 
·        According to news reports, in 2008, James and Shirley Dobson joined New Apostolic Reformation personality and assistant pastor at the International House of Prayer, Lou Engle, for "The Call" in San Diego. [source]


 
·        In March 2012, James Dobson interviewed Lou Engle on his radio program. He praised Engle and his "ministry." [source]
 
 
 
·        Numerous New Religious Right personalities and evangelicals have defended or praised Glenn Beck, or talked with him about God, or joined him in one of his spiritual enterprises. Christians and Mormons do not follow the same God. Why would self-professing Christians unite in a spiritual enterprise with non-Christians? The answer seems to be to reclaim America but how is that working out for them? They are not reclaiming America but I believe compromising the church and the Gospel and hastening God's judgment. [source]    [source]   [source]   [source]   [source]   [source] 
 
 
 
If you are not aware of why the New Apostolic Reformation is so dangerous to the church you need to read my new book Religious Trojan Horse. You should also watch this short video clip by Dr. John MacArthur on Lou Engle, Cindy Jacobs, C. Peter Wagner,  and Mike Bickle.


 
Until pro-family organizations take a strong stand on the Word of God and use the culture war as a platform to preach the Gospel, I believe they will continue to spend millions of dollars with little to show for it. When James Dobson gave his retirement speech to the Focus on the Family board and employees, he all but admitted that there has been little success in the culture war:
 

James Dobson, 72, who resigned recently as head of Focus on the Family-one of the largest Christian groups in the country-and once denounced the Harry Potter books as witchcraft, acknowledged the dramatic reverse for the religious Right in a farewell speech to staff.

 
 
"We tried to defend the unborn child, the dignity of the family, but it was a holding action. We are awash in evil and the battle is still to be waged. We are right now in the most discouraging period of that long conflict. Humanly speaking, we can say we have lost all those battles." [source]
 
Pat Roberston has also expressed doubt on how much his culture war activities have really accomplished:
 
In a reflective mood for Easter, evangelical icon and onetime presidential candidate Pat Robertson echoes the Rev. Billy Graham's recent acknowledgement that he wished he had spent less time on politics and more time on the ministry and his family.

"When you get it all said and done, what did my work accomplish in the political realm?" Robertson wondered rhetorically during an exclusive interview with Newsmax.TV in which he offers an inspirational Easter message. [source]
 
The pragmatic and ecumenical strategy of the New Religious Right has failed and I believe President Obama's re-election is proof of this fact. In Matthew 23:13-29, Jesus uses the word "woe" eight times when speaking to the scribes, Sadducees, and Pharisees. "Woe" means "judgment upon you," and Jesus pronounced judgment on them because they were more interested in moralizing and legislating morality than in understanding, accepting, and preaching the life-changing Gospel of Jesus Christ.
 
Christians should be involved in good works such as defending the lives of the unborn, caring for widows and orphans, and running crisis pregnancy centers. The reason, though, is that people will see the transforming power of the Gospel in our lives. Good works when used as a platform for the Gospel offers unbelievers the chance to see the light of Christ within our lives and to give glory to our heavenly Father. This is the Biblical meaning of being salt and light. The light is the Gospel not good works or moralizing.

Christian activism apart from the Gospel has no eternal value and is, in fact, a sin because we are not obeying God and fulfilling the Great Commission. Uniting with false teachers in spiritual enterprise for political gain is not proclaiming the Gospel but compromising the Gospel.

It is past time that we follow the example of Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:3-5, where he declares that his first priority is the gospel:

For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures.
 
Christian pro-family leaders would do well to examine every initiative, project, book, speech, broadcast, and conference in light of whether it will further the proclamation of the biblical Gospel or compromise scriptural principles clearly laid out in God's Word.
 
If the New Religious Right were truly committed first and foremost to sound biblical theology and doctrine, they would not be involved in spiritual enterprises with those who participate in the New Age Movement, the New Apostolic Reformation, ecumenicalism, globalism, communitarianism, the Church of Rome, the Word of Faith movement, social justice, and the social gospel.
 
Most pro-family organizations claim to be Christian and boast that they embrace "Christian values" because the majority of their supports call themselves "Christian."  However, when it comes to defining what it means to be a Biblical Christian, most of the New Religious Right will not reflect Biblical Christianity because they don't want to offend their Catholic, Mormon, Word of Faith, or New Apostolic Reformation donors. So, in the end, I believe the New Religious Right betrays the Gospel in deference to "another" gospel embraced by these disparate groups.

Yes, I voted, and I hope you did as well but post-election I have read where pro-family and "evangelical" leaders are lecturing Christians that the election of President Obama is what happens when Christians are not committed to Christian activism. Wrong! This is what happens with Christian leaders are committed to ecumenicalism, pragmatism, and give credibility to false teachers all in violation of God's Word and God's warning.

I think the question that needs to be asked now is who will you follow going forward? How will you respond when New Religious Right leaders try to convince you that you need to continue to follow them in order to win the culture war? I for one rejected the culture-war industrial complex for what I think it is really all about some time ago.

The first sentence of my 2009 book Grave Influence was "We've lost the culture war." The culture war is the symptom of the problem and unless we preach the Gospel and defend the Gospel there is not only no hope for the culture but no hope for the lost.

Do you really think God is pleased by political pragmatism over Biblical truth? Uniting with false teachers in spiritual enterprises for political pragmatism is not defending the Gospel but giving credibility to a false gospel. 

It is time for true Christians with Biblical discernment to follow the instructions of Romans 16:17-"Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to doctrine which you learned, and avoid them."
 
The election results do not change the fact that God is still in control. Our mission has not changed; we are to continue to preach the Gospel and disciple fellow believers. Our mission on the day before the election was the Great Commission and today is still the Great Commission. If your life is largely committed to the culture war then you will feel very defeated by the re-election of President Obama-and well you should be because your life is not going to have an eternal impact and your focus is also not a good sign of your spiritual condition.  However, if your life is committed to the defense and proclamation of the Gospel and Biblical discipleship then you realize that our success is not defined by earthly elections which have nothing to do with God's plan for eternity.

Our main focus should be preaching the Gospel to the lost, defending the gospel, and protecting the church from false teachers and pro-family leaders that have allowed certain men to rise from within (Acts 20:28-31).

If you want to pull the rug out from underneath the same-sex marriage agenda or the abortion agenda then preach the gospel to the unsaved. If they hear the gospel and respond through faith and repentance then just watch as their worldview changes, their values change and ultimately their conduct.

We cannot reclaim the culture but we can contend earnestly for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints (Jude 3). This involves exposing today's religious Trojan horse that has breached the walls of modern-day evangelicalism through patriotic ecumenicalism and other such schemes of the evil one.

So, to my fellow Bereans, press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:14).
 





Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 17, 2012, 09:55:19 am
It was once upon a time ago, supposedly the GOP was the party of Christianity. Yes, I know it never was, but nonetheless they did one heck of a job disguising themselves as that and as of traditional values. Read b/w the lines in this article...

http://news.yahoo.com/republicans-gop-needs-times-131006853--election.html

Republicans: GOP needs to get with the times

WASHINGTON (AP) — To hear some Republicans tell it, the Grand Old Party needs to get with the times.

Some of the early prescriptions offered by officials and operatives to rebuild after devastating elections: retool the party message to appeal to Latinos, women and working-class people; upgrade antiquated get-out-the-vote systems with the latest technology. Teach candidates how to handle the new media landscape.

From longtime GOP luminaries to the party's rising stars, almost everyone asked about the Republicans' Nov. 6 election drubbing seems to agree that a wholesale update is necessary for a party that appears to be running years behind Democrats in adapting to rapidly changing campaigns and an evolving electorate.

Interviews with more than a dozen Republicans at all levels of the party indicated that postelection soul-searching must quickly turn into a period of action.

"We've got to have a very brutally honest review from stem to stern of what we did and what we didn't do, and what worked and what failed," said former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, who ran the party in the 1990s.

The party "has to modernize in a whole wide range of ways," added former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who ran against White House nominee Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential primary. "We were clearly wrong on a whole range of fronts."

To determine what went wrong, the Republican National Committee is examining every detail of the 2012 elections, with the goal of rebuilding the party for the future — much as the Democratic Party did in the 1980s after suffering a series of stinging losses at all levels of government.

Now, as was the case back then, the stakes are enormous for the party that failed to win the White House and has lost the popular vote for several national elections in a row. They're perhaps even higher for Republicans grappling for ways to court a rapidly changing electorate whose voting groups don't naturally gravitate toward the GOP. The dangers of failing to act could be severe: permanent minority status.

So it's little surprise that, after the election, some Republicans were quick to sound stark warnings.

The scale of the losses largely shocked a party whose top-shelf operatives went into Election Day believing Republicans had at least a decent chance of capturing the White House and gaining ground in Congress, where Republicans controlled the House and had a sizable minority in the Senate.

Instead, Romney lost all but one of the nine contested states, North Carolina, to President Barack Obama and was trounced in the electoral vote. Republicans also lost ground to Democrats in both houses of Congress, though Republicans retained their House majority.

How to move forward dominated the discussions at last week's Republican Governors Association meeting in Las Vegas, where some of the party's leading voices castigated Romney's assessment — made in what was supposed to be a private telephone call to donors — that Obama won re-election because of the "gifts" the president had provided to blacks, Hispanics and young voters. These governors faulted Romney.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal attributed Romney's loss to a lack of "a specific vision that connected with the American people."

Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown, who describes himself as a "pro-choice moderate Republican," echoed Republicans across the spectrum when he said last week: "We need to be a larger-tent party." Brown lost his seat to Democrat Elizabeth Warren.

Across the board, Republicans say that arguably the most urgent task facing the party is changing its attitude about immigration as it looks to woo Hispanics. This rapidly growing group voted overwhelmingly for Obama, by margins of 7-to-1 over Romney, who had shifted to the right on the issue during the GOP primary.

It didn't take long after the election for even staunch conservatives to start changing their tune on immigration. Days after the election, even conservative TV host Sean Hannity said he would support an immigration bill.

Said Barbour: "If we would be for good economic policy in terms of immigration, that would go a long way toward solving the political problem."

It's not just Hispanics.

Republicans said they also have work to do with single women and younger voters, many of whom tend to be more liberal on social issues than the current Republican Party. These Republicans said a change in tone is needed, though not a change in principles such as opposition to abortion.

"We need to make sure that we're not perceived as intolerant," said Ron Kaufman, a veteran Republican strategist who advised Romney's campaign. "The bottom line is we were perceived to be intolerant on some issues. And tone-deaf on others."

Republicans also said the party has to work on its relationship with working-class voters.

"Republicans have to start understanding that small business and entrepreneurs are important, but the people who work for them are also important," said Rep. Charles Bass, R-N.H., who lost his seat to Democrat Ann Kuster. "We've got to be compassionate conservatives."

Party leaders also said the GOP needs to change how it communicates its message. Obama's campaign, they said, was particularly effective at talking directly to voters, and building relationships over long periods of time, whereas the GOP was more focused on top-down communication such as TV ads and direct mail.

"There are whole sections of the American public that we didn't even engage with," Gingrich said.

Others pointed to the pressing need to recruit candidates who know how to stick to a carefully honed message, especially in a Twitter-driven era. Among their case studies: Senate candidates Richard Mourdock in Indiana and Todd Akin in Missouri, who both discussed **** and pregnancy during the campaign, to the chagrin of party leaders looking to narrow the Democrats' advantage among women.

"We need candidates who are capable of articulating their policy positions without alienating massive voting blocs," said Kevin McLaughlin, a Republican operative who worked on several Senate races for the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

Many Republicans say the party doesn't have a choice but to change — and quickly.

Said Kaufmann: "In this business, either you learn and grow or you die."



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 17, 2012, 09:58:24 am
Wow...did these GOP people seem to not realize that Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida(among others) were RIGGED for Obama?

Looks like the GOP is officially slowly but surely shifting to the left, and the next thing we know they'll be demonizing Christians as much as the Dems.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 17, 2012, 04:48:13 pm
http://www.inquisitr.com/402214/nm-gov-susana-martinez-joins-gop-cacophony-of-romney-critics/

NM Gov. Susana Martinez Joins GOP Cacophony Of Romney Critics

Quote
Martinez spoke plainly about her feelings on Romney’s candidacy and legacy after a recent meeting of Republican governors, saying:
 
“We have to start electing people who look like their communities all the way from city council to county commissioners to county clerks all the way through the state and up into national politics … We need to embrace them not just at election time.”
 

Again, I'm not endorsing the GOP, as they're puppet-controlled as well, but like said, it wasn't too long ago when they at least put on an outward appearance of holding traditional values. Now lately, they seem to be using the same language as the Leftist Emergent Church uses(as you see Martinez's comments).


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on November 18, 2012, 02:25:21 am
Quote
We have to start electing people who look like their communities

This coming from a person named "Martinez". We know exactly what she means too! This has nothing to do with party or religion. It's pure racism. Typical.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on November 27, 2012, 06:13:52 am
Evangelicals Becoming More Devout, Catholics Less So

 Evangelical Protestants have become more devoted to their religious beliefs over the last three decades, even as Catholics have become less attached to their faith, new research finds.

The denominational differences come even as religious affiliations have decreased overall in America, with the number of people who claim no religious affiliation at all doubling from 7 percent in 1990 to 14 percent in 2000, said study researcher Philip Schwadel, a sociologist at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln.

Nevertheless, Schwadel said, these unaffiliated individuals seem to be dropping out of religious institutions that they were previously ambivalent about. People who feel strongly about their faith are as numerous as ever.

rest: http://www.livescience.com/25003-evangelicals-catholics-religious-devotion.html?utm


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 04, 2012, 07:50:12 am
http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/does-gop-religious-retreat-103526580--election.html

Does the GOP need a religious retreat?

It's no surprise that Florida Sen. Marco Rubio took heat for an interview he gave to GQ magazine this month: Departing from scientific consensus, the rising Republican star refused to state whether the Earth is billions of years old or a few thousand, as many fundamentalist Christians believe.
 
What no one expected was the rebuke from televangelist and longtime Christian conservative leader Pat Robertson, dismissing theories of a "young Earth."
 
"If you fight science, you are going to lose your children," Robertson said last week during an appearance on the Christian Broadcast Network, the television empire he founded three decades ago.
 
Robertson wasn't directly speaking to Rubio, but the senator and others in his party might heed the advice. Viewed by many voters as anti-science and too conservative on social issues such as gay marriage, the Republican Party is in danger of losing young and less religious voters for years to come.
 
In a post-election breakdown by the Public Religion Research Institute, the Obama religious coalition mirrors the demographics of 18-29 year olds, whereas Romney's mirrors those of voters aged 65 and up.
 
On Nov. 6, as President Barack Obama won a narrow but clear victory over Mitt Romney, voters in four states expressed support for gay marriage. Anti-abortion candidates lost in several states, including Senate contenders Todd Akin of Missouri and Richard Mourdock of Indiana, both of whom stirred outrage from their remarks on ****.
 
Many experts believe these developments point in part to a decisive shift in the religious makeup of the country, one that could make or break a GOP comeback.
 
"The way Republicans speak is turning off the youngest, fastest growing groups in the country—Latinos and significantly, the unchurched, those with no religious affiliation," said Mark Rozell, a public policy professor at George Mason University who studies religion and politics. "To them, the Republicans are proselytizing."
 
Since the 1980s, organizations like Focus on the Family, the Moral Majority and the Christian Coalition cemented religious conservatives as visible and potent force in the Republican coalition and enforced discipline on social issues such as abortion and gay rights. But now, the religious landscape is changing beneath their feet.
 
Studies suggest the number of unchurched has doubled in the past two decades and shot up by 25 percent in the last four years. The shift has taken place across the country and across economic classes, most notably among the young; one fifth of adults and one third of Americans under thirty now declare themselves religiously unaffiliated.
 
The new and expanding group of unchurched voters overwhelmingly support same sex-marriage and legal abortion, and so they gravitate toward the Democratic Party.
 
"It's clearly a concern—we have a lot of work to do," said Gary Marx, executive director of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, which worked to boost turnout among Catholics and evangelical voters.
 
The group, founded by conservative Christian activist Ralph Reed, helped deliver more religious voters to the polls this year than in 2008, but such efforts couldn't deliver a Romney victory.
 
In a press release following the election, Reed acknowledged that minorities and the young—and therefore, he might have added, the unchurched—made the difference for Obama.
 
Marx and his colleagues insist they aren't especially concerned about the growing secularization of young voters. They are primarily looking to diversify the GOP's religious coalition, Marx said.
 
To close the Latino gap, Marx says conservative activists are planning a major outreach effort to evangelical Hispanics and to Hispanic Catholics who attend Mass
.
 
"We are casting a wider net—the politics of addition, not subtraction," Marx said, adding that Latinos and other minorities have been attracted to many conservative positions like education reform.
 
Marx pointed to Georgia, where Hispanic and black voters supported a state amendment allowing the state government to set up charter schools.
 
Marx also suggested the Democratic advantage with young minority voters was "candidate-centric" — a reflection of Obama's unique status as the first black president.
 
But the problem may run deeper, into the Republican base: There is growing evidence that young evangelicals are simply less interested in politicizing hot-button issues.
 
"Young evangelicals don't look at the country as a battlefield, but rather a mission field," says James Wilcox, a George Mason University political science professor. "They're are less scared than their forbearers: They see the 'War on Religion' narrative as nonsense; they see churches thriving, the outlets they have, and the extent of religious pluralism in this country."
 
The new generation sees community activism, rather than electoral politics, as the means for their faith to shape the world, Wilcox argues. They may disagree with liberals about same-sex marriage, but they also believe that states have the right to determine such policies.
 
Many younger evangelicals are also serious about addressing climate change, even as many high-profile conservatives have expressed doubt about whether climate change is real—with nominee Mitt Romney cracking jokes about it at this year's Republican National Convention.
 
None of this means the influence of religious conservatives on Republican politics is set to disappear. But it is most certainly about to change.
 
Between the rise of the unchurched and the moderation of young religious conservatives, experts say, a smaller movement may emerge — one that retains its current zeal but carries less sway over the selection of GOP nominees. Or the movement could retain its power by successfully diversifying and coming up with a new way to talk to voters.
 
"We plan to reach out with a softer, pro-family agenda—less emphasis on the sexual points, more talk about family," Marx of the Faith and Freedom Coalition said. He also said activists would develop a "forward-looking" policy agenda akin to President George W. Bush's "compassionate conservatism."
 
But at the same time, Marx believes that some of that message already has been lifted by social liberals: "It is true that gay rights activists have stolen that language of 'family' we've used successfully, and now use it for their purposes."
 
One way for religious conservatives to start again, Rozell said, would be to return the favor and take a tip from two much-heralded communicators: Presidents Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton.
 
"Successful politicians can speak two languages, even if it's hard to do," Rozell said. Reagan did it, addressing both the Christian right and a largely secular small-government audience. Often times it's a shift in rhetoric rather than policy."
 
Rozell cited Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell of Virginia, a strong social conservative, who has maintained his popularity by using language that appeals to both religious and secular audiences.
 
Another strategy would be to borrow from the vocabulary of the other team, as Bill Clinton did when he co-opted the rhetoric of religious conservatives to crack down on the culture of sex and violence on TV.
 
"Put aside this talk of wars," Rozell says, "Republicans could easily adopt the rhetoric of "rights" and "tolerance" that liberals currently own, to speak to secular types about the value of pluralism and religious conscience."
..


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on December 13, 2012, 05:55:04 am
Richard Dawkins: Census shows that Christianity in Britain is 'on the way out'

Professor Richard Dawkins, the leading scientist and prominent atheist, responds to the sharp drop in the number of people describing themselves at Christians in the 2011 census.

 The drop in those ticking the Christian box, from 71.7 per cent in 2001 to 59.3 per cent in 2011, is highly significant. Even more dramatic is the rise in numbers professing “No religion”, from 14.8 per cent to 25.1 per cent.The two together represent a genuine shift of opinion, away from Christianity and towards unbelief. This is quite different from the increase in Muslims, which surely is due to demographics only: nobody could seriously suggest that any significant number of people in this country would actually convert to Islam. And, unlike Christianity, converting away from Islam carries certain penalties calculated to deter.

The exhilaratingly high figure of 25 per cent for non-believers – far more than any group except Christians – would be even higher if the census question on religion had been more intelligently framed. If they had asked “Do you have a religion?” instead of “What is your religion?”, polling data from the British Social Attitudes Survey confirms commonsense: the numbers of nonbelievers would have been massively higher. Non-belief is not a religion, and it is insulting to frame a question that presumes that everyone has a religion, in the same way as they have an age and a sex.

But in any case, do the 59 per cent who ticked the Christian box really believe in Christianity? Of course they are free to fasten any label they like to whatever it is they believe. But though they may call it Christianity, are bishops, priests and Christian lobbyists entitled to draw support from the 59 per cent? That depends on what the 59 per cent really do believe. To discover exactly that, the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science (UK) commissioned an Ipsos MORI poll in the very week after the census. We asked only those who ticked the Christian box a series of supplementary questions. The results should be devastating to anybody who wants to claim that this is still a Christian country, which should be run in accordance with Christian values.

Only 32 per cent of the census “Christians” believe in the resurrection of Jesus. Only 35 per cent could pick out the correct answer to “What is the first book of the New Testament?” when given a 4-way choice of Matthew, Genesis, Acts, Psalms. When asked why they had ticked the Christian box, only 28 per cent of those who did so said it was because they believe the teachings of Christianity. The most popular answer to that question was, “I like to think of myself as a good person.” What? You ticked the Christian box because you like to think of yourself as a good person? Are you serious? Do you think atheists, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists don’t think of themselves as good people?

Yet, when these “Census Christians” were asked where they turned when faced with a moral dilemma, only ten per cent said they turned to their religion. The majority turned to relatives or to their own inner moral sense, which of course is what good atheists do. So much for the cliché that you need God to be good. And those who think that our laws and governance should follow Christian values should be disconcerted by the following. Seventy four per cent of the Census Christians are secular in that they think religion should have no special influence on public policy.

After the 2001 census, politicians and clerics used the 72 per cent Christian figure as a weapon to argue for Christian influence in public life. This time, despite the poor wording of the religion question, they will not be able to pull the same trick. Not only has the official figure dropped to 59 per cent. The percentage of those self-identifying Christians who either believe in the central tenets of Christianity, or who think Christianity should be given special status in our national policy, is now very low indeed. Christianity is on the way out in this country. We must hope that other religions will go the same way.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/9738031/Richard-Dawkins-Census-shows-that-Christianity-in-Britain-is-on-the-way-out.html


Title: Southwestern Baptist Seminary gives Rick Warren honor of "Saint" Rick
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 15, 2012, 02:32:30 pm
http://apprising.org/2012/11/24/saint-rick-warren/

We had no idea that Baptists venerated saints. Come to think of it, we had no idea that a Bible twister and false teacher like Rick Warren was considered worthy of such an honor by any self respecting orthodox Christian.
 
But, someone at Southwestern Baptist Seminary apparently thinks “Saint” Rick Warren worthy of a stained glass veneration. SMH

(http://i1.wp.com/apprising.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/RW3.jpg?resize=496%2C740)

If you didn’t know, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary is an SBC school and Paige Patterson is its president:

(source)
 
Here is an example of General of the Seeker Driven Army “Saint” Rick Warren teaching his man-centered mythology:

video inside link above


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 26, 2012, 07:17:41 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/gop-shows-signs-bending-election-defeat-175926964--election.html

GOP shows signs of bending after election defeat

12/26/12

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — For years, Republicans have adhered fiercely to their bedrock conservative principles, resisting Democratic calls for tax hikes, comprehensive immigration reform and gun control. Now, seven weeks after an electoral drubbing, some party leaders and rank-and-file alike are signaling a willingness to bend on all three issues.
 
What long has been a nonstarter for Republicans — raising tax rates on wealthy Americans — is now backed by GOP House Speaker John Boehner in his negotiations with President Barack Obama to avert a potential fiscal crisis. Party luminaries, including Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, have started calling for a wholesale shift in the GOP's approach to immigration after Hispanic voters shunned Republican candidates. And some Republicans who previously championed gun rights now are opening the door to restrictions following a schoolhouse shooting spree earlier this month.
 
"Put guns on the table. Also, put video games on the table. Put mental health on the table," Rep. Jack Kingston, R-Ga., said last week. Other prominent Republicans echoed him in calling for a sweeping review of how to prevent tragedies like the Newtown, Conn., school shooting. Among those open to a re-evaluation of the nation's gun policies were Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa.
 
"You've got to take all these things into consideration," Grassley said
.
 
And yet, the head of the National Rifle Association, silent for a week after the Newtown shootings, has proposed staffing schools with armed police, making clear the NRA, which tends to support the GOP, will continue pushing for fewer gun restrictions, not more.
 
Meanwhile, Boehner's attempt to get his own members on board with a deficit-reduction plan that would raise taxes on incomes of more than $1 million failed last week, exposing the reluctance of many in the Republican caucus to entertain more moderate fiscal positions.
 
With Republican leaders being pulled at once to the left and to the right, it's too soon to know whether the party that emerges from this identity crisis will be more or less conservative than the one that was once so confident about the 2012 elections. After all, less than two months have passed since the crushing defeat of GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who moved far to the right during the primary season and, some in the party say, lost the general election as a result.
 
But what's increasingly clear is that the party is now engaged in an uncomfortable and very public fight over whether its tenets, still firmly held within the party's most devout ranks, conflict with the views of Americans as a whole.
 
Many Republicans recognize that to remain relevant with voters whose views are changing, they too must change.
 
"We lost the election because we were out of touch with the American people," said John Weaver, a senior adviser to past presidential candidates John McCain, the GOP nominee in 2008, and Jon Huntsman, who sought the nomination this year.
 
The polling suggests as much.
 
While Republican candidates for years have adamantly opposed tax increases on anyone, an Associated Press-GfK poll earlier this month found roughly half of all Americans supported allowing George W. Bush-era tax cuts to expire on those earning more than $250,000 a year.
 
Most GOP candidates — Romney among them — also long have opposed allowing people in the country illegally to get an eventual path to citizenship. But exit polls from the Nov. 6 election showed most voters favored allowing people working in the U.S. illegally to stay.
 
And gun control has for decades been anathema to Republicans. But a Washington Post/ABC News poll published last week, following the Connecticut shooting, showed 54 percent of Americans now favor stronger restrictions.
 
This is the backdrop as Republicans undergo a period of soul-searching after this fall's electoral shellacking. Romney became the fifth GOP nominee in six elections to lose the national popular vote to the Democratic candidate. Republicans also shed seats in their House majority and lost ground to majority Democrats in the Senate.
 
Of particular concern is the margin of loss among Hispanics, a group Obama won by about 70 percent to 30 percent.
 
It took only hours after the loss for national GOP leaders to blame Romney for shifting to the right on immigration — and signal that the party must change.
 
Jindal, a prospective 2016 presidential contender, was among the Republicans calling for a more measured approach by the GOP. And even previously hard-line opponents of immigration reform — like conservative talk show host Sean Hannity — said the party needs to get over its immigration stance, which heavily favors border security over other measures.
 
"What you have is agreement that we as a party need to spend a lot of time and effort on the Latino vote," veteran Republican strategist Charlie Black said.
 
When Congress returned to Washington after the election to start a debate over taxes and spending, a number of prominent Republicans, including Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, the top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, signaled they would be willing to abandon their pledges against raising taxes — as long as other conditions were met — as part of a package of proposals to avoid a catastrophic budget meltdown.
 
Leading the effort was Boehner, who has told Obama he would allow taxes to be increased on the wealthiest Americans, as well as on capital gains, estates and dividends, as part of a deal including spending cuts and provisions to slow the growth of entitlement programs. Obama, meanwhile, also has made concessions in the talks to avoid the so-called "fiscal cliff" by agreeing to a higher-income threshold for tax rate increases, while insisting that Congress grant him the authority to raise the debt ceiling. Both sides have spent the past several weeks bickering over the terms.
 
While some Democrats quickly called for more stringent gun laws, most Republicans initially were silent. And their virtual absence from the debate suggested that some Republicans who champion gun rights at least may have been reconsidering their stances against firearms restrictions.
 
By the Monday after the Connecticut shooting, MSNBC talk show host Joe Scarborough, a former Republican congressman from Florida, called for reinstating the ban on assault-style weapons, which he had opposed. The ban expired in 2004, despite support for it from Republican President George W. Bush. Referring to the shooting, Scarborough said: "I knew that day that the ideologies of my past career were no longer relevant to the future that I want, that I demand, for my children."
 
The next day, Grassley and Kingston were among the Republicans saying they were at least willing to discuss stronger gun laws.
 
"The party is at a point where it wants to have those discussions in public, where people feel comfortable differing from what is perceived as the party orthodoxy," said Republican consultant Dan Hazelwood.
 
If silence is a signal, shifts on other issues could be coming, chief among them gay marriage, which the GOP base long has opposed. Exit polls found half of all Americans say same-sex marriage should be legally recognized.
 
After three states — Washington, Maryland and Maine — voted last month to legalize gay marriage, the Republican leadership generally has remained quiet on the issue. There also has been no effort in the House or Senate to push major legislation, only narrower proposals, such as a move in the Armed Services Committee to bar gay marriages at military facilities.
 
But in a sign that the fight over gay marriage also may be waning within the GOP base, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said it was time for Republicans to accept shifting public opinion.
 
The former Georgia congressman, who oversaw passage of the Defense of Marriage Act in Congress and helped finance state campaigns to fight gay marriage in 2010, said in a Huffington Post interview that the party should work toward acceptance of rights for gay couples, while still distinguishing them from marriage.
 
"The momentum is clearly now in the direction in finding some way to . accommodate and deal with reality," Gingrich said.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on January 08, 2013, 02:38:20 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/why-evangelicals-partners-immigration-reform-164718061--politics.html

Why Evangelicals are the new partners for immigration reform

Advocates for immigration reform should seek support from an unlikely source – evangelical Christians. Their political agenda is broadening as Hispanic congregants – documented and undocumented – increase and pastors speak of immigration as a religious concern
.

Most Congress-watchers have low expectations for America's legislative branch over the next two years, and with good reason. The 2012 election again showed a divided electorate, and political stalemate and partisan rancor abound in Washington.
 
Despite this difficult climate, political support is rapidly building in favor of legislation that has confounded presidents and Congresses since 1986: comprehensive immigration reform. Advocates trying to build a winning coalition for reform should seek support from an unlikely source – evangelical Christians.
 
Evangelicals have been a key Republican voting bloc for several decades. According to exit polls, about 1 in 4 voters in November's election was a white Evangelical, and they voted overwhelmingly Republican.
 
Although most Americans associate theologically conservative Christians with cultural issues such as abortion and gay marriage, the evangelical political agenda is broadening. Immigration reform is one issue that has steadily gained momentum.
 
What might account for this change?
 
For one, pastors and religious leaders are talking more about the issue as a religious concern. Many scriptural passages relate to immigration – including the famous 40-year wilderness journey of the children of Israel to the Promised Land. But most evangelical churches and organizations have only recently begun to underscore the biblical connection to immigration.
 
New pro-immigrant movements are seeking to educate and activate evangelical clergy and voters by emphasizing themes of love, justice, and welcome for the stranger that resound throughout the Hebrew Bible and New Testament.
 
Another factor that explains increasing awareness of immigrant issues is simple math.
 
Much like the nation, evangelicalism is becoming more ethnically diverse. According to the Pew Hispanic Center, 13 percent of Hispanic Americans describe themselves as evangelical Protestants. Immigrant churches are growing rapidly, and many denominations have created new structures and leadership posts designed to serve Hispanic congregants. Immigration – including illegal immigration – touches the lives of many in the pews, and church leaders want to help.
 
Also, greater numbers of Evangelicals are worshiping alongside documented and undocumented immigrants, getting to know them and listening to their stories.
 
Perhaps the strongest sign of Evangelicals' advocacy is the emergence of new organizations and coalitions focusing on the issue.
 
In October 2011, Cedarville University, a conservative Christian college in Ohio, hosted the "G92" immigration conference. Taking its name from the Hebrew word for immigrant, ger, which appears 92 times in the Hebrew Bible, the conference has spawned a new movement designed to mobilize Christian college students to advocate on behalf of all immigrants. Leaders are planning half a dozen events across the country in 2013.
 
The Evangelical Immigration Table, founded in June 2012 by nine heads of evangelical organizations, is networking with evangelical leaders from across the spectrum to support immigration reform. Founders include the president of the National Association of Evangelicals, a large umbrella group representing many denominations and associations; Richard Land, an outspoken conservative and Southern Baptist leader; and Jim Wallis, bestselling author and leader of the left-leaning social justice organization Sojourners.

**FYI, Richard Land is a CFR member!
 
In June 2012, the Table released a wide-reaching, seven-point plan for immigration reform that included a call for secure borders, protection of family unity, and a path toward legal status or citizenship. It also left out many of the thorniest details, such as what steps a pathway to legal status would include and who would be eligible.
 
Even so, as religion writer Lisa Miller said in The Washington Post, the plan is "a document of exceptional accord among groups that rarely find themselves on the same side of anything."
 
The week after the presidential election, the Table sent letters to President Obama and congressional leaders asking for a meeting within the first 92 days of the president's new term to move forward reform legislation. Change is clearly afoot.
 
Of course, evangelical voters are not monolithic, and their views on illegal immigration vary widely. Data from a 2010 Pew Research Center study suggest that grass-roots Evangelicals are divided, but a majority (54 percent) now favor policies that include some sort of pathway to citizenship.
 
This majority is likely to grow. Researcher Ruth Melkonian-Hoover's analysis of polling data suggests that white Evangelicals who worship alongside immigrants (she did not distinguish between legal and illegal) are less likely to view immigrants as a threat. When pastors preach positive messages about immigrants, congregants' opinions shift, and support for a path to legalization rises sharply.
 
Since the November election – heavily influenced by Hispanic voters – legislators have more political space to advocate for immigration reform. Some Republicans are joining the effort out of desire to reach Hispanics. Others who previously felt strong political pressure to avoid the issue now feel more freedom to advocate for reform.
 
Evangelical elites from across the ideological spectrum are beginning to come together to advocate for immigration reform. Millions of Americans in the pews may soon follow their lead, and, if so, wise legislators will pay attention.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on January 08, 2013, 02:47:46 pm
Quote
Evangelical elites from across the ideological spectrum are beginning to come together to advocate for immigration reform.

They SHOULD be coming together to advocate the world repent and believe the gospel.

It's amazing to watch how the world uses theology when it's convenient. But this is really a misdirection because there is no place in government for religion of any persuasion. It's secular, so by law, it cannot bow to religious ideologies, thus a religious leader's reasoning carries no weight with the world unless it's in line with the world's demands. And for that to happen, religious leaders must compromise their beliefs and do as Caesar says.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on January 10, 2013, 11:16:24 am
Technically, no it is not a sin to vote. Christians are forgiven and no longer live under the law of sin and death. We can however do things that are unedifying/sinful because of the flesh.

What would be wrong is getting involved in secular matters at all. That's the world, which we are not to be a part of.

We are a "new creature" and the "former things are passed away". That includes voting. The system is rigged anyway, so voting is useless. And anyone who thinks voting can change things is deluded and haven't got a clue about what's really going on in the world.

One more thing in this discussion with elections/voting...

I hear alot from people over how while they understand the wickedness and corruption on a federal level, but at bare minimum, we need to vote for state and local officials in order to help good laws to get enforced(and how occultists, Freemasons, etc really don't exist at the lower levels). Well...

1) When I visited the TX state capitol 2 years ago(Austin), we toured the Capitol building. Pretty much all of the elected officials(state rep, state senators, Lt Gov, etc) except for the Governor himself only meet a couple of times a year to vote on the budget(and other laws), and that IS IT. Otherwise, they get very little pay, and they have their full time jobs at home as their priority.

IOW, from what I gather, they pretty much covet these positions in order that 1) They can further promote their own businesses and professions at home, and/or 2) They have ambitions for a better political office in the future(ie-Congress). Otherwise, they have NOTHING TO GAIN, financially that is, by working these positions, as the pay is nothing more than minimum wage.

2) Barack Obama, before he was elected US Senator(and then President), was a lowly State Senator in Illinois. Just saying.

3) I read in my paper last year over a "prominent" former school board leader who's a Freemason. Yeah, even the local offices can be infiltrated too.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on January 14, 2013, 05:48:37 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/evangelical-coalition-seeks-immigration-overhaul-211103936.html

Evangelical coalition seeks immigration overhaul

1/14/13

NEW YORK (AP) — Prominent evangelical leaders announced a new effort Monday to persuade conservative Christians and lawmakers they should support overhauling U.S. immigration laws.
 
Called "I Was A Stranger," the campaign asks churches to spend 40 days studying Scripture related to immigration, centered on the Matthew 25 exhortation to clothe and feed the stranger. Organizers hope to create a groundswell of support for changes that balance national security with keeping immigrant families together.
 
The coalition includes the National Association of Evangelicals, which represents about 40 denominations; the public policy arm of the 16 million-member Southern Baptist Convention; Esperanza, the Latino evangelical economic development group; pastor Bill Hybels of the influential Willow Creek Community Church in Illinois; and writer Max Lucado. Sojourners, the liberal-leaning evangelical advocacy group, is also participating.
 
"In the Anglo churches, there are so many more Hispanic people that we know and love," said the Rev. Joel Hunter, senior pastor of Northland church, which serves about 15,000 congregants in the Orlando, Fla., area. "There's a readiness, even in the Anglo churches, to address this."
 
Many evangelical leaders have actively supported reform in recent years as the number of immigrants has increased in their churches. However, rank-and-file congregants have been slower to take up the issue beyond demands for stronger national borders. In surveys, white evangelicals have generally ranked border security as their top priority. However, about four in ten have told pollsters they would favor an approach giving equal weight to national security and a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.
 
The evangelical push on the issue comes amid renewed interest in immigration reform from Congress and the White House. In the immediate aftermath of the November election, congressional Republicans suggested the time was right for reform talks. President Barack Obama, who won a record share of Hispanic voters, renewed his pledge to prioritize immigration reform.
 
Evangelical leaders said they are not backing any specific proposal right now.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on January 26, 2013, 01:37:17 am
Not that I ever endorsed the National Review, but nonetheless its readers are largely on the "conservative" side, where a good portion of them are self-professing Christians(or Churchianity folks, take your pick).

You know when the so-called "conservative" leaning media has hit an all-time low when they endorse RAY LEWIS, of all people, being some fervent Christian.

http://www.nationalreview.com/right-field/288180/tebow-out-christians-can-turn-ray-lewis-greg-pollowitz#

With Tebow Out, Christians Can Turn to Ray Lewis?

1/16/12

Here’s an amusing piece on the Ravens’ Ray Lewis that describes his faith, charity, commitment to family, and work habits. An excerpt:

Lewis is an unmarried father of six, and his relationships include people who have fallen on hard times. A boy who was the lone survivor when his mother drove her van into a river last spring. A 76-year-old cancer patient. A teenager with bone cancer — for whom he is paying medical expenses.

“It goes back to the idea that, ‘To much is given, much is required,’ ” Lewis says. “With all the things I’ve been through, the No. 1 thing that I’ve learned is that we’re supposed to help people through this world.”

He reflects on a big influence, Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe. And a not-so-big influence, the father who suddenly appeared three years ago.

As he sat at his locker, Lewis, who grew up in Lakeland, Fla., mimicked the gravelly voice of his late maternal grandfather, Gillis McKinney.

“He used to have this old car, and he’d say,” Lewis said, changing his voice for effect, ” ‘Y’all kids keep getting all these new cars so quick, but I’ll keep a car with 500,000 miles on it. You’ve got to take care of the engine.’

“It’s the same thing with your body. If you clean your body out so that it is not fighting against you, you rest better, think better and you’re always light on your feet. I haven’t had as much as a cold in three years. Bottom line, your body is a temple, and you have to treat it that way. That’s how God designed it.”

And . . .

For all of his influence on teammates, it frustrates Lewis that some family members haven’t fully incorporated healthy habits he urges. This has resonated with him more after the August death of his aunt, Sherry Taylor, 52, who battled cancer.

He also is concerned about the condition of his grandmother, Elease McKinney, and says he is trying to facilitate a liver transplant.

“He’s got such a big heart,” says Lewis’ mother, Sunseria Smith. “He thinks he can do anything to change the world.”

Lewis spoke at Taylor’s funeral. His theme: “Why do we wait so long to take care of our temples?”

“I stay mad at my mom because she spends so much time with God but doesn’t trust God with her body,” he says. “I don’t want to see her body deteriorate. Every day, we’ve got to do something physical. It’s mind, body and spirit.”

“But if you’re not practicing it,” he says, “it’s not going to survive.”

Smith, 51, has a different version. She maintains that she does work out — Lewis has mapped out exercise and diet plans, signed her up at a gym and gets regular reports from her doctor — but typically not to her son’s standard.

“This boy is working my nerves,” Smith says. “He’s been on me for years. Then every time somebody in our family passes, he really goes berserk.

“I know he’s disciplined, and he does it out of love, but sometimes I have to ask, ‘Who’s the mama and who’s the child?’ “

The whole piece here.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on January 26, 2013, 04:16:42 am
Yeah, Ray seems to be a bit confused. And it's, "To whom much is given, much is required". You'd know that if you read your bible more Ray!

And mixing carnal mystic junk won't work, saying it's, "mind, body, spirit". That's New Age mumbo jumbo.

The real truth is that Jesus says that NOTHING entering the mouth defiles the man, period. What the problem is with stuff you put in your body is about moderation, that's it. It's about your attitude about what you eat. If you believe it to be unclean, to you it's unclean, and your advised not to eat it because you'd not be eating by faith.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 07, 2013, 03:18:51 pm
Mar_3:26  And if Satan rise up against himself, and be divided, he cannot stand, but hath an end.

1Pe_4:17  For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?


http://news.yahoo.com/catholic-bishops-conflicted-over-gays-immigration-184526146.html

2/6/13

Catholic bishops conflicted over gays, immigration

The nation's Roman Catholic bishops are in a difficult position as the debate over immigration reform gets underway: The immigrant-built American church, known for advocating a broad welcome for migrants and refugees, could end up opposing reform because it would recognize same-sex partners.
 
Proposals by President Barack Obama and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus include the same-sex partners of Americans among those who would be eligible for visas. The Human Rights Campaign and other gay advocates welcomed the recognition, arguing current laws unfairly treat people in gay or lesbian relationships "as strangers." The idea has the backing of the National Council de la Raza and other liberal Latino groups.
 
But Catholic bishops, with the support of evangelicals and other theological conservatives, have sent a letter to Obama protesting his proposal. In a sign of the sensitivity of the issue, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops would not provide a copy of the statement, saying the signatories agreed not to make the letter public. Sister Mary Ann Walsh, a spokeswoman for the bishops, would say only that recognition of gay couples in the president's reform proposals "jeopardizes passage of the bill."
 
Galen Carey, public policy officer for the National Association of Evangelicals, which represents 40 denominations and has been lobbying for new immigration laws, said, "Our view is immigration reform is not the place to have this discussion." The theologically conservative Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod also signed the Catholic bishops' letter.
 
"The issue of immigration on its own is so controversial, so polarizing," said the Rev. Samuel Rodriguez of the evangelical National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference. He was in the Las Vegas audience last week when Obama presented his plan. "Let's not play politics with 11 million undocumented immigrants."
 
It is far too early to know how much of a factor gay relationships will become in what is expected to be a complicated and emotional debate. The plan unveiled last week by eight leading Democratic and Republican senators did not mention same-gender partners. Many other major religious groups lobbying for reform, such as The Episcopal Church, either support gay marriage or don't make homosexuality a focus. In a conference call this week with reporters, White House Domestic Policy Council director Cecilia Munoz was asked whether Obama would support a bill that didn't acknowledge same-sex partners. Her only response: "The president's position on that is very clear."
 
Still, endorsements from traditional denominations may carry more significance in the current political climate, in which conservative-leaning lawmakers are worried about political damage from backing a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.
 
"The bishops' support, I think, is going to be critical for swinging moderates in the House to support this bill," said Stephen Schneck, a political scientist at Catholic University of America and chair of the anti-abortion Democrats for Life, who was part of the Catholics for Obama re-election effort.
 
It seems unlikely the bishops would accept any provision for same-sex partners— even for an issue as important to the church as immigration. In their drive for greater orthodoxy among Catholics, bishops have made preserving traditional marriage a priority. Last week, San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, who leads the bishops' marriage efforts, said the struggle against gay marriage is a gift from God "and by overcoming it we may achieve spiritual greatness." He made the comments in an interview with The Catholic Herald, a news outlet in Britain.
 
The bishops' stand against Obama's health care law provides some indication of their thinking when they view a core moral teaching in conflict with a long-held social justice goal.
 
For decades, the bishops had advocated for improved access to health care, especially for the poor. But church leaders concluded that the president's plan, known as the Affordable Care Act, would provide financing for ending pregnancies. The administration and Democratic supporters of the law insisted the bishops were wrong, and said no taxpayer money would fund abortion coverage. But the bishops ultimately opposed the legislation.
 
Yet, immigration seems even more critical than health care to the church.
 
Americans church leaders have spent decades lobbying for revisions that would keep families together and fulfill what the church considers the duty of all countries, especially wealthier ones, to do as much as possible to help the poor and persecuted. The church and Catholic groups run a network of aid programs for migrants, refugees and illegal immigrants, taking positions that recognize the country's right to protect its borders, but that still fall "to the left of the Democratic Party," Schneck said.
 
This position is rooted in papal and Gospel teachings so extensive that evangelicals often borrow the theological framework for their own advocacy. In a 2003 joint plea for immigration reform, called "Strangers No Longer," U.S. and Mexican bishops stated, "Regardless of their legal status, migrants, like all persons, possess inherent human dignity that should be respected."
 
The issue is of special historic importance to the American Catholic church, which was built by waves of Irish, Italians, Poles and others. The immigrant presence in the pews is now growing as American-born white Catholics drop out in significant numbers. Researchers estimate that a third of the 66 million U.S. Catholics are Latino.
 
"This is an issue that has been a huge priority for the church for a really long time," said Kristin Heyer, a professor at Santa Clara University in California who studies immigration and Catholic social thought. "The wider Catholic community, in addition to the bishops, has mobilized in a major way."
 
Ultimately, the controversy could split Catholics, in much the same way that Catholics divided over health care. Despite enormous pressure from the bishops, the Catholic Health Association, a trade group that represents hospitals, provided critical backing for the president's health care legislation. Surveys have found that large majorities of lay Catholics back same-sex marriage or civil unions.
 
Given the importance of Latinos to the U.S. church, political observers wonder how bishops could explain their opposition to Hispanic parishioners.
 
Kim Daniels, an attorney and director of Catholic Voices USA, a conservative-leaning lay group that defends church teaching, has been urging Catholics across the political spectrum to drop their differences and get behind immigration reform. Still, she said, "being Catholic in the public square means standing up for all our issues."


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 10, 2013, 02:07:32 pm
Jer 20:4  For thus saith the LORD, Behold, I will make thee a terror to thyself, and to all thy friends: and they shall fall by the sword of their enemies, and thine eyes shall behold it: and I will give all Judah into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall carry them captive into Babylon, and shall slay them with the sword.
Jer 20:5  Moreover I will deliver all the strength of this city, and all the labours thereof, and all the precious things thereof, and all the treasures of the kings of Judah will I give into the hand of their enemies, which shall spoil them, and take them, and carry them to Babylon.


http://news.msn.com/politics/among-us-evangelicals-surprising-support-for-immigration-reform

2/10/13

Among US evangelicals, surprising support for immigration reform

With Hispanic attendance at their churches rising, some evangelical leaders are among the loudest advocates of one of President Barack Obama's top priorities.

WASHINGTON — Thou shalt compromise, at least on immigration reform.

That is the message being heard from some leading evangelicals in the United States. After decades of promoting traditionally conservative causes like opposition to abortion, many evangelical leaders are now wielding their formidable influence to persuade Republican lawmakers to back one of President Barack Obama's top priorities.

With Hispanic attendance at their churches rising, these evangelicals are among the loudest advocates of a U.S. immigration reform. A group of pastors has launched a 40-day campaign to have churchgoers pray, read scripture passages about welcoming the stranger and lobby their members of Congress, many of them in the conservative South.

"We have pastors preach in pulpits to parishioners in Alabama, Georgia, Arkansas, Mississippi, Texas — in all the wonderful red states across America," that aiding immigrants, illegal or not, is a Christian duty, said Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, one of the country's most prominent Hispanic evangelicals.

While evangelicals have been a major force in Republican politics for years, Republican lawmakers will take some persuading to back the sort of immigration reform supported by President Barack Obama, which includes a "pathway" to citizenship for immigrants in the country illegally.

Conservatives in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives want to focus the debate initially on securing the border with Mexico and making sure illegal immigrants are not rewarded with an amnesty.

"Some of them don't necessarily see or acknowledge the changing demographics or the electoral merits of passing immigration reform, but I do think that many of these religious leaders could push them in that direction by really referencing the humanitarian interest, or moral argument," said Republican strategist Ford O'Connell.

Rodriguez and other pastors are speaking to members of Congress "on a daily basis" to ask them to legalize the status of 11 million undocumented immigrants.

Targeted lawmakers include Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, who chaired a House hearing on immigration last week, and Rep. Raul Labrador of Idaho — a leading Tea Party thinker on immigration.

Unlikely as it may have seemed at the height of the "culture wars" of the last two decades, these evangelicals are attempting to nudge Republicans to the center. The effort is well timed, coming as the Republican Party strives to improve its appeal to Hispanic voters who went solidly Democratic at 2012 elections.

"This is one area where social conservative input is extremely welcomed by the Republican Party," said O'Connell.

Pastors are asking worshippers to email their lawmakers and tell them: "I am a Christian, a conservative and I vote. I want you to support immigration reform this year," said Rodriguez.

RARE BIPARTISAN FORAY

Support for an immigration overhaul among Christian conservatives has been growing over time. In 2011, the 16 million-member Southern Baptist Convention — the country's largest Protestant body — called for "a just and compassionate path to legal status" for illegal immigrants while urging the government to secure U.S. borders.

A Public Religion Research Institute poll in 2010 showed white evangelicals support, by a margin of 2-1, an immigration reform that would allow illegal immigrants to become Americans.

After the election, a group of evangelical leaders signed a letter to Obama endorsing "a path toward legal status and/or citizenship" for immigrants. Among the signers was Tim Daly, president of the Focus on the Family ministry.

Immigration is providing a rare foray into bipartisanship for evangelical veterans of fights over gay marriage and abortion like lawyer Mathew Staver, vice president of Liberty University, founded by evangelical leader Jerry Falwell in Lynchburg, Virginia. Staver's Liberty Counsel group threatened to sue a Florida library in 2000 for promoting witchcraft by encouraging young people to read a "Harry Potter" novel.

As recently as last November, Staver wrote on Liberty Counsel's website that Obama won re-election because, "Millions of Americans looked evil in the eye and adopted it."

But now he acknowledges that Obama deserves credit, along with the Republican head of the House Judiciary Committee and Senators from both sides of the aisle, for drawing up plans for an immigration overhaul
.

James 1:8  A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

"I think it is incumbent upon us to work together and I applaud the bipartisan committee in the Senate and I applaud the leadership of Bob Goodlatte," Staver said. "I applaud President Obama too, I just don't want to use this as a political ping pong."

But any talk of an alliance between the White House and evangelicals to win immigration reform is stretching it.

Christian conservatives strongly oppose a proposal by Obama to give spousal visas to same-sex foreign partners of American gays and lesbians. And evangelical leaders disagree among themselves on whether to grant undocumented immigrants the full right to U.S. citizenship or allow them some other, more limited, legal status in the United States.

Neither option is acceptable to some conservative evangelicals, like Iowa pastor Cary Gordon who opposes loosening immigration laws and accuses his co-religionists of "unbiblical naivete."

'I WAS A STRANGER'

Much of the Christian case for helping illegal immigrants is based on stories of Biblical "immigrants" like Abraham and Moses and passages such as Matthew 25:35: "I was a stranger and you invited me in."

"The scriptures command us to take care of the immigrant. It's not just one verse here or there, it's a repeated command throughout the Biblical text," said Matt Soerens of the World Relief organization, who lectures churches on immigration.

U.S. Representative Doug Collins, an Air Force Reserve chaplain, says hospitality to foreigners is fine but must be balanced with respect for immigration laws.

"Scripture also teaches very clearly that there is government and civil authority and that there is an understanding of rule of law," said Republican Collins, who sits on the House Judiciary Committee.

He represents a strongly conservative district in Georgia which has seen a spike in undocumented workers in the poultry and construction industries and opposes giving illegal immigrants a path to citizenship.

The evangelicals' pro-immigration passion reflects changes in the conservative Christian movement which, while still predominantly white, has taken on a Latin tinge.

Rodriguez, the pastor, who heads a U.S. Hispanic organization with 40,000 member churches, gave a benediction at the Republican National Convention in Tampa last year.

While some two-thirds of U.S. Latinos are Catholic, Hispanics form the fastest-growing group in evangelical churches and are seen as a bulwark against dropping attendance.

Rodriguez put the number of Hispanics in the United States who are either "born-again" or evangelical Christians at between 10 million and 16 million, and growing fast.

While numbers are hard to come by, "there are lots of indirect pieces of evidence" that point to the growth of Latino evangelicals, said Victoria DeFrancesco Soto, who studies Hispanic politics.

Six percent of evangelicals were Latinos in 2007, according to a Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life poll. Eight percent of evangelical or "born-again" voters in a Reuters/Ipsos exit poll at last November's election said they were Hispanic.

Worshipping together with newly arrived Christians — as well as the new emphasis on Biblical teachings on immigration — is melting conservatives' doubts about illegal immigrants, said Danny Carroll, an Old Testament professor at an evangelical seminary in Colorado.

He is part of a congregation at a church in Aurora that is attended mostly by white Americans on Sunday mornings. In the afternoons, the church then hosts separate services with their own pastors for Hispanic, Korean, Filipino and Russian immigrant groups

"Once a quarter, all these congregations get together for a worship service so all of a sudden you are sitting next to someone with a different face, different color, different language. Once you put a human face on it, the whole conversation changes," he said.

Editing by Fred Barbash, Tiffany Wu and Todd Eastham.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 13, 2013, 11:17:18 am
Do people even know what "religious" means anymore? Utah and Louisiana are among the most religious states? Aren't they predominantly Mormon and Catholic, respectively? Isn't South Carolina's governor involved in the New Age?

http://news.yahoo.com/most-religious-us-state-151539552.html

The Most Religious US State Is ...

2/13/13

Mississippi holds onto its title as most religious U.S. state, with 58 percent of its residents saying they are very religious, according to a Gallup poll released Wednesday (Feb. 13).
 
The least religious state? Vermont.
 
About 40 percent of Americans said they were "very religious," meaning religion is an important part of their daily life and that they attend religious services every week or nearly every week. Some 31 percent indicated they were nonreligious, or that religion wasn't an important part of their daily life and they seldom or never attend such services.
 
The 10 most and least religious states remained relatively constant from the 2011 numbers, with the only change being the inclusion of Hawaii in the least religious list in place of New York. [See full list of U.S. states and religiosity]
 
As expected, the South dominated the "most religious" list, while the 12 least religious states were located in New England. For instance, while just 14 percent of Alabama residents indicated they were nonreligious, 50 percent of those in New Hampshire said the same. (In addition to very religious and nonreligious, Gallup also had a "moderately religious" category.) Utah, which has a large Mormon population, and Oklahoma, which straddles the border between the South and the Midwest, were the only exceptions to the dominantly Southern states in the top 10 list.
 
Top 10 most religious states
• Mississippi: 58 percent are very religious
Utah: 56 percent
• Alabama: 56 percent
Louisiana: 53 percent
• Arkansas: 52 percent
South Carolina: 52 percent
• Tennessee: 50 percent
• North Carolina: 50 percent
• Georgia: 48 percent
• Oklahoma: 48 percent
 
Bottom 10 (least religious states)
• Vermont: 19 percent are very religious
• New Hampshire: 23 percent
• Maine: 24 percent
• Massachusetts: 27 percent
• Oregon: 29 percent
• Rhode Island: 29 percent
• District of Columbia: 30 percent
• Washington (tie): 31 percent
• Connecticut (tie): 31 percent
• Alaska (tie): 31 percent
• Hawaii (tie): 31 percent
• Nevada (tie): 31 percent
 
The differences in religiosity across the United States may not be the result of underlying demographics (race or ethnicity) or religious identities (Catholic or Protestant majorities, for instance), but rather part of a state-level cultural phenomenon.
 
Something about the state's culture, based partly on that state's history, may be behind residents' religiosity, Gallup suggests. "In other words, it can be hypothesized that a person moving to Mississippi is more likely to become personally more religious than if that same person moved to Vermont," Gallup officials write in a statement.
 
While overall seven in 10 Americans said they were either moderately or very religious, other Gallup poll results reported in January have shown a rise in "no religious identification" over time.
 
"Americans' expression of an explicit religious identity in response to a survey interviewer's question is one of many measures of religiosity, although by no means a definitive measure of a person's religiousness or spirituality," Gallup states. "The rise in 'nones' partly reflects changes in the general pattern of expression of religion in American society today — particularly including trends towards more 'unbranded,' casual, informal religion."
 
The just-released state-religion results are based on more than 348,000 interviews with adults ages 18 and older conducted from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2012, as part of Gallup Daily tracking. The results were weighted to be representative of each state's adult population by gender, age, race, Hispanic ethnicity and education, based on Census data.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 21, 2013, 11:12:40 am
This news item is on the front page of the Dallas Morning News(which I get) this morning(so a new article) - when I opened up the paper and saw it, felt pretty disgusted.

http://www.dallasnews.com/news/politics/headlines/20130220-conservative-evangelical-christians-sign-on-for-immigration-overhaul-pitch.ece

2/20/13

Conservative evangelical Christians sign on for immigration overhaul pitch

AUSTIN — After years of silence and even hostility to modifying immigration laws, conservative evangelical Christians have become unlikely allies in pressing for a path to citizenship for those here illegally because, they say, the Bible told them so.

A coalition of religious leaders in Texas and elsewhere, many with strong credentials as social conservatives, is engaging congregations in a coordinated call for Congress and the White House to deal with 11 million illegal immigrants.

“Circumstances culturally and politically have thrown evangelicals back on their biblical authority to ask, ‘What does the Bible really say about this?’” said George Mason, senior pastor of Wilshire Baptist Church in Dallas. “There may be lots of political positions that differ on how we accomplish it, but they want to be on the side of God in their minds.”

While moderate and liberal religious groups have long been a part of the immigration debate, the increasingly active involvement of conservative evangelicals marks what Mason called “a sea change” by an important group that could help move Washington toward political consensus.

**Rev 13:1  And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.  :-\

“I can assure you our folks are strongly conservative — an overwhelming majority vote Republican and conservative in every way, socially and politically,” said David Fleming, pastor of Champion Forest Baptist Church in Houston. “But this is an issue that transcends that category.”

Does this include pro-abortion, anti-gun, pro-gay rights people like Mitt Romney and John McCain? ::) Oh - Bush I and II were Skull and Bones, and Reagan was a 33rd Degree Freemason. And Mormon Romney is pro-universal healthcare. WHOOPS!

“I’ve had people say to me and write me, ‘You’re going to get fired because you’re out of step with your people,’” said Fleming. “Look, I pastor these people. I know their hearts. And if you can show them from the Scriptures that we’re to be both just and compassionate and, practically speaking, must solve the problem, they’ll say of course we do.”

White evangelical Protestants have been among the least supportive religious groups on a comprehensive immigration approach. A Pew Research poll conducted six years ago found a majority of white evangelicals believe immigration to be a threat to American culture and a burden on the economy.

But a recent survey found considerable evangelical support for keeping families together and following the biblical injunction to welcome the stranger — two themes in a campaign by a national network of diverse religious leaders, the Evangelical Immigration Table
.

Gospel of Matthew

The network has launched an effort featuring a passage from the Gospel of Matthew that includes videos, sermon notes, prayer guides and lobbying efforts in Washington to press a bipartisan solution that balances border security with respect for families.

Several thousand congregations in 40 states have been encouraged to read at least one Scripture a day pertaining to immigration. In one video, Southern Baptist leader Richard Land makes the argument that immigration reform can be consistent with conservative values.

The Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, called the “I Was a Stranger” project linking liberal and conservative faith groups “historic” and “unprecedented.”

In his recent State of the Union speech, President Barack Obama made immigration reform a top priority for his second term. Both members of Congress and the White House have advanced ideas for providing a pathway to legal status, creating a guest-worker program and further securing the border.

Critics insist that security “triggers” be met before any path to citizenship is instituted. And there remains considerable resistance among conservatives to overhauling the law. At a town-hall meeting in a Phoenix suburb Tuesday, Arizona Republican Sen. John McCain, an architect of a bipartisan plan in the Senate, faced a hostile crowd demanding deportation.

“We are a Judeo-Christian nation,” McCain said, as the crowd shouted that illegal immigrants must never be allowed to vote or become citizens.

Fleming said the immigration debate has been held hostage to two polar opposite views.

“One was to grant everyone amnesty and throw away the law and let everybody do what they want. That didn’t seem like a workable solution and certainly didn’t conform to my biblical worldview,” he said. “But the other extreme was just as impractical, and that was to build a fence and deport 15 million people by tomorrow. Two different poles and both of them throwing rocks at each other.”

Election loss

Politically, many Republicans have come around to the idea of an immigration overhaul following election losses in which the party has failed to attract a growing Hispanic voting constituency. Business leaders want changes that will provide a reliable source of low-wage workers. And local police have resisted acting as de facto border agents, which diverts resources from dealing with crime.

The effort to engage evangelicals is framed in biblical terms. The Evangelical Immigration Table dovetails with other groups, including the National Immigration Forum, an alliance of religious leaders, business and law enforcement, under the rubric “Bibles, Badges and Business.”

The goal is a system that’s both fair to immigrants who are here legally and compassionate to those who are not that provides eventual “earned” citizenship and border security.

Dedicated Christians may disagree on what the solution is, but everybody acknowledges there must be a solution,” said the Rev. Rick Scarborough, an East Texas evangelist and head of the politically conservative Vision America.

Scarborough said he has been “conflicted” on the issue as both a socially conservative Republican and a Christian pastor. But he said if a solution couples border security and a requirement that illegal immigrants seeking naturalization go to the back of the line, “the majority of evangelicals will sign on.”

One caution, he said: “The majority of the Republican leadership has to understand that this is not going to win a majority of Hispanics to their cause. The Democrats have won that argument.”

When congregations hear a conservative pastor encourage support for immigration policies from the pulpit as a moral, not political issue, it can have considerable influence, he said.

“If not, we pastors ought to resign our posts,” he said.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Have these people even read the book of Matthew, by any chance?

Mat 4:17  From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

Mat 3:16  And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
Mat 3:17  And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.


Mat 23:13  But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on February 21, 2013, 01:45:45 pm
College Hosts Sex, Masturbati0n Tutorial – Inside A Church

Allegheny College’s Ford Memorial Chapel was transformed into a boudoir of sorts Wednesday night, as professional sex educators advised students in attendance how best to touch themselves and their partners to reach orgasm in what was billed as an educational seminar.

The chapel, built and dedicated in 1902, is where Catholic mass and non-denominational services are conducted every week at the private liberal arts college in northwestern Pennsylvania. But all that took a back pew to Wednesday’s festivities, dubbed “I Heart the Female Orgasm” and hosted by a variety of student groups on campus.

rest: http://www.thecollegefix.com/post/12730


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on February 21, 2013, 04:44:57 pm
 ::) Can you imagine the outrage if they held, or tried to hold, that class at an Islamic mosque or a Jewish temple?

Yet again scripture holds true.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 25, 2013, 08:25:34 pm
Here comes the "religious right" with their good 'ole tricks up their sleeves again... ::)

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/group-aims-drive-turnout-among-faith-voters-231711424--election.html

2/25/13

Group aims to drive up turnout among faith voters

A group of top evangelical leaders is launching a new voter initiative in hopes of increasing turnout among Christian voters in next year’s midterm elections.
 
The American Renewal Project, an arm of the conservative American Family Association, is launching “Pastors and Pews,” which will offer policy briefings to church leaders and their congregations in hopes of encouraging Christians to become more politically active amid years of declining turnout among voters of faith.
 
The group tells the Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody that they will hold its first event in May in Des Moines, Iowa—a key presidential primary state. And in a sign they're not messing around, they've invited three Republicans rumored to be considering White House bids in 2016: Sens. Marco Rubio of Florida and Rand Paul of Kentucky, and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.
 
Alex Conant, a spokesman for Rubio, confirmed that the Florida senator received the invitation, but said he “will not be able to attend.” Spokesmen for Paul and Jindal did not immediately return requests for comment.
 
David Lane, an influential conservative operative who's steering the group, tells Brody that it's a way to unite pastors over crucial issues facing the church and society.
 
“If the key to maintaining sustainable freedom is righteousness—the same virtue that produced freedom—what is the greatest threat to freedom? Unrighteousness,” Lane tells CBN. “America has left God.”
 
The group’s efforts come after former Christian Coalition head Ralph Reed led an effort to drive up voter turnout among faith voters during the 2012 election. His group, the Faith and Freedom Coalition, said evangelical voters made up 27 percent of the voting electorate—a number that was far better than the turnout in the 2008 election, but which still wasn’t enough to help Republican Mitt Romney win the White House.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Sen Marco Rubio - "The Republican SAVIOR", Illegal Immigration Reform Supporter, On same page with Obama's ME policies, etc.
http://endtimesandcurrentevents.freesmfhosting.com/index.php/topic,8141.0.html

Louisiana Catholic Governor Bobby Jindal
http://endtimesandcurrentevents.freesmfhosting.com/index.php/topic,5000.0.html

And we all know how Rand Paul went against his dad when he endorsed Romney


Title: In Bible Belt, rift emerges in pro-gay marriage movement
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 13, 2013, 08:20:28 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/bible-belt-rift-emerges-pro-gay-marriage-movement-051313327.html
3/13/13
LOUISVILLE, Ky (Reuters) - In Kentucky, a Bible Belt state where voters have passed a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, the movement to promote gay rights has two factions.
 
One seeks to overturn discrimination through a legislative path, admitting it faces long odds. The other wants to break down barriers to gay marriage with demonstrations and civil disobedience.
 
Chris Hartman, head of Kentucky's Fairness Campaign, spends his time lobbying for a nondiscrimination law that would protect gays and lesbians from losing their jobs or being denied housing because of their sexual orientation.
 
He concedes that the law, which has been proposed every year for a decade and has never been brought to a vote, has little chance of passing any time soon.
 
Then there is Rev. Maurice Blanchard, who says he is less patient. He is calling for an historic gay rights march on the state capitol on March 26, the day the Supreme Court begins hearing two gay-marriage cases: one on a marriage ban in California and another on a federal law that restricts the definition of marriage to the union of a man and a woman.
 
The issue has put the two men, both openly gay and in their early 30s, at loggerheads. Hartman says gay marriage is a non-starter for state lawmakers and talk of it will only set back negotiations for more moderate proposals, like a non-discrimination law.
 
"Marriage is on the forefront of many people's minds, and it's tough to go to the folks who are excited about relationship recognition and be the person to say, 'But that's not where our leaders are,'" said Hartman. "It's not that it's ambitious; it's unrealistic."
 
Blanchard, who was arrested with his partner in January when they refused to leave the Jefferson County clerk's office after being denied a marriage license, likens his fight to the struggle for black civil rights and says there is no proper time to demand equality.
 
"I want the (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) person who sees this event to feel affirmed: Faith is not against me and in fact it is the basis for calling for your rights," Blanchard said
.
 
LEGAL TO DISCRIMINATE
 
Nationally, 63 percent of Americans say gay marriage or civil unions should be legalized, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll of 22,395 people in 2013. Of those, 41 percent said they support full marriage while 22 percent support civil unions; 25 percent say neither option should be legal.
 
Of 7,869 respondents in the South, support for gay marriage is considerably less: 57 percent support gay marriage or civil unions, with 36 percent favoring same-sex marriage and 21 percent favoring civil unions. Another 30 percent oppose gay marriage and civil unions.
 
The poll's accuracy is measured using a credibility interval, which was plus or minus 0.8 percentage points among Americans and plus or minus 1.3 percentage points among Southerners.
 
"Regional efforts to redefine marriage have only been successful in deep-blue states," said Thomas Peters of the National Organization for Marriage, the leading national group opposing same-sex marriage.
 
He noted that the last time gay marriage came to a vote in the South, last year in North Carolina, it was easily defeated.
 
"Those who are organizing this march in Kentucky know that they are doing so against the face of overwhelming opposition to same-sex marriage in the state," said R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville. "They are intending to make a statement and I am sure they will succeed in making a statement."
 
In 2004, Kentucky was one of 11 states to pass a constitutional amendment defining marriage as heterosexual. Since then, national gay rights groups have focused on marriage and, over the last decade, nine states plus the District of Columbia have legalized gay marriage.
 
This year, with gay marriage proposals being considered in Illinois, Rhode Island and Minnesota, there has been little talk of a "Southern strategy" for Bible Belt states.
 
But momentum has been building, said Michael Aldridge, who heads the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky. In January, the tiny Appalachian town of Vicco passed an ordinance prohibiting discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations based upon a person's actual or perceived sexual orientation and gender identity. Louisville, Lexington and Covington also have nondiscrimination ordinances
.
 
Aldridge said there is no reliable count of how often gays and lesbians are penalized in the state because of their sexual orientation. Last summer, a lesbian couple in Richmond made headlines after being kicked out of a park while taking maternity pictures ahead of the birth of their baby boy.
 
"No state has ever passed relationship status without first having state-wide nondiscrimination protection, which is why that's our focus," Aldridge said. "A lot of people don't realize that it's still legal to discriminate."
 
Pockets of Louisville suggest times are changing.
 
On Saturday nights, a gay night club called the Connection, which claims to put on the "best drag show in America," lights up Louisville's Market Street. On a recent Saturday, the dance floor was packed with same-sex and opposite-sex couples in almost equal numbers.
 
NO MORE PUTTING LIFE ON HOLD
 
On Sunday, March 3, Blanchard came to the Open Door Community Fellowship, a gay-friendly church that sits several miles from where the Kentucky Derby is held each spring.
 
The reverend wanted to talk about the rally on March 26, and noted that the date nearly coincides with Martin Luther King's famous civil rights march.
 
"You're going to hear that this march and rally won't make one bit of difference," Blanchard said. "In 1965, when Dr. King marched with over 8,000 people from Selma, Alabama, to Montgomery, Alabama, he knew and they knew that they were not going to change the law in Alabama. They were going to have the opportunity to get a witness of faith that would dramatize the discrimination. That's what we need to do."
 
Four couples from the church have been married in Washington D.C. and in one of the nine states that allow gay marriage, but the licenses have no legal weight in Kentucky.
 
"It's gotten to a point where I can't put my life on hold any longer," said Jay Joseph, who is 34. He recently traveled to Connecticut to marry his partner of seven years, Dane Joseph.
 
The couple would like to adopt children, but Dane, a citizen of Grenada, has been unable to secure work papers in part because gay couples are not entitled to spousal benefits.
 
Cassey Gillett, who married her partner, Stephanie Gillett, in New York last September, says she would not want to live anywhere but Kentucky, where the couple is raising four children from their previous heterosexual marriages.
 
"I'd love to live in New York, but I can't just abandon Kentucky," said Cassey. "Kentucky is a place for families. It is an awesome place to raise children."
 
She said she expects marriage to be legalized in her lifetime, but she said Kentuckians need to be shown that homosexual couples are no different from straight couples.
 
"I swear, if you come to our house, the most exciting thing is reading a book or playing a game," said Cassey. "We are a completely normal family."
 
(Additional reporting by Maurice Tamman; Editing by Prudence Crowther)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 14, 2013, 12:50:42 pm
Lifetime TV’s “Preachers’ Daughters”: Church Girls Gone Wild
http://beginningandend.com/lifetime-tvs-preachers-daughters-pastors-girls-gone-wild/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+BeginningAndEnd+%28Beginning+And+End%29&utm_content=Yahoo%21+Mail
3/12/13

Excerpt:

The Predictable Reality TV Formula

“For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.” – 1 Timothy 6:10-11.

What cannot be forgotten is that reality TV is entertainment. As with the show The Sisterhood, which never in its entire season shared the Gospel in any episode and used the name of Jesus Christ to mock one another, the directors of these programs need “drama” in order to up the entertainment value. So as a result, it will be necessary for one or more of these daughters to “rebel” on camera in each episode. So the girls are not only being given a license to sin, but they are also being told that if the entertainment value is high enough, they can get a second season, which means fame and potentially millions of dollars. This is what every reality TV show on air tells their participants. Do something crazy, wild and memorable and you will make a lot of money in a second season. And this has led to reality TV becoming home to some of the most sinful, disrespectful and lascivious behavior in all of entertainment as the participants seek to keep the viewers’ attention each week for all of the fame and money that awaits.
 
And this is the situation these three pastors are putting their teenage daughters in. Reality TV stars have become the newest type of celebrity and knowing you can go from obscurity to the cover of Gossip magazines in a matter of weeks brings in yet another level of temptation to sin, “bring drama” and become a household name. In the case of The Sisterhood, grown women married to pastors, gossiped about each other, constantly slandered each other and fought on every single episode (with the only real question being: will this be the episode they turn it into an all out brawl). Preachers Daughters is taking it in the direction of fornication and dating behind parents’ backs. All in the name of entertainment.
 


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on March 14, 2013, 01:37:23 pm
"Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap." Galatians 6:7 (KJB)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 14, 2013, 09:45:02 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/last-minute-snag-stalls-israeli-coalition-deal-211701988.html
3/14/13
Last-minute snag stalls Israeli coalition deal

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reached a deal Thursday to form a new coalition government, but a last-minute snag over the title of his new partners kept the plan from being formalized for at least one more day.
 
The new government is expected to try to curb years of preferential treatment for the country's ultra-Orthodox minority and may push for renewed Mideast peace efforts. But the late-hour disagreement reflects the tough challenges Netanyahu could face keeping his new coalition intact.
 
It would be the first in a decade to exclude ultra-Orthodox Jewish parties. It includes two new rising stars in Israeli politics who have vowed to end a controversial system of draft exemptions and generous welfare subsidies granted to tens of thousands of ultra-Orthodox seminary students.
 
"The next term will be one of the most challenging in the history of the state," Netanyahu told his Likud-Yisrael Beitenu parliamentary faction Thursday. "We are facing great security and diplomatic challenges."

more


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 03, 2013, 06:47:37 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/jesus-evangelists-launch-immigration-ad-campaign-045007701.html
4/3/13
What Would Jesus Do? Evangelists Launch Immigration Ad Campaign

It started in South Carolina with Republican Sen. Lindsay Graham urging evangelists to back immigration reform as a way to "fix the problem."

Conservative faith leaders in the Palmetto state are now being joined by church leaders in North Carolina, Texas, Colorado and Florida producing and airing a series of ads designed to change the hard-line views of conservative Christians on the issue.

The Evangelical Immigration Table says the commercials will "educate" the faithful on the Bible's point of view on immigrants
.

"White evangelicals have been listening to the voice of the extreme," said the Rev. David Fleming, the senior pastor for Champion Forest Baptist Church of Houston. "Give education to our people, they are changing their minds on this issue."

Fleming said that the undocumented are caught in a system that "isn't working," and is "not only ineffective and inefficient" but treats individuals like "political footballs."

"These folks speak English, they work hard, they pay taxes ... they are great neighbors they are friends of ours," he said. "We live together, we work together, we serve together. We are all in this together. We see the immigrant as a person created in the image of God."

As the religious inspiration for immigration reform, the group cites Matthew Chapter 25, where the Bible reads: "I was a stranger, and ye took me in."

One reason for the push among evangelical leaders could be the strong shift toward representation of Hispanics in their churches. Among U.S. Hispanics 13 percent identify as evangelical, second only to Catholicism, which 62 percent identified with in a 2012 Pew Hispanic poll.

Dr. Richard Land, the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission for the Southern Baptist Convention, said they aren't going to "cast" support for one political party over another, but instead to "lift up moral issues at stake in this debate."

"There's a sea change happening in the Republican Party on this, and I see it here," Graham said in an interview with Bloomberg last week. "If I can sell it in South Carolina, don't come to me and say it's hard. This is a conservative state, and the way we're selling it is to fix it."

On April 17, the religious leaders have organized a "day of worship" and lobbying on immigration in Washington, D.C.

"The Bible speaks clearly and repeatedly to God's concern for the immigrant, guiding the Christ-follower toward principles that we believe should inform both the interpersonal ways that we interact with our immigrant neighbors and the public policies that we support," the website reads.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on April 04, 2013, 05:22:52 am
Quote
"These folks speak English, they work hard, they pay taxes ... they are great neighbors they are friends of ours," he said. "We live together, we work together, we serve together. We are all in this together. We see the immigrant as a person created in the image of God."

What bs!  ::)

No, they don't speak English usually or claim they don't when it's convenient, and they aren't great neighbors, but rather cause a mess and don't know how to keep a place clean (you should see where I live! They are slobs!). Work hard or pay taxes? Doesn't matter. They are trespassers and criminals for knowingly breaking US law. And they are not great friends, because they keep to the Latino friends and shun everybody else out of fear of being deported. And to top it off, the VAST majority are Catholics who could care less about anybody else.

Yes, we are to love our neighbors, but that does not mean we are to live with them or be friends with people who reject Christianity. The problem began with them being here illegally in the first place, regardless of how friendly they may be.

Real Christians know that we are not to keep company with a brother that walks not according to sound doctrine, but rather reprove, rebuke, and exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. Catholics aren't even brethren for starters.

So if they want to be friends with people who have no problem trespassing on US soil, then they might consider how they would feel if some of those illegals decided to move into Graham's house, or set up a tent on his front lawn. I wonder how he'd feel with a bunch of criminal illegals moving into his fancy neighborhood.

I guarantee if an illegal set up a tent on his front lawn, he'd call the cops in a heart beat to have the "immigrant" removed for trespassing, yet it's okay with them if illegals trespass on other people's land? Idiot sellouts and traitors!  ::)


Title: Evangelicals Back Obama's Faith-Based Council's Report on Ending Human Trafficki
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 10, 2013, 11:09:23 pm
Evangelicals Back Obama's Faith-Based Council's Report on Ending Human Trafficking
4/10/13

The National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) has backed the new President's Advisory Council on Faith-based and Neighborhood's report to Barack Obama, which is aimed at eradicating modern-day slavery.

"Human trafficking debases the God-given dignity of every person," said NAE President Leith Anderson in a statement, who serves on the Advisory Council. "It is time for the government, churches and all members of society to work together to bring trafficking in persons to an end."

The report, "Building Partnerships to Eradicate Modern-day Slavery," ­­makes several recommendations to Obama, who has promised to take important steps to tackle the billion-dollar industry. More than 27 million people currently live as human slaves, more than any other time in history.

A summary of the recommendations the Advisory Council made are detailed on the White House website. One of the most important points they made is that the fight against human slavery must be elevated to an agency level and more steps need to be taken to raise awareness for this pressing issue.

"We are proud to stand with the President Obama and his Administration on this vital moral issue. We commit ourselves to working with our government, our houses of worship and community-based organizations, and our fellow Americans, to end slavery in our time," said Susan K. Stern, the Chair of the President's Advisory Council.

The NAE also reminded readers on its website of the 1999 Trafficking in Women and Children resolution, which calls on evangelicals to become more aware and more involved in victim assistance. The organization says that significant strides have been taken since then, but more work still needs to be done to combat human trafficking.

"Each year force and fraud bring as many as a million innocent victims into the international sex industry. There is a growing movement to oppose this horrendous degradation of women and children," NAE says in the 1999 resolution.

Other prominent evangelical leaders, such as Louie Giglio from Passion City Church in Atlanta, have also been heavily involved in the global fight to end human trafficking. Giglio has been on the forefront of promoting the "End It" movement, which raises awareness for the 27 million modern-day slaves and educates people how they can get involved.

Another issue that the NAE has agreed with the president on is the passing of the Arms Trade Treaty agreement by the U.N., which will now seek to impose international regulations on weapons and ammunitions.

Some conservatives had expressed reservation regarding the ATT over fears it might infringe on the 2nd Amendment, but the NAE, Obama and most world leaders argued that it is a necessary step in the global fight against human exploitation and violence that forces children to serve as soldiers and causes millions of deaths in undeveloped regions.

Read more at http://global.christianpost.com/news/evangelicals-back-obamas-recommendations-to-end-human-trafficking-93672/#7JvDg2TT81WOHIDY.99


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 20, 2013, 03:40:14 pm
This isn't a church, per se, but it's a self-professing Christian school - Baylor University in Waco, TX. First off, they don't hire faculty(and staff I believe too) unless they not only profess to be Christians, but are regular church-goers as well. Well, they SHOULD know that it's ONLY the LORD that looketh upon the heart - so if they think everyone they hire is Christians, they are very naïve.

1Samuel_16:7  But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.

Anyhow, this person was a big standout BB star over at Baylor Univ(and has gotten a lot of publicity)...

Could Brittney Griner's Announcement Change Anything For Baylor And Its Gay Students?

After years of speculation about her sexuality, Brittney Griner -- the first pick in the WNBA draft and all-around game changer for women’s hoops -- casually told SI.com that she is gay. "It really wasn't too difficult. I wouldn't say I was hiding or anything like that," Griner said. “I've always been open about who I am and my sexuality, so it wasn't hard at all."

Given that there are numerous openly gay players in the league, the reaction to Griner's comment was muted.

But for administrators at Baylor, it could not have been a welcome announcement. Griner's alma mater identifies itself as a Christian university, and it has a long history and school policy against homosexuality. Its student handbook says that even advocacy of homosexual behavior is against its policy:

"The University affirms the biblical understanding of sexuality as a gift from God. Christian churches across the ages and around the world have affirmed purity in singleness and fidelity in marriage between a man and a woman as the biblical norm. Temptations to deviate from this norm include both heterosexual sex outside of marriage and homosexual behavior. It is thus expected that Baylor students will not participate in advocacy groups which promote understandings of sexuality that are contrary to biblical teaching."

Griner brought a national championship to Baylor as well as revenue and media coverage because of her star status -- she won the 2012 ESPY Award for best female athlete -- so it is doubtful she would face anything but public silence or support from the administration. Her coach, Kim Mulkey, while noting that her star player had stood up to horrible taunting while playing, professed ignorance of any of her players' relationships when asked about Griner's sexuality in March.

Mark Osler, a former Baylor professor who has spoken out against the school policies on gays, sees this as a double standard, and one that Griner's announcement could help overturn.

"She's not just any student," Osler told ThePostGame. "Next to RGIII, she is the most visible Baylor athlete in the world. She won a lot of games for them. Without her, they would not be nearly the team they have been. So yes, [I think] they are glad to have her be their gay superstar. I doubt they would be so supportive if she was a ... gay woman with no other supreme talents."

Osler says maybe it's time that the school revise its thinking -- especially on a campus full of what he said are conscious and caring students that generally do not agree with the policy.

"As a lawyer and law professor, I believe rules matter," Osler said. "And if the idea about tolerance and understanding of people like Brittney Griner has changed ... it's time to change that rule as well."


Baylor did not respond to a request from The PostGame for comment.

For gay athletes and students at Baylor before Griner, coming out had much bigger consequences. In 2007, Emily Nkosi left the team and transferred because of her decision to come out. She told USA Today that Baylor operated on a 'don't ask, don't tell' policy and she feared losing her scholarship -- despite having been a strong contributor on the national championship team in 2005. (Baylor, for its part, denied to the paper that she would have lost the scholarship for coming out.)

"There's a lot of fear being driven into a lot of people,” Nkosi said at the time. “Not only is it sad (because of) the people who are saying, 'You can't do this because if you do this, this booster is going to pull out on me.' It's really sad because it's something you can hold over someone."

Nkosi did not immediately respond to ThePostGame’s request for an interview in light of Griner's announcement. But she did discuss a similar media inquiry on her Facebook page:

"A [reporter] just asked me 'What do you think of the "don't ask, don't tell" atmosphere that seems to be at Baylor with gay student-athletes?’; anyone want put their two cents in? And help me articulate the best possible message that will land in this community?”

The immediate response:

"Tell them it's **** ****---" one friend wrote on her wall.

Nkosi agreed. "What's wrong with it?" she wrote. " ...everything..."

Four years after Nkosi left, some students said that the school wasn't enforcing the official policy, but others told the campus newspaper, the Baylor Lariat, that many are still fearful to be open about their sexuality.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 20, 2013, 04:28:58 pm
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/E/EU_BRITAIN_GAY_CLERGY?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2013-05-20-16-06-40
5/20/13

Church of Scotland takes step to allow gay clergy

LONDON (AP) -- Senior members of the Church of Scotland voted Monday to let some congregations choose ministers who are in same-sex relationships - an important compromise that must still pass further hurdles before it can become church law.

The church's General Assembly backed a motion affirming a traditional conservative view on homosexuality, but permitted liberal congregations to ordain openly gay men or women if they wish.

The assembly's vote would require the approval of next year's General Assembly as well as votes by the church's regional presbyteries to become law. The process is complicated, and is expected to take at least two years.

Monday's decision came after a lengthy debate on the issue, which has divided the church of about 400,000 members for years. Two congregations have split from the church over the issue.

"This was a major breakthrough for the church but we are conscious that some people remain pained, anxious, worried and hurt," said Lorna Hood, the assembly's moderator. "We continue to pray for the peace and unity of the church."

Albert Bogle, who proposed the motion, said it was a compromise to move the debate between the traditionalists and revisionists forward.

"My motion is to be permissive and to allow those who want to do this to do it. But I want to affirm the position of the Church of Scotland in the historic tradition of the church," he said. "It will give everyone what they want but it will keep us together."

The General Assembly, held each May, consists of about 700 members and decides church policy.


Title: Texas Mega-Church Welcomes Islamists to ‘Global Faith Forum’
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 23, 2013, 04:24:03 pm
Texas Mega-Church Welcomes Islamists to ‘Global Faith Forum’
5/23/13
http://balfourpost.com/?p=657&preview=true

The 3,000-member NorthWood Church of Keller, T.X. is holding a “Global Faith Forum” in November. In yet another Islamist-attended interfaith event, Christians will hear from a former Saudi intelligence chief, a former director-general of Al-Jazeera, officials from U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entities and the non-Muslims who embrace them.

Pastor Bob Roberts. Jr. is known for his efforts to build-bridges with Muslims. He spoke at the “Christ at the Checkpoint” conference put together by Palestinian Christians at Bethlehem Bible College. So did Florida Pastor Joel C. Hunter, who has been negative attention for his association with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity. Hunter is also critical of “Christian Zionists.”

An article posted on Hunter’s website reports how the “Christ at the Checkpoint” audience, including students from Wheaton and Eastern Universities, “were moved by the testimony of Palestinian men and women who shared the pain and suffering they experience on a daily basis caused primarily by the continuing occupation.”

Pastor Roberts reacted to the anti-Islam Innocence of Muslims video by suggesting that governments crack down on its distribution. He said, “There is a ‘clear and present’ danger the U.S. courts have ruled in regard to freedom of speech—I think that has to extend globally.”

In January, NorthWood Church hosted Azhar Azeez, Vice President of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). ISNA is an unindicted co-conspirator in a major terrorism-financing trial. Federal prosecutors labeled ISNA a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity, a fact confirmed by the Brotherhood’s own secret documents.
 
In November, his church’s Global Faith Forum will bring the spotlight to his interfaith efforts and those involved in them. Event speakers include Rep. Kay Graner (R-TX), former South Carolina Governor David Beasley and Christianity Today editor Mark Galli, but they aren’t the main attractions.
 
The conference website’s home page proudly advertises Prince Turki al-Faisal, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the U.S. from 2005 to 2007, as a main speaker. Before that, he was the Saudi foreign intelligence chief from 1977 to 2001, making him a top figure in Saudi Arabia’s proliferation of Wahhabism around the world for over 20 years. He represented a Sharia-based government that persecutes Christians.
 
Faisal Bin Muammar was an advisor at the Saudi Royal Court and Secretary-General of the Riyadh-based King Abdul Aziz Center for National Dialogue.
 
Safi Kaskas is a co-founder of East West University in Chicago and a “strategy consultant for a number of business organizations in the USA and Saudi Arabia.” He is a member of the Association of Muslim Social Scientists. A 1991 U.S. Muslim Brotherhood memo identifies AMSS as one of “our organizations and the organizations of our friends.” The memo says its “work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within.” The AMSS is also closely linked to the International Institute of Islamic Thought.
 
Another main speaker is Professor John Esposito, one of the top non-Muslim supporters of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network. He is a frequent guest speaker at their events and was a witness for the defense in the trial of the Holy Land Foundation.
 
The aforementioned Azhar Azeez is again speaking. He is the Vice President of ISNA and has been on its Executive Council since 2002. He is also the senior National Director of Islamic Relief USA, a charity linked to the Muslim Brotherhood.
 
Wadah Khanfar was the director-general of Al-Jazeera from 2006 to 2011. Al-Jazeera’s extremism is well-documented. The Arabic station even gives Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader Yousef al-Qaradawi a weekly show.
 
Ayatollah Ahmad Iravani is President of the Center for the Study of Islam and the Middle East. He’s also been a teacher for 10 years at the Catholic University of America. He graduated from Qom, Iran and has taught Sharia Law in Tehran. He’s also participated in Catholic-Muslim dialogues called “A Common Word” that includes allies of Qaradawi.
 
Imam Zia ul Haque Sheikh is a member of the North American Imams Federation. Radical imam Siraj Wahhaj has served on the Board of Trustees. Its website lists Ashrafuz Zaman Khan as its President. Bangladesh has charged him with war crimes from his days in the Islamist group Jamaat-e-Islami.
 
Dahlia Mogahed is from the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies and is a friend of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entities. In 2008, she said that CAIR and ISNA were designated as unindicted co-conspirators by the federal government in order “to silence, you know, institution-building among Muslims. And the way o do it is [to] malign these groups. And it’s kind of a witch hunt.”

Suhail Khan is a former Bush Administration official and Senior Fellow for Christian-Muslim Understanding at the Institute for Global Engagement. He has been accused of helping U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entities gain influence in the Bush Administration after 9/11 and of having Brotherhood ties himself. He denies that the Muslim Brotherhood even exists in America.
 
Rev. Jack Sara is President of Bethlehem Bible College and Pastor with the Evangelical Alliance Church in the Holy Land. The College put together the “Christ at the Checkpoint” conference and has a long relatonship with Evangelicals for Middle East Understanding.
 
It wouldn’t be surprising if Pastor Roberts didn’t know who he was dealing with. After all, he cited Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader Yousef al-Qaradawi as a “key Islamic leader” condemning anti-American violence. The desire for interfaith credentials seems to surpass the desire to have a standard.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on May 24, 2013, 03:18:58 am
Quote
Pastor Roberts reacted to the anti-Islam Innocence of Muslims video by suggesting that governments crack down on its distribution. He said, “There is a ‘clear and present’ danger the U.S. courts have ruled in regard to freedom of speech—I think that has to extend globally.”

THAT is the words of a demon in sheep's clothing! Notice the wording, classic military phrase, "clear and present danger". He's clearly part of the "Clergy Response Team".

It just gets worse and worse. ::)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 27, 2013, 01:04:57 pm
It seems like in recent years, especially after Katrina - whenever these natural disasters would happen, the aftermaths would get used to *unite* communities...and guess who is playing a large role in all of this? As you all know, I lived in New Orleans when Katrina happened - and yes, clergy in that city acted as community organizer roles(ie-Emergent/WOF heretic leaders like Rick Warren, Creflo Dollar, Joyce Meyer, etc all stopped by - Warren even told a group of Baptist pastors that discouragement is the biggest sin in the bible, and that God would forsake us if we didn't put it aside to work together).

http://news.yahoo.com/twister-heals-ala-town-fractured-over-immigration-131958548.html
5/27/13
Twister heals Ala. town fractured over immigration

KILPATRICK, Ala. (AP) — For years before a tornado hit, few besides the immigrants who work at nearby poultry plants ventured down the pothole-rutted dirt roads of "Little Mexico."

The community, whose official name is Kilpatrick, comprises a large population of Latin American residents who previously mingled very little with the white, English-speaking natives.

Oddly enough, it was the twister, with its 125 mph destructive winds and home-wrecking fury, that began bringing the two groups together, even as it tore much of what they owned apart.

People began working together clearing away debris and wreckage after the storm without regard to language or culture, and folks suddenly were getting along better. Jacky Clayton, assistant police chief in Crossville, which includes part of Kilpatrick, doesn't know exactly what happened, but he said things seem less tense now.

"Maybe it's just a little more understanding of brotherly love," Clayton said.

Ivan Barrera, of Puebla, Mexico, the 31-year-old owner of a full-service Latin grocery store in the town, noted that for much of the seven years he has lived here, he has felt a certain "neutrality" between the immigrant and native communities. No blatant animosity, but no meaningful connection, either.

"I think things have gotten better since the storm," he said, speaking in Spanish.

The tearing down of cultural walls was a rather remarkable achievement in a state that two years ago passed the toughest anti-immigration law in the nation and is now bracing for the results of a protracted debate in Washington on immigration reform.

Located about 75 miles northeast of Birmingham in DeKalb County, Kilpatrick has drawn hundreds of immigrants from Mexico, Guatemala and other Latin American countries who moved to the rural area over the past decade to work in chicken-processing plants.

An estimated 2,000 immigrants live in Kilpatrick. An exact number is hard to nail down given the transience of some of the workers and the fact that many moved here without legal permission.

But their influence is unmistakable: The 600-student elementary school in nearby Crossville that many children from Kilpatrick attend is more than 60 percent Hispanic, unusual in a state where the population is only 4 percent Hispanic.

Driving through the area, it's not hard to see why so many people call it "Little Mexico" or, alternately, "Little Tijuana." Signs in Spanish advertise everything from $1 tacos at the El Taco Unico roadside stand to pastries, pinatas and Mexican spices at a Mexican bakery where Latin music plays quietly. On a main road a mile away, customers come and go from Barrera's grocery store.

On a recent sunny spring afternoon, families strolled down the road to a small neighborhood store while boys played soccer in yards next to bleating goats and clucking chickens. Most of the children spoke Spanish, with a little English sprinkled in.

Rosemarie Chavez is a bilingual native of Texas who moved into the area about 16 years ago when hardly anyone else was around and has most recently taken on the role of unofficial liaison between the immigrants and Alabama natives. She said the Hispanic population grew quickly once landowners began subdividing pastureland and selling acreage and mobile homes to the families who were moving in to take the poultry jobs.

The more the town grew, however, the more it became a target of the anti-immigration sentiment that had begun growing in the South and other parts of the country. For advocates of the tough anti-immigration law passed by Alabama's Republican-dominated Legislature in 2011, Kilpatrick was a prime example of unregulated immigration — many of the recently arrived workers had come to the United States without legal permission.

The new law allowed police to check immigration status during routine traffic stops and detain those who couldn't produce the right papers. The legislation also required schools to verify students' immigration status.

Police began to make Kilpatrick a focus of frequent traffic stops, and many residents were scared, said Chavez, who is also a community outreach worker for Quality of Life Health Care Services, which provides medical services throughout the area.

Many Hispanics left Alabama in the weeks after Gov. Robert Bentley signed the strict immigration law. They gradually returned, however, as courts gutted the measure's strictest provisions, officials relaxed enforcement, and the public's attention went elsewhere, Chavez said.

Still, their renewed physical presence did not translate into cultural assimilation. Kilpatrick's residents seldom veered far from the route that led to their jobs at the poultry plants and their native neighbors showed little interest in getting to know them.

That all began to change on March 18, the day two twisters plowed through DeKalb County, damaging 270 residences countywide. A total of 27 homes were destroyed, 19 of them in Kilpatrick, which was hit by an EF2 tornado, said Daryl Lester, deputy director of the DeKalb County Emergency Management Agency. Tornadoes are considered significant when they are rated EF2 or higher.

Students and volunteers from English-speaking churches accompanied the police, rescue squads and fire departments that descended on Kilpatrick within hours, helping to deliver food, right overturned vehicles, pick up fallen limbs and rescue photos and other precious keepsakes from the wreckage of the homes.

The immigrants were initially spooked by so many officials with badges, and some fled to the homes of friends and family instead of taking advantage of local agencies' offers of food and shelter, Chavez said.

But Chavez and others helped spread the word that authorities were there to assist tornado victims, not to arrest or deport anyone.

Both immigrants and natives learned valuable lessons that day and in the weeks afterward as they found themselves working side by side. The newcomers discovered that not everyone resented their presence in town. Alabamians with family roots reaching back for centuries discovered that the Hispanics down the road were a lot like them: family folks just trying to scrape by.

"We were helping a lot of the Hispanics and they were reaching out to help others," said Clayton, the police officer.

Barrera said that in the weeks since the twister, English-speaking firefighters and church groups have continued to help the Hispanic community by taking up collections. Just two weeks ago, a man who has sold land and mobile homes to residents in the Hispanic community dropped by Barrera's store to let him know that food and replacement furniture were available at a nearby church.

Miguel Gomez, 24, a native of Mexico's Michoacan state who has worked at the Guelaguetza Bakery in Kilpatrick for four years, said he felt a welcome change after the tornado, which did minor damage to the mobile home where he lives with his wife, child and mother.

"A lot of Americans came to offer us help, to offer shelter and food," Gomez said, speaking in Spanish. "It did surprise me a little to see it because not everyone tries to help the Mexicans."

Signs of the tornado are still evident: Blue tarps still cover damaged structures, and some of the mobile homes brought in to replace destroyed trailers appear ramshackle and rickety. Meanwhile, immigrants and natives are far from being the best of friends in Kilpatrick, where immigrant residents say they still see the occasional police car pulling over drivers whose legal status might be in doubt.

But few deny that important progress toward tolerance and unity has been made since the day the twisters landed.

"A great bridging has taken place," said Zach Richards, pastor at the local Union Grove Baptist Church. "It's beautiful to see
."



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 27, 2013, 01:08:18 pm
^^

Mat 10:11  And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, enquire who in it is worthy; and there abide till ye go thence.
Mat 10:12  And when ye come into an house, salute it.
Mat 10:13  And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you.
Mat 10:14  And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.
Mat 10:15  Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city.
Mat 10:16  Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.


2Tim 3:5  Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 27, 2013, 02:10:36 pm
Here's another example...

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/ticket/consoler-chief-obama-tragedy-speeches-142928364.html
5/27/13
Consoler in chief: President Obama’s post-tragedy speeches, from Tucson to Moore

"I'm just a messenger here today, letting everybody here know that you are not alone, that you've got folks behind you."

After touring the tornado damage in Oklahoma, on Sunday, President Barack Obama found himself in an all-too-familiar role: consoler in chief. From Tucson to Newtown, Joplin to Moore, Obama's visits to cities and towns torn apart by tragedy have become an important, if sadly routine, part of his presidency.

"Whenever I come to an area that's been devastated by some natural disaster like this, I want to make sure everybody understands I'm speaking on behalf of the entire country," Obama said, standing where the Plaza Towers Elementary School once stood. "Everywhere, fellow Americans are praying with you."

"This is a strong community with strong character," he continued. "There's no doubt they're going to bounce back."

A little over a month ago at a church in Boston's South End, the president delivered a similar message in the wake of the marathon bombings.

"Scripture tells us to run with endurance the race that is set before us," Obama said at the interfaith service. "This doesn't stop us. And that's what you've taught us, Boston. That's what you've reminded us, to push on. To persevere. To not grow weary. To not get faint. Even when it hurts. Even when our heart aches. We summon the strength that maybe we didn't even know we had, and we carry on. We finish the race."


During Obama's five years in office, "this presidential ritual has become as familiar a symbol of sadness as the seas of stuffed animals and flowers that accompany these mournful scenes," Joe Heim wrote in the Washington Post. "Perhaps more than any president before him, Obama has had to take on the role of consoler in chief with increasing regularity, a result of a steady stream of tragedies and an increasing expectation that they all merit a presidential visit and embrace."

Indeed, it's "hard not to notice that perhaps the Obama presidency will not be measured by his successes but by his solace," Richard Parker wrote in the Miami Herald after last month's plant explosion in West, Texas. "Not the place in history a president wishes to occupy."

In December in Newtown, Conn., following what Obama later said was the toughest day of his presidency, the consoler in chief spoke to a community which had just lost 20 children in the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

"I come to offer the love and prayers of a nation," Obama said at the interfaith service. "I am very mindful that mere words cannot match the depths of your sorrow, nor can they heal your wounded hearts. I can only hope it helps for you to know that you're not alone in your grief, that our world, too, has been torn apart, that all across this land of ours, we have wept with you. We've pulled our children tight. And you must know that whatever measure of comfort we can provide, we will provide. Whatever portion of sadness that we can share with you to ease this heavy load, we will gladly bear it. Newtown, you are not alone."

Obama began his speech in Newtown by quoting scripture: "Do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, inwardly, we are being renewed day by day."

He did the same in Aurora, Colo., last July, after visiting a victim of the deadly movie theater shootings:

Scripture says that
"He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more. Neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away." And when you have an opportunity to visit with families who have lost their loved ones—as I described to them, I come to them not so much as president as I do as a father and as a husband. And I think that the reason stories like this have such an impact on us is because we can all understand what it would be to have somebody that we love taken from us in this fashion—what it would be like and how it would impact us.

In Tuscon, Ariz., in 2011, the president addressed the community at an interfaith service days after a gunman killed 6 people and wounded 13 in an attempted assassination of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

"I have come here tonight as an American who, like all Americans, kneels to pray with you today and will stand by you tomorrow," Obama said. "There is nothing I can say that will fill the sudden hole torn in your hearts. But know this: The hopes of a nation are here tonight. We mourn with you for the fallen. We join you in your grief."

He quoted scripture there, too:

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
 the holy place where the Most High dwells.
 God is within her, she will not fall;
 God will help her at break of day.

In Moore on Sunday, President Obama did not select a passage from the Bible himself, instead relaying an anecdote from media coverage of the tornado.

"There was a story that really struck me," Obama said. "In the rubble was found a Bible, open to the words that read: A man will be as a hiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest.' And it's a reminder, as scripture often is, that God has a plan, and it's important, though, that we also recognize we're an instrument of his will. And we need to know that as fellow Americans, we're going to be there as shelter from the storm."



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on May 28, 2013, 04:15:43 am
Quote
"There was a story that really struck me," Obama said. "In the rubble was found a Bible, open to the words that read: A man will be as a hiding place from the wind, and a cover from the tempest.' And it's a reminder, as scripture often is, that God has a plan, and it's important, though, that we also recognize we're an instrument of his will. And we need to know that as fellow Americans, we're going to be there as shelter from the storm."

I know you have this in red, but did you notice how he interpreted it? It's an unnerving way to explain it, by saying, "we're an instrument of his will". Many wicked men have said that very thing, trying to distance themselves from the evil they do, claiming they are just a messenger or whatever.

But even more, notice he changed the meaning of the verse to make is sound like it's talking about man is the "hiding place"? Obama has no idea that it's talking about the man, Christ Jesus.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on May 28, 2013, 07:16:45 am
Diversity, not Jesus, saves says Presiding Bishop

The Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church has denounced the Apostle Paul as mean-spirited and bigoted for having released a slave girl from demonic bondage as reported in Acts 16:16-34 .
 
In her sermon delivered at All Saints Church in Curaçao in the diocese of Venezuela, Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori condemned those who did not share her views as enemies of the Holy Spirit.
 
The presiding bishop opened her remarks with an observation on the Dutch slave past. “The history of this place tells some tragic stories about the inability of some to see the beauty in other skin colors or the treasure of cultures they didn’t value or understand,” she said.
 
She continued stating: “Human beings have a long history of discounting and devaluing difference, finding it offensive or even evil.  That kind of blindness is what leads to oppression, slavery, and often, war.  Yet there remains a holier impulse in human life toward freedom, dignity, and the full flourishing of those who have been kept apart or on the margins of human communities.”
 
Just as the forces of historical inevitability led to the ending of industrial slavery, so too would the march of progress lead to a change in attitude towards homosexuality, she argued.
 
“We live with the continuing tension between holier impulses that encourage us to see the image of God in all human beings and the reality that some of us choose not to see that glimpse of the divine, and instead use other people as means to an end.  We’re seeing something similar right now in the changing attitudes and laws about same-sex relationships, as many people come to recognize that different is not the same thing as wrong.  For many people, it can be difficult to see God at work in the world around us, particularly if God is doing something unexpected.”
 
To illustrate her point presiding bishop turned to the book of Acts, noting “There are some remarkable examples of that kind of blindness in the readings we heard this morning, and slavery is wrapped up in a lot of it.  Paul is annoyed at the slave girl who keeps pursuing him, telling the world that he and his companions are slaves of God.  She is quite right.  She’s telling the same truth Paul and others claim for themselves,” Bishop Jefferts Schori said, referencing the first chapter of the Epistle to the Romans.
 
“But Paul is annoyed, perhaps for being put in his place, and he responds by depriving her of her gift of spiritual awareness.  Paul can’t abide something he won’t see as beautiful or holy, so he tries to destroy it.  It gets him thrown in prison.  That’s pretty much where he’s put himself by his own refusal to recognize that she, too, shares in God’s nature, just as much as he does – maybe more so!,” the presiding bishop said.
 
The New Testament passage goes on to say that Paul and Silas were imprisoned for freeing the girl of her demonic possession. Presiding Bishop noted “an earthquake opens the doors and sets them free, and now Paul and his friends most definitely discern the presence of God.  The jailer doesn’t – he thinks his end is at hand.”
 
However, Paul now repents of his mistake in casting out the spirit of divination, she argues.  “This time, Paul remembers who he is and that all his neighbors are reflections of God, and he reaches out to his frightened captor.  This time Paul acts with compassion rather than annoyance, and as a result the company of Jesus’ friends expands to include a whole new household.  It makes me wonder what would have happened to that slave girl if Paul had seen the spirit of God in her.”
 
In support her argument for radical inclusion and diversity over doctrine Bishop Jefferts Schori adds that the day’s reading “from Revelation pushes us in the same direction, outward and away from our own self-righteousness, inviting us to look harder for God’s gift and presence all around us.  Jesus says he’s looking for everybody, anyone who’s looking for good news, anybody who is thirsty.  There are no obstacles or barriers – just come.  God is at work everywhere, even if we can’t or won’t see it immediately.”
 
She concluded her sermon by stating that we are not justified by our faith but by our respect for diversity.
 
“Looking for the reflection of God’s glory all around us means changing our lenses, or letting the scales on our eyes fall away.  That kind of change isn’t easy for anyone, but it’s the only road to the kingdom of God.”
 
Salvation comes not from being cleansed of our sins by the atoning sacrificial death of Jesus Christ, but through the divinization of humanity through the work of the human will. “We are here, among all the other creatures of God’s creation, to be transformed into the glory intended from the beginning.  The next time we feel the pain of that change, perhaps instead of annoyance or angry resentment we might pray for a new pair of glasses.  When resentment about difference or change builds up within us, it’s really an invitation to look inward for the wound that cries out for a healing dose of glory.  We will find it in the strangeness of our neighbor.  Celebrate that difference – for it’s necessary for the healing of this world – and know that the wholeness we so crave lies in recognizing the glory of God’s creative invitation.  God among us in human form is the most glorious act we know.”
 
Responses posted on the Episcopal Church’s website to the Presiding Bishop’s sermon have been uniformly harsh, noting her interpretation was at odds with traditional Christian teaching, grammar, and logic. “This is quite possibly some if the most delusional exegesis I’ve ever read in my life,” one critic charged. “I’m sorry, but this sermon is not a Christian sermon.”
 
The reception by bloggers has been equally unkind. The Rev Timothy Fountain observed the presiding bishop had up ended the plain meaning of the text. “Instead of liberation” in freeing the slave girl from exploitation, presiding bishop finds “confinement.  Instead of Christ’s glory, there’s just squalor.”
 
The Rev. Bryan Owen argued “What's happening here is the exploitation of a biblical text in service to a theopolitical agenda.  Given what she says in the first paragraph I've quoted from her sermon, the Presiding Bishop suggests that anyone who doesn't buy into that agenda - anyone who holds to the traditional, orthodox understanding of such matters - is likewise afflicted with the same narrow-minded bigotry as Paul, and thus in need of enlightenment.”

http://anglicanink.com/article/diversity-not-jesus-saves-says-presiding-bishop

Jefferts Schori's tenure has been highly controversial and marked by nearly unprecedented schism, with four dioceses having broken off to become part of the Anglican Church in North America and a fifth having split over the prosecution of their bishop (Mark Lawrence of the Episcopal Diocese of South Carolina) [7][8] At her direction the national church has initiated lawsuits against departing dioceses and parishes, with some $22 million spent thus far.[9] She also established a policy that church properties were not to be sold to departing congregations.[10]
 
Jefferts Schori is a supporter of same-sex relationships and of the blessing of same-sex unions and civil gay marriage.[11] Like her predecessor, she is a supporter of abortion rights, stating that "We say it is a moral tragedy but that it should not be the government's role to deny its availability."[11] She also supported the HHS mandate on birth control.
 
Some within the church have questioned the orthodoxy of her theology. For example, her statement that "the great Western heresy – is that we can be saved as individuals, that any of us alone can be in right relationship with God" in her opening address to the 2009 General Convention was widely criticized and prompted a clarifying statement from her in the following week.[12][13]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katharine_Jefferts_Schori


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on May 28, 2013, 11:53:04 am
Quote
In her sermon delivered

And that is the problem; "her".

Quote
“This is quite possibly some if the most delusional exegesis I’ve ever read in my life,” one critic charged. “I’m sorry, but this sermon is not a Christian sermon.”

I agree. It's a rant by a devil.

"But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence." 1 Timothy 2:12 (KJB)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 06, 2013, 05:11:21 pm
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/10101900/Church-of-England-gives-up-fight-against-gay-marriage.html
Church of England gives up fight against gay marriage

The Church of England has effectively accepted defeat over gay marriage signalling that it will no longer fight against a change in the law.


6/5/13

In a short statement, the established Church said that the scale of the majorities in both the Commons and Lords made clear that it is the will of Parliament that same sex couples “should” be allowed to marry.

The Bishop of Leicester, who leads the bishops in the House of Lords, said they would now concentrate their efforts on “improving” rather than halting an historic redefinition of marriage.

It represents a dramatic change of tack in the year since the Church insisted that gay marriage posed one of the biggest threats of disestablishment of the Church of England since the reign of Henry VIII.

And it comes despite a warning from the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Rev Justin Welby, that the redefinition of marriage would undermine the “cornerstone” of society.

The climb-down comes as the newest diocesan bishop in the Church of England said that support for gay marriage was “understandable” because of the way gay people had been treated in Britain in the past.

The Rt Rev David Walker, who was named today as the new Bishop of Manchester, insisted that although the Government bill was “flawed” had he been in the House of Lords he would not have voted against it.

Peers voted by 390 to 148 against a motion which would have struck down the Government’s same-sex marriage bill on Tuesday.

It will now be scrutinised by peers who are likely to add a series of amendments to add extra protections for teachers or other workers who object on grounds of conscience.

In a statement, Rt Revd Tim Stevens, Convenor of the Lords Spiritual, said bishops would now “join” with politicians to strengthen parts of the bill rather than resisting it.

“Both Houses of Parliament have now expressed a clear view by large majorities on the principle that there should be legislation to enable same-sex marriages to take place in England and Wales,” he said.

“It is now the duty and responsibility of the Bishops who sit in the House of Lords to recognise the implications of this decision and to join with other members in the task of considering how this legislation can be put into better shape.”

And he made clear that the bishops would look not only at strengthening opt-outs for those who oppose a new definition of marriage but at the future practicalities for people in same-sex unions.

He signalled that bishops would seek to introduce a notion of adultery into the bill and extend parental rights for same-sex partners.

Under the current bill people in a same-sex marriages who discover that their spouse is unfaithful to them would not be able to divorce for adultery after Government legal experts failed to agree what constitutes “sex” between gay or lesbian couples.

The bishops are also seeking to change a provision which says that when a lesbian woman in a same-sex marriage has a baby her spouse is not also classed as the baby’s parent.

The result is that in some cases children would be classed as having only one parent.

Bishop Stevens said: “The concerns of many in the Church, and in the other denominations and faiths, about the wisdom of such a move have been expressed clearly and consistently in the Parliamentary debate.

“For the Bishops the issue now is not primarily one of protections and exemptions for people of faith, important though it is to get that right, not least where teaching in schools and freedom of speech are concerned.

"The bill now requires improvement in a number of other key respects, including in its approach to the question of fidelity in marriage and the rights of children.

“If this bill is to become law, it is crucial that marriage as newly defined is equipped to carry within it as many as possible of the virtues of the understanding of marriage it will replace.

“Our focus during committee and report stages in the coming weeks and months will be to address those points in a spirit of constructive engagement."

His comments came as the new Bishop of Manchester signalled sympathy with supporters of gay marriage.

In his first comments since he was named as replacement to Rt Rev Nigel McCulloch, who recently retired, he said that the bill was flawed but added: “I fully understand why in a society where for so long gay people have been subjected to such abuse and ill treatment many people say if they are asking for equality in the area of marriage that is something they can get.”

He added: “I can see why in our society many people now – the majority of people – think that if this will help them to feel less badly treated then let them have it.”

Bishop Walker, who is currently the Bishop of Dudley – a junior bishop in the diocese of Worcester – attracted headlines earlier this year when he took on David Cameron over welfare cuts and accused politicians of scaremongering over immigration.

It emerged last month that Manchester Diocese, one of the biggest dioceses in the Church of England, had included a requirement to foster better links with the city’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities as part of its new bishop’s job description.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 14, 2013, 11:31:48 am
http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/06/03/lutherans-elect-first-openly-gay-bishop/?iref=obinsite
Lutherans elect first openly gay bishop
6/3/13

(CNN)– For more than two decades, the Rev. R. Guy Erwin couldn't officially be a pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. On Friday, he was elected a bishop.

Erwin's election signals a shift not only for the ELCA – the nation's seventh largest church – but also for American Christianity. Only one other mainline Protestant denomination, the Episcopal Church, has elected openly gay and lesbian bishops.

“In these days such milestones seem to be coming at an ever-faster rate," Erwin told CNN, "and eventually what seems revolutionary now will seem normal and predictable."

With more than 4 million members in 10,000 congregations, the ELCA is the largest of several Lutheran denominations in the United States. The ELCA's decision to allow gay clergy has strained ties between those denominations, some of whom have partnered for relief work.

"The ELCA is a church that belongs to Christ, and there is a place for all here," said church spokeswoman Melissa Ramirez Cooper. "The election of Pastor Erwin illustrates what many in the 4-million-member church believe - that God calls each of us by name.”

The ELCA lifted its ban on openly gay, partnered clergy in 2009, clearing the way for pastors like Erwin, but angering conservatives. By some estimates, some 600 congregations have since left the ELCA for more conservative churches.

The Rev. W. Stevens Shipman, director of the Lutheran Coalition for Renewal, said the ELCA is not keeping promises it made in 2009 to respect the views of churches and individuals who regard homosexuality as a sin.

"The promise was also made publicly that no congregation would be required to call a pastor in a same-sex partnership," Shipman said, "but now an entire synod has been forced to live under the authority of a bishop who is in such a relationship."

Erwin, a scholar at California Lutheran University, will serve a six-year term representing the Southwest California Synod, a five-county area that includes Los Angeles. His election took place an annual three-day assembly in Woodland Hills, California.

Erwin, who was ordained a pastor in 2011, played down his election as the ELCA's first openly gay bishop. But acknowledged that his very “existence” was a symbol for broader acceptance.

“The work of a bishop in our church is to lift up the church's message of grace and peace in the wider society, to administer the church's work in our area, and to teach and preach,” Erwin said in an e-mail to CNN. “In this regard, the sexual orientation of the bishop may not be very important.”

Still, the bishop-elect said, “The very fact I exist will be a signal to others that GLBT folks are respected and have a full place in our church.” Erwin is also part Osage Indian and is active in the Osage Indian Nation, according to the ELCA.

Erwin’s election symbolizes a noticeable change for a church that once banned clergy who were in same-sex relationships, said Ross Murray, director of news and Faith initiatives at GLAAD.

Prior to the 2009 change, “hundreds of gay and lesbian clergy were forced out of congregations or served under secrecy,” Murray said.

“Dr. Erwin demonstrates how far the ECLA has come with LGBT inclusion,” said Murray in an e-mail to CNN. “He could not have been ordained just four years ago, and now he is a leader for the church. It makes me proud as a gay man, and as a Lutheran.”

Although the ELCA church did not allow clergy in same-sex relationships while he was attending seminary, Erwin  said that he “always believed that this would someday be possible.”

Erwin also said the church's 2009 change in policy was more of a "culmination of God's work" than a "start of something new."

Erwin has long been a board member of Extraordinary Lutheran Ministries, a Lutheran group that advocates for the 130 openly gay Lutheran clergy who are members.

Amalia Vagts, the group’s executive director, said Erwin’s election was an “amazing day” for openly gay and lesbian Lutherans.

“This is a powerful message for LGBT people everywhere that the Lutheran church welcomes them,” Vagts said in an e-mail.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on June 14, 2013, 03:54:23 pm
"Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?" Matthew 7:16 (KJB)


Title: Re: Texas Mega-Church Welcomes Islamists to ‘Global Faith Forum’
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 15, 2013, 12:16:48 pm
Texas Mega-Church Leader Partners with Muslim Brotherhood Front
6/11/13
http://frontpagemag.com/2013/ryan-mauro/texas-mega-church-leader-partners-with-muslim-brotherhood-front/

On June 9, the Clarion Project reported that the U.S. envoy to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation will be speaking at an Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) regional conference, sharing the stage with at least three Islamists. But there are some other featured guests: ISNA’s interfaith allies, including Pastor Bob Roberts of NorthWood Church in Texas.

ISNA is identified in a 1991 U.S. Muslim Brotherhood memorandum as one of its fronts. The U.S. government also listed ISNA as a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity when it designated the group an unindicted co-conspirator in the Hamas-financing trial of the Holy Land Foundation. The so-called “charity” was another U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity that, in the words of Judge Jorge Solis, “operated from within ISNA.” ISNA denies it has “ever been subject to the control of…the Muslim Brotherhood.”

ISNA’s South Central Conference will be held in Dallas on June 15. The event will feature an interfaith panel that includes its Community Outreach Director, Mohamed Elsanousi, who attended a Muslim Brotherhood-linked conference in Mauritania last year.

Other participants include Rabbi Joshua S. Taub of Temple Emanuel and Cristina Warner, the Campaign Director of the Shoulder-to-Shoulder Campaign, an ISNA-allied interfaith coalition. ISNA is so proud of Shoulder-to-Shoulder that its success was a top talking point of senior officials when they met with the Islamist Prime Minister of Turkey.

The most high-profile interfaith speaker at the ISNA regional conference is Pastor Bob Roberts of NorthWood Church, a critic of “Christian Zionists.” As reported last month, Pastor Roberts’ NorthWood Church is holding its own Islamist-stocked interfaith event called the Global Faith Forum in November. Pastor Roberts’ speakers include ISNA officials, former senior Saudi officials and a former director-general of Al-Jazeera.

The Clarion Project’s original article on the event provides insight into some of the fellow speakers of Pastor Roberts, Rabbi Taub and Cristina Warner.

The keynote speaker is Dr. Jamal Badawi, who will also be on panels about Sharia and having a healthy family. His record includes praise for Hamas, “combative jihad,” and justifying the physical disciplining of wives (or, as he says, “a gentle tap on the body” for disobedience). His name also appears in a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood phonebook from 1992 and he hangs out with Brotherhood spiritual leader Yousef al-Qaradawi. The radicalism of his resume is strong enough to prompt counter-terrorism expert Patrick Poole to ask, “Why is Jamal Badawi Still Allowed into the United States?”

ISNA official Yusuf Ziya Kavakci will be handling the opening remarks, leading a prayer and joining Badawi for the panel on Sharia. He used to lead a mosque that an article in 1999 said “is considered to be one of the most active centers of Hamas activity in the United States[.]” The mosque was linked to the Holy Land Foundation, the aforementioned U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity that was housed by ISNA and shut down for financing Hamas.

The notorious Imam Siraj Wahhaj is listed as an invited speaker at the event. His radicalism is unquestionable. He has preached that “America is the most wicked government on the face of the planet Earth.” America, he told his audience, is a “garbage can” that he prays “crumbles.” Unlike some Islamists, he doesn’t hide his desire for Sharia Law in America.

“If only Muslims were clever politically, they could take over the United States and replace its constitutional government with a caliphate. If we were united and strong, we’d elect our own emir and give allegiance to him. Take my word, if eight million Muslims unite in America, the country will come to us,” he said.

The book Muslim Mafia quotes Wahhaj even condoning violence. “We don’t need to arm the people with 9mms and Uzis. You need to arm them with righteousness first. And once you arm them with righteousness first, then you can arm them,” he said, as well as “I will never tell people, ‘Don’t be violent.’ That’s not the Islamic way.”

Wahhaj’s rhetoric lines right up with the private words of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. The 1991 memorandum that identified ISNA as one of its fronts said its “work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within.”

Page 21 of the document states: “[W]e must possess a mastery of the art of ‘coalitions’, the art of ‘absorption’ and the principles of ‘cooperation.’” That is the context that ISNA’s interfaith alliances need to be put in.

After my last article on NorthWood Church was published, a reader emailed me to say that he posted it to the Facebook page of the church and the personal page of Pastor Roberts. It didn’t take long for it to be deleted. Ignorance is no longer an excuse.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 17, 2013, 12:26:44 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/catholics-lutherans-jointly-mark-reformation-anniversary-145732543.html
6/17/13
Catholics, Lutherans jointly to mark Reformation anniversary

By Tom Heneghan and Tom Miles

PARIS/GENEVA (Reuters) - Senior Roman Catholic and Lutheran officials announced on Monday they would mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in 2017 as a shared event rather than highlight the clash that split Western Christianity.

The Vatican and the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) presented a report in Geneva admitting both were guilty of harming Christian unity in the past and describing a growing consensus between the two churches in recent decades.

The 500th anniversary of Martin Luther's 95 Theses, the doctrinal challenge that launched the Protestant Reformation, will be the first centenary celebration in the age of ecumenism, globalization and the secularization of Western societies.

"The awareness is dawning on Lutherans and Catholics that the struggle of the 16th century is over," the report said. "The reasons for mutually condemning each other's faith have fallen by the wayside."

They now agree belief in Jesus unites them despite lingering differences, it said, and inspires them to cooperate more closely to proclaim the Gospel in increasingly pluralistic societies.

"This is a very important step in a healing process which we all need and we are all praying for," LWF General Secretary Martin Junge said at the report's presentation in Geneva.

"The division of the church is something we cannot celebrate but we can see what is positive and try to find ways towards the future together," said Cardinal Kurt Koch, head of the Vatican's department to promote Christian unity.

SEEKING COMMON GROUND

Roman Catholicism, the world's largest church, has about 1.2 billion members or just over half of all Christians. There are about 75 million Lutherans in LWF member churches and other Lutheran groups around the world.

Catholics and Lutherans began seeking theological common ground after the 1962-1965 Second Vatican Council, which opened the Roman church to better relations with other churches, and have ironed out many of their differences over the decades.

They took a major step forward in 1999 by agreeing a common view on justification, the doctrine at the core of their 16th century dispute. At issue was whether Christians attained eternal salvation by faith alone or also by doing good works.

Both sides admitted in the 93-page report that they had often ridiculed each other's teachings in the past, sinning against the eighth commandment which bars giving false witness.

The Lutheran side confessed its shame and regret over "the vicious and degrading statements that Martin Luther made against the Jews" and rejected other "dark sides of Luther" including his support for the persecution of Anabaptists.

The report said Christians in developing countries, now an important region for both churches, could not identify with 500-year-old European rows. Secularization in Western societies in recent decades meant many old feuds were now forgotten there.

The rise of Pentecostal and charismatic movements over the past century "have put forward new emphases that have made many of the old confessional controversies seem obsolete", it added.

STILL APART ON SOME ISSUES

The report said Luther's 95 Theses were meant to begin a debate about practices such as selling indulgences and were not intended to found a new church. Both sides mishandled the crisis that followed, leading to the final split.

Disputes over the authority of the Bible, which Lutherans stress more than Catholics, have narrowed so much that lingering differences would no longer justify maintaining their split, the report said. It spoke of the two churches sharing "unity in reconciled diversity" over these issues.

But while ecumenical dialogue has developed new common understandings on some divisive points, other doctrines - such as the office of the Catholic pope or the nature of the ordained clergy - still remain significantly far apart.

The LWF said it wants to talk with Anglican, Mennonite, Reformed, Orthodox and Pentecostal churches about how they might also participate in the 2017 commemoration.

(Editing by Michael Roddy)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 20, 2013, 10:48:50 am
Had a feeling this "Christian" group is opposition controlled - otherwise, 1) How did they get so much favorable MSM coverage to begin with? and 2) Where is the God's chasteneth and chastisement in their lives?

Heb 12:6  For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Heb 12:7  If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?
Heb 12:8  But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.
Heb 12:9  Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?


http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/06/20/19056718-ex-gay-group-says-its-shutting-down-leader-apologizes-for-pain-and-hurt?lite&ocid=msnhp&pos=6
6/20/13
'Ex-gay' group says it's shutting down; leader apologizes for 'pain and hurt'

A Christian ministry that led the so-called ex-gay movement, which professes to rid people of their homosexuality, has announced that it will shut down, and its leader apologized extensively to gays for causing “pain and hurt.”

The ministry, Exodus International, was founded in 1976 and claims more than 200 branches, churches and counselors in the United States and Canada. It had insisted that people could overcome same-sex attraction through prayer and therapy.

Mainstream psychiatric and medical groups have said that the movement, also known as reparative therapy, is unfounded in science and can be harmful. The American Psychiatric Association said 15 years ago that it could cause depression, anxiety and self-depressive behavior in patients.

The president of Exodus, Alan Chambers, said late Wednesday on the ministry’s website that he had “conveniently omitted my ongoing same-sex attractions” but now accepts them “as parts of my life that will like always be there.”

Addressing gays, Chambers, who is married to a woman, wrote: “You have never been my enemy. I am very sorry that I have been yours.”

“I am sorry for the pain and hurt many of you have experienced,” he wrote. “I am sorry that some of you spent years working through the shame and guilt you felt when your attractions didn’t change.”

He added that he could not apologize for his own biblical beliefs about sex and marriage but would not fight gays on their own beliefs or their push for rights.

In a statement, Exodus International, which describes itself as the oldest and largest group of its kind, said that its board of directors had decided to close down after a year of talking and praying about its place in a changing culture.

Polls show that a narrow majority of Americans, a steadily growing share, support gay marriage, which has been legalized in 12 states and the District of Columbia. The Supreme Court is preparing to rule on two landmark gay-rights cases.

“We’re not negating the ways God used Exodus to positively affect thousands of people, but a new generation of Christians is looking for change – and they want to be heard,” Tony Moore, an Exodus board member, said on the organization’s website.

Chambers, over the past year, had caused turmoil in the ex-gay movement by changing course and saying that reparative therapy could hurt gays and that there was no cure for same-sex attraction.

"I do not believe that cure is a word that is applicable to really any struggle, homosexuality included," Chambers told The Associated Press last year. "For someone to put out a shingle and say, 'I can cure homosexuality' — that to me is as bizarre as someone saying they can cure any other common temptation or struggle that anyone faces on Planet Earth."

Evan Hurst, the associate director of Truth Wins Out, a leading organization opposed to the ex-gay movement, applauded Chambers on Thursday for “honesty, integrity and authenticity.”

“It takes a real man to publicly confront the people whose lives were destroyed by his organization’s work,” he said.

"Alan Chambers, and the rest of the Exodus leadership, has fully and completely come to the realization that their so-called 'ministry' has done harm to thousands of people,” said Ross Murray, of of gay rights advocacy group GLAAD. “They are coming to the right decision to end that harm now."

California last year become the first state in the nation to ban such therapy for teens under 18 years of age. New Jersey's state legislature is weighing similar legislation.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on June 20, 2013, 02:31:58 pm
Quote
Had a feeling this "Christian" group is opposition controlled

Yeah, you might call it an inside job.

But the irony of it, is they are correct, you cannot "cure" gay. Technically speaking, every person is guilty of being gay. "For all have sinned..."

If you offend in one point, you are guilty of all. Brother Paul is used to describe that very dilemma, that the flesh wars against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh.

Attraction is nothing but the flesh, the "lust of the eyes". We all have our fleshly preferences. A gay person has theirs. No other way to put it. But that doesn't mean we give in to what the flesh wants. Jesus can and has changed people's desires and focus. It doesn't make the lusts of the flesh go away while we are still in this fleshly body, but the Spirit is "a way to escape" those lusts.

We are not perfect, no question, and no man will be perfect in not doing fleshly things. Just the desire alone to not want to do sinful things is what God is looking for, and He does the rest, and when we do fall, He is able to pick us up again, show us what we did wrong, give us a hug and send us on our way. BUT, we must seek Him with a repentant heart, really wanting to change.

The "gay lobby" however doesn't believe, even though many claim they believe. Well, devils also believe and tremble!

The key is that while we all may be born with gay tendencies, and everything else carnal, because of the corrupted flesh, that doesn't mean we are allowed to run around after the fleshly desires.

Just because you get mad at somebody, and just want to smack them into reality, that doesn't make it okay to do. God will give them ample opportunity to come to reality. It's their choice if they pay attention or not. We plant seeds and water them, we don't make them grow. That is God's job. "...but God that giveth the increase".


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 16, 2013, 07:36:28 pm
http://www.christianpost.com/news/fear-of-violent-attacks-stalls-ex-gay-pride-event-previously-to-be-held-at-family-research-council-100220/
Fear of Violent Attacks Stalls Ex-Gay Pride Event; Previously to Be Held at Family Research Council
7/16/13

The first-ever "Ex-Gay Pride Month" reception, scheduled to be held in Washington, D.C. on July 31, has been postponed until September following multiple security threats directed toward members of the ex-gay community and the Family Research Council, where a reception celebrating ex-gay leaders and supporters was planned to be held.

Christopher Doyle, the co-founder of Voice of the Voiceless (VoV), told The Christian Post on Tuesday that VoV and Equality and Justice for All have decided to continue to hold some Ex-Gay Pride events in the nation's capital at the end of the month, which will be posted on the VoV website later this week, but the reception at the FRC building has been postponed and moved to an undisclosed location to ensure the safety of speakers and guests at the event.

"When we announced that this event was going to happen at FRC about two weeks ago, we received – as did FRC – a lot of attention, which was good, but we also received a lot of negative attention," Doyle explained. "Some liberal news organizations, like the Huffington Post, started saying things about this event that weren't true, like it was being sponsored and run by FRC just because FRC was the venue. And that wasn't true at all. So that riled up a lot of people who don't like FRC, because FRC takes a very traditional stance on marriage, and they're considered, by the Southern Poverty Law Center, to be one of those anti-gay hate groups."

According to Doyle, the comments made against the Ex-Gay Pride month led to him and others receiving hate-filled emails and harassment over the phone. "And there started to be a lot of online chatter about trying to disrupt this event," he added, "trying to demonstrate against it, trying to protest it. Basically, after experiencing all of that hate and harassment toward us online and also directed at FRC, we just started to take a second look at this event."

Doyle added that after receiving threatening messages from anti-ex-gay extremists, he and other organizers were concerned about a repeat of the violence in Seattle, Wash., where Christians were recently attacked for opposing homosexual behavior. He said they were also concerned about the safety and security at the FRC, which was a "target of hate in August 2012 by Floyd Corkins, the gunman who shot a security guard at the conservative nonprofit organization.

"Corkins acknowledged in a plea agreement that he wanted to kill as many people as possible and smear Chick-fil-A sandwiches in their faces. It was later determined by the Federal Bureau of Investigation that Corkins was inspired by the SPLC," Doyle said.

When asked by CP whether the SPLC is fueling the attacks against the Ex-Gay Pride month, Doyle said that what he believes is that SPLC is targeting ex-gay organizations through their hate campaign.

"They are actively engaged in the hate campaign, and I believe they are responsible for some of this ill sentiment," he said. "They're saying a lot of half-truths, they're lying, and they're basically not telling the whole story. And they're really spreading a lot of hate against people like me, the organization and the people that we represent."

Doyle added that the SPLC is targeting ex-gay organizations by using an interactive map on their website, which he believes threatens organizations like VoV with "potential violence at the hands of extremists who are intolerant of opposing viewpoints on homosexuality."

He continued, "So there's just a lot of hatred and ill sentiment going on out there right now. And we feel like we didn't want this event to be dominated by these extremists coming and protesting and surrounding the building, and intimidating people as they were trying to come in. We wanted this to be a very positive event."

The postponement of the Ex-Gay Pride lobbying efforts and reception have led Doyle and VoV to expand the initiative to celebrate September as being Ex-Gay Awareness month, despite recent threats against July's Ex-Gay Pride events, which he says are a reminder that many are intolerant of the ex-gay community.

In addition to ongoing plans for the remaining Ex-Gay Pride events later this month, Doyle said September's Ex-Gay Awareness initiative will be used to increase awareness and educate college and secondary students about discrimination and intolerance in schools toward members of the ex-gay community.

"Ex-gays are being discriminated against, and the LGBT population is not the only one experiencing that type of rejection and harassment," Doyle added.

Even though the new venue location for September's reception has yet to be determined, Doyle has confirmed with CP that Matthew Staver, founder of the Liberty Counsel, will be one of the keynote speakers and will be the recipient of the first Ex-Gay Pride Freedom Award.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Isaiah_54:14  In righteousness shalt thou be established: thou shalt be far from oppression; for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 21, 2013, 06:23:13 am
‘Disciples of Christ’ Vote to Embrace Openly Homosexual Members, Leaders

The general assembly of the Disciples of Christ has voted to affirm open homosexuals and transsexuals as members and leaders.
 
The resolution was passed this week in Orlando with the support of a number of representatives within the denomination, including Midway Hills Christian Church in Dallas, Texas; Foothills Christian Church in Wichita, Kansas; Bethany Christian Church in Gastonia, North Carolina and St. Andrew Christian Church in Berkeley, California. The GLAD (Gay, Lesbian and Affirming Disciples) Alliance was also a part of the move.
 
“[B ]e it resolved that the General Assembly meeting in Orlando, Florida, July 13-17, 2013, calls upon the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) to recognize itself as striving to become a people of grace and welcome to all God’s children though differing in race, gender, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, nationality, ethnicity, marital status, physical or mental ability, political stance or theological perspective,” the resolution states.
 
“Be it further resolved that the General Assembly calls upon the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) to affirm the faith, baptism and spiritual gifts of all Christians regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” it continues. “[A]nd that neither is grounds for exclusion from fellowship or service within the church, but we celebrate that all are part of God’s good creation.”

 

In a video created by the denomination, spokespersons further paralleled the affirmation of homosexuality to the “radical hospitality extended by Jesus at the Lord’s table.”
 
“Both theologically conservative disciples, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender disciples report feeling left out in our church,” outlines an unnamed representative. “The intention of this resolution is not to accept and welcome one group at the detriment of the other. It is to say that as disciples, we strive to extend Christian hospitality to all children of God.”
 
She states, however, that no particular church within the denomination is required to change its policies if it disagrees.


And there are likely those who will choose to distance themselves from the resolution. For years, the denomination has been split on whether or not to embrace homosexuality as an accepted behavior.

 
“To love sinners and influence them to repentance, that’s Jesus’ example of love,” said Floyd Legler of Indiana over a decade ago during a debate surrounding the matter. “We believe homosexual behavior is a sin. We do not want a leader who refutes orthodox Christian doctrine and the primacy of the Bible as a Christian’s guide.”
 
Apologist Matt Slick of Carm–who is not affiliated with the denomination–outlined a similar viewpoint in an article about homosexuality posted on his website. He stated that telling others that homosexuality is in opposition to God’s creation order is not hateful.
 
“[B ]elieve it or not, we Christians aren’t judging them. We are informing them,” he said. “God has declared that homosexuality is a sin. It isn’t our preferences we’re declaring. It is God’s.”
 
“The only hope for the homosexual, and all people who break God’s laws, is to realize that God is holy and He will rightfully judge all who have sinned against Him by breaking His law,” Slick continued. “If He did not do this, then He would be approving of wrong doing. … Like any sinner, the homosexual needs to repent, receive Christ by faith, and be saved from God’s righteous judgment by trusting in Christ and the judgment that fell upon Him on the cross.”

http://christiannews.net/2013/07/20/disciples-of-christ-vote-to-embrace-openly-homosexual-members-leaders/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 24, 2013, 12:37:07 pm
I know this is a DC politician saying this, but nonetheless we're more and more hearing this "We need 'spiritual' revival in this country" nonsense in recent years...

http://blogs.cbn.com/thebrodyfile/archive/2013/07/23/brody-file-exclusive-ted-cruz-says-america-needs-a-spiritual.aspx

7/23/13
Brody File Exclusive: Ted Cruz Says America Needs A Spiritual Revival 

In an interview you’ll only see on The Brody File, Sen. Ted Cruz says spiritual revival is needed in America saying, “I think we’re at the edge of a precipice. If we keep going down this path we’re risking losing our nation. We’re risking losing the incredible oasis of liberty.”

The Brody File team spoke to Cruz on Friday in Iowa after he spoken at the Pastors and Pews events in Des Moines. A partial transcription is below along with the video.

David Brody: Do you believe that spiritual revival is needed in this country?

Sen. Ted Cruz: Without a doubt.

I think we’re at the edge of a precipice. If we keep going down this path we’re risking losing our nation. We’re risking losing the incredible oasis of liberty.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------

1John 4:3  And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

1John 2:18  Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.

1Tim 4:1  Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
1Ti 4:2  Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 25, 2013, 05:55:07 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/rise-religious-left-121500812.html
The rise of the religious left
7/25/13

A new study shows that young people are increasingly moving toward progressive religious attitudes

(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/C8QjY4y64GZKtLalm6o35A--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7cT04NTt3PTYzMA--/http://media.theweek.com/img/generic/religiousorientation.jpg)

When it comes to religion in politics, much of the national conversation has for years focused on the politically active religious right. That, however, might be changing, at least according to research that shows a growing religious left.
The study, conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute and the Brookings Institution, found that the religious right still makes up 28 percent of the country. The religious left only makes up 19 percent. ("Religious moderate" is still the biggest group.) Break it down by age, however, and the picture looks very different.

Older people are far more likely to be members of the religious right. Forty-seven percent of the Silent Generation, made up of Americans between the ages 66 and 88, are religious conservatives. Twelve percent of people in that age group are religious progressives.

Only 17 percent of millennials, on the other hand, are considered religious conservatives, while 23 percent of them are categorized as religious progressives.

This shift could already be having real-world consequences. Last month, a CNN/ORC poll found that more than two-thirds of people ages 18 to 34 support same-sex marriage. The Silent Generation? Sixty-two percent oppose it.

These changing attitudes have resulted in a slow march toward marriage equality that seemed implausible back when Bill Clinton was signing the Defense of Marriage Act into law in 1996.

Not that the GOP should be panicking — yet. For one thing, surely some young religious progressives will become more conservative as they age. And as Robby Jones notes in The Washington Post, the religious right is still a much more cohesive voting bloc, made up of 70 percent white Christians.

The religious left is a hodgepodge of white, black, and Latino Christians, as well as Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, and "unattached believers." Rallying white Christian conservatives over a single issue is easier than doing the same with a diverse coalition of religions and ethnicities.

Still, Jones argues, the "analysis suggests a distinctly different future pattern...: the declining appeal of religious conservatism, coupled with the increasing appeal of both a diverse religious progressivism and religious disaffiliation."

The shrinking conservative Christian base could be why some members of the GOP are rushing to push restrictive new abortion laws, writes Slate's Amanda Marcotte, comparing them to "a bunch of people grabbing as many goodies as they can before they're kicked out the door."

Quote
While it's unwise to write off the possibility of yet another revival of conservative religious mania — conventional wisdom would say that the young progressives will get more conservative as they age, though that's not necessarily true — for the time being, the signs point to a simmering down of the religion wars in the U.S.[Slate]


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 03, 2013, 09:28:11 am
http://nbcpolitics.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/08/03/19819640-from-politics-to-the-pulpit-faith-groups-see-the-hand-of-god-in-immigration-reform?lite&ocid=msnhp&pos=1
8/3/13
From politics to the pulpit, faith groups see 'the hand of God' in immigration reform

When lawmakers return to their home districts this August, they’re likely to hear strident opinions about immigration reform from local business owners, farmers, political activists, talk radio devotees and regular citizens engaged in the democratic process.

But many Christian leaders are hoping that they also hear the voice of the Almighty as well.

“It is very difficult to argue theologically that Jesus would be opposed to immigration reform,” says Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, the leader of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference. “Beyond the issue of the public policy, the heart of God is for those that are suffering and for the oppressed and the marginalized.”

Rodriguez’s group – encompassing more than 40,000 evangelical congregations nationwide – is just one of many faith-based organizations hoping to influence the immigration debate this fall by invoking scripture and the compassion of God, from the pulpit and at political events. 

Pro-reform Christian organizations trace their support for the overhaul from Biblical passages and parables; the most often-quoted is Matthew 25:35, which reads “ For I was hungry, and ye gave me meat; I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink; I was a stranger, and ye took me in.” Leviticus 19 is another common refrain: “The stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself; for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.”

**Uhm, Leviticus 19, this very passage, was to ISRAEL!

But there are also very practical reasons for these organizations to engage in the pro-reform effort. Immigrants are increasingly a part of the fabric of American faith communities, advocates say – even those in congressional districts that are still overwhelmingly white. And when undocumented individuals face poverty, health problems and deportations, they’re turning to churches for help.

**This shows the rotten fruit right there of these church buildings - they're serving as community organizations more than anything else.

“Most evangelicals who are concerned about immigration aren’t concerned about immigration as an abstract issue,” says Dr. Russell Moore, the new head of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission. “They’re concerned about people in their pews who are facing a broken system. They’re concerned about families that are threatened with being split apart.”

The faith-based push is far from new, but it’s reaching peak volume as the effort to pass immigration reform that includes a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants is bogged down in the GOP-led House going into the August recess.

Some, like the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, are specifically targeting Republican members of Congress who are on the fence by appealing to members of their congregation to attend town hall meetings and visit district offices. Others are more focused on building support for the reform effort through prayer and community events.

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is urging local dioceses to organize pilgrimages, devote masses and deliver sermons on the subject; it has also suggested Sept. 8 as a day of action for Catholics to pray for – and speak up about – immigration. 

The “Bibles, Badges and Business” campaign, made up of diverse faith groups as well as law enforcement and business groups, is planning about 50 events nationwide, including roundtables, speeches and town hall visits. The Evangelical Immigration Table, a coalition made of up many of the same evangelical organizations, aims to target about 80 congressional districts with in-person visits, phone calls and op-eds, according to Jim Wallis, founder of Sojourners, a national Christian organization focused on social and racial justice.

“When a pastor with 5,000 members calls his member of Congress, he answers the phone,” Wallis said.

The alliances between different religious groups – not always on the same page on other issues like sexual morality, war and the economy – also allow the pro-reform coalition to offer a consistent message to people of faith from born-again Christians and Mormons, who have supported Republicans overwhelmingly in past presidential elections, to Catholics and mainline Protestants, who are more evenly split between the two parties.

“The faith groups can reach to both sides of the spectrum,” said Kevin Appleby, the director of migration policy and public affairs at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. “We have an ability to reach into offices where others may not be able to and make the argument that this is the right thing to do.”

Appleby acknowledges that the politics of immigration reform aren’t easy for some lawmakers, who may be hearing overwhelmingly from constituents who oppose the reform effort when they go home to heavily conservative districts.

Not all who hear the message are going to be convinced that creating a path to citizenship is the Christian thing to do. (Critics of the citizenship policy, after all, also cite the Bible, pointing to Romans 13: “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities.”)

“But,” Appleby adds, “it certainly doesn’t hurt for members to know that their church or their faith organization would support them on this, and thank them for it.” 

Moore, from the Southern Baptist Convention, says that – although his organization doesn’t specifically organize political activity – the most effective way to influence lawmakers on the fence about the reform effort is simply to tell the stories of how the broken immigration system affects people in their own churches.

“As our congregations become more ethnically diverse – and they are, rapidly – our people are seeing the human element here,” he said. “Those stories are finding their way out of local congregations and toward elected officials.”

A May 2013 study by the Pew Research Center’s Religion and Public Life Project estimated that, over the last two decades, the United States has admitted about 12.7 million legal immigrants who identify as Christians.  About 60 percent of new legal immigrants last year were Christian.

And among undocumented immigrants, the percentage of Christians Catholics is even more striking. More than eight in ten undocumented immigrants are Christian Catholics, the study found, translating to an estimated 9.2 million individuals living in the United States today.

“The future of the churches, all of them – Catholic, Southern Baptist, evangelical, mainlinethe future of our churches are immigrants,” Wallis says. “They are our future.”

Rodriguez agrees, citing projections that show the majority of evangelicals in the United States may be Latino by the year 2030.

“The optics that guide the community in addressing immigration reform are not just morally driven – which is the most important – but are also about self-preservation,” Rodriguez says. 

“The very future of American evangelicalism lies in the hands of the immigration reform debate. So it’s a matter of survival.”


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 03, 2013, 09:30:17 am
So this is why they're dragging out this immigration bill for further debate until October(instead of taking a vote on it next week before Congress goes on a month long recess) - gives them additional time to target the modern-day churches, and get all of the "denominations" and different faiths on the same page, and ultimately get them on the path to this OWR.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on August 04, 2013, 04:35:24 am
Quote
“When a pastor with 5,000 members calls his member of Congress, he answers the phone,” Wallis said.

But let a single voice in the wilderness cry out, and you get nothing from your congressman but crickets.

The wicked world is playing on scripture, just like Satan did with Eve. "Yeah, hath God said..."

What they don't point out is that once you have welcomed a stranger, you try the spirit, whether they are of God. If they are not of God, then their welcome is short lived, and the believer is commanded to separate themselves from that person. They are no longer welcome if they insist on remaining unbelieving.

As scripture says, judgement must begin at the house of God. You don't randomly let just anybody in and be friends with them.

Yes, I agree that Christian doctrine opposes borders in effect, but then the faith has zero interest in what the world does, and knows who runs the world, so we could care less what the world does, because we know that it won't listen to God, so how could man possibly think that they will listen to their fellow man? It's absurd. That literally would be the blind leading the blind!

Quote
get all of the "denominations" and different faiths on the same page, and ultimately get them on the path to this OWR

Agreed. They want to at least make it look like they are on the same page, towing the globalist line.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 06, 2013, 08:33:46 am
http://living.msn.com/family-parenting/the-family-room-blog-post?post=62471345-eb72-45d8-8853-2e26ad781143
Are college students losing their religion?

Secular groups on college campuses are proliferating; in the past few years, the number of campus atheists and agnostics has increased more than threefold.

2/18/13

As the stigma of atheism weakens, secular groups on college campuses are on the rise reports Religious Dispatches.

In 2007, 80 campus groups were affiliated with the national Secular Student Alliance (SSA), an educational nonprofit that works to organize and empower nonreligious students around the country.

Today, there are 394 SSA student groups on campuses across the country.

“We have been seeing rapid growth in the past couple of years, and it shows no sign of slowing down,” Jesse Galef, communications director at SSA was quoted.

According to a study "Religion in the Millennial Generation," which drew primarily on data from the 2008 Pew Religious Landscape Survey, a greater percentage of 18- to 29-year-olds today than young adults in earlier generations say they have no religious affiliation (percent unaffiliated, by generation).

But maybe secular groups like SSA aren’t so different than their faith-based counterparts. At least when it comes to categorizing on-campus student groups.

There are a lot of parallels with religious groups on campus,” Ron Sanders, missional team leader for Campus Crusade For Christ (recently renamed Cru) at Stanford University, told Religious Dispatches
.

**Campus Crusade for Christ has ties to the "speaking in tongues/signs and wonders" movement New Apostle Reformation, FYI.

They have weekly meetings similar to ours, and give one another support, and they do social justice projects on campus and in the communities... I don’t know that they aren’t a faith group,” Sanders was quoted.

Despite the growth of secular groups on campus, not all young adults are leaving God behind.

More than three-quarters of young adults taking part in the National Study of Youth and Religion recognize a belief in God. But almost 7 percent fewer believe in God as young adults (ages 18 to 23) than did as teenagers, according to the study, which is tracking the same group of young people as they mature.

What young adults are less likely to believe in is religion. The number of those who describe themselves as "not religious" nearly doubled, to 27 percent, in young adulthood.

Read the rest of the story here.

Why do you think college students are less religious than prior generations?


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on August 06, 2013, 03:54:43 pm
Quote
**Campus Crusade for Christ has ties to the "speaking in tongues/signs and wonders" movement New Apostle Reformation, FYI.

Yep, just another churchianity non-profit. Familiar with them from way back in high school. They were apostate then, and still are.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 11, 2013, 01:38:41 pm
This has been part of the end times deception going way back to 1980(when the "religious right" formed) - getting Christians to be political active, instead of edifying them to keep their focus on the salvation of our Lord Jesus Christ and his imminent return.

Although the "religious right" is all but dead now, the Illuminati minions are still finding ways to deceive Christians into being politically active. As for Ted Cruz - he's not even eligible to be President/VP either, b/c not only was he born in Canada, but his father is Cuba born(and hence not even a naturalized born citizen).

http://news.yahoo.com/cruz-again-raps-obamas-health-care-law-010313926.html
Cruz again raps Obama's health care law
8/10/13

AMES, Iowa (AP) — Sen. Ted Cruz on Saturday continued his call for cutting off funding for President Barack Obama's health care law and told conservative Christians that congressional lawmakers can't be counted on to do it.

The Texas Republican, a tea-party favorite and a possible presidential candidate in 2016, drew a standing ovation at the Family Leadership Summit with his denouncement of the health care initiative labeled "Obamacare" by its critics.

"That reaction right there shows how we win this fight," Cruz said. "If I was sitting in the Senate cloakroom, the reaction would be fundamentally different. If we have to depend on Washington, it will never be done."

As he has in remarks to other conservatives, Cruz asserted that a grassroots effort would be needed. "The only way we win this fight is if the American people rise up and hold our elected officials accountable," he said.

Cruz has been part of a push by some conservative lawmakers to close the government temporarily this fall — by refusing to fund federal operations beyond Sept. 30 — if that's the only way to cut off money for Obama's health care law. Other Republicans have dismissed the tactic as counterproductive and even dangerous for Republicans seeking re-election next year.

Last Tuesday the party's most recent presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, told donors that "there are better ways to remove Obamacare" and predicted that a shutdown effort would result in the health care law being funded anyway, Republicans suffering at the polls and Americans being unhappy.

Asked about the Romney remarks, Cruz told reporters at the Iowa event: "There are lots of folks that can share their views. In my view, No. 1, there's bipartisan agreement Obamacare isn't working. No. 2, this is the single best opportunity to defund it."

Cruz demurred when asked whether he agreed with Republican Party Chairman Reince Priebus' warning to NBC and CNN that airing TV programs about Hillary Rodham Clinton, a potential Democratic presidential candidate, could cost the networks any party cooperation on future GOP primary debates. NBC plans a miniseries and CNN a documentary.

"The RNC will make its own decisions," Cruz said. "I don't think anybody is surprised to discover that that the mainstream media are in love with Hillary Clinton. Indeed, I would expect both of those movies will be released on Valentine's Day."

Former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa., who sought the Republican nomination in 2012 and might again in 2016, told the group that the party must do a better job reaching out to working-class voters. The winner of the Iowa caucuses in 2012 said that by focusing on business owners in that election, the GOP failed to connect with "job holders" and "marginalized" a group of voters.

"We need to reject this idea that if we build the economy, all boats will rise. We need to talk about people who have holes in their boats, because we all do," Santorum said.

Reality TV star and real estate mogul Donald Trump, who flirted with a presidential run in 2012, said the GOP was struggling and would need a strong candidate in 2016, "someone who is really smart and really good."

The daylong event was one of many cattle calls for potential candidates in the grueling run-up to the next presidential election. Conservative voters will likely be critical to a victory in the Iowa caucuses, the nation's first presidential nominating event.

Iowa Republican consultant Doug Gross said conservative Christian voters could play a big role in 2016.

"Historically the people that are there (at the Family Leader summit), represent about 40 percent of the caucus-goers. That's not an insignificant portion," Gross said. "It depends how many conservatives get in the race. It's totally wide open."


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on August 12, 2013, 03:52:29 am
Quote
"The only way we win this fight is if the American people rise up and hold our elected officials accountable," he said.

Will NEVER happen. Jesus says so. If he actually read and believed the bible, he'd know that about his "conservative Christian voters" constituents.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on August 16, 2013, 08:20:14 am
Female Elected to Head Nation's Largest Lutheran Denomination

The liberal-leaning Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ECLA) has elected a woman as its new leader.

Northeast Ohio Bishop Elizabeth Eaton defeated Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson, who has held the position since 2001, with about two-thirds of the vote on the fifth ballot.

The election was part of the country’s largest Lutheran denomination’s national meeting Wednesday in Pittsburgh. Eaton's election is historic for the denomination.

Eaton, 58, commended Hanson for keeping the ECLA intact during one of “the most tumultuous times” in the church and thanked bishops for staying.

“I am proud of my brother and sister bishops. Not a single one of us resigned in protest,” the Chicago Tribune reported Eaton saying Wednesday after her victory. “We don't agree on everything in this church. But we do agree on the cross of Christ, and we do agree we're going to stick together to have that conversation.”

The denomination cleared the way for partnered homosexuals to be ordained in 2009, causing 647 of its 10,000 congregations to leave. In June, it elected its first openly gay bishop, the Rev. R. Guy Erwin, to oversee churches in Southern California.

Eaton said she supported the decision to allow partnered gay clergy but that the church must respect those with a different understanding of Scripture and doctrine.

“Those people also have a voice in this church. We need to make room for those who do not agree with us but agree with our claim upon the cross,” she said, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

The ECLA, based in Chicago, has about 4 million members. It was formed when three Lutheran groups merged 25 years ago. Only about 23 percent of the clergy in the denomination are women, a church spokeswoman said.

http://www.charismanews.com/us/40646-female-elected-to-head-nation-s-largest-lutheran-denomination


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 16, 2013, 12:06:51 pm
Quote
Northeast Ohio Bishop Elizabeth Eaton defeated Presiding Bishop Mark Hanson, who has held the position since 2001, with about two-thirds of the vote on the fifth ballot.

One of my uncles/aunts in Ohio are members of the Lutheran church, but it's the "conservative" branch(Synad, sp). But even this "conservative" branch is VERY liberal in its theology - I visited their church a couple of years ago, and the pastor's sermon came off like a humanist would say(didn't remember him saying much about Jesus). They call themselves "conservative" b/c well, of the "rules" they justify as such(ie-99% of their leadership are runned by men).


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Boldhunter on August 31, 2013, 01:02:55 pm
I have a friend in Dallas who says the promo for this is huge and TV coverage, plus Oprah will film another "Life Class". My friend says most all people who were "strong believers" in the past, are going and they WON'T listen to her warnings.

DALLAS –  Megachurch pastor T.D. Jakes is bringing his MegaFest inspirational event — which features everything from a film festival to a conversation with Oprah — home to Dallas for the first time this week.More than 50,000 people from around the world are expected to attend the three-day event, which kicks off Thursday. Bishop Jakes says the event is designed to help bring families together by helping create lifelong memories."It's going to be a fun event. We have empowerment sessions and we have spiritual sessions, but it's also just a lot of plain old fun and family time," said Jakes, whose nondenominational church The Potter's House has more than 30,000 members.The event combines Jakes' conferences for men, women and children. Speakers will include Houston megachurch pastor Joel Osteen and his wife, Victoria.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/08/28/dallas-megachurch-pastor-td-jakes-brings-megafest-event-home-to-dallas-for/#ixzz2dZQn4xO2


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 31, 2013, 01:18:33 pm
I have a friend in Dallas who says the promo for this is huge and TV coverage, plus Oprah will film another "Life Class". My friend says most all people who were "strong believers" in the past, are going and they WON'T listen to her warnings.

DALLAS –  Megachurch pastor T.D. Jakes is bringing his MegaFest inspirational event — which features everything from a film festival to a conversation with Oprah — home to Dallas for the first time this week.More than 50,000 people from around the world are expected to attend the three-day event, which kicks off Thursday. Bishop Jakes says the event is designed to help bring families together by helping create lifelong memories."It's going to be a fun event. We have empowerment sessions and we have spiritual sessions, but it's also just a lot of plain old fun and family time," said Jakes, whose nondenominational church The Potter's House has more than 30,000 members.The event combines Jakes' conferences for men, women and children. Speakers will include Houston megachurch pastor Joel Osteen and his wife, Victoria.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/08/28/dallas-megachurch-pastor-td-jakes-brings-megafest-event-home-to-dallas-for/#ixzz2dZQn4xO2

Being from this area, yes, it is heavily being advertised(Friday's entertainment guide part of the Dallas Morning News showed big coverage of it).

It's as if you think it looks like an advertisement for one of the world's biggest (secular)fairs.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on August 31, 2013, 02:02:54 pm
T.D. Jakes, Oprah, AND Joel Olsteen, all under one roof?

And the deceived are paying how much to get into that place?


Title: "Reformation Project” Targets Churches to Make Them Gay-Affirming
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 01, 2013, 09:19:07 pm
“Reformation Project” Targets Churches to Make Them Gay-Affirming
http://standupforthetruth.com/2013/08/reformation-project-targets-churches-to-make-them-gay-affirming/

Is your church “reformed?” It soon will be, if Matthew Vines has his way.  In just a few weeks, Vines will reach thousands of people around the nation and train them to infiltrate Bible-believing churches like yours to attack the Truth.

Vines, a Harvard-educated gay Christian who sparked a great deal of controversy in the church community last year with his in-depth analysis on why the Bible does not condemn homosexuality, has launched a new leadership training conference aimed at teaching Christians how to lead LGBT-friendly churches and communities:

Quote
In a video announcing the project, Vines says The Reformation Project will “train, connect and empower gay Christians and their allies to reform church teaching on homosexuality from the ground up.”

Vines gained a wide recognition and stirred controversy last year with his hour-long YouTube video, which has gained over half a million views, where he presented a detailed argument on why he believes the Bible does not condemn gay people.

The young Christian also did an exclusive interview with The Christian Post where he detailed how he arrived at his argument, which caused a great deal of discussion and debate in the Christian community. A number of theologians, such as Dr. Evan Lenow, assistant professor of Ethics at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and Dr. Robert Gagnon, associate professor of New Testament at the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and the foremost expert on the Bible and homosexuality, offered counter-arguments, rejecting Vines’ reading of the Bible.

The Reformation Project, which will take place Sept. 18-21 at Asbury United Methodist Church in Kansas City, Kansas, is aimed at tackling homophobia in the church, Vines says.

“Right now there are thousands of churches across the world where gay Christians have no voice – where coming out means getting kicked out and losing all support from family and friends,” he states in the video.

“As the Bible tells us, the stone that the builders rejected has and will become the Cornerstone.”

According to the project website, regional offices are being launched “in places where LGBT people have the least support” in order to “reform the churches there from within.”

“Soon, gay kids in Jackson, Mississippi and Kingston, Jamaica won’t just have to hear on YouTube that it gets better-they will have the personal support of outspoken, influential Christian allies in their communities who can ensure that it does.”


Title: Re: "Reformation Project” Targets Churches to Make Them Gay-Affirming
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 01, 2013, 09:25:16 pm
Quote
“As the Bible tells us, the stone that the builders rejected has and will become the Cornerstone.”

This is WHAT this passage of scripture SAYS...

Matthew 21:42  Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?
Mat 21:43  Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.
Mat 21:44  And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Boldhunter on September 06, 2013, 03:04:39 pm
This is a sample of a "Who We Are" from a church my daughter has been invited to attend with her friend whose family says they are Christian. (FIRST off I can discern this is some sort of Emergent because of the coffee cafe & no cross OR SALVATION message/Statements of Faith)
I wondered about this pastor's past affiliations (see below) and if anyone has any information they can give me regarding them. It would help me greatly to explain to my children what the fallen away are.

Link is from Vintagewestside.org

Who is our Pastor?

 Ger Jones is from England, but spent much of his childhood in the States. He started out as a corporate lawyer in London, before moving into brand management in Switzerland. In 2004 he felt God call him to full-time ministry, went to seminary at Regent College, Vancouver and in 2007 he became the Associate Pastor at Holy Trinity Church, Raleigh. In 2010 Ger accepted the call to move out West and start a new church in West L.A. Ger has an amazing Aussie wife, Lizzie, and three outrageously fantastic young kids – Amy, Naomi and Sam.

What is our Vision?

 We have a simple vision: ‘Joining God in the Renewal of All Things’. The great story of the Bible is God restoring and healing our broken lives and the world through Jesus Christ. He invites us, his church, to participate with him in seeing his Kingdom come, his will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

Why the name Vintage Church?

 John 15:4,”No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.” Vintage Church is ‘of the vine’; we are rooted to the timeless truths of Christ and committed to maturing and reaching our fruit-bearing potential in Christ.

What makes us tick?

 We love the Bible, eagerly desire the ministry of the Holy Spirit, are passionate Worshipers of God, are joined together in Community, and we are on a mission to see our city come to know Christ and be healed through him.

Who are our friends?

 You can tell a lot about someone by who they hang out with. We are closely linked in vision and ministry with Holy Trinity Brompton, London, England and have been planted out by Holy Trinity Church, Raleigh. We are privileged to partner in the gospel with churches across L.A. who we count as friends, including Rock Harbor, Basilieaand Southlands.

Listen To Sermons




Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 06, 2013, 04:31:38 pm
Yeah, beware of those churches and ministries talking about their so-called "Visions".

As for visions - read the book of Acts(in particular) - they relate to PREACHING THE GOSPEL of Jesus Christ(his death, buriel, and resurrection, and how to get saved).


Title: Church: ‘Jesus had two dads’ sign causing buzz around town
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 18, 2013, 12:12:02 pm
Church: ‘Jesus had two dads’ sign causing buzz around town
http://kfor.com/2013/09/18/church-jesus-had-two-dads-sign-causing-buzz-around-town/
9/18/13

(http://localtvkfor.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/church-sign.jpg?w=388)

NASHVILLE, Tenn (CNN) – A sign in front of a church in Tennessee is causing quite a buzz in the community over its message.
 
The sign at St. John’s United Methodist Church reads, “Jesus had two dads and he turned out just fine.”
 
People around town are now talking about the sign’s deeper meaning and whether or not it has to do with gay marriage.
 
According to WSMV, the sign was put up as a message to children of any blended family.
 
Pastor Bill Campbell said, “I think the assumption is we’re taking a stand relative to a position with regards to same sex marriage. For me, it’s more of a concern of what are we doing about families and a message to children.”


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 18, 2013, 05:23:25 pm
While Rick Warren may be playing a big part in all of this, it looks like for some reason, Churchianity seems to be buying into this gun control deception as well...

http://jonathanmerritt.religionnews.com/2013/09/18/will-rick-warren-lead-christian-movement-gun-control/
9/18/13
Will Rick Warren lead a Christian movement for gun control?
Sep 18, 2013

Bestselling author and mega-church pastor Rick Warren and his wife, Kay, have been pushing Christians on social issues for the last decade. They were among the first evangelical leaders to begin championing adoption, which helped turn it into an issue of top priority among the faithful. And through their P.E.A.C.E. plan, they’ve helped mobilize evangelicals to fight AIDS, a disease many Christians believed was God’s judgment on gays and lesbians only a generation ago.

“It may actually be shorter to list causes that [Rick and Kay Warren] have not dedicated time and energy to,” CNN’s Daniel Burke wrote on Tuesday.

But after the Warren’s interview with CNN’s Piers Morgan last night about their son’s suicide and other issues, many wonder whether the religious power couple might lead a Christian movement for gun control.

This past April, Rick and Kay’s son, Matthew, committed suicide with a gun he illegally obtained online. He had attempted to purchase a gun legally several times but was rebuffed because of a red flag on his background check for having been forcibly admitted to a mental institution.

“We’re grateful that the laws kept Matthew from getting the gun for as long as it did,” Rick Warren said in the interview.

At one point, Morgan brought up Washington Navy Yard shooting, noting it as part of a “constant tidal wave” of gun violence in America.

“Now that you’ve been so personally touched and you’re in such a position of authority, is it affecting what you’re going to be saying about this going forward?” Morgan asked the pastor.

“Well yeah,” Warren responded, “I mean it’s going to affect me in all three of those areas, not simply in gun control.”

He went on to add that when he heard news of the shooting, he fell to his knees and prayed for the victims.

What exactly Warren means when he says this will affect the way he engages the issue of gun control is unclear, but this isn’t the first time he’s expressed concern on the matter. Following the Sandy Hook shooting last year, Warren said on “Fox News Sunday”:

Quote
There’s a mental health angle that you have to deal with, I don’t think we’re taking care of those struggling with mental illness like we need to in America. There is the civil safety issue, which is gun control and these assault weapons — they don’t call them ‘assault weapons’ for nothing. There is the social issue … students, by the time they’re 18, they’ve maybe killed 10,000, 20,000 people on video games without any remorse for it. It creates a culture of violence.


If the Warrens decide to engage this issue, there are some indications that much of the Christian community is poised to join them. According to an August 2012 survey by Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI), six-in-ten Catholics and religiously unaffiliated Americans (62% and 60%) favor stricter gun control laws. About 42% of mainline Protestants and 35% of white evangelicals said the same thing.

But the PRRI survey was conducted prior to the Sandy Hook tragedy that sparked a national debate on the issue. In January of this year, a non-scientific poll conducted by the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) found that 73% of church leaders agreed there needs to be stricter gun regulations.

“Evangelicals are pro-life and deeply grieve when any weapons are used to take innocent lives,” said Leith Anderson, President of the NAE. “The evangelical leaders who responded to the NAE survey support the Second Amendment right to bear arms but also want our laws to prevent the slaughter of children.”

It’s difficult to tell exactly how many American Christians favor gun control at this moment, but one thing is for certain: If Rick and Kay Warren decide to prioritize it, we can be sure that the number—whatever it is—will grow. - See more at: http://jonathanmerritt.religionnews.com/2013/09/18/will-rick-warren-lead-christian-movement-gun-control/#sthash.VyoXFU9X.dpuf


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 18, 2013, 05:28:11 pm
^^

I know THE strong delusion as prophecized in 2nd The 2 hasn't come to pass yet - but nonetheless the seeds for it were planted many years ago.

It seems like part of this strong delusion that's edging closer is partly due to the CONFUSION brought unto Churchianity - once upon a time ago, these clergymen and their pews were staunchly pro-life and pro-family. That's all and good, but pretty much those were the only 2 issues they completely focused on, while throwing discernment with everything else out the window. Now fast-forward to our present day - They're trying to tie in pro-life to pro-gun control b/c they somehow think the latter will prevent the slaughter of young children.

Also - NAE stands for National Association of Evangelicals(article only says NAE) - Ted Haggard was President of this "Christian" organization until he got exposed in 2006. Pretty much this organization is composed of MANY "Christian" faiths.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on September 18, 2013, 05:29:02 pm
Quote
While Rick Warren may be playing a big part in all of this, it looks like for some reason, Churchianity seems to be buying into this gun control deception as well...

Their 501c3 requires them to support Caesar, and that fact is the exact thing Jesus warned about, that you cannot serve God and mammon, to "render unto God...".


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on September 21, 2013, 05:56:07 am
Moody Bible Institute Drops Alcohol and Tobacco Ban for Employees
School follows Wheaton, Huntington, and Asbury in emphasizing 'values not rules.'


The Chicago-based evangelical Moody Bible Institute has dropped its ban on alcohol and tobacco consumption by its 600-some faculty and staff, including for those who work in its radio and publishing arms.

The change in August reflected a desire to create a "high trust environment that emphasizes values, not rules," said spokeswoman Christine Gorz. Employees must adhere to all "biblical absolutes," Gorz said, but on issues where the Bible is not clear, Moody leaves it to employees' conscience.

Employees may not drink on the job or with Moody students, who are not allowed to drink while in school.

Founded in 1886 by evangelist D.L. Moody, the Moody Bible Institute pays the cost of tuition (about $6,000 per semester before federal aid) for its 1,600 undergraduates who attend the main campus in downtown Chicago, many of whom go into ministry after graduation.

Students must abstain from tobacco, alcohol, illegal drugs and "sexual promiscuity" for at least one year before they enroll and during their time at Moody.

"In addition, students are to refrain from gambling, viewing obscene or pornographic literature, and patronizing pubs, bars, nightclubs, comedy clubs, and similar establishments," the catalog says. "There will be no on- or off-campus dances sponsored or organized by Moody Bible Institute students or personnel."

Last year, the school lifted a ban on long hair for men and nose stud earrings for women. "Hair is to be well-groomed and should avoid extremes," the guidelines say, and hair should be of natural color.

The change at Moody represents the latest shift in attitudes at different Christian institutions in recent years.

Ten years ago in suburban Chicago, Wheaton College lifted the ban on student dancing and now allows faculty, staff and graduate students to drink, though not on campus. Other schools, including Huntington University and Asbury Seminary, have changed their stances on employees and drinking in the last five years, said Jennifer Woodruff Tait, managing editor of Christian History Magazine.

"It's part of a larger trend of wanting cultural acceptance," said Tait, who noted that professors would go to academic conferences and be embarrassed when they couldn't drink with friends. "A lot of people saw attitudes to alcohol as a witness. Many people are saying there are other ways to witness and this is a way to fit in."

Colleges and seminaries are one barometer to gauge current evangelical thinking on social issues, said Larry Eskridge, associate director of the Institute for the Study of American Evangelicals.

"Generally, permissive attitudes about alcohol within an evangelical denomination or school are looked upon by many conservative evangelicals as a hallmark of decline, perhaps even of apostasy," he said.



rest: http://www.christianitytoday.com/gleanings/2013/september/moody-bible-institute-drops-employee-alcohol-tobacco-ban.html?utm


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 21, 2013, 11:53:17 am
Quote
Students must abstain from tobacco, alcohol, illegal drugs and "sexual promiscuity" for at least one year before they enroll and during their time at Moody.

"In addition, students are to refrain from gambling, viewing obscene or ****ographic literature, and patronizing pubs, bars, nightclubs, comedy clubs, and similar establishments," the catalog says. "There will be no on- or off-campus dances sponsored or organized by Moody Bible Institute students or personnel."

Last year, the school lifted a ban on long hair for men and nose stud earrings for women. "Hair is to be well-groomed and should avoid extremes," the guidelines say, and hair should be of natural color.

The change at Moody represents the latest shift in attitudes at different Christian institutions in recent years.

Ten years ago in suburban Chicago, Wheaton College lifted the ban on student dancing and now allows faculty, staff and graduate students to drink, though not on campus. Other schools, including Huntington University and Asbury Seminary, have changed their stances on employees and drinking in the last five years, said Jennifer Woodruff Tait, managing editor of Christian History Magazine.

For one, the bible never said to abstain from liquor. Yes, they warn about drunkenness, but at the same time they talk about letting your MODERATION being made to all men, for the Lord is at hand.

1Tim_5:23  Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach's sake and thine often infirmities

And just as long as they don't use an excess of wine...

Eph_5:18  And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

As for bans on illegal drugs - does that include mariju@na and c@nnabis too? Both of which have been proven to heal ailments like seizures?

As for this Moody Bible College - they're also your typical Alexandrian-brainwashing/learn Greek and Hebrew texts bible college(and one of their employees, Erwin Lutzer, signed a document over evangelicals and Catholics being in unity recently) - THIS they need to repent of!


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on September 22, 2013, 04:01:18 am
Quote
As for this Moody Bible College - they're also your typical Alexandrian-brainwashing/learn Greek and Hebrew texts bible college

Bingo! aka Churchianity. No other explanation needed.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on September 28, 2013, 08:20:22 am
Pennsylvania Church Fires Minister for Officiating Same-Sex ‘Wedding’

A church in Pennsylvania has fired their pastor for officiating a same-sex ‘marriage’ ceremony contrary to the congregation’s stand on the Biblical definition of marriage.
 
While the name of the church has not been revealed, State College Mayor Elizabeth Goreham has spoken to several outlets about the circumstances surrounding the recent termination of Ken Kline Smeltzer.
 
As previously reported, following the Supreme Court ruling striking down a key part of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), D. Bruce Hanes, a register of wills in Montgomery County, took it upon himself to begin issuing “marriage” licenses to homosexuals. However, same-sex “marriage” is illegal in Pennsylvania, as it has a marriage law on the books outlining that it is the “strong and longstanding policy of [the] Commonwealth that marriage shall be between one man and one woman.”
 
Goreham then announced that she would marry anyone who received a license from Hanes. However, she was told that in doing so, she could be violating her oath of office.

 Therefore, Goreham contacted Ken Kline Smeltzer, a minister affiliated with the Church of the Brethren denomination. She asked if he would be willing to officiate the ceremonies instead, and he agreed.
 
Last month, Smeltzer “wed” Joseph Davis and Gregory Scalzo in a ceremony at Goreham’s house in State College, Pennsylvania. According to the Centre Daily Times, he had prepared a statement beforehand notating that he agreed to officiate the service because the two men “are very much in love and obviously committed to each other.”
 
However, as Smeltzer’s congregation believes that the Bible prohibits homosexual behavior, and therefore is in opposition to same-sex “marriage,” they decided to boot him as their shepherd.

“He doesn’t regret performing the wedding and he is very supportive of marriage equality,” Goreham told local television station WTAJ. “He’s sorry that the church and he were not able to work it out, but he stands by his act and would do it again.”
 
Smeltzer’s wife Bonnie pastors a separate “church,” University Baptist and Brethren Church (UBBC) in State College, which is supportive of the homosexual lifestyle. She issued a statement on Thursday to alert the public that any reports that UBBC had fired her husband were inaccurate, as he served as minister at a separate location. However, the name of the church Smeltzer led is not being revealed.

“UBBC is affiliated with the American Baptist Churches, USA and the Church of the Brethren and is a member of two organizations representing congregations whose welcome clearly includes gays and lesbians: the Supportive Communities Network of the Brethren Mennonite Council for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Interests and the Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists,” the UBBC website outlines.
 
Response to Smetlzer’s firing has been mixed.
 
“Just yet another example of a church that hates gays more than it loves God,” one commenter named Michael wrote. “And they wonder why a record number of Americans now want absolutely nothing to do with American Christianity?”
 
“Nice to see a church upholding Scripture as the Bible clearly condemns homosexuality,” stated another named Jody, who cited Romans 1; Leviticus 18 and 20 and 1 Corinthians 6:9. “God loves all men but He will not countenance sin; He died to remove it! By rejecting His tremendous gift, we slap His Divine face! Homosexuals and those for such unions need to experience the salvation He died to give us all rather than live as they please. When we finally surrender to His will, we will be at true peace!”


http://christiannews.net/2013/09/28/pennsylvania-church-fires-minister-for-officiating-same-sex-wedding/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 28, 2013, 12:45:50 pm
Good for them - now the next thing they can do is get the KJB, and get rid of their 501c3 status.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on September 29, 2013, 04:25:59 am
And drop their affiliations with any of those reprobate "denominations". And that fired false teacher can go get a job in San Francisco. ::)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on October 01, 2013, 07:13:54 am
United Methodist Judicial Council to Decide Whether Denomination May Advocate Homosexuality

The United Methodist Judicial Council is set to decide on whether resolutions passed at regional conferences regarding the homosexual lifestyle are permissible according to church doctrine or are a violation of the denomination’s rules.

http://christiannews.net/2013/09/30/united-methodist-judicial-council-to-decide-whether-denomination-may-advocate-homosexuality/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on October 07, 2013, 10:01:33 am
Outspoken Lesbian Minister Promoted to Dean of Vanderbilt Divinity School

A divinity school in Tennessee recently installed an openly homosexual clergywoman as the school’s new dean.
 
Vanderbilt Divinity School (VDS), located in Nashville, Tennessee, has developed a reputation for progressive policies and teachings. An article last week in Nashville Scene described the institution as a “liberal oasis” and “a bastion of the religious left” where scholars tend to “challenge rather than uphold orthodoxy.”
 
The school’s “Commitments” page states that the institution “is committed to the faith that brought the church into being,” but advocates “a critical and open examination of the Hebraic and Christian traditions.” In particular, VDS is devoted to “confronting the homophobia that prevails throughout much of the church and society.”
 
“We recognize the rights of lesbians and gay men within the religious community and the need for the eradication of civil discrimination based on sexual orientation,” the commitments page continues. “This commitment involves the exploration in the curriculum of lesbian and gay concerns as well as affirmation and support of gay and lesbian people within our community.”

In keeping with these beliefs, the school has officially appointed Emilie Townes as the 16th dean of the school. Not only is Townes an ordained American Baptist clergywoman, but she is also an overt homosexual. A news article on the VDS website described her as “a pioneering scholar in the field of womanist theology.” During her official convocation ceremony, the Temple Church Choir of Nashville opened with a Michael Jackson song.
 
“I am excited about becoming part of this slice of God’s cloud of witnesses as we shape ourselves into being responsive to holding traditions and the future together,” Townes said during her convocation address. “Not out of a sense that traditions are static but with an appreciation for the fact that they are dynamic and actually morph and change, though slowly at times. And also not out of a sense that the future is some magic potion that allows us to neglect the work we must do today.”
 
Townes’ liberal stance on social issues have earned her a profile on The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Religious Archives Network. In a 2012 article Townes wrote for The Huffington Post, she describes her “marriage” with her homosexual partner.

“[My partner and I] are both clear that we do not to conform to the standard text of marriage,” Townes wrote, “but we want to find ways to breath new air and life into what it means to be married not only by the state, but even more so in the eyes of the Holy Spirit.”
 
“As a Christian social ethicist with womanist leanings,” she continues, “I am clear that the Bible says precious little about same sex relationships, though it appears to have a bit more to say about acts but even that is muddled. I am also clear that although God judges our acts, God does so out of love and mercy and would much rather spend holy time applauding our attempts at humanity than smiting our behavior.”
 
Townes’ homosexual partner, Laurel Schneider, also joined the VDS faculty this year. Schneider is now a professor of religious studies.
 
Richard McCarty, provost of Vanderbilt University, said they chose Townes as the divinity school’s new dean because they wanted “someone to come in and make us better.” In regards to Townes’ homosexuality, McCarty says that “not relevant.”
 
“I wouldn’t want it to be seen as, well, this was just a poke in the eye to my faith tradition,” McCarty explained, according to Nashville Scene. “That’s not what it is. And that would be that nanosecond of concern that some people may interpret it that way. Our charge was to get the best possible candidate for our divinity deanship to say yes. And we got the best candidate—and thank God she said yes.”
 
Despite VDS’ liberal educational standards, not all seminaries and divinity schools endorse homosexuality. Albert Mohler, Jr., president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, says that those who promote Scriptural sanctioning of homosexuality must resort to “feats of exotic biblical interpretation worthy of the most agile circus contortionist.”
 
“We should not be surprised … that apologists for the homosexual agenda have arisen even within the world of biblical scholarship,” Mohler writes in an article titled Homosexuality and the Bible. “Biblical scholars are themselves a very mixed group, with some defending the authority of Scripture and others bent on deconstructing the biblical text. The battle lines on this issue are immediately apparent.”
 
Mohler argues that Christians should respond to homosexuals with genuine compassion, but such compassion should always convey biblical truth.
 
“Those seeking to contort and subvert the Bible’s message are not responding to homosexuals with compassion. To lie is never compassionate,” he contends.
 
“The biblical witness is clear: Homosexuality is a grievous sin against God and is a direct rejection of God’s intention and command in creation,” Mohler continues. “All sin is a matter of eternal consequence, and the only hope for any sinner is the redemption accomplished by Jesus Christ, who on the cross paid the price for our sin, serving as the substitute for the redeemed.”

http://christiannews.net/2013/10/07/outspoken-lesbian-minister-promoted-to-dean-of-vanderbilt-divinity-school/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 07, 2013, 11:12:13 am
Honestly, never imagined society would become THIS reprobate.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on October 07, 2013, 11:20:26 am
Honestly, never imagined society would become THIS reprobate.

we arent even close to how bad its going to get, you havent seen anything yet.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 07, 2013, 11:38:40 am
we arent even close to how bad its going to get, you havent seen anything yet.


At church yesterday, we heard a sermon from the SBC Texas Interim Pastor Committee(or whatever it's called) - to sum it up in a nutshell: the guy is Emergent in his beliefs. Forget him reading out of an NIV, he talked about church "unity", getting along with others while being non-judgmental, servant "leadership", and even promoted a secular book by a successful businessman over "going from good to great". He even twisted Acts 6:1-7 to try to justify what he was saying.

FYI, read Acts 6:1-7(KJB) - it is NOT a timeless prophecy, but a prophecy that ONLY happened at a PARTICULAR POINT IN TIME. The NIV subtlely distorts this by changing words in past/present tenses into other past/present tenses...which makes it look like it applies to church buildings now.

Anyhow - pt being that this whole Emergent Church system seems to be the final nail in the coffin to bring in every other little bitty reprobate idea into the walls. Pretty soon, we could see sodomites taking almost all leadership roles in the SBC and in all the other "denominations". And now that Chuck Smith passed away, might as well include Calvary Chapel in that mix.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on October 07, 2013, 03:33:42 pm
Quote
A news article on the VDS website described her as “a pioneering scholar in the field of womanist theology.” During her official convocation ceremony, the Temple Church Choir of Nashville opened with a Michael Jackson song.

See, I really think the intent by these heretics is to openly and intentionally act in a deliberate way that they know is contrary to sound doctrine. The thing is that they don't actually believe, and their mindset is that being in religion is a job, a career choice that can pay really well, because the world loves it's own.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 10, 2013, 10:55:48 am
http://gma.yahoo.com/blogs/abc-blogs/tattooed-jesus-texas-billboard-residents-talking-214214393--abc-news-topstories.html?vp=1
Tattooed Jesus on Texas Billboard Has Residents Talking

By Barbara Schmitt

A billboard showing a tattooed Jesus Christ has stirred up quite a bit of buzz in the heart of the Bible Belt.

The ad, which is the work of the website Jesustattoo.org, popped up along a West Lubbock, Texas, highway, and it's got people talking. It shows a man, ostensibly Jesus Christ, with outstretched arms tattooed with such words as "Outcast," "Addicted, "Jealous."

"I don't like the picture. I think it's very derogatory," a local-area resident told the CBS affiliate KEYE-TV.

On the website, a video casts Jesus as a tattoo artist and shows several tattooed individuals approaching him to reveal their sinful markings. A woman with "Self Righteous" tattooed on her chest and a young disabled boy with the word "Outcast" tattooed on his body come forward.

ABC News' calls to the group behind the video and controversial billboard were not immediately returned.

While the billboard has drawn a lot of attention, not everyone finds it blasphemous or outrageous.

"I thought that it was cleverly done because, basically, it's a visual of Jesus taking the sins of people and covering them and taking them from an outcast or something and giving them a new start, which is what the gospel is about," David Wilson, a senior pastor at Southcrest Baptist Church in Lubbock, told ABC News.

Wilson said there's a great message within the billboard and video once one gets past its shock value.

"I looked it up, and I said … this is perfect because it just draws people in here," Wilson said.

Over the course of the six-minute video, Jesus goes to work on the plagued tattooed victims and changes each shameful or negative word or phrase into something positive. The woman in the video breathes a sigh of relief when her tattoo is transformed from "Self Righteous" to "Humbled." The young disabled boy shows pride as he goes from "Outcast" to "Accepted."

On their website, the filmmakers emphasize the uncomplicated nature of their message. "It really is as simple as it appears. We are a small group of people humbled by the love of Jesus. We are not a church. We are not selling anything. We encourage you to tell as many people as possible. That's it."

Wilson said the billboard and video are different ways to reach different people.

"You know, I use the analogy - I like to fish, and I use different baits for different fish, and to me this is fishing for people who would never walk in the door of a church."


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on October 10, 2013, 02:43:52 pm
What they seem to overlook is that Jesus Christ has no sin, and "markings in the flesh" is a sin according to Judaic law, so their billboard is portraying a lie, calling evil good.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 12, 2013, 05:19:22 pm
Their true colors are coming out now...their love of money...

http://news.yahoo.com/among-social-conservatives-pocketbook-message-081905347--election.html
Among social conservatives, a pocketbook message
10/12/13

WASHINGTON (AP) — Seeking a new generation of leaders, social conservatives are looking for a lot more than opposition to gay marriage and abortion.

An annual summit of faith leaders and conservative activists gave a platform to a new wave of Republican leaders, who derided President Barack Obama's health care law, his steering of the economy and foreign policy along with a more traditional litany of social issues.

In what amounted to an audition, Senate Republicans like Ted Cruz of Texas described a nation teetering on "the edge of a cliff" while Rand Paul of Kentucky said U.S. foreign policy needed to stop a "war on Christianity." Mike Lee of Utah said the nation's economic problems represented "moral threats" to the stability of families.

"We can't stop talking about the importance of our values and our culture," said Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, who joined a parade of prominent GOP leaders at the Values Voter Summit on Friday. "We can't stop talking about them because the moral well-being of our people is directly linked to their economic well-being."

Organizers said Saturday that Cruz won the event's straw poll of possible 2016 presidential candidates with 42 percent, followed by Dr. Ben Carson and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum with 13 percent. Paul and Rubio placed fourth and fifth, respectively, offering an informal popularity contest among the roughly 2,000 attendees.

Social conservatives gathered at the summit as congressional Republicans sought agreement with Obama on a way to end the government shutdown, now in its 12th day, and avoid an economic default. Few in the audience expressed interest in backing down from efforts to defund or delay the nation's health care law, a primary driver of the impasse, and said they wanted congressional Republicans to bring down the nation's debt.

Marlene Kellett of Columbia, Md., said Republicans needed to hold firm in their opposition to the so-called Obamacare law. But she expressed pessimism that Republicans would make progress.

"I'm very opposed to Obamacare — it's a disaster," Kellett said. "But I'm not feeling very positive about (the impasse). So often the Republicans cave, and they can't seem to get what they want."

Adrienne Grizzell of Lexington, Ky., said the accumulation of nearly $17 trillion in debt — the source of a debate over whether to raise the nation's borrowing limit — is too often shrugged off. "It's as if, 'No, it's not a problem, let's keep spending,'" she said. "Nobody is saying, 'OK, we've going to start spending less.'"

While social issues touched the hearts and minds here, speaker after speaker stressed pocketbook issues a year after Democrats vilified GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney as being oblivious to the needs of middle-class families during tough economic times.

Cruz, whose speech was interrupted several times by immigration reform advocates, said Friday the health care law and Obama's spending priorities had put the nation on the wrong track. "We have a couple of years to turn this country around, or we go off the cliff into oblivion," he said.

Lee said economic issues such as a lack of economic opportunity, stagnant wages and spiraling housing costs represented "moral threats to families' stability."

Rubio said too many families are struggling to pay for child care and grappling with student loan debts. Paul devoted his remarks to foreign policy, describing attacks on Christianity in the Muslim world.

Santorum, who chased Romney for the GOP nomination during the 2012 primaries, previewed an upcoming holiday film, "The Christmas Candle," released by his film company. Santorum recalled the early days of his presidential campaign, something he said, "that comes to mind every now and then, even today."

To be certain, gay marriage and abortion got plenty of attention. Carson, a Maryland physician popular with conservatives, rejected the notion of a "war on women," raised by Democrats, saying, "The war is on their babies." He said marriage was a "sacred institution" that did not need a new definition.

Along the sidelines, conservatives said they were actively seeking a new group of conservatives to rally behind — and made clear that they don't want capitulation.

"We don't have enough Ted Cruzes and Marco Rubios," said Jerry Skirvin, who runs a marketing firm in Lynchburg, Va. "We have too many John McCains and Lindsey Grahams," he said, identifying two GOP senators often accused of seeking conciliation with Democrats.

The search also took place in private. Before the summit, Cruz and Paul sat down for separate closed-door meetings with a group of evangelical leaders, including Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, which sponsored the event, former presidential candidate Gary Bauer and Robert Fischer, a South Dakota businessman. The senators were joined by their wives during the session and discussed their faith and views on issues.


Title: 1 In 3 Young "Born-Again" Evangelicals Believe Jesus Lied When He Said That He I
Post by: Mark on October 16, 2013, 08:45:46 am
Only 1 in 3 Young Born-Again Evangelicals Believe Jesus Is Only Way to Heaven, Apologist Says

 Young American born-again believers are moving away from a biblically-centered worldview, with only one in three affirming that Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven, according to Steve Cable, senior vice president of Probe Ministries.

"We need to admit (that there's a problem)," Cable said on Friday at a session titled "What Do [Young] American Believers Really Believe and How Do We Save Them From Cultural Captivity?" at Southern Evangelical Seminary's 20th annual Christian Apologetics conference in Charlotte, N.C.

"Don't go around with your blinders thinking that everything is fine. We have a lot of people that aren't born again, so there's a lot of work to do. But then you look at the born-agains and see that we have even more work to do."

Cable, who recently published Cultural Captives: The Beliefs and Behavior of American Young Adults, focused the session on what he called "emerging adults," or young believers between 18-29 years old. He disputed arguments that evangelicals are well-positioned and that their numbers in America haven't changed much in the last 35 years, and brought up the work by sociologist Christian Smith, who is the William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Sociology and Director of the Center for the Study of Religion and Society and the Center for Social Research at the University of Notre Dame.

According to Cable, in books such as Souls in Transition and Lost in Transition, Smith identified five disturbing patterns found in emerging adults. The sociologist argued that most emerging adults are morally adrift – their morals are personal and subjective; they are captive to consumerism; they have little civic and political engagement; they believe that sex is not a moral issue, and they engage in intoxication, or fake feeling of happiness.

"We need to focus on the upcoming generations, saving the lost, saving the captive believers. Don't stop when they leave high school. Most people's brains are not fully formed until they are in their early 20s," Cable said.

Several studies in recent times have tried to analyze the questions young Christians are struggling with, and why many of them are leaving the church. Bestselling author Eric Metaxas shared in an article posted in The Christian Post in July what one student who has left the faith once said: "Christianity is something that if you really believed it, it would change your life and you would want to change [the lives] of others. I haven't seen too much of that."

Metaxas noted that such remarks are "pretty sobering."

"This puts the ball in our court. Are we living lives that show our children that we actually believe what we say we believe?" he asked.

In his presentation on Friday, Cable analyzed a number of charts and graphs, including work done by Barna Research, Christian Smith, the General Social Survey, and the Baylor Religion Survey, which mostly came to the same conclusions about what young Americans and young American Christians believe.

The senior vice president of Probe Ministries said that the survey data showed that only 9 percent of Americans hold a Biblical view, and among emerging adults, that number is even smaller. In general, the statistics showed that in 1990, 11 percent of 18-30 year olds said they have no religion. That number increased to 31 percent in 2012.

"If it continues in that rate, it's not going to be too many years until we have over 50 percent of young adults in America who say they have no religion," he said.

Other notable stats showed that born-agains have decreased in number by 22 percent since 1976, while only one in three of emerging adults who said they have been born-again believe that Jesus Christ is the only way to get into heaven.

"This means that two thirds of them do not believe that Jesus is the only way to heaven," Cable said. "It's pretty hard to have a biblical belief in Jesus Christ and believe there are other ways to heaven."

Similarly, when asked basic questions relating to their faith, only one in three of born-again young evangelicals were found to hold a biblical worldview, and only one in five were actively engaged in practicing their faith.

"The evangelicals who are living out their lives as a witness to Jesus Christ, bringing these non-evangelicals to faith in the Lord – it's 1 out of 25," Cable added.

He offered, however, that those Christians who are going to church or identifying as born-agains but siding with what culture tells them instead of the Bible, called "cultural captives," can still be reached by truth.

"Interact with them, share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Gospel does not change," he advised.

"(They) need to be Christ servants. They need to learn to accept objective truth, and be aware of cultural traps."

As a possible solution, Cable offered a new in-depth 7-week church experience called "Once Captive," aimed at young adults, offering them ways to escape "cultural captivity" and embrace a biblical worldview.


http://www.christianpost.com/news/only-1-in-3-young-born-again-evangelicals-believe-jesus-is-only-way-to-heaven-apologist-says-106500/


Title: Re: 1 In 3 Young "Born-Again" Evangelicals Believe Jesus Lied When He Said That He I
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 16, 2013, 12:37:47 pm
Only 1 in 3 Young Born-Again Evangelicals Believe Jesus Is Only Way to Heaven, Apologist Says

Cable, who recently published Cultural Captives: The Beliefs and Behavior of American Young Adults, focused the session on what he called "emerging adults," or young believers between 18-29 years old. He disputed arguments that evangelicals are well-positioned and that their numbers in America haven't changed much in the last 35 years, and brought up the work by sociologist Christian Smith, who is the William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Sociology and Director of the Center for the Study of Religion and Society and the Center for Social Research at the University of Notre Dame.

And look at that "emerging" buzzword again - from what I've read about it, it pretty much is another form of communism, socialism, wealth distribution(not just earthly materials), etc. For example - look at the "emerging" markets since 2010 - a lot of the countries being invited in are 3rd world countries that TPTB are politically correctly calling "developing". All they're doing is cutting into the pie, where the other pieces belong to these Western first world countries, hence eating into their shares.

Now you're seeing this in the modern-day church system - they're bringing in all of these d@mnable New Age heresies(ie-Rick Warren's and Bill Hybels' Emergent Church system) into the sheepfold, that they're either forcing born-again believers to compromise, and hence forcing them out.

Quote
According to Cable, in books such as Souls in Transition and Lost in Transition, Smith identified five disturbing patterns found in emerging adults. The sociologist argued that most emerging adults are morally adrift – their morals are personal and subjective; they are captive to consumerism; they have little civic and political engagement; they believe that sex is not a moral issue, and they engage in intoxication, or fake feeling of happiness.

And remember the NIV hitting the market in 1978 - a false perverted version that made moral issues like fornication personal and subjective, endorsed consumerism aka the prosperity gospel, among other things. Marvel ye not that in our present day, we're witnessing these very things now.

Also - at my church service a couple of weeks ago - the youth pastor preached a sermon he got out of some youth devotional. From it he said how God created us to worship him. Now if THIS isn't heresy, than I don't know what is - b/c in the first place, we have to be BORN AGAIN, of water, and of the Spirit. Yeah, no wonder why the professing Christian youth of today doesn't know what true salvation is.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 01, 2013, 03:50:33 pm
Looks like they're taking this "culture wars" overseas now to 3rd world countries - you saw how TPTB used this "culture wars" agenda to bring America into sodomy. Have a couple of comments on this, but will say them in the next post.

http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/power-players-abc-news/culture-war-film-links-u-s--evangelicals-to-intolerance-against-gays-in-uganda-191437464.html?vp=1
Culture war: Film links U.S. Evangelicals to intolerance against gays in Uganda

5 minute interview clip of filmmaker with ABC news reporters in link

Are American Evangelicals to blame for a surge of anti-gay sentiment and violence in Uganda?

Roger Ross Williams, the director of the new documentary “God Loves Uganda,” told “Top Line” that American Evangelical missionaries are contributing to a raging culture war over homosexuality in Uganda, where just a few years ago a law was proposed that prescribes the death penalty for certain homosexual acts.

“All the Evangelicals I followed told me they feel like they've lost the culture war here in America as marriage equality has passed state by state, the recent Supreme Court rulings, but they are winning in the global South and especially in Africa and Uganda,[/b]” Williams said.

Williams’ documentary looks specifically at the prominent ministry in Uganda by the American Evangelical group known as the International House of Prayer (IHOP).

“They don't do any humanitarian work,” Williams said. “They don't build schools or hospitals or help people. … It's a numbers game, convert souls, and that's it.”

Ministries like the International House of Prayer, Williams’ said, are preying on a vulnerable population.

“Uganda is a very vulnerable population to the sort of prosperity gospel and that message,” he said. “They're poor, they're sick, and you come in and you say we're going to cure you, we're going to heal you. It works.”

And their Evangelical message, which teaches that homosexuality is a sin, is inadvertently contributing to religiously-fueled, and sometimes violent, intolerance against the LGBTI community in Uganda.

“For a lot of these young people, it is a time to have an adventure, but for the poor African listening to this, they think that’s how it should be,” said one Ugandan minister, who believes American Evangelical ministry is having negative effects on his country, in the film.

When contacted about this story, the International House of Prayer responded with an official statement of their belief about the sanctity of marriage and said the documentary provides misinformation about their ministry.

"The IHOPKC leadership team upholds the New Testament view of the sanctity of sex in the context of marriage between one man and one woman,” the statement said. “However, we strongly oppose victimization or violence against any sector of society that disagrees with the biblical view. We honor the dignity and rights of all who differ from us."

Recently back from a tour to promote his film in Africa, Williams said his film has sparked a conversation that he hopes will lead to increased tolerance and acceptance for the LGBTI community in Africa.

“It was amazing, because the people from the LGBTI community came out in public for the first time and addressed the faith leaders and said, ‘You've made our lives miserable,’” Williams said of a screening of the film in Malawi. “And some of the faith leaders, they stood up and they said, ‘You know what, we take back what we've said about you. We've never met a gay person, we thought they were monsters.’”

And while Williams said he doubts he’ll be “welcome back at the International House of Prayer,” of which his film is critical, he hopes his film will cause American Evangelicals to reconsider how they minister abroad.

For more of the interview with Williams, including how he says U.S. aid to Africa has also been affected by Evangelical zeal, check out this episode of “Top Line.”


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on November 01, 2013, 03:58:03 pm
Quote
Are American Evangelicals to blame for a surge of anti-gay sentiment and violence in Uganda?

Americans are involved, but "churchianity' is what the world will blame, whether they are responsible or not.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 01, 2013, 04:01:31 pm
OK, comments...

1) IHOP(International House of Prayer ministry) is connected with the Apostate New Apostle Reformation(which "influential evangelicals" like Billy Graham, Rick Warren, the late Jerry Falwell, Bill Bright, Pat Robertson, C. Peter Wagner, Rick Joyner, etc are part of).

2) Rick Warren has taken his Purpose Driven ministry to Uganda many times. Guess what - Warren CONDEMNED Uganda's anti-sodomy bill last year.

Rick Warren Condemns Uganda Anti-Gay Bill After Faith, LGBT Groups Call for Response
12/7/12
http://www.christianpost.com/news/rick-warren-condemns-uganda-anti-gay-bill-after-faith-lgbt-groups-call-for-response-86289/

Oh wait - so these American "evangelical" groups are getting demonized for warning about the sodomy agenda there. But en yet Rick Warren, who is part of this same "evangelical" group, is able to speak out against this very anti-sodomy law in Uganda?

Even though there's strict anti-sodomy laws in Uganda, somehow it's these American "evangelical" groups that are getting demonized, and not really the Ugandan government?

Coincidence that Uganda has slowly come into acceptance since these American "evangelical" groups went there?

Does anyone see what's wrong with this whole picture?


Thesis - these American "evangelical culture warriors"

Antithesis - the pro-sodomy lobby

Synthesis - bring everyone to an acceptance to sodomy globally

And to add to this too - Warren pretty much played the same role there he played here in America a decade ago(by the time he came on the national stage shortly after the 21st century, the whole "culture wars" nonsense slowly but surely dwindled).


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on November 01, 2013, 04:26:26 pm
I keep expecting Rick to come out of the closet...


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Christian40 on November 01, 2013, 07:20:59 pm
Quote
Williams’ documentary looks specifically at the prominent ministry in Uganda by the American Evangelical group known as the International House of Prayer (IHOP).

“They don't do any humanitarian work,” Williams said. “They don't build schools or hospitals or help people. … It's a numbers game, convert souls, and that's it.”

Ministries like the International House of Prayer, Williams’ said, are preying on a vulnerable population.

“Uganda is a very vulnerable population to the sort of prosperity gospel and that message,” he said. “They're poor, they're sick, and you come in and you say we're going to cure you, we're going to heal you. It works.”

i have seen this with Reinhard Bonnke's ministry, he would boast how he had 1 million people in the audience, and i think he went up to 10 million at one time. Bonnke being a friend of Benny Hinn. i think these false ministries go into Africa to make themselves look good. They dont care if the Africans are getting sound doctrine or not.

James 2:15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food,
16 And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit?
17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: tennis shoe on November 01, 2013, 10:59:07 pm
My, oh my. I knew that sounded familiar. IHOP came out of the Kansas City crew which has close ties to Toronto, Lakeland, Brownsville, etc. They all know each other.

The Dangers of the International House of Prayer (IHOP)

by John Park

The International House of Prayer (IHOP) was started on May 7, 1999 by Mike Bickle in Kansas City. [1]  It is well known for its 24/7 worship and prayer ministry.  Now it has grown substantially to include international ties, its very own seminary, and undergraduate program.  People from around the globe are flocking to IHOP, but do they actually know what they are getting into?

Cultic Origins and Goals

It is clear that almost all of the participants in IHOP do not have an understanding of what they are getting into.  Many of the participants, including many genuine Christians who are being deceived, believe it is a place to go pray and worship, while not knowing what the theological distinctives are that make IHOP unique.  The true origin started in 1982 after a man named Augustine approached Mike Bickle and said an audible voice told him to prophesy to his congregation.  Later that year, Mike Bickle claimed to hear an audible voice speaking to him while on a trip in Cairo, Egypt.  The voice told him, “I am inviting you to raise up a work that will touch the ends of the earth. I have invited many people to do this thing and many people have said yes, but very few have done my will.” [2]

This is parallel to how many other cults of Christianity are born.  They follow the basic formula:
(Blank 1) said God told him/her a message, and he/she and starts the (Blank 2) church.

For Example:
·   Joseph Smith said God told him a message, and he started the Mormon church.
·   Ellen G. White said God told her a message, and she started the Seventh Day Adventist church.
·   Mary Eddy Baker said God told her a message, and she started the Christian Scientist church.
·   Sun Myung Moon said God told him a message, and he started the Unification church.
·   Witness Lee/Watchman Nee said God told him a message, and he started the Local Church.
·   Mike Bickle said God told him a message, and he started the International House of Prayer.

Not only is IHOP origin akin to many other aberrant groups, but their ultimate goals follow suit.  Mike Bickle has been quoted to say the church brings on the great tribulation:

We're not absent for the great tribulation, now listen carefully, the church causes the great tribulation. What I mean by that – it's the church, it's the praying church under Jesus' leadership that's loosing the judgment in the great tribulation in the way that Moses stretched forth his rod and prayed and loosed the judgments upon Pharaoh. The church in the tribulation is in the position that Moses was before Pharaoh but it won't be a Pharaoh and Egypt, it'll be the great end time Pharaoh called the antichrist and the book of Revelation is a book about the judgments of God on the antichrist loosed by the praying church. [9]

Even worse, Bickle proposes that an elite end-time church defeats God's enemies, and Jesus is "held in the heavens" until it happens.

Right now the prayer movement is growing fast….really fast! But when I say it's growing fast instead of one percent of the Body of Christ taking hold of it, maybe 10 percent. It's….you know it's like 10 times bigger than it was a generation ago, but beloved as fast as the prayer movement is growing, where people are getting hold of it, still for 90 percent of the Body of Christ it's not even on their mind. Jesus is not coming until the Body of Christ globally is crying out "Come Lord Jesus, Come Lord Jesus, Come Lord Jesus" and they don't just say "come and forgive me" they are crying out in the understanding of who they are as the one that is cherished by Jesus in the bridal identity. [9]

The Power of Emotionalism, Mysticism, and Gnosticism

The major draw of IHOP is experience.  People often come to me citing their experience and go back again and again to experience "God" and the "Spirit" - no different than an emotional high.  This is analogous to mysticism, which is defined as “the pursuit of deeper or higher subjective religious experience,” and “that spiritual reality is perceived apart from the human intellect and natural senses.” [13] They practice what is known as centering or contemplative prayer.  This is defined as “the practice of relaxing, emptying the mind, and letting one's self find the presence of God within.” [10] In fact, they had an article titled “Contemplative Prayer” on their website, but after much negative press they have taken it down. [13]

However, the contents of the article have been preserved by a former IHOP staff member’s website and is available for all to see here: (http://gospelmasquerade.wordpress.com/2009/08/01/contemplative-prayer-continued/)

One of the highest criticisms would be IHOP’s insidious Gnosticism.  Gnosticism is derived from the greek word gnosis, meaning “knowledge.”  The hallmark of Gnosticism is the idea of having “hidden knowledge” of the spiritual realm that is unavailable to others.  This knowledge comes via prophecies, visions, and dreams that God specifically gives to a certain privileged group of people  - in this case IHOP.  In fact, IHOP has their own “prophecy rooms” where one can receive “prophecies,” and they used to have a practice of mailing out recorded tapes, of which I was asked by my friend’s mother to translate!

This is something the Apostle Paul discusses in Colossians 2:18. “Let no one keep defrauding you of your prize by delighting in self-abasement and the worship of the angels, taking his stand on visions he has seen, inflated without cause by his fleshly mind” (NASB) [11].

Great experiences with our Lord are a gift from God, but one needs to exercise caution concerning the authority he/she gives personal experiences.  More often than not, the people who go to IHOP do not have a strong theological foundation and so they rely on their experiences to dictate what the Bible says and not the other way around.  Here are some words (from Dr. John MacArthur's sermon "Are Experiences a Valid Source of Truth?) of wisdom regarding experiences:

There is the ploy they use, "Well, we would expect you to be against it since you haven't had the experience." That is Gnosticism. That is believing that you have been elevated to a higher level of comprehension which the uninitiated have no understanding. Rodman Williams, who has written a number of books and who was once the president of a local Charismatic school, and I quote said, "Any vital information concerning the Gifts of the Spirit, the Pneumatic Charismata, predisposes a participation in them. Without such a participation, whatever is said about the Gifts may only result in confusion and error." If you haven't had it, you have no right to talk about it. One pastor said to me, "You talk exactly like one who never had the experience. You are speaking out of ignorance." I wonder if they feel that way talking about Heaven, Hell, murder, adultery, homosexuality, and numerous other subjects. Do we have to have that experience too? [5]

The IHOP Dilemma

When someone comes to you and say that God gave him a clear audible and/or visual revelation (dream, vision, prophecy, etc.), you are now in what I will call the IHOP Dilemma.

Due to the seriousness of disobeying genuine prophecy and the heinousness of proclaiming a false one, you are in an IHOP Dilemma when you are now forced to choose:

1) If this person is actually speaking truth from God.  If so, we are bound to listen or face incurring the steep penalty of disobeying God's very own commands via His prophet.

or

2) Whether or not a person is proclaiming falsehood in God's name and thus incurring the steep penalty of false prophesying and being a false prophet.

Unfortunately, this puts the rest of Christianity in a hard situation, because we now have to make the determination whether IHOP is full of false prophets or true prophets and to treat them as such.  We cannot merely remain neutral.  How can we be neutral on God's revelation or on such an egregious sin as false prophecy within the church?  It is like someone saying the pastor cheated on his wife or that he murdered someone and saying, "Hmm... let me think about that and get back to you later."  No, you're now in a tough situation and you now have to make a hard decision!

Unfortunately, many of those in IHOP have no idea what they are doing when they are supposedly "prophesying."  As I said before, they do not have a strong Biblical foundation and do not pause to think of the gravity of what they are actually proclaiming. [8]

<snip>

Conclusion

A quick review of the main offenses include:
1.   Cultic origin, worship style, and goals
2.   Emotionalism
3.   Mysticism
4.   Gnosticism
5.   The IHOP dilemma
6.   False Prophecies
7.   Effective Denial of Sola Scriptura
8.   Opposition by multiple Godly Christian Groups

Though it may seem like a place that is on fire and passionate for God, this is simply not the case.  Many of the people that do go there are sincere Christians, but they have been overcome by the lies and experiences they have there.  In short, the people I have communicated with ignore the things above and simply hold on to what they have experienced and point the finger at me saying, “you don’t know about us.”  Unfortunately I do know, and I hope this article persuades or helps you convince someone else who is going down a destructive path.  It breaks my heart to see so many young people fall victim to this place, and all the people who waste their lives and God given talents to expand IHOP’s kingdom and not God’s Kingdom.

http://carm.org/ihop


Title: Kentucky Baptist children’s home considers allowing gay adoption
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 07, 2013, 12:45:01 pm
Kentucky Baptist children’s home considers allowing gay adoption
11/7/13
http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/kentucky-baptist-childrens-home-considers-allowing-gay-adoption

November 7, 2013 (Albert Mohler) - Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world (James 1:27).

Back in 1869, Baptists in Kentucky established a “Home for the Helpless,” seeking to serve orphans and other homeless children. Like so many other Christian churches and denominations of the era, Louisville’s Baptists saw the need for an orphanage to provide care for parentless and abandoned children, who before the establishment of orphanages were housed with adults in almshouses. The Home for the Helpless became the Louisville Baptist Orphans Home, and its charter established its mission to serve “orphan and destitute children.”

Those Baptists saw the orphanage as a Christian duty in response to a biblical mandate. The orphanage was a direct extension of Christian conviction, and it was operated under a board of Baptist control. In 1953, the Louisville ministry merged with the nearby Kentucky Baptist Children’s Home, and the two became the Kentucky Baptist Board of Child Care. A 1986 “Covenant Agreement” between the child care ministry and the Kentucky Baptist Convention called for the ministry to operate “in keeping with Christian principles and the dream of the founders of child care in Kentucky.”

That pledge is now very much in question as reports indicate that the ministry, now renamed Sunrise Children’s Services, is poised to change its hiring policies to remove any barrier to homosexuals and lesbians working as employees of the ministry.

The proposal came to light as the Western Recorder, the Kentucky Baptist newspaper, reported that the Sunrise board had discussed the matter in a specially called meeting held in August. That news, which stunned Kentucky Baptists, came after years of assurances from the ministry and its president, Bill Smithwick, that current hiring policies would remain in place. As the paper reported, “Up to now, Smithwick has consistently told the KBC mission board and convention messengers that Sunrise would continue defending its right to discriminate based on sexual orientation in on-going lawsuits.” Those lawsuits include an action filed by a lesbian worker who was terminated in 1998. That lawsuit was dismissed by the courts, but the terminated employee later filed a legal challenge to state funding of any institution that teaches religious beliefs. The State of Kentucky agreed to a settlement in the case, but Sunrise refused to accept the settlement, according to the Western Recorder.

When contacted by the paper, Smithwick refused to talk about the proposal and offered a rather belligerent response: “I don’t think Kentucky Baptists need to know something until there is something to know. Right now, my comment is, there’s nothing that Kentucky Baptists need to know, and all this [publicity] will do is hurt us.”

Subsequently, Kentucky Baptist leaders learned that  Smithwick’s August presentation to the Sunrise board had explicitly called for the employment policy to be changed. Smithwick set out several options for the board, making clear that retaining the policy would require the termination of additional employees. In turn, he warned that Sunrise would likely lose major secular funding sources in the business community, suffer further adverse publicity, “and close our doors.” He also told the board that he expects the federal government to mandate the employment of homosexuals in the future, and probably the near future. This is premised on the fact that Sunrise receives millions of dollars each year in government funding.

Smithwick then set out a second option whereby Sunrise would “tough it out until the Federal Government mandates employment of homosexuals” and “then change our employment practices after losing years of time and money spent to build our brand.”

Lastly, Smithwick proposed a third option: “Change our employment practice.” He declared that Sunrise “is not a church, or a religious institution” and argued that the organization cannot operate at current levels without government funds. Then, after arguing that Sunrise is not a religious institution, he assured the board that, even if the policies are changed, Sunrise would “continue to share the Gospel through Bible studies, worship attendance, etc. to residents and staff.”

Included in Smithwick’s argument was his personal statement that he would “rather homosexuals see the love of God through us than be denied employment by us.” He closed by offering the strange analogy of a missionary serving in Iran who wore a head covering out of respect for Muslims, apparently missing the point that no biblical command or biblical teaching is violated by wearing a head covering.

Kentucky Baptists were not alone in their shock over the Sunrise proposal. An attorney who had represented the terminated lesbian employee told The Courier-Journal (Louisville), “This is very surprising. They were very adamant that they wouldn’t hire gays and lesbians.” He is right, they were adamant about the matter and, at least until the board votes later this week on Smithwick’s proposal, they still are—at least officially.

All that can change in short order. Bill Smithwick is absolutely right about one aspect of this matter: there is every likelihood that governmental coercion on these issues is coming. The Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) is expected to pass in the U.S. Senate in coming days, and the Obama Administration has threatened to accomplish much the same by executive order. It is hard to imagine how an entity that describes itself as “not a church or a religious institution” can claim an exemption under such a legal mandate.

There is truth in the claim that Sunrise Children’s Services, along with thousands of similar organizations and institutions, will have to face a hard choice: serve Caesar or serve God. This becomes inevitable once an entity becomes dependent on financial support from the government. That is why Baptists have historically—and rightly—insisted on nonparticipation with government funding. Participation means dependency, as the financial situation of Sunrise Children’s Services makes clear. Smithwick told The Courier-Journal, “The Baptist support, totaling $1 million each year on a $27 million budget, is very much needed, but Sunrise cannot sustain itself without the partnership of state and federal and fundraising dollars.”

The choice faced by Sunrise, soon likely to be faced by a host of similar organizations, is to get smaller or get secular. The instant an organization takes government money it is transformed into an instrument of the state. What Caesar funds, Caesar controls. This is a hard lesson, and one likely soon to be learned by Christian institutions that have been taking government money and have grown dependent on those funds.

**You forgot about the 501c3 status - allowing people to write off donations off of their income taxes - same thing.

This will not end with children’s homes. A good many Christian colleges and universities have grown dependent on funds flowing through federal student aid programs and similar forms of government funding. What happens when they face a similar choice? The math will not work in their favor. A hard choice will have to be made, and we will soon see who will stand on conviction and who will act to save their funding.

The question does not stop with funding. Soon after Britain passed antidiscrimination legislation like ENDA, Christian adoption agencies were basically put out of business. They were given a choice to sever ties with their churches or go out of business. In Massachusetts, the legalization of same-sex marriage meant the end of the adoption work done by Catholic Charities, since they could not and would not violate their convictions. In Illinois, the work of Catholic Charities in foster care and adoption came to an end in 2011, and the admired organization gave up millions in government funding because they would not violate their convictions.

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, himself a Catholic,  made the coercive power and intention of the state clear when he declared that a refusal to recognize same-sex civil unions as equivalent to heterosexual marriage for adoption and foster care: “They have a law in Illinois. It’s the civil unions law. I signed it into law. We’re not going back. Any organization that decides that because of the civil unions law that they won’t participate voluntarily in a program, that’s their choice.”

Some choice. In October of 2011 the state transferred more than 1,000 children from the care of Catholic Charities to secular agencies.

According to Baptist Press, only four or five of the 23 Baptist children’s homes associated with state Baptist conventions do not receive government funds. Bryant Millsaps, president of Tennessee Baptist Children’s Homes, told the news service that his agency had not accepted government monies in its 122 year history. And he explained why: Receiving government money is “almost like being dependent on a drug. You get hooked on it, and getting unhooked is very, very difficult. And in some cases it’s impossible.”

The board of directors of Sunrise Children’s Services faces a hard choice, but the choice is not just between several policy alternatives. They will decide to serve God or to serve Caesar. Paul Chitwood, executive director of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, urged Sunrise to step out in faith, even if it means losing massive funding. He urged the agency “to dramatically scale back its work in order to be faithful to Scripture and to model biblical values in front of hurting children.” As for Kentucky Baptists, they will find a way to serve children and keep their convictions, assures Chitwood: “Either way, I am confident Kentucky Baptists will always minister to hurting children and will do so through a ministry with biblical values.”

When asked about the payment of taxes, Jesus famously responded, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s” (Mark 12:17). We dare not render to Caesar what belongs rightly and only to God.

Reprinted with permission from Albert Mohler


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 09, 2013, 12:46:32 pm
http://now.msn.com/eric-fromm-northwest-christian-student-body-president-comes-out-as-an-atheist-on-school-news-site/
11/9/13

Christian college student body president comes out as an atheist
8 hrs ago

Eric Fromm decided to attend Northwest Christian University almost in spite of its faith-based mission. He liked the school's small class sizes and communications program, but was already struggling with his faith when he enrolled. And though he was well-regarded enough to be elected student body president, confessing his doubts to other students revealed their discomfort, with some even making fun of him. That only steeled his resolve to declare his atheism in the school's on-line newspaper, even as he expected more criticism. But instead there has been an outpouring of support, though he still gets the "Why are you here?" questions. But not from university vice president MIchael Fuller. “I want students like Eric here … students who are looking to explore their faith and willing to look hard and make their faith their own,” he said.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

It wasn't too long ago when the "moral majority" voting sect supported Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush b/c supposedly they were born again Christians - of course, they were a 33rd Degree Freemason and a Skull and Bones alum, respectively.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 09, 2013, 01:21:19 pm
^^

‘I’m an Atheist’: Christian College Student Body President Reveals Shocking Secret in Op-Ed
11/8/13
http://news.yahoo.com/m-atheist-christian-college-student-body-president-reveals-181235879.html

Eric Fromm, student body president at Northwest Christian University, a faith-based college in Eugene, Ore., stunned his college community last week when he revealed through an op-ed published in a campus outlet that he's an atheist.

Fromm shared his theological views and issued a clarion call for Christians to be more accepting of others who disagree with their worldview in the Beacon Bolt, an online publication.

"My name is Eric Fromm. I am Senior at NCU majoring in communications, and I am an atheist," he wrote in an article titled "Lifting the Curtain."

He continued, "Yes, you read that correctly, I am an atheist. For those of you who didn't already know about my nonbelief, this news may be a bit shocking, but I was an atheist long before I came to NCU."

Fromm went on to explain that he was baptized a Lutheran and raised a Methodist, but that, over time, he began to develop the belief that "God wasn't real."

FYI, George Lucas("Star Wars") was raised a Methodist as well. And this isn't the first "But I was raised a Protestant/Methodist" story...

Considering Fromm's admission that he came to Northwest Christian University, a well-known Christian school, as an atheist, he explained that he did so because he knew the school had a good communications program.

"I knew that the school catered to Christian thinking, so before I enrolled, I visited the campus to make sure that the chapel services were comfortable enough that I could fulfill the requirement," he wrote. "No one was speaking in tongues or handling snakes, so I decided to stay."

**This seems to be the "new norm" in Churchianity - "speaking in tongues"(meaning one has a "gift" of speaking in a bunch of gibberish).

In his op-ed, Fromm described often struggling during university chapel services, as he found himself wanting to be a part of the excitement and energy, but he said he couldn't force belief in God upon himself.

From there, Fromm took aim at some of the Christians on campus who have treated him differently since they found out he's a non-believer. He called it ironic that these same people who now scoff at him would often complain about how they were treated in high school as a result of their Christian views.

"When people found out that I was an atheist, they started treating me differently," Fromm continued. "Sometimes they would verbally attack me, sometimes they would give me the cold shoulder, and sometimes they just gave me dirty looks."

He concluded by noting that he is "burdened" by the potential of rejection because of his non-belief. Fromm said he wrote the article so that he no longer has to keep his atheism a secret -- and because he wanted to target his peers' "inability to accept those who don't fit their Christian pattern."

In an interview with The Register Guard, Michael Fuller, vice president for enrollment and student development at Northwest Christian University, said that he has known about Fromm's atheism for years and that it did not cause him to question his student body presidency.

"He's a man of very high character and respect. He's a great advocate for our student body, which is exactly what he's supposed to be and do," Fuller said.


While Fuller added that the school wishes Eric would be a "strong Christian man," he went on to say that he wants students like Fromm to be a part of the academic community -- individuals "who are looking to explore their faith and willing to look hard and make their faith their own."

Some critics, though, question Fromm's presidency and charge that a Christian school's mission cannot be fulfilled by having an atheist student leader at the helm.

"With an atheist president, it doesn't make sense how this mission can be carried out," one critic wrote in an e-mail to The Register Guard.

What do you think? Let us know below.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 09, 2013, 01:23:33 pm
Quote

What do you think? Let us know below.

Galatians 1:10  For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on November 10, 2013, 04:17:28 am
And why is this story a big deal? I don't think it is. The guy is a student, so what. It's not like he's the US president trying to hide his real religious beliefs!  ::)

What I think, is that this is a non-story.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 10, 2013, 04:16:33 pm
And why is this story a big deal? I don't think it is. The guy is a student, so what. It's not like he's the US president trying to hide his real religious beliefs!  ::)

What I think, is that this is a non-story.

Yes - but at the same time, he's the student body President of this "Christian" college - if this was 20, or even 10 years ago, a lot of people would have made a big deal out of this. But now - it seems like just anything goes in these places.

These "Christian" churches and colleges have always been compromised and leavened, but again, it's been only recently when the attitude over this is just "whatever goes".


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on November 11, 2013, 03:10:53 am
Well, I can say from my limited exposure, those schools are full of non-believers. A brother I knew years ago went to school in Missouri to one of those "Christian" colleges and he said back then (now over 20 years ago) how most of the students he talked to weren't Christian. He was amazed at the number of kids that had the idea they were going into the "ministry" for the money. Nothing has changed I don't think.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 18, 2013, 11:01:21 pm
http://galatiansfour.blogspot.com/2013/12/so-few-discern.html
Wednesday, December 18, 2013

So Few Discern.....

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-L2nGYddxjuM/UrHJ4Peb4wI/AAAAAAAAGpw/xAgZkbOBMAw/s400/cover.PNG)

Perhaps some of you have faced statements like I am going to list below. If you want to share any input or advice I am willing to take it. Outside the internet, and like-minded Christians such as ones who post on here, my success rate of finding like-minded people or convincing of them of things is abysmally low. I have witnessed to many, even a couple who left the Catholic church, but then the evangelical church system scoops them right up. I know they are in God's hands, and in charge of their own choices and beliefs, but sometimes this can get tough.

  What would you say or do?  Have any of you ever known someone extremely kind, a good loved friend or colleague or family member or someone that professes to love Jesus Christ and then they just do not want to know what you have to share? Sometimes it can be troubling. It hurts my heart, to try and show someone I care about things and then be told the following.

 Let me list them....

1. "That is too scary and depressing".

 This is usually said in reference to warnings about the NWO, or if one doesn't want to go down what is commonly known as "conspiracy" lane, this has been said to me in reference to Satan running the world and Luciferians at the higher levels running things. This statement has been told to me warning about false evangelical churches several times. This can be over something such as bringing up the reality of the Tribulation in the book of Revelation during a bible study or for more liberal folks, even the discussion of hell itself.  Many church folks out there consider even connecting bible prophecy to current events as "conspiracy". I have directly seen a pastor write, "We are to focus on our own lives and not get caught up in bible prophecy!" Anyhow conspiracy is warned of in the Bible.

Acts 23:13 And they were more than forty which had made this conspiracy.

 We are supposed to give the "good news" of course, but this statement usually goes with the next:

2. "The world is NOT that evil, the world is a good place."

 That's a hard one to break. This is related to some of the you must be positive messages that are out in the world. It is tough, I know my world view alone, can have people label me as "melancholic", even if you tell them of hope and joy in heaven, if you say things here are bad or really bad, people are upset by that. Many do not face the reality of how our world works. They do really believe that it is better "not to know" and this can range from immediate topics like false pastors to more subtle stuff, like believing that all people want to do good, or people are mostly good inside. The Bible says there are none that are good.

  Some will trying to mean well will tell you, put that 'depressing religious stuff" aside and go enjoy yourself. Why do you have to warn about all that depressing stuff biblebeliever? This one where people can get to you, and you think "Oh I shouldn't talk about these things" and how many conform based on that alone, not wanting to be a "negative nancy"? One can think thoughts like maybe my view of the world is skewed because I've had a tough life but then this attitude especially has grown and led people into a denial of sorts with self-chosen blindfolds.

 But if one isn't going to admit the world is evil, how are we supposed to do this?

Ephesians 6: 31 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

3. It's not right to leave the church system. God designed us to be in the church.

 I have shared my struggles with this one quite a few times. One thing I will confess here, is I do struggle with a temptation to find the "least worst" church and attend. Thoughts pop up like, "I've been out of a church now for 7 years, except for a few months of visiting a Calvary Chapel years ago and how is this going to work out in the long haul?" No other members of my household are Christians. If I ever did that, that would last all of about two seconds, before they would praise Rick Warren from the pulpit or tell me that no politician is to be criticized and I would get up and run. These folks, see people who reject the church system as "outliners". This one is a tough one. I have been asked these kind of questions:

a. What kind of Christian doesn't go to church?

 My answer: One that can't find a church that teaches the truth. Then I quote Revelation 17

b. How can you be a Christian in a vacumm?

 My answer: It's not easy, I seek out long distance Christian fellowship. We have the Holy Spirit to lead and teach us even when alone.

c. Why do you think you know more then those who have studied theology and actually know Greek and Hebrew?

 My answer: The Holy Spirit is to be our teacher. The seminaries are cemetaries when it comes to true Christian belief.

d. Now that I am born again, where am I supposed to attend a local church to find like-minded believers?

 My answer: You must trust in God and ask Him to lead you. This one troubles me, because I think a new believer definitely needs some Christian support.  I have done a few bible studies with one newer believer but that fell off from their end. I have answered Pray to God to find like minded believers and look to God's truth and then warned about the churches. Yes this one is not easy.

e. The circumstances of your life, bible believer make it imperative that you are a part of a church.

 My answer: I'd rather be in a church but I have not been able to find a house church or other independent church that teaches the truth. They know I am in a household with no other Christians, my family of orgin is not Christian and I live in a community where even "fundamentalists" are extraordinarily rare.

 Many do not realize I would love to have a church to be in or part of. But how many falsehoods can on take? What if God tells you to leave them all? Even ones you yourself did not want to leave but obedience to God had to come first? I know this applies to some readers here.

 About a month ago, one of my old church members [from my first IFB] wrote me and told me I need to find a church, any church rather then be around out in the world alone. She wrote me and told me, "The times are evil and you need the support of a church family!"  Point taken, we all know this is not an easy place to be but what can be done? Perhaps God will change things for me one day.

Soon I may be writing about a topic that may not be an easy one. This one I may upset a few folks. I am going to be writing about the baptist churches, and the matters where I parted ways from the baptist church even IFBs and why I stopped calling myself a baptist long ago. This one is kind of a scary one to go into.  Why? Because I have my connections to my old IFB church  and old pastor--[yes have freely told him what I believe from everything on Christmas to the NWO] and I know I probably have a lot of IFB and other baptist readers.

4. The Pressures are Immense.

 If not for study of God's Word and prayer, I can see how people would give in to all of the above, I see them give in all the time. One tells them the hard truths, and they do not want to know. They run.  You find yourself wondering why? It's sometimes hard to draw that line too between who is really saved, but in need of time and teaching via the Holy Spirit and who has never really been born again but considers themselves a Christian because they are part of a church or were baptized. There are many in the church system, even Catholic who if you ask them, "Are you born again?" Will have no problem saying "Yes!" but be totally wrong.  Many will tell you, "I am born again," and many will tell you, they became born again and gave their lives to Jesus Christ, but here I'm having my own difficulty, why aren't they discerning things then? Why do they still believe "Jesus" is in a piece of bread? The Catholics take that to the extreme but many other Protestants believe in downgraded forms of what the Catholics do. Why do so many Baptists like Rick Warren or think anyone who warns about discernment is wrong?

 For someone who stays in the Catholic church, and imbides of communion, and still believes in Purgatory, we pretty much can easily say, they have not been born again to where the Holy Spirit called them out of the harlot...I have said to some people directly, outside of a rare one who directly disobeys the Holy Spirit to leave, there are no saved people in the Catholic church. Sadly many have their pastors tell them otherwise.

 We know most of the church system is lost including the Protestant and evangelical ones. Surely some are born again, but why don't they discern? Why don't they "see"? This is a tough one for me especially regarding people I care and love about. The church system serves as its own blindfold. So many can't conceive of the truth outside what it told them by pastors. I know heaven isn't going to be a theological test to get in. Being born again, will be the most important. Surely even I have not learned everything there is to learn, we are all only human. But I question some of this stuff I really do from what I see. The not wanting to know thing when it is so overt is scary.

 It can be heartbreaking to show them scriptures, books on scriptures, videos, and they hand them back over to you saying, "I could not read this, I stopped reading this, I found this too scary..." It is a hard place to be in.  Perhaps some of my readers here have faced this too. What would you say or do beyond praying? These are people who freely admit they are "born again" but cling to the church system and it's worse deceptions like a barnacle on a ship.  Many are in churches their families have been in for over a hundred years. Others trust their pastors, some of whom are "kind" men to tell them "the truth." It's not always an easy thing. Sometimes I have asked God, are my fruits poor because so few have listened? Uh-oh people who hate this blog may jump on that one. Have any of my readers faced this, what do you think?

Job 24:13
They are of those that rebel against the light; they know not the ways thereof, nor abide in the paths thereof.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 21, 2013, 09:28:40 pm
For the record - there's NO end times "revival" b/c scripture clearly says there's going to be APOSTASY worldwide in the end times! THIS is a trap!

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/12/20/will-ae-suspension-phil-robertson-mobilize-evangelical-christians/
12/20/13
Will A&E's suspension of Phil Robertson mobilize evangelical Christians?

In suspending “Duck Dynasty” star Phil Robertson, A&E may have given evangelical Christians an opportunity to mobilize and stand up for their beliefs, David Brody said Friday on “The Kelly File.”

“(Evangelicals) are very upset at A&E for pulling the plug,” said Brody, who’s the chief political correspondent for the Christian Broadcasting Network. “You don’t mess with Duck Dynasty and evangelical Christians.”

Brody told Megyn Kelly that of the 85 million evangelicals currently in the United States, only a quarter of them vote, leaving the door open for liberal groups to take advantage at the polls.

“This is a gay rights lobby that’s a well-oiled machine,” Brody said. “They have the money and they have the passion. Are evangelicals going to match the passion? At this point, they haven’t, but Duck Dynasty might change that.”

But Brody is unsure if evangelicals can counter the gay rights lobby, which he calls a “vocal minority.”

“Can (evangelicals) switch, in essence, they playing field? Well, that remains to be seen,” Brody said. “We’ll see in 2016 for sure.”

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

John_18:36  Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.

Hebrews 11:36  And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:
Heb 11:37  They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented;
Heb 11:38  (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.
Heb 11:39  And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise:
Heb 11:40  God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on December 22, 2013, 04:50:55 am
Quote
But Brody is unsure if evangelicals can counter the gay rights lobby, which he calls a “vocal minority.”

No, they cannot. It is written right there in the Word of God, which those "evangelicals" claim to be reading. "Evangelicals", aka "Churchianity", can't understand because they don't have the light in them.

The father of lies is pulling a fast one on churchianity in that the ploy is to get them caught up in the world, walking after the flesh, and puffing up their pride, and getting them to fight for their "rights' in the world under a "works" false doctrine.

As I understand it, the idea is for people to turn from the darkness of the world, become born-again as a "new creature", and changing their lifestyle.

Let's see what Jesus prayed to the Father...(not only does Jesus not hear the prayers of the wicked, Jesus doesn't even pray for them to the Father, as the world is truly lost in darkness without God)

"I pray for them: I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine." John 17:9 (KJB)

12  While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.
13  And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
14  I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
15  I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.
16  They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
17  Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.
18  As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world.
19  And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth.
20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
John 17:12-20 (KJB)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 17, 2014, 10:17:18 pm
2/2014
Christianity's Churchianity's giant sleeper - China
http://www.ucobserver.org/features/2014/02/sleeping_giant/

Churches — both legal and illegal — are booming in China. Some view them as a welcome counterpoint to rampant materialism. Others see ghosts of a colonial past.
 
By Alex Jürgen Thumm

It was my last Sunday morning in China, my last chance to experience church in a Communist country where, as far as I could tell, Christianity was basically forbidden. It was 2011, and I had been in Beijing for five weeks to study Mandarin. In that time, I hadn’t seen a single cross, church or Bible. In fact, I read at customs that you couldn’t bring in more than four Bibles from abroad. I had no idea that I was in the third-largest Christian country in the world.

In Liangmaqiao, a Beijing neighbourhood that’s home to the foreign and the wealthy, I arrived at the 21st Century Hotel, where the Beijing International Christian Fellowship (BICF) holds services. The parking lot was full of Rolls-Royces and BMWs bearing Jesus-fish decals. At the building entrance, two parishioners acting as doorkeepers asked me for ID — by government order, only foreigners may attend church. I had forgotten my passport, so the doorkeepers made me sign a slip of paper attesting to my alien status.

Inside, 3,000 people packed into various auditoriums, each offering worship in a different language. I opted for the Mandarin service. Imagine an evangelical megachurch of hundreds of Chinese people with American passports. There was an excited but orderly choir, rock music and long, passionate praying. The Chinese-Californian minister preached about outreach and marriage. I recognized most of the songs from my Canadian Baptist upbringing; they had just been translated into Mandarin.

After I’d spent a couple of hours watching the service on jumbo-sized screens (which provided the clearest view), my first megachurch experience came to an end. Just before I managed to escape, someone wanted to talk. This was to be expected — I was one of three white people in the congregation. She was a teacher, she said, from the Philippines. But once we left the hotel and had walked a few blocks, she confessed she was actually a missionary. It was too risky to say so in the church auditorium, which was likely bugged, she said. She asked me directly whether I could secure a church sponsorship for her in Canada. We exchanged e-mail addresses, but I never heard from her again.

'Misconceptions abound about China, and that’s no less the case when it comes to the country’s Christian population.'

Misconceptions abound about China, and that’s no less the case when it comes to the country’s Christian population. Many assume a Communist country that is officially atheist would allow no religion. (Mao Zedong once said “religion is poison.”) But religious freedom is guaranteed in the 1978 constitution — or at least what the government considers “normal religious activity,” occurring in government-sanctioned places of worship serving one of the five official faiths: Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, Protestantism and Catholicism. Religion is on the rise in China, with one-third of people claiming an affiliation. To all my Chinese friends’ surprise, there are as many as 130 million Christians in China; the only countries with more are the United States and Brazil. Churchgoers in China outnumber those in all of Europe.

Given figures like these, understanding China’s relationship with Christians is essential to predicting the future of Christianity globally. Whether Chinese Christians refuse or accept state-sanctioned religion, or whether the state itself loosens or tightens its restrictions on the faithful will in turn shape the international body of Christ. In other words, what happens in China won’t simply stay in China. David Wang, co-founder of the Hong Kong-based mission agency Asian Outreach, says Chinese people are busy planting churches abroad; Metro Vancouver alone is home to over 100,000 Chinese Christians. “It’s now the era of ministry from China,” he told Christianity Today magazine.

Christianity and missionaries have been present in China — on and off, officially and covertly — since the eighth-century Tang dynasty. A further wave of tolerance for missionary work washed in during the 13th-century Mongolian Yuan dynasty. This was a time when the Chinese referred to Muslims, Jews and Christians all by the same name, hui hui — a stark contrast in a country that now considers Catholicism and Protestantism as two separate religions.

During a walking tour of Shanghai’s French Concession, I learned about the Taiping Rebellion, which took place between 1850 and 1864. It led to 20 million deaths and, interestingly enough, the foundations for Chinese communism. The cause for all the bloodshed? A certain Hong Xiuquan announced he’d had a vision that revealed he was Jesus’ brother. Over time, he gathered tens of thousands of armed followers seeking to establish the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom.

Contemporary Chinese Christianity can probably be traced to 1951, with the founding of the Three-Self Patriotic Movement, one of two state-sanctioned Protestant organizations. Its three “selves” are self-governance, self-support (financial independence from foreigners) and self-propagation (homegrown missionary work). The principles were meant to assure the government that the church would be loyal to the People’s Republic of China.

Perhaps ironically, today’s Christianity was also shaped by the decade-long Cultural Revolution that began in 1966, when religion was banned, faith leaders persecuted and places of worship destroyed or converted for secular use. Amid this upheaval, secret house churches sprang up, the Three-Self Patriotic Movement went underground (and was officially restored in 1979) and today’s church elders came of age.

More recently, in 2007, 70 leaders of illegal house churches convened in Wenzhou to develop seven core values. Several of them are distinctly Chinese. For example, intentional non-denominationalism reflects the Chinese value of wholeness and oneness.

The United Church of Canada has a long history with China, beginning in the mid-19th century with three missions led by the Presbyterian Church, one of the United Church’s founding denominations. Missionaries such as Very Rev. James Endicott, the United Church’s second moderator, carried this work into the 20th century. Endicott’s missionary son, Rev. James G. Endicott, later drew controversy for his support of the Chinese Communist Party.

'Perhaps ironically, today’s Christianity was also shaped by the decade-long Cultural Revolution that began in 1966, when religion was banned . . . '

Gary MacDonald told me about his 19 years of Christian life in China, beginning in 1992. As a United Church global mission worker, he lived in three different rural areas educating teachers with the Amity Foundation, one of China’s largest relief and development agencies and a United Church partner. In these partially illiterate rural communities, being known as a Christian was both a title and a standard. Sermons were over an hour long, and church meant giving, singing, praying spontaneously and forgiving neighbours’ Cultural Revolution betrayals, some of which involved torture. “To have an elderly person — blind and physically challenged because of having been tortured for his or her belief — lead in prayer during a church service is something I shall never forget,” he says.

Today, Chinese Christians can choose between two official Protestant church movements and Catholicism. I’m told these services are much the same as evangelical Chinese churches in the West, with one major difference: the church leaders are required to maintain a relationship with the government.

A separate category of legal worship in contemporary China is exclusive to foreign passport-holders: the international churches. “The Chinese government respects the freedom of religious belief of foreigners in China and they may attend religious activities in temples, mosques, churches and other religious places,” claims the tourism website beijingchina.net.cn. As long as foreigners do not try to establish or change Chinese religious organizations and practices, they are free to participate in worship.

Evangelism, sharing religion with minors and worshipping in public space are prohibited. The government fears that a congregation outside state control could grow too large and too influential.

Shan O-Yuan moved to Beijing from his native California a decade ago for a job in the construction industry and has been active with the BICF from the start. Sure, he says, you have to learn “how to work within regulations,” but for him, the Chinese Christian life is a happy and exciting one. As he sees it, people who live abroad have left familiar cultural constraints behind, so they’re more open to asking spiritual questions. Many rediscover their Christian faith while in China.

O-Yuan, who is in his 30s, has warmed up to his status as a religious minority. Being a Christian in China is a distinction. Unlike in the West, where what O-Yuan describes as a “so-called enlightened, post-Christian” view puts people off organized religion, in China they’re curious, “and it creates conversation.”

Despite evangelism being officially off-limits, O-Yuan claims you can evangelize in China in a way that you simply can’t in the United States. For example, because the Beijing expat community is a transitory one, when you “invest” in people who then return home, your actions ultimately have a global impact.

O-Yuan realizes there are difficulties, however, having faced some himself. “They want you to stay in your own little western enclave,” he says, “and keep your religious life to yourself.” It took a BICF project that he was involved with three tries to get a church planted in Beijing’s central business district. The 2008 Olympics, in particular, put the authorities on edge.

But in China, O-Yuan has found a place where he says God’s will is active and present. He’s witnessed successful church projects, including the establishment of orphanages. Gary MacDonald also told me about a church in Gansu province that refused to obey an order a few years ago to move to the edge of town and hand over its land. It stood up for its property rights, something MacDonald says wouldn’t have happened a decade earlier.

One aspect of the international church that excites O-Yuan is the absence of denominations. People find their common ground in Jesus and in being an expat. Though O-Yuan admits worship is strongly influenced by American evangelism, he insists it would be easier for a non-evangelical to find a spiritual home in China than in the United States: “The evangelical church in China is a lot more open.”

The third category of churches in China is illegal house churches, which operate underground and beyond the state’s control. (In order to keep a low profile, they typically split up once they reach about 100 members.) Those who join are keen to be part of a Christian community — for both its social and religious benefits — and are not intimidated by state threats. Though it’s impossible to know how many people attend house churches, some sources estimate between 45 million and 60 million Protestants, and their numbers are growing — a fact that even the government can’t ignore. In 2012, the State Administration for Religious Affairs created a plan to “guide” illegal house churches into becoming state churches.

Last summer, I returned to Beijing for three months to work as an English-teaching au pair for a wealthy, two-child Chinese family. One Sunday afternoon, after attending a small international church service in a business district, I was invited to a “gathering.” We got in a taxi and arrived at an apartment tower. My new acquaintance forgot which floor to go to. We tried cold-knocking a few doors and asked the doorkeeper if he had seen a large group of foreigners around. Finally, we tried one last floor, and it was the one. It was only when we walked in — late — that I realized it was a house church. I found myself in an apartment larger and more sophisticated than I’ve ever stayed in. It was packed with over 50 Chinese citizens, foreigners and Asian Americans, most of them working professionals and students. The service was long, passionate, hopeful and heavily influenced by American evangelism. It was also surprisingly loud, for an illegal gathering. I now know it was a typical Beijing house service. I wanted to return, but I knew the church would relocate before I’d have the chance.

The most famous illegal house church is Beijing’s Shouwang Church. Founded in 1993, it has grown to include over a thousand members, some of whom reportedly hold memberships in the Communist party. In 2011, having been evicted for the 20th-plus time (the landlords were under pressure from the state), Shouwang started to meet outdoors in the Zhongguancun area of Beijing, sometimes referred to as China’s Silicon Valley. A few dozen worshippers are arrested at every outdoor Shouwang service and usually held for a few hours. Despite the notoriety of the church, its name cannot be found on Chinese websites.

Many other Chinese Christians don’t let themselves be intimidated by the government, often drawing courage from Bible stories such as Daniel in the lion’s den. The Texas-based organization China Aid reports that from 2005 to 2006, 1,958 Christians were arrested in China. Wiretapping is not unheard of. China Aid also reports that house church leaders were arrested at a Christian leadership conference in Shandong province in 2007 and subsequently sentenced to multiple years in a labour camp.

These days, there are hints the Communist party may be more favourably disposed toward faith than in previous generations. China is experiencing a 1960s-style sexual revolution and 21st-century materialism all at once. With a frighteningly large share of the population concerned with little but socio-economic success, values such as politeness, honesty, sexual fidelity and community are taking a direct hit — especially in the cities.

Is Christianity a solution? China’s former premier Wen Jiabao regularly invoked the importance of spiritual growth. The Communist party has also expressed interest in American evangelical-style marriage courses to combat the explosive divorce rate.

Before becoming a Christian himself, the well-known Chinese economist Zhao Xiao pointed to Christianity and its positive impact on the historic economic success of the West. In his 2002 article, “Market Economies With Churches and Market Economies Without Churches,” he argued that China needs a moral foundation and therefore needs Christianity. After his field study in the United States, Zhao concluded that a strong economy requires a moral force to transcend the drive for profit and to infuse the business community with respect for people, contracts and the planet.

Is the Chinese state correct in its judgment that Christianity is a foreign-controlled import? Or can Christianity become indigenous to China? And what does Chinese Christianity look like: Bible-reading followers of Jesus who submit to state control? Would they quote Confucius, venerate ancestors and enjoy traditional Chinese festivals, rooted in Buddhism and luck? After all, many Chinese mix faiths, calling themselves Taoist and Buddhist, for example.

At the same time, one also has to wonder whether Christianity ought to be indigenized — would Chinese Christianity ultimately have a positive impact on China and the rest of the world? Would it even be Christianity?

Many more questions remain. In China, there are no guarantees; the uncrossable line is always fluctuating. Trust can be precarious. Are Christians still persecuted? None of the six pastors I contacted would give me an interview, saying it’s just not the right time. What move will the government make next? When will Christian members of the Communist party take a stand, and when will the party’s treatment of religion estrange a critical mass? What role can western Christians ethically play without compromising the Chinese church’s independence?

For now, O-Yuan believes that the best Chinese Christians can do is tell their story.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 18, 2014, 12:19:02 am
http://www.christianpost.com/news/christian-dating-culture-part-1-majority-of-single-christians-reject-idea-of-waiting-for-marriage-to-have-sex-114422/
Christian Dating Culture (Part 1): Majority of Christian Singles Reject Idea of Waiting Until Marriage to Have Sex

Survey Reveals That 61% of Christian Singles Are Willing to Have Casual Sex

2/12/14

A majority of single Christians are rejecting biblical doctrine by choosing to have sex before they are married. Sixty-one percent of self-identified Christian singles who answered a recent ChristianMingle survey said they are willing to have casual sex without being in love, while only 11 percent said they are waiting to have sex until they are married.

In an interview with The Christian Post, two Christian Millennials share their diverse stories on faith, sex and marriage, and explain why many singles are battling against the "purity culture" of their youth.

When Heather Lindsey moved to New York City in 2004 at the age of 22, the Michigan native both attended church regularly and considered herself a Christian.

While Lindsey grew up in the church, she said it rarely emphasized reading the Bible or one's relationship with God. As an adolescent, her mother's only sex-ed advice was to use birth control when she became sexually active. But while in college, Lindsey "gave her heart to Christ." There, for the first time, she became convicted that premarital sex is wrong.

But despite this realization, after Lindsey moved to New York, she did not abide by this new sexual ethic. Instead, she entered and exited relationships frequently, often sleeping with the men she was dating.

"Even though I knew it was wrong, I continued to have sex outside of marriage," Lindsey told The Christian Post. "Why? Because when you're single you don't want to be lonely."

"I was the girl that broke up with one boyfriend and had another one on speed-dial—that afternoon I'd already be going out with somebody else. I kept a boyfriend because I liked the attention," she continued.

For Lindsey, her behavior was not simply a result of her conforming to the sexual values of her non-Christian peers. Instead, she had friends from church with similar sexual ethics and even dated and became sexually involved with a man who was serving at the same church that she was.

"We all went to the church. We were hypocrites. We said we loved the Lord but we ignored the scriptures that said that fornication is a sin," said Lindsey.

Lindsey eventually cut off all people that had been a part of that lifestyle. Several years ago she got married and moved to Atlanta, where, now 31, she is the founder and CEO of Pinky Promise, an organization that encourages single and married women to "rise above cultural pressures and to "stay determined to live for Christ regardless of their circumstances."

Only 11 percent of Christians are waiting until marriage before having sex

While Christians may see Lindsey's premarital sexual behavior as typical for that outside their faith, a new Christian Mingle study suggests that it is increasingly commonplace for Christians to sleep together outside of a marital context.

In a survey of 716 Christians released in January, only 11 percent said they save sex exclusively for marriage. Instead, 60 percent said they would be willing to have sex without any strings attached, while 23 percent said they would have to be "in love." Five percent said they would wait to get engaged.

This data supports a 2011 Relevant Magazine poll that revealed that 80 percent of "young, unmarried Christians have had sex" and that "two-thirds have been sexually active in the last year."

While the findings of a 2012 National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) and Grey Matter Research poll did not show outcomes as high as the two previous polls, according to its research, 44 percent of unmarried evangelicals between ages 18-29 said that they had sex, including 25 percent who said they had had sex in the last three months.

Battling against the "purity culture"

Emily Maynard, 28, a writer from Portland, Ore., has witnessed many of her friends rejecting abstinence, in what she interprets as them pushing back against the "purity culture," or the conservative sexual and dating norms with which they were raised.

"It's a family, church and social system that favors the idea of courtship. There were phrases like 'Don't date unless you're ready to get married' or at the age where you can support yourself on your own. Or 'Guard your heart, particularly as a woman.' I was told that even crushes were giving away a piece of myself," Maynard told CP.

Maynard said that as her and her peers grew up, many of them became "jaded" with their childhood values and consequently chose to make decisions contrary to those espoused by the purity culture.

"We were raised with the idea that says, 'Wait for God to bring you the one.' And 'Don't wait around, don't sleep around, and you'll kind-of get this reward,'" said Maynard.

"I think a lot of people who are dating in the Christian world, say late 20s, early 30s, they did 'the right thing.' They followed the system. They waited until they got married to have sex and their marriage fell apart by the time they were 25. I think there are a lot of people entering the dating world who are jaded with what a lot of churches and purity culture promises you," she added.

**Yes, the modern-day "church" system's BIG problem is that they turned a blind eye to no-fault divorce! This is why sodomy has been getting legalized at a faster rate now!

While the backlash might be true for some subsets of evangelicals, according to the NAE poll, most Christians attributed their sexual activity to culture, followed by lacking a strong biblical foundation and "living in the moment."

**This has been the rotten fruit of the whole "culture wars" since 1980, lead by the "religious right" - they pretty much threw out the bible.

The Church is following secular culture opposed to leading by example

Lisa Anderson, who is the director of Boundless, Focus on the Family's singles and young adults ministries, said that she was not surprised at Christians' high tolerance for premarital sex.

"Generally, if you look at the dating landscape in the church today, it looks very similar to that of the world. There's not a lot of distinction in the way people date [or] in the attitude toward dating and marriage," Anderson told CP.

**No surprise - as pretty much New Age theology, CCM, and Freemasons have infiltrated these Babel church buildings for a long time, and now their really rotten fruit is showing.

While "sex may be the determining factor" for some Christians "we're even seeing that line blurred," said Anderson.

"And in every other respect, we're generally seeing the same kind of attitudes and practices," said Anderson, listing "dating ad nauseum, dating indefinitely, dating someone without any specific game plan, and dating recreationally without a view toward marriage," as examples of ways that the Church has adopted the patterns of the larger secular culture.

"For the Christian culture it's extremely frustrating, because they are trying to go after something lasting, but they're using the same formula to get something that's just not going to get them there," said Anderson.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 03, 2014, 08:20:49 pm
http://www.movieguide.org/news-articles/secret-box-office-success-hollywood-told.html
The Secret to Box-Office Success Hollywood Never Told You

What if there was a secret formula that guaranteed your next major motion picture would be a box-office hit?

What if this secret formula could add $30-$50 million to your movie’s gross revenue?

Now, what if this secret formula was actually not secret, but something well known and researched by an organization with a 22-year history for accurately predicting box-office success?

I’m about to share with you something you won’t hear at any Hollywood cocktail party or $5,000 a plate political fundraiser at George Clooney’s house.

Are you ready?

The secret to box-office success is to make a great movie with strong Christian, Biblical, moral, and redemptive content and no graphic sex, nudity, foul language, or violence.

If you’re more interested in bringing in $200 million on your next movie than receiving a golden statue that will likely collect dust on your bookshelf, make movies that the 123 million Americans who attend church weekly want to see.

I see your skepticism. You’ve been in Hollywood so long that the last church you’ve visited was for a funeral or a wedding.

Let’s take a look at the Top 10 movies at the box office in 2013. These all made north of $200 million each.

Ninety percent (90%) of the Top 10 movies in 2013 had a strong or very strong Christian, Biblical, moral, or redemptive worldview, and none of them had a strong Non-Christian, Anti-Christian, or immoral worldview.

You may find yourself running in circles with people who like the idea of “spreading the wealth around” or sympathetic to the Occupy Wall Street movement, but it’s best to keep these viewpoints out of your movies.

Also, none of the top 10 movies had any strong Communist, socialist, or anti-capitalist content.

In fact, THE HUNGER GAMES:  CATCHING FIRE, IRON MAN 3, and MAN OF STEEL were particularly conservative movies, and these three movies brought in more than $1 billion dollars collectively!

The Top 10 movies of 2013 also had no explicit sexual nudity, no Anti-American or anti-patriotic content and none were R rated.

The secret to box-office success isn’t really a secret, but it’s a well-publicized fact showcased each year by the record-breaking numbers of Americans who buy tickets for movies that affirm rather than assault their values.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Kilika on March 04, 2014, 12:52:00 am
Is that article a joke? It sure sounds like it.

All those movies they mention aren't even close to being "Christian". And what Christian elements they may have, are actually churchianity babble. ::)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 04, 2014, 11:21:57 am
Is that article a joke? It sure sounds like it.

All those movies they mention aren't even close to being "Christian". And what Christian elements they may have, are actually churchianity babble. ::)

I saw both "Hunger Games" movies, FWIW - both are pretty violent for movies that got a PG-13 rating. And they also push the Agenda 21 agenda.

Pretty much the big picture this article is talking about is that Hollywood is spending more and more time marketing movies toward the Churchianity crowd. Not surprising, as in the end times, Jesus Christ says deception would be growing and growing.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 05, 2014, 09:35:04 pm
Matthew 13:20  But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it;
Mat 13:21  Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.


http://news.yahoo.com/gods-not-dead-low-budget-hit-says-christians-211652034.html;_ylt=AwrBEiRXu0BT8lYAqBHQtDMD
'God's Not Dead': What low-budget hit says about Christians and Hollywood

'God's Not Dead' plays to Christians who feel their faith is caricatured or mocked by Hollywood. It finished fifth at the box office this weekend amid sharply mixed reviews.

3/24/14

It may be “The Year of the Bible” in Hollywood, but American moviegoers are still startling the industry with their robust enthusiasm for faith-filled films targeting the tastes of the faithful.

This weekend, the little-known and small-budget “God’s Not Dead,” a narrative about a Christian college student who must defend his faith in front of an aggressive philosophy professor who makes each of his students sign a pledge affirming that God does not exist, took in more than $8.5 million Friday through Sunday – a surprising fifth-place in this weekend’s box office numbers.

Even more startling, say observers, is the fact that the movie, aimed toward Evangelical Christians, was shown in only 780 theaters – far fewer than those ahead of it, each of which were showing on more than 3,000 screens. Featuring cameos by “Duck Dynasty” stars Willie and Korie Robertson, “God’s Not Dead” beat nearly every other movie this weekend on an earnings-per-screen basis.

“While this huge opening may be a surprise to the industry, it is not so much to us,” said Mark Borde, co-president of Freestyle Releasing, the film’s distributor, said over the weekend. “The in-house tracking, the legitimate one million Facebook fans, the very high trending on Twitter and Fandango, among many other platforms, and the huge positive reaction from the hundreds of screenings over the many past months, gave us hope for a significant opening.”

While not a blockbuster of biblical proportions, the small film’s significant success this weekend comes at a time when Hollywood has been trying to capitalize yet again on the faith-based market, which also made a hit out of “Son of God” earlier this month. The film was condensed from the History Channel’s smash TV hit, “The Bible,” and has taken in nearly $56 million since its release Feb. 28.

It also comes a week before next week’s much-anticipated release of “Noah,” starring Russell Crowe, as well as the forthcoming “Exodus,” directed by action movie legend Ridley Scott. Both big-budget biblical epics have blockbuster expectations along the lines of “The Passion of the Christ,” Mel Gibson’s controversial and graphic depiction of the crucifixion of Jesus, released 10 years ago.

But “God’s Not Dead” is a very different kind of film, many observers say. It has a deep resonance in the Evangelical subculture, which often feels mocked and demeaned by the nation’s media and entertainment elites. And even “Noah” has already generated controversy among the faithful, who object to the liberties taken with the movie’s extra-biblical story lines.

“There's a negativity towards Christians in Hollywood,” said Kevin Sorbo, the actor who plays the atheistic philosophy professor and who also played Hercules in the hit TV fantasy drama in the 1990s. “And a negativity towards people who believe in God.”

“The silent majority is starting to get annoyed with what’s going on,” the Christian actor continued. “I think more people need to start speaking about it instead of just sitting there and taking it.... It’s happening; you’re getting attacked; you need to stand up for yourself and your beliefs.”

Indeed, the film leaps headlong into the culture wars, striking back against famous atheists, referencing the views of Stephen Hawking, Noam Chomsky, and others.

The film follows the ordeal of Josh Wheaton (played by Disney alum Shane Harper), a pre-law student who refuses to sign a “God is Dead” statement at the outset of his philosophy class. His philosophy professor (Sorbo) then tells him he must either drop the class or defend his belief in God in front of the rest of the students, if he is to pass.

But the movie also has a number of subplots that reference real-life issues that chafe many Evangelicals. A journalist, described as a radical vegan, conducts ambush interviews with “Duck Dynasty” star Willie Robertson and his wife, who play themselves, referencing culture-war issues that have plagued the show since the family patriarch, Phil Robertson, compared homosexuality to bestiality in a magazine interview.

It also follows the story of a young Muslim woman, who converts to Christianity and secretly listens to podcasts of the evangelist Franklin Graham, son of Billy Graham. Her enraged father violently kicks her out of the house. There is also a subplot about a local pastor struggling with his faith, the vegan journalist who later discovers she has cancer, and the philosophy professor’s mistress, who becomes a Christian.

“I’m so glad a film like ‘God’s Not Dead' is bringing to the public the very real culture clash going on in American public life, especially in education,” e-mails Mitch Land, professor and dean at the School of Communication & the Arts at Regent University, an Evangelical school in Virginia Beach, Va. “We have a right and obligation to express our faith without fear of discrimination or reprisal.”

But responses to the film are as stark as red and blue.

Scott Foundas, chief film critic at Variety, called it a “ham-fisted Christian campus melodrama,” saying its depiction of the college professor was “rather like the Jews in the wartime **** propaganda films.”

And so far, some 2,000 ratings on the site imbd.com reveal a divide as wide as it could possibly be. On Monday morning, about half of the arm-chair critics on the site rate the film a "Citizen Kane"-level 10 out of 10 stars (46.3 percent). A full third, however, give it a rock-bottom, "Ishtar"-level 1 star out of 10 (32.8 percent). There's no shades of gray for those who see this film.

Still, others see it in a far less conflict-laden context.

“The success of 'God’s Not Dead' shows at least three things,” says Paul Levinson, media critic and professor of communications and media studies at Fordham University in New York: “Big budgets are not necessary to make popular movies, there is a significant part of the population that cherishes faith-based movies, and students like narratives about arrogant professors who get their due.”


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 09, 2014, 12:37:31 pm
Look at all of the misdirection going on here - FYI, these Pentacostal and "money making" churches ARE branches of the Catholic Church! And to boot - Rwanda happens to be one of Rick Warren's Global P.E.A.C.E. Plan "Purpose Driven" countries, and guess what, the United Nations declared this very country to be under human rights abuses in recent years!

There's going to be NO "revival" in the last days of the Church Age!

http://news.yahoo.com/evangelism-booms-catholicism-suffers-post-genocide-rwanda-043338846.html
4/9/14
Evangelism booms, Catholicism suffers in post-genocide Rwanda

Kigali (AFP) - Jean-Claude Zamwita's family abandoned the solemn organ music and stained glass windows of the Catholic church in 2006, eight years after the genocide in Rwanda, and started visiting an evangelical church with tambourines and drumming.

Such churches have been springing up across Rwanda, partly because the traditional churches, notably the Catholic Church, were largely discredited by the role played by some of their clerics during the killings.

Since the end of the genocide, which left some 800,000 people -- essentially Tutsis -- dead, Rwandans have increasingly turned to pentecostal churches or in some cases to Islam.

Zamwita, who was 15 when his family changed churches, said it was an easy decision.

"When we used to attend mass there was no interaction between the priest and the congregation. I was like a slave, being told what to do and what not to do. Here I feel free," he said.

The new churches started when Rwandan refugees came back from neighbouring countries such as Uganda or the Democratic Republic of Congo, where evangelical churches are already well established.

**FYI, I believe Warren is also active in Uganda.

"These churches are attractive because there is singing, a big display of emotion and an opportunity for individual expression," explained Paul Rutayisire, a historian specialised in religious issues.

Inside the Celpar church that Zamwita and his family attend, the service looks more like a rock concert than anything else.

On a small stage a dozen members of the congregation sing, dance, leap into the air and then throw themselves to their knees. Others throw their arms into the air, wipe tears from their eyes before plunging their head into their hands as if the end was near.

"After the genocide people were spiritually weak. They were sick," explained James Nsengiyumva, the 39-year-old preacher and secretary general of Celpar. "We brought them a new message of empowerment and reconciliation."

This Ugandan-born Rwandan, dressed in a well-cut suit, has 29 churches in Rwanda, three in neighbouring Burundi and a further 40 in DR Congo.

The new churches have found post-genocide Rwanda to be fertile ground as the Catholic Church, while still powerful, no longer has the close relationship to the government that it enjoyed prior to 1994.

Rwanda is still dotted with the ruins of Catholic churches where the faithful seeking shelter were massacred, sometimes with members of the clergy acting in complicity with the killers.

The debate over the role of the Catholic Church was revived on Monday when Rwanda's representative to UNESCO lashed out at the Vatican.

The Catholic Church, a moral authority and an important institution remained silent," Jacques Kabale, Rwanda's ambassador to France and to the UN agency, said on Monday, the 20th anniversary of the genocide.

**Again, the human rights abuses continued when Warren made this one of his "Purpose Driven" countries.

"Its abandonment was felt all the more keenly in that some of its members hid criminal actions," he said.

In spite of everything the Catholic Church has not totally lost its influence, Rutayisire said.

"People go to the Catholics, then to the others. Some people even go to both... those are spiritual journeys."


"The debate over the role of the Catholic Church in the genocide is something that is of interest to an elite group of genocide survivors, for within the majority that was not persecuted (i.e. the Hutu) this is not an issue," he added.

"We don't see them as competition," said Smaragde Mbonyintege, the head of the Episcopal Conference in Rwanda, adding that the Catholic Church had a lot to learn from the preaching methods of the new churches.

The Rwandan government for its part considers that if the evangelical churches do not for the moment represent a threat to public order, they are nevertheless difficult to keep tabs on.

"They are sprouting up like mushrooms," said Felicien Usengumukiza, deputy director general of the Rwanda Governance Board, noting that many of those in charge of evangelical churches seem more interested in making money.

If the evangelical churches get financing from outside the country, they also depend on contributions from the faithful. Zamwita, who ekes out a living from odd jobs, gives, like many other member of the flock who can barely afford it, 10 percent of his earnings to the church.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It's a lot like churches in America now - young people, in particular, are jumping ship from both these Catholic churches, as well as these Baptist/Protestant money-greedy/live under the law Babel buildings to these seeker-sensitive/social justice/liberal megachurches.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 20, 2014, 06:56:44 pm
https://movies.yahoo.com/news/captain-america-crushes-johnny-depp-holds-off-heaven-152800117.html
4/20/14

Excerpt:

Starring Greg Kinnear as a small-town pastor whose son claims to have seen heaven after a near-death experience, Sony's “Heaven Is for Real” was third for the weekend with $21.5 million and has taken in $28.5 million since opening Wednesday. It was the fourth faith-based film to score with moviegoers this year, coming on the heels of “Noah,” “God's Not Dead” and “Son of God.”


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 20, 2014, 09:21:57 pm
http://ca.reuters.com/article/entertainmentNews/idCABREA3J0L320140420
Hollywood plays to the faithful, finds hits with God
4/20/14

By Ronald Grover and Chris Michaud
 
(Reuters) - Hollywood has embraced God in a big - and lucrative - way.
 
The movie "Heaven is for Real," which depicts the story of a young boy who claims to have visited heaven during a near death experience, is the fourth faith-based film this year to stir movie-going audiences with impressive box office numbers.
 
Made for $12 million, the film, which stars Greg Kinnear, collected $21.5 million over the Easter weekend in U.S. and Canadian theaters, finishing third at the box office behind bigger budget films "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" from Walt Disney and "Rio 2" from Fox.
 
Two other Christian-based films also cracked the top 10. "Noah," from Viacom's Paramount Pictures, stars Russell Crowe as the biblical figure and was ninth. It has generated more than $93 million at domestic theaters since opening in March, according to the site Box Office Mojo.
 
"God's Not Dead," about a religious freshman college student who debates his professor over the existence of God, was tenth and has totaled $48 million over five weeks, despite playing in only about half the numbers of theaters of Hollywood's larger films.
 
Fox's "Son of God," an adaptation of producer Mark Burnett's 10-hour TV mini series "The Bible," generated more than $59 million in domestic ticket sales after opening earlier this year.
 
"This audience has long felt left out by Hollywood and it certainly looks like this isn't the case anymore," said Paul Dergarabedian, senior market analyst of box office tracking firm Rentrak, in an email. "The numbers will encourage studios to make more of these types of films."

Studios have been searching for more faith-based films since Mel Gibson's 2004 "The Passion of the Christ," which tallied $611.9 million in worldwide ticket sales and was made on a modest $30 million budget, according to Box Office Mojo.
 
In the last five years alone, Hollywood has made 26 movies that the site classifies as "Christian" films, including three based on "The Chronicles of Narnia" fantasy novels by C.S. Lewis that literary academics say adopted several Christian themes.
 
"There's a core audience and they're very interested in seeing films with a faith-based center," said Rory Bruer, president of worldwide distribute for Sony Pictures Entertainment, whose TriStar Pictures unit distributed "Heaven is for Real."
 
"The one main ingredient most have is that they are somewhat inspirational in nature," said Bruer. "People feel like they get something out of it."
 
Not all get great reviews. "Heaven is for Real" got a positive "fresh" rating from only 31 of 59 reviewers, according to the site Rotten Tomatoes.
 
But some of the films can have a built-in marketing vehicle, according to David A. R. White, whose company Pure Flix produced the film "God's Not Dead."
 
White told Entertainment Weekly that Pure Flix waged an aggressive grass-roots campaign that included screening the film for 8,000 pastors prior to its opening.
 
"We have a lot of relationships to the gatekeepers who can rally their people to go to the movie theater," White told the magazine. He added of the American audience, "160 million plus people call themselves Christians. They go to church once a month, at least. That's a lot of people."


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 20, 2014, 09:38:40 pm
Quote
But some of the films can have a built-in marketing vehicle, according to David A. R. White, whose company Pure Flix produced the film "God's Not Dead."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marketing
Marketing is the process of communicating the value of a product or service to customers, for the purpose of selling that product or service.

Marketing can be looked at as an organizational function and a set of processes for creating, delivering and communicating value to customers, and managing customer relationships in ways that also benefit the organization. Marketing is the science of choosing target markets through market analysis and market segmentation, as well as understanding consumer behavior and providing superior customer value. From a societal point of view, marketing is the link between a society’s material requirements and its economic patterns of response. Marketing satisfies these needs and wants through exchange processes and building long term relationships.

Organizations may choose to operate a business under five competing concepts: the production concept, the product concept, the selling concept, the marketing concept, and the holistic marketing concept.[1] The four components of holistic marketing are relationship marketing, internal marketing, integrated marketing, and socially responsive marketing. The set of engagements necessary for successful marketing management includes capturing marketing insights, connecting with customers, building strong brands, shaping the market offerings, delivering and communicating value, creating long-term growth, and developing marketing strategies and plans.[2]

Marketing may be defined in several ways, depending on the role of the advertised enterprise in relation to the strategic role in positioning the firm within its competitive market. The main definition is often credited to Philip Kotler, recognized as the originator of the most recent developments in the field, for the works that appeared from 1967 to 2009, with the latest work born from the last economic crisis: Chaotics.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 22, 2014, 11:05:13 am
http://www.dailypaul.com/247248/chick-fil-a-contains-msg-and-other-toxic-chemicals-christians-call-this-a-victory-insanity
Chick Fil A contains MSG and other toxic chemicals. Christians call this a victory? Insanity.
8/2/12

This is considered a victory? We`are doomed.

"Countless thousands of customers then line up all across the country to support Chick-fil-A's free speech rights, thinking, "Yeah, we're bad asses! We're gonna show those gay marriage people that we're powerful, too!"

And then, astoundingly, they all buy chicken sandwiches laced with MSG and made with anti-foaming chemicals and genetically modified soybean oil! (Chick-fil-A sandwiches are not organic, and they're not labeled non-GMO. Most soybean oil comes from genetically modified soybeans.)

So please help me figure this out here: WHO IS THE BIGGER RETARD IN ALL THIS?"

http://www.naturalnews.com/036653_Chick-fil-A_anti-boycott_ingredients.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on June 05, 2014, 12:37:19 pm
Culture Upside Down: There Has Been A Colossal Shift In America’s Values Since 2001

The United States is becoming a place where “anything goes”, and most Americans are okay with that.  No matter which side of the “culture war” that you are on, you have to admit that our culture is being fundamentally transformed.  In fact, new numbers from Gallup confirm that there has been a colossal shift in America’s moral values just since 2001.  Over the past 13 years, we have become a dramatically different country.  Many of the things that used to be considered “evil” are now considered to be “good”, and many of the things that used to be considered “good” are now considered to be “evil”.  In other words, our culture is literally being turned upside down, and the “values” that our national leaders speak of today are far different from the “values” that our grandparents grew up with.  So is this a good thing or a bad thing?

Every year, Gallup conducts an “annual Values and Beliefs survey”, and the survey results for 2014 have just been released.  When you compare the numbers from 2001 to the numbers for this year, the difference in quite a few of the categories is quite striking.  Here are a few examples…

Sex between an unmarried man and woman

2001: 53%

2014: 66%

Divorce

2001: 59%

2014: 69%

Having a baby outside of marriage

2001: 45%

2014: 58%

Gay or lesbian relations

2001: 40%

2014: 58%

Medical research using stem cells from human embryos

2001: 52%

2014: 65%

Pornography

2001: 30%

2014: 33%

Suicide

2001: 13%

2014: 19%

Cloning Humans

2001: 7%

2014: 13%

As a nation, we are moving much more in the “socially liberal” direction.

But does that mean that everyone is changing?

Well, when Gallup broke the numbers down by political affiliation, they found something extremely interesting.

Gallup discovered that the values of Democrats had experienced a seismic shift since 2001, but that the values of Republicans had actually changed very little…

    In the 12 years Gallup has asked this overall question, Democrats have become significantly more tolerant on many issues, while independents generally show a smaller shift in the same direction and Republicans’ views have changed little. The percentage of Democrats who say an issue is morally acceptable has increased for 10 issues, including abortion, sex between an unmarried man and woman, extramarital affairs, cloning humans, divorce, cloning animals, suicide, research using stem cells from human embryos, polygamy, and gay and lesbian relations.

    In some cases, the change among Democrats has been substantial. For example, in 2003, 52% of Democrats said having a baby outside of wedlock was morally acceptable, and 40% of Republicans and 61% of independents agreed. This year, 72% of Democrats, a 20-percentage-point increase, say it is morally acceptable. Meanwhile, Republicans have seen no change, with 40% still saying it is morally acceptable, although a higher 50% viewed it as morally acceptable last year. Independents have also not seen a change, with 60% saying having a baby out of wedlock is morally acceptable this year.

In other words, the “values gap” between the two major political parties is now larger than it has ever been.

And Gallup has previously found that there are huge differences between age groups when it comes to moral values as well.

For example, only 19 percent of Americans 55 and older consider pornography to be “morally acceptable”, but 49 percent of Americans in the 18 to 34-year-old age group do.

This is true on issue after issue, and it is an indication that Americans will continue to become more “socially liberal” as older generations of Americans die off.

But as our values change, America is becoming a much different place.

You see, the truth is that moral values have consequences.  The following are just a few statistics about the current state of morality in America from one of my previous articles…

-18 percent of all women in the United States say that they have been raped at some point in their lives.

-It is estimated that one out of every four girls will be sexually abused before they become adults.

-Approximately one-third of the entire population of the United States (110 million people) currently has a sexually transmitted disease according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

-In the United States today, more than half of all couples “move in together” before they get married.

-For women under the age of 30 in the United States, more than half of all babies are being born out of wedlock.

-At this point, approximately one out of every three children in the United States lives in a home without a father.

-Right now, there are 70 million Americans that are on mind-altering drugs of one form or another.

-According to a study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately two-thirds of all Americans in the 15 to 24-year-old age bracket have engaged in oral sex.

-During 2012, more than 85,000 military veterans were formally treated for sexual abuse that they suffered while serving in the U.S. military.

-According to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, there are 747,408 registered sex offenders in the United States.  And those are just the ones that have been caught and convicted.

Can our society survive if everyone just does “whatever seems right in their own eyes” and young people are allowed to decide for themselves what is right and what is wrong?

Some would suggest that our nation is “evolving” and that we are steadily becoming a more “progressive society”.

Others are deeply alarmed that we are abandoning the values that this nation was founded upon and are calling for a return to those values.

So what do you think?

Please feel free to share your opinion about America’s dramatic cultural shift by posting a comment below…

http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/culture-upside-down-there-has-been-a-colossal-shift-in-americas-values-since-2001


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 05, 2014, 01:10:26 pm
I remember when I was a kid in the 80's - they were really conditioning for all of these abominations going on now in the media then. For example, I remember seeing tv shows et al how parents would stop by their grown sons' homes, only to find a woman coming out of the shower. I also remember them using buzz phrases like, "You need to try it on first...".(Seriously - when you try on shoes before you buy them, do these shoe stores let you borrow them for a week or so? ::) ) And there were countless movies in that very decade with sex, violence, etc that were marketed toward children(ie-Eddie Murphy movies like "Beverly Hills Cop").

And come to think of it too - I don't recall these "religious right"/pro-family groups saying one word about all of this, why? B/c their "hero" Ronald Reagan was in the oval office at the time. It wasn't until Bill Clinton came into office when they started making a big deal out of all of this(ie-the Columbine shootings in 1999). And then they went back to staying quiet when George W. Bush came into office.

As for those 2001 poll figures compared to now - Wow! And I thought THOSE figures then were high! And no, I don't buy into the fact that professing Republicans haven't changed their stances on these issues - having been around these Babel church building-types, especially of late, even they have softened their stance at least somewhat on these issues. For example, they seem to at least tolerate this CCM/Purpose Driven nonsense.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 05, 2014, 01:21:51 pm
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/paul-raushenbush/progressive-christianity_b_5437715.html?ncid=txtlnkusaolp00000592
6/4/14
The Stunning Resurgence of Progressive Christianity

Anyone born within the last 50 years would be justified in thinking that Jesus' teachings and Christian preachings were the exclusive domain of social and fiscal conservatives. The '70s, '80s, and '90s were dominated by Christians with names like Falwell, Robertson, and Dobson who leveraged television and radio to make theirs the default religious voice in America.

While important Liberation, Black, Womanist and Feminist theology was being lived out in communities around the world, when the media wanted a "representative" Christian voice it generally turned to these men with the largest megaphones who brought their faith language to conservative political stances on issues such as abortion, the role of women, LGBT rights, the death penalty, social welfare and war.

But that is so #TBT (ThrowBackThursday). There has been a largely unnoticed but radical movement over the last decade during which the spiritual fire has shifted to more progressive Christians and that has the potential to change both the political and spiritual landscape of America.

I had a feeling this was happening but was shocked during the past few weeks to note the extent to which the more progressive Christian leaders are speaking out and being heard in their effort to impact the public square. Pastors and priests have spoken out on blocked Medicaid expansions, gun control, and climate change.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops continued their push for immigration reform by celebrating a Mass on Capitol Hill, building on the powerful Mass they celebrated weeks earlier at the U.S.-Mexico border. The United Church of Christ continues to push, claiming that their religious right to perform gay marriages is being infringed upon in North Carolina and protesting the FCC's proposed new rules on Net Neutrality, while over a thousand clergy wrote a letter urging Congress to change drug sentencing laws.

Groups like Nuns on a Bus, Sojourners, Red Letter Christians, The Cana Initiative, Moral Mondays, Faithful America and many others are consistently witnessing to injustice in visible -- and reportable -- ways. Now, when the mainstream media is looking for a Christian to comment on a story, they have a powerful progressive set of voices to chose from.

None of this is to say that the hardline religious conservative voice and influence has vanished. There are many on the religious right who still find traction on issues such as the contraception mandate, rallying against science and climate change, and perceived threats on religious freedom. However, these voices no longer control the narrative of what Christians care about, and the perception of a Christian conservative opinion monolith has been shattered.

Perhaps the change is as simple as the pendulum swinging back after years to the right -- who could have foreseen that Pope Francis would follow immediately after Pope Benedict -- but the shift also has to do with demographics. A survey on religion and politics that came out last summer from Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) showed the numbers:

   
Quote
With each generation, the popularity of religious conservatism has declined. Forty-seven percent of the Silent Generation (ages 66 to 88) are religious conservatives, compared with 34 percent of Baby Boomers, 23 percent of Gen Xers and 17 percent of Millennials.

During that time the numbers of religious progressives have remained pretty steady. As PRII director explained: "If you're using a generational snapshot today as a proxy for the future, it is is safe to say that religious progressives hold a stronger appeal among Millennials."

The rebirth of progressive Christianity may also be connected with the advent of the Internet that allows immediate access and connection between Christian activists and communities on issues such as pro-lgbt, anti-poverty and torture. Progressive Christians may have also gained strength in partnerships with Americans of different faith traditions and secular Americans who together created the voting block that elected Barack Obama president both in 2008 and 2012.

Perhaps the most encouraging change are the many ways that more traditionally conservative and progressive Christians are working together on issues such as immigration, trafficking of women and children, and mental health. HuffPost Religion right now is collecting 100 stories on religious communities doing good in the world under the hashtag #ReligionDoingGood and it is no surprise to see that conservative, progressive and moderate Christians are all doing great things in the world to help other people and the environment.

Wile the influence of the old religious right has waned, I'm not sure that just replacing it with the "religious left" is what this county needs. The way forward is for people of good will of all faiths and no faith to work together on matters that promote the common dignity, respect and well-being of all Americans.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on June 07, 2014, 05:11:37 am
4 Trends in Christianity That Could Scare You, According to Ed Stetzer

Despite what many think, the church in America is not dying (and no serious researcher thinks that). However, there are some challenges and changes to be considered.

When we consider missiology, part of the discipline includes considering how churches relate to their culture. Since we live in changing times, it's worth thinking through what current cultural changes mean for future church engagement of that culture.

Here are four trends that are already evident, but will become even more important in days to come:

1. The word "Christian" will become less used and more clear. There are three broad categories that make up the approximately 75 percent of Americans who refer to themselves as Christians. I wrote about this earlier in The State of the Church In America: Hint: It's Not Dying, but it is worth keeping in our minds moving forward. The fact is that not everyone who uses the word "Christian" is using it the same way.

Cultural Christians, about 25 percent of the U.S. population, are simply those who, when asked, say they are a Christian rather than say they are an atheist or Jewish. They are "Christian" for no other reason than they are from America and don't consider themselves something else.

The second type is what I call a congregational Christian. They account for another close to 25 percent of the population. This person generally does not really have a deep commitment, but they will consider refer to themselves as Christians because the have some loose connection to a church—through a family member, maybe an infant baptism, or some holiday attendance.

Convictional Christians, also about 25 percent of the population, are those people who self-identify as Christian who orient their life around their faith in Christ. This includes a wide range of what Christian is—not just evangelicals, for example. It means someone says they are a Christian and it is meaningful to them.

So, what's the trend?

Well, first, the trend is that less people are calling themselves Christians and those who are will take it more seriously. In other words, cultural and congregational Christians, or the "squishy middle," is collapsing while convictional Christians are staying relatively steady.

In the future, the word Christian will mean more to those who would be considered convictional Christians. However, it will mean—and will be used—less to those who were nominal Christians in the first place. The word will be less used and more clear.

2. The nominals will increasingly become nones. Basically, type one (cultural) and two (congregational) are what we would generally call nominal Christians. Nominal comes from the Latin, meaning "name" or "name only." A growing number of people are name only Christians. They claim "Christianity" for survey reasons, but rarely attend church or give any consistent consideration to their faith identification.

They're simply calling themselves Christians because that's who they consider themselves to be, not because of any life change or ongoing commitment. Those types of Christians, about half of the population now, will become a minority in a few decades.

We are now experiencing a collapse of nominalism.

It is fair to say we are now experiencing a collapse of nominalism. Many of these who have been labeling themselves as Christians are starting to feel free to be honest about their religious affiliation, or lack thereof. The "Nones," those who give say they have no religious preference, could potentially represent as many as half of the population in the next 20 to 30 years—it's already over 30% among college students (with a third of college students still being religious).

The nominal Christians in the squishy middle (cultural and congregational Christians) are becoming those who now answer "none of the above" on religious surveys. In other words, the "nominals are becoming the nones."

As the Nones rise in their number, Christian influence on culture will begin to wane. The minority of Christians in a culture will begin to feel even more like a minority when more nominals become Nones. As people no longer claim to be Christians, Christianity will be further marginalized, which should change the way we think about engaging culture.

3. Christians will increasingly change cultural tactics. The next 20 years are going to be a challenge for convictional Christians and churches in many places. We will be engaging in cultural conversations often as the minority we truly are. Those who aggressively fight this as a culture war will find it hard to reach people. Instead of being seen as those who are seeking to engage and serve people in the culture, Christians will be seen as an enemy. That's not to say there are not important causes to engage—there are—but how we engage is almost as important as that we engage.

In biblical terms, we may experience what it means to be salt and light in the midst of an adversarial culture.

As the Nones rise in their number, Christian influence on culture will begin to wane.

In response, we should look to two groups of people from the Bible, which I profiled in Creating an Assessment Culture By Being of Berea and Issachar. We must hold the Word of God in high authority as the Berean Christians did in Acts 17:11. Christians must become seriously committed to Scripture and the Gospel in every aspect of our lives. We should also wisely discern the present culture and strategize how to best glorify God.

"From the Issacharites, who understand the times and knew what Israel should do" (1 Chronicles 12:32).

I desire for the church and Christians to be examining the Scriptures daily to know the Word of God and also to know the times, the context, and the Spirit's wisdom to address the culture with the Good News.

As I see it, some Christians will go down fighting. Other Christians, will go on loving. But either way, convictional Christians will increasingly see they are not the moral majority and will advocate less for the legislation or traditional values and be more focused on protecting religious liberty.

There are ways to stand for the good, advocate for cultural realities that engender human flourishing, and do so in a loving way. That's the future convictional Christians need.

4. More robust churches will result from the death of nominalism. The next 20 years are going to be a challenge for convictional Christians and churches in many places.

It is beginning to cost something to be a Christian in America—not as much as in many places in the world or in much of history, but more than it used to. And, as living for Christ costs more in our culture, it will mean more in our context.

Churches that are preaching the Gospel and are focusing on biblical truths are going to become more clearly distinct from the culture around them. The end result? Robust Christian communities are going to get stronger.

These gospel-preaching churches will have members who are more, not less, committed and these committed churches will have less nominal Christians in the years to come. Christianity will become more of a minority in culture, but more refined, more biblical, and more missional churches will be the result.
Where From Here?

The lasting effects of these shifts will force churches to make a critical decision. They will either become a cultural church that allows the societal trends to dictate their ever-changing beliefs. Or they will become a counter-cultural church that faithfully adheres to Scripture and proclaims the gospel in a carefully considered way. The latter church will offer real hope in the midst of an adversarial culture and is the only real future for the American church.

http://www.charismanews.com/culture/44114-4-trends-in-christianity-that-could-scare-you-according-to-ed-stetzer


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on June 07, 2014, 05:49:17 am
Here's What Americans Consider Moral And Immoral

Divorce, pre-marital sex, stem cell research, and abortion are becoming more morally acceptable to Americans, according to a recent Gallup poll.

The percentage of people who said these and other traditionally taboo issues are morally acceptable are at record highs, Gallup notes.

Below is a chart that displays the survey results, with an asterisk denoting the issues for which moral acceptability is at or near a record high:

(http://static4.businessinsider.com/image/538dd5ff6bb3f71966859ef6-580-877/moral%20acceptability%20gallup%20chart.png)

Some issues, such as affairs and cloning humans, are still considered unacceptable, but even those areas are gaining traction and have a higher rate of moral acceptability than in past years.

Surprisingly, barely half of respondents said gay or lesbian relations were morally acceptable, but that rate is still a record high for the issue.

The difference in these rates over the past few years isn't drastic — 2010 numbers are fairly similar — but some issues that were contentious among the American people about 10 years ago have become largely acceptable today.

Americans have largely come to accept divorce, premarital sex, and homosexual relations since 2001, when Gallup first conducted a moral acceptability poll.

In 2001, 59% of respondents considered divorce morally acceptable, 40% said homosexual relations were OK, and 53% approved of premarital sex. Today, those rates are at least 10 percentage points higher on each issue.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/taboo-issues-are-becoming-more-morally-acceptable-in-america-2014-6#ixzz33wvGu9B3


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on June 14, 2014, 08:27:38 am
The New Christian Divide - Cultural Christians Vs Practicing Christians

Are there any clear indications as to how the Church in America is headed? Ed Stetzer believes that based on certain researched trends, the church in America is not dying, but there are still some challenges and changes to be considered. He goes on to describe four “Mission trends” that need to be considered when it comes to the state of the church in America.

Stetzer argues that when we consider missiology (the area of practical theology that investigates the mandate, message, and mission of the Christian church), part of the discipline includes considering how churches relate to their culture in a dynamic way It also considers what current cultural changes mean for future church engagement of that culture.

In a recent article published in Christianity Today, Stetzer outlines four trends that are already evident and expected to increase in importance in future:

1. The Word "Christian" Will Become Less Used and More Clear.

There are three broad categories that make up the approximately 75 percent of Americans who refer to themselves as Christians:

• Cultural Christians, about 25% of the U.S. population, are simply those who, when asked, say they are a Christian rather than say they are an atheist or Jewish. They are "Christian" for no other reason than they are from America and don't consider themselves something else.

• Congregational Christians: They account for another close to 25% of the population. This person generally does not really have a deep commitment, but they will consider refer to themselves as Christians because they have some loose connection to a church—through a family member, maybe an infant baptism, or some holiday attendance.

• Convictional Christians, also about 25% of the population, are those people who self-identify as Christian and who orient their life around their faith in Christ. This includes a wide range of what Christian is—not just evangelicals, for example. It means someone says they are a Christian and it is meaningful to them.

Stetzer elaborates: “The trend is that less people are calling themselves Christians and those who are will take it more seriously. In other words, cultural and congregational Christians, or the "squishy middle," is collapsing while convictional Christians are staying relatively steady. In the future, the word Christian will mean more to those who would be considered convictional Christians. However, it will mean—and will be used—less to those who were nominal Christians in the first place. The word will be less used and more clear.”

Stetzer’s research also brings out another startling reality: America’s true Christian population is therefore at about only 25%, which means it is now only a Christian nation in name by virtue of about 50% of Americans professing Christianity as their religion of preference, as compared to just 25% of convictional and practicing Christians. The Bible indicates the test of the true Christian:

Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. (I John2:3-5).

It certainly seems clear that as far as God is concerned, those we consider “nominals” are actually no different than the self-professed “nones”.

2. The Nominals Will Increasingly become Nones.

Stetzer explains: “Type one (cultural) and two (congregational) are what we would generally call nominal Christians…they're simply calling themselves Christians because that's who they consider themselves to be, not because of any life change or ongoing commitment. Those types of Christians, about half of the population now, will become a minority in a few decades. We are now experiencing a collapse of nominalism. The "Nones," those who give say they have no religious preference, could potentially represent as many as half of the population in the next 20 to 30 years…”

The natural consequence or conclusion of this is that as the Nones rise in their number, Christian influence on culture will begin to wane and Christianity will be further marginalized. In essence, those who profess Christianity in name only, and without a serious commitment to Jesus Christ, will find it easy to disassociate themselves when the tag ‘Christian’ starts to be seen as a liability or inconvenience, and will thus end up missing the “narrow gate” and the “difficult way” that leads to life (Matthew 7:14).

3. Christians Will Increasingly Change Cultural Tactics.

According to Stetzer: “The next 20 years are going to be a challenge for convictional Christians and churches in many places. We will be engaging in cultural conversations often as the minority we truly are. Those who aggressively fight this as a culture war will find it hard to reach people. Instead of being seen as those who are seeking to engage and serve people in the culture, Christians will be seen as an enemy…In Biblical terms, we may experience what it means to be salt and light in the midst of an adversarial culture.”

Stetzer suggests that to counter this “adversarial culture”, we must hold the Word of God in high authority as the Berean Christians did in Acts 17:11. Christians must become seriously committed to Scripture and the Gospel in every aspect of our lives. We should also wisely discern the present culture and strategize how to best glorify God. "From the Issacharites, who understand the times and knew what Israel should do" (1 Chronicles 12:32).

Stetzer concludes that “...There are ways to stand for the good, advocate for cultural realities that engender human flourishing, and do so in a loving way. That's the future convictional Christians need.”

4. More Robust Churches will Result from the Death of Nominalism.

In Stetzer’s view, the next 20 years are going to be a challenge for convictional Christians and churches in many places. It is beginning to cost something to be a Christian in America—not as much as in many places in the world or in much of history, but more than it used to.

Churches that are preaching the Gospel and are focusing on Biblical truths are going to become more clearly distinct from the culture around them. The end result? Robust Christian communities are going to get stronger. These Gospel-preaching churches will have members who are more, not less, committed and these committed churches will have less nominal Christians in the years to come.

Christianity will become more of a minority in culture, but more refined, more Biblical, and more missional churches will be the result.

Stetzer concludes by saying that “the lasting effects of these shifts will force churches to make a critical decision. They will either become a cultural church that allows the societal trends to dictate their ever-changing beliefs. Or they will become a counter-cultural church that faithfully adheres to Scripture and proclaims the gospel in a carefully considered way. The latter church will offer real hope in the midst of an adversarial culture and is the only real future for the American church.”

How true. We are already witnessing the increasing divide between the culturally conforming churches that support such vices as abortion and homosexuality, and the uncompromising churches that do not. Preaching against sin and immorality is now being labeled “hate speech.” Sadly, much of the persecution that will be suffered by the true Church will come from the conforming, compromising churches. Jesus warned: They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.(John 16:2).

Yet, the promise of God still stands firm and secure:

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written:“For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.(Romans 8:35-39).

Read more at http://www.prophecynewswatch.com/2014/June13/135.html#kEXIO4DeDlSO7Bgt.99


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 14, 2014, 11:32:51 am
Matthew 13:3  And he spake many things unto them in parables, saying, Behold, a sower went forth to sow;
Mat 13:4  And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:
Mat 13:5  Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth:
Mat 13:6  And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.
Mat 13:7  And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them:
Mat 13:8  But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixtyfold, some thirtyfold.
Mat 13:9  Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.
Mat 13:10  And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables?
Mat 13:11  He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.
Mat 13:12  For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.
Mat 13:13  Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.
Mat 13:14  And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive:
Mat 13:15  For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.
Mat 13:16  But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.
Mat 13:17  For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.
Mat 13:18  Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower.
Mat 13:19  When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.
Mat 13:20  But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it;
Mat 13:21  Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.
Mat 13:22  He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful.
Mat 13:23  But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 07, 2014, 03:29:57 pm
http://www.abpnews.com/faith/theology/item/29030-ornate-sanctuaries-no-distraction-from-the-word-baptist-pastors-say

Ornate sanctuaries no distraction from the Word, Baptist pastors say

While many Baptists have historically rejected religious symbolism in their sanctuaries, others have embraced it as a way to get worshipers focused on God.

8/1/14

By Jeff Brumley

You can strip a sanctuary of symbols, remove all vestiges of beauty and deny any value the aesthetic may have in worship. But experts say those elements almost always creep back into the church — one way or another.

That principle was illumined by the 1936 book Worship by Evelyn Underhill, in which she showed that Protestants who reject visual symbols simply heard them expressed in “hymns rich in concrete images and emotional suggestion” — in other words, the symbols were experienced “by means of the ear instead of the eye.”

It’s also evident in a more recent Christianity Today Her.meneutics blog by Michelle Van Loon titled, “The Church Deserves Better than Ugly Decorations.”

Even in congregations devoid of intentional spiritual aesthetics, buildings become the repositories of tacky sacred art, gaudy banners and the spurned leftovers from various home decorating trends.

“At a time where home design has its own network in addition to a host of shelter magazines, maybe it’s time to ask different questions before we bring in either Granny’s doilies or the latest wrought iron wall art from the craft store to adorn our worship space,” she wrote. 

‘A spiritual place’

The answers to questions Van Loon asks about the role of space in worship — its welcoming message and how it connects worshipers to God — have separated European and American Christians since shortly after the time of the Reformation. And while many — and possibly most — Baptists have ended up on the no-frills side of the debate, many have not.

First Baptist Church in Dayton, Ohio, was built in 1913 by a group of Baptists who valued beauty in art, worship and architecture. The result was a structure that resembles a Catholic or Eastern Orthodox cathedral more than the typical downtown Baptist church.

“I think that’s really important” to play up the aesthetic, said Rodney Kennedy, First Baptist’s senior pastor. “We want to do everything in our power to show that beauty is important in the message of Christianity.”

The American Baptist congregation recently spent $400,000 to enhance the sanctuary, which is adorned with massive stained-glass windows, vaulted ceilings and mosaics of each of the 12 apostles on the building’s pillars.

Kennedy said aesthetics can be used to instruct the faithful on theological concepts and bridge the gap between the sacred and the mundane.

“Beauty touches us in a spiritual place that plainness just can’t get to,” Kennedy told ABPnews/Herald.

“Mostly, what you get is people having a sense of reverence and a sense of awe when they walk into a place like this — that is what the people who build this building were trying to say,” he said.

Distractions from the Word

But there was a time when Baptists were almost uniformly agreed on a “less is better” approach to church architecture and decoration, said Bill Leonard, professor of Baptist studies and church history at Wake Forest University School of Divinity.

“Baptists started out as Puritans in terms of their understanding of the worship environment, which in many ways was anti-Catholic and anti-Anglican,” Leonard said.

Ornate decorations were seen as opulent distractions from the centrality of preaching, he said. Many Baptists referred to their churches as meeting houses instead of churches.

Art, along with musical instruments, did not make their way into Baptist sanctuaries until the 19th century, when murals of the Jordan River became popular behind baptisteries.

More religiously overt architecture and art thrived as Baptists moved into the mainstream and began competing with Presbyterian, Methodist and other traditions, Leonard said.

However, the aversion to aesthetics has not disappeared in modern Baptist or other churches. The megachurch movement sanitized its worship spaces in order to attract and keep the unchurched and those with negative views of Christianity, Leonard said.

And there are still many congregations that see such decorations as either idolatrous or simply distractions from the preaching of the Word.

‘It draws you’

But beauty can actually help worshipers better connect with preaching and, for that matter, with God, said Brent Beasley, pastor of Broadway Baptist Church in Fort Worth, Texas.

Broadway is currently undergoing a renovation of its sanctuary, including all new seating and flooring, repairs of cracks and a complete repainting.

The huge sanctuary, with its stained glass and immense ceilings, draws people into worship the moment they enter the room, Beasley said.

“You are drawn upward by the vaulted ceilings and the beauty of the stained glass — it moves you.”

The experience of sacred space prepares worshipers for the preaching to come, he added.

“It’s definitely the opposite of a distraction,” Beasley said. “It draws you toward the presence of God.”

Simplicity ‘a valid choice’

Churches that reject visible or physical representations of the holy usually acknowledge those elements in other ways, said Lisa Cole Smith, pastor and artistic director of The Church at Convergence, a congregation that supports the arts and is a member of the Baptist General Association of Virginia.

“They do that with the Lord’s Supper and baptism … and the offering,” Smith said. “These are things that include a visual element — in other words, they require the use of our eyes.”

But Smith added that to be sacred, space does not need to be symbolically decorated.

“A bare space can have aesthetic beauty. Simplicity is a valid choice, like periods of silence.”

The key is to be intentional about connecting space with a congregation’s theological beliefs.

“It should not be a question of taste, but of how it reflects our view of God,” she said.

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Isaiah 53:2  For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.
Isa 53:3  He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Isa 53:4  Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
Isa 53:5  But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

1John 2:15  Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
1Jn 2:16  For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
1Jn 2:17  And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 21, 2014, 06:48:33 pm
http://www.theweek.co.uk/uk-news/60475/archbishop-of-canterbury-questions-gods-existence
Archbishop of Canterbury questions God's existence
9/18/14

 LAST UPDATED AT 14:46 ON Thu 18 Sep 2014

The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby last weekend gave a powerful statement about his recent doubts over the existence of God. Welby disclosed that recently, while he was jogging with his dog near his London home, he asked why God does not intervene to stop injustice in the world.

Welby’s statement appeared in a personal interview he gave in front of hundreds of people at Bristol Cathedral last weekend, The Guardian reports.

When the interviewer, BBC Bristol’s Lucy Tegg, asked Welby “Do you ever doubt?” the Archbishop paused and then said: “Yes. I do. In lots of different ways, really. It's a very good question. That means I've got to think about what I'm going to say. Yes I do." He added: "I love the Psalms, if you look at Psalm 88, that's full of doubt."

Welby said he was aware that his statement might be “not what the Archbishop of Canterbury should say", but he said that there are moments in life when people question the existence of God.

However, according to Welby, he is very certain that Jesus existed. “We know about Jesus, we can't explain all the questions in the world, we can't explain about suffering, we can't explain loads of things but we know about Jesus," he said. ·

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Uhm...Jesus Christ IS God!

John 8:56  Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.
Joh 8:57  Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?
Joh 8:58  Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: rick50 on September 25, 2014, 07:36:03 am
The great falling away is often believed to be a falling away from truth into apostasy. For many years This is what I believed myself. I held this opinion because in my mind that is what my perception of a great falling away was. I saw apostate Christianity as a big group and Spirit filled believers as a smaller group, possibly much smaller.

But I progressed into better Bible study techniques and began leaving leaving my own perceptions,beliefs and
opinions behind in order to take a stab at looking at scriptures from God`s point of view instead of my own.
It`s a wonderful way to study the Bible.

Anyways, I found out that the term "fall away" always means a departure from the faith into a condition of unbelief. In the New Testament to "fall away" means to quit going to church and to quit being a Christian, apostate or otherwise.

When Paul said there will be a "great falling away" he means that a day will come when people will stop believing in great numbers. This event will occur at the same time that the "great delusion" Paul warns us
about comes.

Paul said it will be a delusion that is so strong that it will attempt to decieve even the elect of God who FYI are in a once and always saved condition. YaY Jesus!



 


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 25, 2014, 08:29:29 am
And look at some of the stuff they're bringing into these "churches" - Rick Warren's PDL, Richard Foster's Christ-denying stuff, contemplative prayer(which the Roman Catholic Church practices, and is rooted out of Hinduism), etc.

Quit going to church? Hard to say - especially considering all of these 5-star-like comfy megachurches everyone's flocking to nowdays(and churches in America are putting their biggest emphasis on building bigger congregations and buildings).

But yes - they're not preaching biblical truth anymore.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: rick50 on September 25, 2014, 06:01:06 pm
And look at some of the stuff they're bringing into these "churches" - Rick Warren's PDL, Richard Foster's Christ-denying stuff, contemplative prayer(which the Roman Catholic Church practices, and is rooted out of Hinduism), etc.

Quit going to church? Hard to say - especially considering all of these 5-star-like comfy megachurches everyone's flocking to nowdays(and churches in America are putting their biggest emphasis on building bigger congregations and buildings).

But yes - they're not preaching biblical truth anymore.

I`m still running windows xp on my computer so I can`t get on some websites, one of which is my online bible. But in a couple of days I`m going to get it upgraded to windows 7. Once I get that done and can get back into my online Bible I`ll post up some of the scriptures about it.

By the time the real deal "great falling away" occurs, churches will be getting put out of buisiness by the coming persecution. America might not even be around when this happens because it may not happen until after WW3. The great tribulation, great falling away and the strong delusion are all events that are related to each other.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 08, 2014, 11:53:16 pm
http://www.examiner.com/article/the-devout-are-deficient-study-shows-christians-are-bereft-bible-knowledge?cid=sm-facebook-100714-1.45pm-DevoutAreDeficientIn
The devout are deficient: Study shows Christians are bereft in Bible knowledge
10/7/14

The majority of Americans claim to be committed to their faith. Nearly three out of every four individuals identify themselves as a “Christian.” That said, perhaps it’s time they start reading the Word of God. A study, conducted initially in 2010 and recently updated, shows the devout are rather devoid when it comes to Bible 101.

The study, conducted by the Pew Research Religion and Public Life Project and reported on by the Pacific Standard magazine on Oct. 6, asked over 3,400 Protestants, Catholics, Jews, Mormons and Atheists / Agnostics a total of 32 questions regarding elements of their own faith, knowledge of world religions and the role of religion in public life.

While Jews, Mormons and even those who profess no belief in God all individually answered at least 20 of the 32 questions correctly, Christians came in well under – flunking out with answering only 15.7 questions correctly on average. Catholics were one of the worst performers when it comes to religious academia, scoring only 14.7 of the questions correctly.

The survey included seven questions that should be fundamental for any Bible reader, and five additional questions on elements of Christianity.

For example, in answer to the open-ended question What is the first book of the Bible?, only 42 percent of the Catholics were able to correctly name "Genesis." By comparison, seven out of ten Atheists / Agnostics knew the name of the Bible’s opening book.

The numbers dipped even more for Catholics when they were asked to name the Gospels (the first four books of the Greek scriptures, or New Testament.) Only 33 percent could come up with Jesus’ contemporaries of the apostles Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

Multiple choice questions made it a little easier for Christians; 65 percent knew that Jesus was born in Bethlehem (not Nazareth, Jerusalem or Jericho). Still, the unaffiliated were right on their heels with 62 percent knowing the birthplace of the Messiah.

The remaining four Bible questions broke down as follows:

Which of these is NOT in the Ten Commandments: Do unto others; Do not steal; Do not commit adultery; Keep the Sabbath.

(Only sixty-three percent of Catholics were able to answer correctly that Jesus’ words regarding treating others as we would like to be treated were not in the laws given to Moses on Mount Sinai.)

Which figure is associated with remaining obedient to God despite suffering?

(The answer is Job; not Elijah, Moses or Abraham. Only 25 percent of Catholics knew that, compared to 48 percent of Protestants
, 70 percent of Mormons and 47 percent of Jews. This despite the fact that what was recorded in the book of Job lays the groundwork for the age-old question: Why does God permit suffering?)

Which figure is associated with leading the exodus from Egypt?

(While over 90 percent of Mormons and Jews got this right – and even 72 percent of the Atheists and Agnostics – only 65 percent of Catholics were able to pick Moses out of the same four men named above.)

Which figure is associated with willingness to sacrifice his son for God?

The answer is the patriarch Abraham, who took his 25-year-old son Isaac
up mount Moriah, built an altar for the sacrifice, and had the knife in the air above a willingly bound Isaac before an angel stopped him. Abraham’s intense faith in God and the resurrection hope prefigured God’s sacrifice of his own son for mankind – something that only 61 percent of Christians knew.)

More difficult questions on elements of Christianity displayed pitiful results. A question on transubstantiation (The belief that the bread and wine transfigure into the actual flesh and blood of Christ) scored in the low 40th percentile for Christians; a question on the Protestant teaching of salvation was answered correctly by only 19 percent of Protestants, and additional questions on Martin Luther, the Reformation and John Edwards scored well under 50 percent accuracy all around.

Writes PewForum.org:

    Previous surveys by the Pew Research Center have shown that America is among the most religious of the world’s developed nations. Nearly six-in-ten U.S. adults say that religion is “very important” in their lives, and roughly four-in-ten say they attend worship services at least once a week. But the U.S. Religious Knowledge Survey shows that large numbers of Americans are uninformed about the tenets, practices, history and leading figures of major faith traditions – including their own. Many people also think the constitutional restrictions on religion in public schools are stricter than they really are.

A lite version of the 32-question quiz is available here, though we’ve given you most of the answers already.

It’s a sad commentary when so many who claim to be Christians – churchgoing or not – know so little about the tenets of their faith. When is the last time you actually saw someone carry a Bible into a church? In place of studies in scripture, we have ceremonial formalities, traditions and prosaic observances done out of repetition.

Indeed, the Bible answers such broad questions as why bad things happen to good people, what is in store for the earth, who go to heaven and who have an earthly hope to live forever in paradise.

Even commonplace observances, taken for fact, are proved untrue with a simple reading through the Gospels. For example, the book of Luke explains why Jesus could not have been born on the 25 of December. (As does the Catholic Encyclopedia.) Matthew’s writings of the background of Jesus’ birth detail why the “star” was placed in the sky, not by Almighty God, but by his enemy, Satan the Devil, who was looking to do away with the Messiah. Later in Matthew we read about how to pray to God – and why mindless repetitions of the same prayers over and over do not stir a hearing ear.

Paul’s writings give us his eloquent, lawyer-like argument as to the need for Christ to suffer and die for us. The musings of David, the shepherd-king, tell us much of God’s forgiveness and compassion. In Acts of the Apostles, the stories of what the men of faith went through as they preached from door to door, across the sea and to Gentiles, would rival any modern action film. The prophet Daniel tells of a dream that helps us pinpoint the year that Christ was given the Messianic throne in heaven, and the book of Revelation tells us what happened next, and what’s to come.

The Bible does, in fact, answer all of our questions. That is, if you bother to read and study it.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on December 20, 2014, 06:52:16 am
End times for end times

Franklin Graham, son of the famous evangelist, recently warned that the rise of Ebola signaled that we are living in the last days. Few people noticed. Christian filmmaker Paul Lalonde released an awful movie in October about the end of the world. Despite snagging Nicolas Cage for the lead role, Lalonde’s retooling of Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins’s bestselling Left Behind books fell flat with audiences. Meanwhile, megastar preachers Rick Warren, Joel Osteen, and T. D. Jakes all downplay the strident eschatology that characterized the churches of their youth.

Evangelical apocalypticism looks almost dead.

This was not always the case. As modern evangelicals’ grandparents and great-grandparents gave birth to fundamentalism and then its successor neo-evangelicalism, nothing animated their lives or their theology more than the conviction that Jesus was coming. And nothing distinguished them more from their liberal Protestant counterparts than the belief that the earth was beyond redemption.

Fundamentalists believed that the world was careening rapidly towards a series of cataclysmic events described in biblical prophecy. They taught that the Holy Spirit would soon turn this world over to the Antichrist, a diabolical world leader who would preside over an awful holocaust in which those true believers who had not already been raptured to heaven would suffer interminable tribulations.

But just when all hope would seem lost for those still on earth, fundamentalists preached that Jesus would return with an army of saints to defeat the Antichrist at the literal Battle of Armageddon. His victory would pave the way for God to establish a millennium of peace and prosperity, a new heavens and a new earth.

In crafting this argument they adapted traditional premillennial theology and fit it to their time and place. Fundamentalists and evangelicals saw in each of the major global events of the 20th century proof that the time is nigh. World War I, women’s suffrage, the Great Depression, World War II, atomic bombs, the creation of the United Nations, the “lawlessness” of the civil rights movement, and a 1970s oil crisis all seemed to be incontrovertible evidence of the looming tribulation.

Then came the rise of the religious right and the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and especially George W. Bush. Evangelicals, no longer prophets and dissidents, were welcomed into the highest echelons of power.

As their influence and power skyrocketed in the 21st century, the faithful have invested more and more time in working towards achieving the kingdom of God in this world rather than in preparing humanity for the next.

Most evangelicals no longer draw elaborate maps seeking to identify Gog and Magog, or look for evidence of the rebirth of the Roman Empire, or wonder when animal sacrifices will commence again in Jerusalem.

Evangelicals, and evangelicalism, have become respectable. Charles Colson made this clear immediately after 9/11. Rejecting prophetic prognostication, he counseled readers of Christianity Today: “I try to avoid end-times prophecy that makes Christians appear irrelevant to the world.”

Polls, however, tell a different story. A 2010 Pew Research Center study revealed that 41 percent of all Americans (well over 100 million people) and 58 percent of white evangelicals believe that Jesus is “definitely” or “probably” going to return by 2050. According to the 2014 Bible in American Life report, of the 50 percent of all Americans who had read the Bible at all in the previous year, over one-third claimed that they did so “to learn about the future.”

Evangelicals no longer have to obsess over an imminent rapture and the premillennial second coming of Christ. They have been so successful in equating their particular beliefs with the Christian faith writ large that premillennialism is now taken for granted. Ideas that originated among a small fringe of radicals 150 years ago are now assumed to be the faith, once and for all delivered to the saints.

So while Lalonde and Graham seem out of touch, and they embarrass many evangelicals, it is for one reason alone: they are fighting a battle that has already been won. Americans, well-versed in rapture theology and facing an environmental crisis, global warming, a new pandemic, and weapons of mass destruction, already know—the end is near.

http://www.christiancentury.org/blogs/archive/2014-12/end-times-end-times


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on December 20, 2014, 07:50:04 am
'Hip' church gives biblical Christians new label: 'Hater'

Oddly, within American evangelicalism and media circles, a concept and term have emerged that place conservative Christians on the outside, in effect, becoming “other.”

And we all know what happens when a group is labeled “other” (see Jews, World War II).

Sometime back, the progressive mega church pastor, Steven Furtick (Elevation Church, Charlotte, North Carolina), mentored as he is by evangelical bigwigs like Rick Warren and Bill Hybels, felt bold enough to post a YouTube video in which he sneeringly challenged what I’d call traditional Christians to basically get out of the way, because their time is past.

Presumably, to Furtick, it’s the “new generation’s” time now, so step aside with your stodgy hymns and expositional preaching style.

Never mind that Furtick’s goofy/disturbing video/rant looks like a “Saturday Night Live” parody.

His view is somewhat main stream among Christian Millennials. Masked a bit by a pious nod toward humanitarian causes, the leadership of this group is quite nasty, albeit in subtle ways.

Witness Mr. Jonathan Merritt. I consider Merritt – son of former president of the Southern Baptist Convention Dr. James Merritt – to be a leading change agent within evangelicalism, in the broader attempt to move evangelicals to center-left perspectives.

Jonathan Merritt is essentially Southern Baptist “royalty,” having moved from Atlanta to New York City sometime back. He uses his perch as columnist for Religion News Service to advocate for center-left (at best) perspectives.

Take his take on Rob Bell, from a Nov. 24 post, as he describes Bell’s move to the (Oprah) OWN Network: “Riding on the success of a pile of bestselling books and a hit video series, Pastor Rob Bell became one of the most sought after religious speakers in America during the early 2000′s. But after Bell questioned whether hell was real in his New York Times bestselling book ‘Love Wins,’ many conservative Christians tried to oust him from the inner circle of evangelicalism.

“How did Bell respond? By quietly bidding his haters adieu, leaving his church, and attaining even more success,” Merritt concludes.

Okay, this is really interesting. Let’s look at what Merritt is doing here, because in my opinion, in this column, it is Merritt and not Bell who is the real story.

It’s all about propaganda.

Notice that Merritt (a quasi-journalist?) injects plenty of his own feeling into the piece, which reads somewhat as a straight news story. He lets us know that Bell has produced a “pile” of bestselling books, has had a “hit video series” and is a much sought-after speaker.

Is Merritt moonlighting as Bell’s press agent? Such writing resides in the realm of what David Bar-Illan used to call “glow jobs,” in which journalists would fawn over their subjects, because they identified with them – much like Patrick Seale and his sycophantic relationship with Hafez Assad of Syria.

What I really want to focus on with Merritt is his jab at Bell’s critics: “By quietly bidding his haters adieu, leaving his church and attaining even more success.”

Bell’s (justified) critics are “haters.” Once he shed those persimmon-sucking has-beens, Bell has gone on to the kind of success that would make any modern hipster preacher giddy.

Merritt likes it. He likes Bell. He presumably likes Bell’s wacky theology (when Ed Dobson hired Bell way back when for the Wheaton grad’s first ministry gig, he assured the church board that while Bell didn’t know much Bible, the dude sure could communicate!).

He also likes the fact that Bell has moved over to the community run by the High Priestess of American Spirituality Oprah Winfrey.

This is the new face of American Evangelicalism, and anyone who thinks it hasn’t arrived is either clueless or wants to be.

The key thing here is Christian media, 2014-style. Merritt, as a well-positioned writer, injects all sorts of his personal biases into his writing, in an attempt to shape public opinion, mostly among Millennials.

Actually, I think he’s succeeding. Spectacularly.

And that’s the problem.

When “pastors” like Rob Bell are mainstreamed, one knows that the American church is in deep trouble. I’m talking the big, visible, mega-church/church growth model, for there one will find the embracing of any glitzy personality at the expense of truth.

Yet Merritt’s hit-piece on “haters” of Rob Bell (the very term is a straw man, since those of us in conservative circles have never heard anyone say they hate Bell personally) is deeply disturbing. It signals that from our own camp, there are those who wish to marginalize, defame and mock Bible-believing Christians.

Don’t like Bell’s leftist theology? You’re a hater. Can’t stomach Tony Jones jettisoning of original sin as a key doctrine? You’re a hater. Chagrined by Furtick’s punkish persona and loose handling of Scripture? You’re a hater.

Not just a hater, but a petty and jealous one, at that.

Do you see how Jonathan Merritt is doing it? He’s implanting false notions into readers’ minds, that those who uphold the authority of Scripture are in some way weak-minded weirdoes.

A couple predictions: No one in evangelical circles at the leadership level will ever say a word about Merritt’s nasty agenda, and it will get worse.

Just get a load of the pages of Relevant magazine sometime, as publisher Cameron Strang mocks anyone he disagrees with, or even mentor Andy Stanley’s casual handling of biblical concepts.

Or check out the venom coming from the aw-shucks writer, Donald Miller.

For these men are part of a group that I maintain controls the narrative (if you want to call me a conspiracy nut and hater, please do) within American evangelicalism.

Dissenters aren’t welcome. Far more chillingly, they/we are now presented as “other.”

Read more at http://mobile.wnd.com/2014/12/hip-church-gives-biblical-christians-new-label-hater/#3pTmljJYlpJYdeEB.99



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 20, 2014, 07:56:41 pm
Quote
Polls, however, tell a different story. A 2010 Pew Research Center study revealed that 41 percent of all Americans (well over 100 million people) and 58 percent of white evangelicals believe that Jesus is “definitely” or “probably” going to return by 2050. According to the 2014 Bible in American Life report, of the 50 percent of all Americans who had read the Bible at all in the previous year, over one-third claimed that they did so “to learn about the future.”

By 2050? I'm not at liberty to date-set the rapture of the church(as we don't know the day nor hour) - but I'll be very surprised if it doesn't happen before 2020. OK, I'll up it a notch and say by the next midterm elections(2018).

Look how close we're getting now - and there's so many things starting to come to pass that you can poke holes through. Sodomy marriage to be legalized in the USA by next June? The microchip implant slowly getting into the mainstream? Megachurches becoming the new norm? Occultism getting into the mainstream? Need we say more?

As for the word "haters"? These people are acting like 10 year old kids - I remember when I used that word as a young boy, my parents would be quick to correct me. Now? You have Baby Boomers using it at will?

And yes, been called just that when I merely exposed the heresies of the RCC, Rick Warren, and Rupert Murdoch.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on January 26, 2015, 05:13:57 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EczZgS8cYrg


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 14, 2015, 10:16:26 am
http://www.wlox.com/story/28078378/advance-ticket-sales-for-50-shades-highest-in-ms
Mississippi tops nation in advance ticket sales for "50 Shades"
Posted: Feb 10, 2015 10:18 PM PST
Updated: Feb 11, 2015 11:19 AM PST

PEARL, MS (Mississippi News Now) - A new, hot and steamy movie is making a huge impact across Mississippi.

Based on the bestselling novel by E-L James, "50 Shades of Grey," opens nationwide this weekend, but advance ticket sales in Mississippi are already reaching record numbers.

In fact, the state has sold four times more advanced tickets for this movie than it has for any other movie in Fandango's 15-year-history, according to the online ticket seller.”

"I think that '50 Shades of Grey' has been great for the American economy," said Tami Rose, manager of Romantic Adventures in Pearl.

Rose says since the book, "50 Shades of Grey" has been out, her sales have soared.

"I have really seen this affect our industry for the last two years ever since the kindle book came out we started with husbands coming in saying, my wife read this book and I'm like oh yes we know exactly what you need," Rose explained.

We saw quite a steady flow in her store Tuesday afternoon and we asked customers what's behind all the hype.

"It's kind of new to American culture," said Ben McKeithen. "We're kind of Christian rooted and it's exploring stuff that's been shunned upon."
“Especially here in the South , sex is something we're real hush hush about, now it's become a healthy thing, people are talking about it with their kids," Ashley Meetze, Assistant Manager of Romantic Adventures explained.


However, some critics, strongly encourage parents to think twice before letting your teen go to see this film.

"Teens exposed to sexually explicit media are more likely to act out in those ways to have sex at younger ages with multiple partners,” Dr. Michelle Cretella, Vice President of American College of Pediatricians said.

Dr. Cretella says the novel and the film promotes unhealthy relationships.

We got mixed reviews from the public.

"I think parents should see it first then make their own decision as to what they want their child exposed to and then from that point they should be able to make an informed decision about if their child should view the movie or not," Millicent Adams a parent of a 17 year old said.

"Much better to send you kids out informed and ready to make good choices than it is to keep them sheltered their whole lives and let them be blasted when their 18," Rose explained.

"50 shades of Grey" opens nationwide Friday, but there are already some selected local theatres showing advanced showings as early as Thursday night.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 28, 2015, 05:46:14 pm
And these "evangelicals" insisted how the 2014 midterms would change the direction of this country? ::)

http://news.yahoo.com/homeland-security-funding-fight-shows-limits-gop-power-083050253--politics.html
2/28/15

GOP leaders are struggling to show they really are in charge

WASHINGTON (AP) — Two months into full Republican control of Congress, GOP leaders are struggling to demonstrate they really are in charge.

The stunning House defeat Friday of a three-week spending bill for the Department of Homeland Security exposed Speaker John Boehner's weakness in the face of rebellious conservatives.

It also again demonstrated his need to rely on Democrats at critical moments as the minority party's agreement to a one-week spending bill helped the speaker get it over the finish line with only hours to spare before a threatened agency shutdown.

President Barack Obama signed the bill shortly before midnight.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., already had bowed to Democrats' demands and stripped the contentious provisions rolling back Obama's immigration policies from his chamber's version of the Homeland Security spending bill.

The two leaders face different, and often competing, challenges as they try to produce the responsible governance they promised voters after November elections, when Republicans won control of the Senate and increased their House majority to the largest in 70 years.

Two months into the new Congress, the severe limits to their powers are confronting Boehner, R-Ohio, and McConnell as they aim to chart a course for the final two years of Obama's presidency. That path could help lead their party back into the White House, and perhaps even produce a few legislative achievements.

"Obviously we're not getting good results, are we? I base everything on results," said Rep. John Fleming of Louisiana, one of the many Republicans frustrated with the GOP's performance, particularly on the Homeland Security bill.

"Our leadership set the stage for this," Fleming said. "Yet we didn't really see much messaging, coordination or communication."

Even though Boehner has large numbers on his side, it's still not enough to ensure he can line up a majority on any given bill, especially on issues such as immigration, education or abortion. The GOP advantage is 245-188 with two vacancies.

A frustrated Rep. Devin Nunes, the California Republican who heads the House Intelligence Committee chairman, lashed out at "a small group of phony conservative members who have no credible policy proposals and no political strategy to stop Obama's lawlessness" and seem to be "unaware that they can't advance conservatism by playing fantasy football with their voting cards."

McConnell is contending with Senate rules that give important rights to the minority party, which Democratic leader Harry Reid of Nevada is adept at exploiting.

Republicans hold 54 seats, but that is six short of the 60 needed to ensure passage of most legislation.

Democrats united against and ultimately blocked GOP attempts to use the Homeland Security spending bill as the measure to overturn Obama's immigration directives extending work permits to millions of people in the country illegally.

Many Republicans campaigned for re-election last fall on promises to stop Obama on immigration, and their inability to do so is infuriating to conservatives. That's why 52 of them in the House voted down a three-week agency spending bill Friday night in a humiliating defeat for Boehner and other Republican leaders.

"The problem is there are a whole lot of us, including leadership, who put out statements saying Obama's executive order was illegal, unconstitutional. How do you backtrack off of that?" asked Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Fla.

GOP leaders regrouped to offer a one-week bill, but it required the blessing of House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi of California. She assured fellow Democrats the vote would pave the way for passage of a full-year bill next week, without the immigration language that has drawn a White House veto threat.

Boehner aides denied that any such assurances had been given.

The chaos was the most high-profile debacle for the GOP so far this year, but not the only one. Earlier in the day, House Republican leaders shelved an education overhaul bill amid conservative opposition. Previously they had retreated on border security legislation and an abortion bill.

In the Senate, McConnell has devoted much of the past two months to debates and votes related to the Homeland Security bill, as well as passage of the Keystone XL oil pipeline bill, which Obama has vetoed.

Along the way, there were lower-profile achievements.

The Senate approved Obama's defense secretary nominee, Ash Carter, on a resounding bipartisan vote. The House passed bills aimed at reining in Obama on taxes and regulation, although the measures are likely to hit a dead end in the Senate, just as they did when Republicans were in charge.

But the GOP majority has been defined as much by infighting among Republicans and between the House and the Senate as by any achievements. That raises questions about Congress' ability to accomplish the many tasks before it, including passing a budget, increasing the nation's borrowing authority and passing a new use of force agreement to battle Islamic State militants.

"The DHS funding fight is the first test of the new Republican Congress, and so far they're failing," said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. "If the Republicans can't even fund something as simple as Homeland Security, we shudder to think what will happen when it's time to fund the whole government or raise the debt ceiling."


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 09, 2015, 09:49:32 pm
There is NO "revival" in the last days! And look at what is promoted here!

http://www.newsmax.com/US/Christianity-on-rise-increasing-10-signs/2015/03/09/id/629134/
10 Signs Christianity Is on the Rise
3/9/15

Christianity is a dying relic of an ancient past. The Internet is killing it. Science is killing it. Western sophistication is killing it. Right?

Wrong.

In many ways, Christianity is on the rise as never before—worldwide, and in America. Here are the ways we can tell:

1. Christianity is growing by leaps and bounds worldwide.

The research shows Christian numbers rising, not falling worldwide. "Christianity should enjoy a worldwide boom in the coming decades, but the vast majority of believers will be neither white nor European, nor Euro-American," writes Philip Jenkins of Baylor University, author of "The Next Christendom."

In America, this will mean that as white descendants of Europeans fall off a demographic cliff, they will be replaced by the growing Southern Christian and Catholic populations.

2. Nominal Christianity is dead — and that’s a good thing.

Meanwhile, in America, research showing that Christian numbers are tanking is a little misleading. What it really shows is a fall in the number of people who call themselves Christians but have never darkened the door of a Church. We no longer feel we have to dishonestly mark the "Christian" box, and we now feel it's OK to be honest and mark the "atheist" box—but this shows health rather than weakness.

It is an interesting dynamic: In the West, the nominal Christianity that was inherited unthinkingly is disappearing and in the East and South, real Christianity is a rapidly growing grassroots movement. Books like God's Century by Monica Duffy Toft of Public Policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government and God Is Back by John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge of The Economist are trying to figure out what that will mean.

3. The Church is promoting the sacraments.

But the nominal Catholic rate still causes problems. We know various polls place Mass attendance at various small percentages. What we don’t know is the extent to which they merely show that nominal Catholics still mark "Catholic" on polls.

Another thing we also know is that the Church is promoting the first necessary step to increased Mass attendance: confession. The Vatican’s 24 hours for the Lord March 13-14 is doing this church-wide, seeing promotions pay off in Great Britain, while events such as Chicago’s Festival of Forgiveness and Philadelphia's confession push are doing the same in America.

4. Eucharistic Adoration is on the rise.

A good measure of whether Catholics are more than nominal is Eucharistic adoration. To spend time with Jesus Christ is the very definition of a Christian, after all. Adoration is offered at 7,094 U.S. parishes as listed by RealPresence.com. In 2005, that website’s president, Mike Mortimer, estimated that there were 715 perpetual adoration chapels in America. The Vatican now estimates that there are 1,100 perpetual adoration chapels in America.

The worldwide church is led by a man who prays a daily Eucharistic hour and the Church in America is actively promoting Eucharistic adoration through events like the Eucharistic Adoration Novena.

5. Catholic youth movements have never been stronger.

A movement’s future is only as strong as its next generation, and so for Catholicism to have a future it has to have a youth movement. Catholicism does. Our most recent World Youth Day attracted 3.7 million — one of the 30-year event’s largest gatherings ever.

At home, we see a pro-life force largely led by young American Catholics, which dwarfs almost every other activist movement. Tens of thousands of Catholic young people descend on Washington each January for the March for Life, and you can add to that the young people at the 115 smaller marches for life throughout the United States and the nationwide life chain events in October.

6. … and the Catholic youth movements are linked to higher education.

When I went to college, people referred to "the **** four" or "thriving five" Catholic colleges faithful to the magisterium. Now I work at a college and we continually hear new stories of schools trying to reclaim their Catholic identity in order to compete. Today, the National Catholic Register’s latest Catholic Identity Guide lists more than 30 schools that are promoting the strength of their Catholic identity.

At the same time, new Catholic centers at state schools are trying to make inroads in hostile environments that dismantle students’ faith: The Seek 2015 conference of FOCUS (The Fellowship of Catholic University Students) attracted nearly 10,000 college students this year.

7. New, young vocations.

Another phenomenon you can’t help but notice in Catholic circles is hidden from official numbers: the new young vocations. We see them at Benedictine College all the time — in our classrooms, in our Abbey, and among our alumni. But because of the huge numbers of elderly priests and nuns, the total numbers of priests and nuns keeps dropping in America.

Research does show that millennials are "even more likely" to consider vocations than the generation before them, and anecdotal evidence shows that there was a Benedict Effect before there was any Francis Effect in vocations, and that priests under 35 represent a sign of hope in the Church.

8. Strong, engaged Bishops.

Complaining about bishops is a pastime as old as the Church itself. It can be done in a helpful way (see the letters of St. Paul in your New Testament) and in an unhelpful way (as in the joke about the part of the bishop-making ceremony where the candidate’s spine is removed).

But the 21st century has seen a huge change in the way American bishops engage the world. It first became noticeable with the candidacy of John Kerry, a radically pro-abortion politician whose nominal Catholicism forced bishops to take a stand. Then came the rise of Obama and the HHS mandate — which every U.S. bishop denounced. Finally, new strong bishops are emerging from what Thomas Peters calls the "Benedict Bishop Bump."

9. A new interest in Scripture.

Many people predicted when "The Da Vinci Code" was popular that the long-term effect of the novel’s crazy anti-Scriptural premise would be to increase interest in Scripture. That paradoxical prediction has proven true. In the wake of "The Da Vinci Code," a new interest in Scripture can be seen in popular books, television miniseries, and major Hollywood movies.

10. The witness of the martyrs.

Last but not least by a long shot is the witness of the martyrs. The beautiful way Christians are showing their deep faith and love for Jesus Christ, as I've said before, will grow the Church just as it did in the former atheist communist bloc, and indeed as it did in the early Church.

The bottom line is that if Christianity is true, then we can expect it will continue to rise and not die. If it's not true, then it will certainly die — and the sooner, the better. But since Jesus Christ really did die and rise and leave us the sacraments, don’t expect it to go away any time soon.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on March 11, 2015, 09:08:41 am
How the New Christian Left Is Twisting the Gospel

Peek behind the curtain of some "progressive" or "hip" evangelical churches, past the savvy technology and secular music, and you will find more than just a contemporary worship service. You'll find faith leaders encouraging young evangelicals to trade in their Christian convictions for a gospel filled with compromise. They're slowly attempting to give evangelicalism an "update"—and the change is not for the good.

It's painful for me to admit, but we can no longer rest carefree in our evangelical identity—because it is changing. No doubt you have seen the headlines declaring that evangelicalism is doomed because evangelical kids are leaving the faith. It is no secret that there is an expanding gulf between traditional Christian teachings and contemporary moral values. But the sad truth is that the ideological gulf between America's evangelical grown-ups and their kids, aka the "millennials," seems to be widening too.

Somehow the blame for this chasm is being heaped on traditional churches. They are accused of having too many rules as well as being homophobic and bigoted. Yes, we've heard those false claims from popular culture in its desperate attempt to keep Christianity imprisoned within the sanctuary walls. But now popular culture is being aided by Christ-professing bedfellows whose message to "coexist," "tolerate" and "keep out of it" is more marketable to the rising generation of evangelicals.

The seasoned Christian soldiers are noticing these distortions of the gospel. But for young evangelicals, the spiritual haze is harder to wade through. Desperate for acceptance in a fallen world, many young evangelicals (and some older ones) choose not to take Christ out of the chapel, and so they are unwittingly killing the church's public witness. In this uphill cultural battle, mired by scare tactics and fear, three types of evangelical Christians are emerging:

    Couch-potato Christians: These Christians adapt to the culture by staying silent on the tough culture-and-faith discussions. Typically this group will downplay God's absolute truths by promoting the illusion that neutrality was Jesus' preferred method of evangelism.
    Cafeteria-style Christians: This group picks and chooses which Scripture passages to live by, opting for the ones that best seem to jive with culture. Typically they focus solely on the "nice" parts of the gospel while simultaneously and intentionally minimizing sin, hell, repentance and transformation.
    Convictional Christians: In the face of the culture's harsh admonitions, these evangelicals refuse to be silent. Mimicking Jesus, they compassionately talk about love and grace while also sharing with their neighbors the need to recognize and turn from sin.

I know about these three types of Christians because at one time or another I have fallen into each of these three categories. My parents will tell you that even though I was raised in church, I morphed into a full-fledged feminist, told my parents they were ignorant for not endorsing homosexuality and bought into the distorted social justice rhetoric that confuses caring for the poor with advancing socialist or big government systems and demonizing the United States for its free market system.

I'm not ashamed to share my story because my experiences and those of my fellow bold evangelicals are a testimony of God's awesome, transforming power. Being countercultural for Christ isn't easy. What does the Great Commission say? Jesus commanded us to go, "teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you" (Matt. 28:20).

Where Did We Go Wrong?

I see so many parents scratching their heads trying to figure out where they went wrong with young evangelicals. Following the instructions of Proverbs 22:6—"Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it"—many evangelical parents took their children to church and prayed with them every night before bed. Yet the values those children now hold dear do not reflect the traditional teachings of Jesus.

To be perfectly clear, I want to let you know upfront that this isn't a parenting how-to guide that, if followed, will lead your loved ones to salvation. Instead, what I can offer you is a glimpse into the world of a twenty-something who sees thousands of young evangelicals being spiritually and emotionally targeted on Christian university campuses, in college ministries and at churches nationwide by a growing liberal movement cloaked in Christianity.

Research tells us that evangelicals are drifting further away from the orthodox truths their parents and grandparents held dear.   

Our churches have rarely—if ever—faced the exodus we are seeing today. This will have a direct effect on the spiritual and moral values that will shape the nation in the coming years. That is why it is urgent that concerned Christians start acting now before the situation gets worse.

The Collision of Faith and Culture

Faith and culture will continue to collide in America. The culture wars, the growth of family, the success of missions, the prosperity of our great nation—the future rests on millennial evangelicals' worldview. And that is cause for concern, because something has gone wrong with young evangelicals' theology.

The millennial generation's susceptibility to "feel-good" doctrine is playing a big part in America's moral decline. Millennials' religious practices depend largely on how the actions make us and others feel, whether the activities are biblical or not. For example, we only attend churches that leave us feeling good about our lifestyle choices, even if those choices conflict with God's clear commandments. We dismiss old hymns that focus on God's transforming salvation, love and mercy and opt for "Jesus is your boyfriend" songs. Or we contribute to nonprofits that exploit and misuse terms such as justice, oppressed and inequality because tweaking the language makes us feel more neutral, less confrontational.

Popular liberal evangelical writers and preachers tell young evangelicals that if they accept abortion and same-sex marriage, then the media, academia and Hollywood will finally accept Christians. Out of fear of being falsely dubbed "intolerant" or "uncompassionate," many young Christians are buying into theological falsehoods. Instead of standing up as a voice for the innocent unborn or marriage as God intended, millennials are forgoing the authority of Scripture and embracing a couch potato, cafeteria-style Christianity all in the name of tolerance.

This contemporary mindset is what Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the German theologian whose Christian convictions put him at odds with the Nazis and cost him his life, called "cheap grace." In his book The Cost of Discipleship Bonhoeffer wrote: "Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, Communion without confession, absolution without personal confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate."

Right now cheap grace theology is proliferating around evangelical Bible colleges, seminaries and Christian ministries.

Christian Doctrine Hijacked

It is not that millennial evangelicals were not taken to church by their parents. It is that their training has been hijacked by ineffective and sometimes intentionally distorted doctrine.

As constant and pervasive as the attacks on Christianity are at public universities, it is important to remember that millennials' worldviews do not start taking shape after they move out of their parents' houses. Their understanding of Jesus' teachings and cultural convictions begin to form while they are still at home and under the influence of their local church.

What I hope and pray evangelical parents and leaders come to realize is that the church has been too trusting. In our jampacked lifestyles, parents have treated Sunday school as they do softball or ballet class—drop off the kids for an hour then pick them up and hope they learned something.

Early on in my Sunday school teaching days, my co-teacher and I followed the curriculum pretty narrowly, the exception being that my co-teacher had an outstanding knowledge of biblical history that he imparted to the kids.

We taught all about Jesus' birth, resurrection and saving grace. Thinking the fluffy kids ministry curriculum covered all of the necessary bases, I felt confident these kids had a firm grasp on their Christian worldview. Boy, was I wrong!

One day my co-teacher and I decided to play "True or False." We casually went down a list of worldview questions with our class, sure that our little evangelicals would nail every question correctly.

No. 1: Jesus is God. "True." Great job.

No. 2: Jesus sinned. "False." Bingo!

No. 3: Jesus is one of many ways to heaven. "True." What?!

Shocked is the only way to describe how I felt. Hadn't they been listening to us? When I asked who taught them that, one girl said, "Coexist." Yes, these young evangelicals had been listening to their Sunday school teachers and their parents, but they had also been listening to their public school teachers, TV celebrities and rock stars.

Youth ministers, volunteer leaders and pastors also have to start preparing these kids to deal with the very real hostility that faces young evangelicals. 

If we never talk about abortion in church, how can we expect the rising evangelical girl to calmly explain the option of adoption to her frightened best friend who just admitted she is pregnant?

What will surprise you is how much young evangelicals actually crave honest discussions about abortion, sexuality, sexual exploitation, feminism and radical Islam. My friend and Evangelical Action adviser Richmond Trotter has two non-negotiable topics when addressing youth: creation and life. Having volunteered in church youth ministry since 1996, Richmond is not afraid to have serious discussions about what Scripture says about abortion, evolution and homosexuality. Make no mistake: The trend away from biblical truth is not concentrated in the hipster city limits. It is unfolding in the crevices of America's plains, hills, mountains and swamplands. All across this nation, "old-fashioned" conservative evangelicalism is being traded in for a bright and shiny, mediocre Christianity.

If America's evangelicals disengage from the public square and fail to engage the rising generation of Christian leaders, then we risk losing our public voice, then our religious liberty, then liberty altogether.

What Happened to the Religious Right?

The last several decades witnessed tremendous evangelical influence in the United States. Leaders such as Billy Graham, Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, Tim and Beverly LaHaye, Paige and Dorothy Patterson, James Dobson, and James and Betty Robison made a bold impact on America's families, churches and government. Now that those few leaders are aging or retiring, or have died, there are very few traditional evangelical leaders left holding the torch and even fewer candidates to whom they can pass it.

But religious convictions in America are not on the verge of disappearance just yet. There is still hope. In the book God Is Alive and Well: The Future of Religion in America, Gallup Inc. Editor-in-Chief Frank Newport ensures: "Christianity will prevail in the U.S. America will remain very much a Christian nation in the decades ahead, albeit less so than in the past because of an increase in Americans who don't have a religious identity."

Heed the Warning Signs

Evangelicals and culture warriors in the U.S. do not have to look far to discover what happens when Christian denominations give up on their traditional convictions and teachings. All we have to do is look at the dwindling memberships of mainline Protestant denominations.

In order to safeguard the trajectory of young evangelicals, we must uphold the authoritative Word of God. It is imperative that those in a position to influence millennials have transparent and honest discussions about the culture wars evangelical youth are already engaging. Otherwise they will be silent and accepting in the face of persecution and false doctrine.

The importance of arming the next generation of evangelicals cannot be overstated. If we continue to follow the example of mainline Protestants, evangelicalism will have a gloomy future. We must offer sorely needed leadership, but before we can do that, we need to know exactly whom and what we are up against.

http://www.charismanews.com/opinion/48678-the-new-christian-left-is-twisting-the-gospel


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 11, 2015, 10:34:38 am
Quote
The last several decades witnessed tremendous evangelical influence in the United States. Leaders such as Billy Graham, Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, Tim and Beverly LaHaye, Paige and Dorothy Patterson, James Dobson, and James and Betty Robison made a bold impact on America's families, churches and government. Now that those few leaders are aging or retiring, or have died, there are very few traditional evangelical leaders left holding the torch and even fewer candidates to whom they can pass it.

It's b/c they were controlled opposition to begin with - these people were also yoking up with Emergent Church leaders and the Roman Catholic Church.

Yes, they had an OUTWARD APPEARANCE of being fundamentalists, but nothing more - when all was said and done, they just passed the baton to all of these Christian Leftists like Rick Warren, Bill Hybels, Max Lucado, Beth Moore and Rob Bell.

IOW - in the 80's, the Apostate Church decided to become political(which ended up polarizing the nation). Then when they saw that didn't evangelize the lost, they turned to secular forms of entertainment like this "contemporary" christian music and emergent church theologies to try to bring in the lost.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 13, 2015, 01:03:23 pm
http://www.salon.com/2015/03/13/the_end_of_white_christian_america_is_nigh_why_the_countrys_youth_are_abandoning_religious_conservatism_partner/
3/13/15
The end of white Christian America is nigh: Why the country’s youth are abandoning religious conservatism
White Christians are now a minority in 19 states. America's growing racial diversity only tells part of the story


There’s been a lot of media attention recently to the changing demographics of the United States, where, at current rates, people who identify as “white” are expected to become a minority by the year 2050. But in many ways, the shift in national demographics has been accelerated beyond even that. New data from the American Values Atlas shows that while white people continue to be the majority in all but 4 states in the country, white Christians are the minority in a whopping 19 states. And, nationwide, Americans who identify as Protestant are now in the minority for the first time ever, clocking in at a mere 47 percent of Americans and falling.

The most obvious reason for this change is growing racial diversity. Most Americans still identify as Christian, but “Christian” is a group that is less white and less Protestant than it has been at any time in history. The massive growth in Hispanic Catholics, in particular, has been a major factor in this shift in the ethnic and religious identity of this country. White Catholics used to outnumber Hispanic Catholics 3 to 1 in the 2000s, but now it’s only by a 2 to 1 margin.

But another major reason religious diversity is outpacing the growth of racial/ethnic diversity is largely due to the explosive growth in non-belief among Americans. One in five Americans now identifies as religiously unaffiliated. In 13 states, the “nones” are the largest religious group. Non-religious people now equal Catholics in number, and their proportion is likely to grow dramatically, as young people are by far the most non-religious group in the country. This isn’t some kind of side effect of their youth, either. As Adam Lee has noted, the millennial generation is becoming less religious as they age.

These changes explain the modern political landscape as well as any economic indicator. While not all white Christians are conservative, these changing numbers definitely suggest that conservative Christians are rapidly losing their grip on power. And while some non-white Christians are conservative, their numbers are not making up for what the Christian right is losing. And whether conservative leaders are aware of the exact numbers or not, it’s clear that they sense that change is in the air. Just by speaking to young people, turning on your TV, or reading the Internet, you can sense the way the country is lurching away from conservative Christian values and towards a more liberal, secular outlook. And conservative Christians aren’t taking these changes well at all.

To look at the Christian right now is to see a people who know they are losing power and are desperately trying to reassert dominance before it’s lost altogether. The most obvious example of this is the frenzy of anti-abortion activity in recent years. Anti-choice forces have controlled the Republican Party since the late ’70s, but only in the past few years have they concentrated so singlemindedly on trying to destroy legal abortion in wide swaths of the country. In 2011 alone, states passed nearly three times as many abortion restrictions as they had in any previous year.

None of this is a reaction to any changes in people’s sexual behavior or reproductive choices. It’s not like there was a spike in abortions causing this panic. In fact, the abortion rate has been declining. And despite continuing media panic over adolescent sexuality, the fact is that teenagers are waiting longer to have sex, on average, than in the past. Despite this, not only are you seeing a dramatic increase in attacks on legal abortion, the Christian right has expanded its attacks to contraception access, suggesting that something has worked them into a panic they believe can only be resolved by trying to reassert their religious and sexual values.


That something isn’t changes in sexual behavior, but it’s reasonable to believe it’s because of changes in sexual values. People might not be having more sex, but they are feeling less guilty about the sex they are having. Since Gallup first started polling people in 2001 on moral views, acceptance of consensual sex between adults has skyrocketed. In a decade’s time, acceptance of premarital sex swelled from 53% to 66% of Americans and acceptance of gay Americans grew from a mere 38% to a majority of Americans. Even polyamory has become more acceptable for Americans, rising from being accepted by 5% of Americans to 14%.

The fact that these changes in attitude are rising alongside the growth of irreligiosity is not a coincidence. More perhaps even than the 1960s, Americans are in a period of questioning rigid sexual and religious mores, and concluding, in increasing numbers, that they are not down with guilt-tripping people for victimless behavior and demanding conformity for its own sake. Some of them–now a whopping 22% of Americans!–are leaving religion entirely. Some are continuing in their faith but choosing to interpret their values differently than Christian conservatives would like.

And so we see Christian conservatives cracking down in a desperate bid to regain control. They claim that they’re being oppressed by increasing tolerance for religious diversity. They have latched onto, with some success, the claim that “religious freedom” requires giving Christians the right to oppress others. The Republican Party is in complete thrall to the religious right, to the point where giving the Christian right one go-nowhere symbolic bill instead of another one created a major political crisis.

**I really hate to say it - but b/c of their hypocrisy, they reaped what they sowed. I say this b/c I've grown up in these "conservative" SBC churches all my life - they act like they are better than everyone just b/c they promote "good morals", are anti-abortion, vote Republican, go to a church building every week, etc. Ultimately, even these hireling pastors' children didn't turn out well either.

The irony is that this panic-based overreach is just making the situation worse for the Christian right. One of the biggest reasons the secularization trend has accelerated in recent years is that young people see the victim complex and the sex policing of the Christian right and it’s turning them off b/c they are not getting sound doctrine, the King James Bible, being introduced and taught to them by their Baby Boomer parents, and these hireling Babel buildings. And they’re not just rejecting conservative Christianity but the entire idea of organized religion altogether. In other words, the past few years have created a self-perpetuating cycle: Christian conservatives, in a panic over changing demographics, start cracking down. In reaction, more people give up on religion. That causes the Christian right to panic more and crack down more. In the end, Christian conservatives are going to hasten their own demise by trying to save themselves. Not that any of us should be crying for them.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

**OK - this is obviously a far-left leaning news site(Salon) - but I really hate to say it, they are right. I say this b/c look how the previous generation(Baby Boomers) and their respective hireling Babel building pastors never trained them Millenial children in the proper word of God, the King James Bible.

And now they are shocked over what's going on? They really need to examine themselves to see if they're in the faith.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 16, 2015, 08:41:27 am
What about being active to preach the gospel to lost and thirsty souls?

How about those *liberal* justices Ronald Reagan, George HW Bush, and George W Bush appointed?(that voted to legalize abortion, sodomy, the Police State, and socialized medicine)

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/16/us/evangelicals-aim-to-mobilize-an-army-for-republicans-in-2016.html?_r=1
3/15/15
Evangelicals Aim to Mobilize an Army for Republicans in 2016

DES MOINES — One afternoon last week, David Lane watched from the sidelines as a roomful of Iowa evangelical pastors applauded a defense of religious liberty by Senator Ted Cruz of Texas. That night, he gazed out from the stage as the pastors surrounded Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana in a prayer circle.

For Mr. Lane, a onetime Bible salesman and self-described former “wild man,” connecting the pastors with two likely presidential candidates was more than a good day’s work. It was part of what he sees as his mission, which is to make evangelical Christians a decisive power in the Republican Party.

“An army,” he said. “That’s the goal.”

And Mr. Lane is positioning himself as a field marshal. A fast-talking and born-again veteran of conservative politics with experience in Washington, Texas and California, Mr. Lane, 60, travels the country trying to persuade evangelical clergy members to become politically active.

His hope is that the politicized pastors will help mobilize congregations that have been disheartened by the repeated failure of socially conservative candidates, and by a party that has softened its opposition to same-sex marriage.

It is an organizing approach far different from those in the days when larger-than-life leaders like the Moral Majority founder, Jerry Falwell, who died in 2007, or Pat Robertson, now 84, could activate evangelical voters simply by anointing a candidate.

But close observers of evangelicals and their political involvement say Mr. Lane is emblematic of a new generation of evangelical leaders who draw local support or exert influence through niche issues or their own networks.

Unlike political operatives such as Ralph Reed, the former executive director of the Christian Coalition who helped elect George W. Bush before becoming ensnared in the Jack Abramoff lobbying scandal, Mr. Lane does not have an extensive organization.

What Mr. Lane, a former public relations man, does have going for him is a decentralized landscape in which a determined believer with an extensive network of ground-level evangelical leaders and a limitless capacity for talking on the phone can exert influence on Republican presidential candidates eager to reach evangelical voters.

“David is the real deal,” said the Rev. Brad Atkins, a prominent pastor in South Carolina. “He really believes that this is his calling.”

And it is here in Iowa, where conservatives traditionally have an inordinate influence in the state’s Republican presidential caucuses, that evangelicals have their best shot of shaping the field. In what he says is his effort to restore “our Christian heritage,” Mr. Lane’s American Renewal Project has already shown its influence in Iowa by helping to unseat three State Supreme Court justices who voted to allow same-sex marriage.

But Mr. Lane’s ambitions are national — he focused on battleground states in 2014 and has built an email list of 100,000 pastors around the country.

His goal now is to get 1,000 pastors to run for public office, and their potential support has drawn a virtual pilgrimage of conservative candidates eager to join the tours Mr. Lane organizes to Israel and to his “Pastors and Pews” events.

“A good friend” Mr. Cruz said.

“A great friend,” *Roman Catholic* Mr. Jindal said.

With some of the energy gone from the evangelical movement, said John C. Green, a political scientist at the University of Akron and an expert on evangelicals, “this is about keeping the pressure on for the next election.”

“Lane has influence with pastors, and they listen to him,” Mr. Green added.

All this activity has caught the attention of liberal opponents, who call Mr. Lane an extremist for his belief that abortion will incur divine vengeance on America and his argument that the Republican Party will be destroyed by its acceptance of same-sex marriage just as the Whig Party was destroyed by its acceptance of slavery in the 19th century.

They have sought to cast him as the de facto travel agent for the American Family Association, a Mississippi-based conservative religious organization, which had to distance itself from a spokesman, Bryan Fischer, who called homosexuals “Nazis” and argued that Muslims should not enjoy First Amendment rights and should be converted to Christianity.

Mr. Lane said that he raises his own money for his trips and events from a handful of wealthy donors, whose names he declined to divulge, and that the American Family Association pays him a retainer and provides him with legal and accounting assistance. In return the group, which has an expansive radio network, Internet constituency and budget, gets its name on all of Mr. Lane’s events and adds to its database the contact information of all the pastors he organizes.

Questions about his associations or accusations that he is an opportunist clearly get under Mr. Lane’s skin. But, he said, they show how he is “on the radar.”

And it is a long way from where he started. Raised in rural Oklahoma by his grandparents after his parents divorced in his infancy and his father left, Mr. Lane hit bottom as a partying student at the University of Mississippi, where for four summers he sold Bibles door to door.

“I’d stay drunk all night and sell Bibles all day,” he said. With about a semester to go in 1977, he dropped out, instead pursuing a life of “drugs, wine, women and song.” (“Le Freak” by Chic and “****,” he clarified.)

He eventually sought redemption from the Bible and a series of motivational speaking mentors. Judge Ziglar, author of “Timid Salesmen Have Skinny Kids” and brother of the famed motivational speaker Zig Ziglar, took an interest in him.

Then, after having a conversion moment in a downtown Atlanta alley following a motivational seminar, he moved to Houston and came under the wing of Judge Paul Pressler, a key figure in the resurgence of the Baptist conservative movement and the Moral Majority.

Bob Perry, the wealthy Texas home builder and Republican donor, who later funded the Swift Boat Veterans campaign against John Kerry in 2004, gave Mr. Lane $3,000 of seed money to get started in Washington, where Mr. Lane began working for Carl Channell in support of President Ronald Reagan’s “Star Wars” defense system.

“Spitz taught me the fund-raising business,” said Mr. Lane, using a nickname for Mr. Channell. “He was a homosexual.”

He eventually worked for Mr. Falwell, and throughout his career gained a reputation as a “pastor’s friend,” said his own former pastor, the Rev. Gary Miller, who tearfully recalled Mr. Lane’s handing him a pair of new shoes during a period of tight finances in his own life.

And it is as a pastoral impresario that Mr. Lane has found his influence and attracted an audience of auditioning politicians. He organized an event with Gov. Rick Perry and hundreds of evangelical pastors in Texas in 2005. Dozens of events and candidates and seven years later, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky attended an event in South Carolina.

“They say you’re anti-Israel,” Mr. Lane said he told Mr. Paul when they met, and asked if he had ever been to Israel. When Mr. Paul said he had not, Mr. Lane, whose daughter now works for Mr. Paul, asked if the senator would be interested in going on a tour with evangelical leaders from Iowa and South Carolina.

Two years ago, Mr. Paul, his wife, Kelley, and their sons joined about 50 pastors and evangelical leaders on the trip. Afterward, Mr. Lane said, he received a note from Mr. Paul in which he wrote that he had awaked from a dream singing “How Great Thou Art” and that two of his sons had committed their lives to Christ.

After Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey made a good impression at a Republican event later that year, Mr. Lane offered him the chance to join primary state pastors on a “Reagan, Thatcher, John Paul II” tour to California, London and Rome.

“They turned it down,” said Mr. Lane, who smiled when asked if he thought that was a mistake.

Instead, Mike Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor, jumped at the opportunity, subbing former Nazi concentration camps and Oskar Schindler’s former factory in Poland for the stop in Rome.

Last month, Mr. Lane took 60 members of the Republican National Committee to Jerusalem at a cost, he said, of about $500,000. A trip to Israel with Mr. Jindal is planned for July.

Missing from his travel manifests and events are the Republican Party’s establishment candidates. While Mr. Lane is technically neutral at this point, he clearly is no fan of the more moderate wing of his party. He said he tried to rescue the 2008 and 2012 tickets by advocating Mr. Huckabee for vice president.

While he admires Jeb Bush’s record as governor of Florida, especially his opposition to taking Terri Schiavo off life support, he scoffed at Mr. Bush’s choice for evangelical liaison, noting that he was “26 years old” and that his father was “behind Romney.” And as far as Mr. Bush’s hiring an openly gay communications director, he said: “I don’t understand what he’s up to. Personnel is policy.”

Mr. Lane is himself something of a one-man operation. He said that he shares the same hard-charging engine as his father, a car dealer who made the Chevrolet Hall of Fame, and since setting up shop in Southern California in 1998, Mr. Lane has acted mostly behind the scenes. Last week’s conference, and the two presidential hopefuls, was a calculated step into the spotlight.

“If the Lord were to call 1,000 pastors in America — 1,000 — and they ended up with an average of 300 volunteers per campaign in 2016, that would be 300,000 grass-root, precinct-level, evangelical conservatives coming from the bottom up,” he said to the ballroom full of pastors. “It would change America.”


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on March 24, 2015, 12:17:02 pm
Minister Who Denies God’s Existence: I Don’t Appreciate Being Told I’m Not a Christian

But your not  :P

 A Presbyterian USA minister in Oregon who says that he doesn’t believe in God—and doesn’t require his members to believe either–remarked in a recent article that he is offended by those who assert that he is not a Christian.

“Someone quipped that my congregation is BYOG: Bring Your Own God. I use that and invite people to ‘bring their own God’—or none at all,” wrote John Shuck of Beaverton’s Southminster Presbyterian Church in a guest post for Patheos last week. “While the symbol ‘God’ is part of our cultural tradition, you can take it or leave it or redefine it to your liking.”

Shuck first came out as an unbeliever in 2011, generating controversy as to how one could serve as a minister and not believe in the Bible.

“The concept of ‘God’ is a product of myth-making and ‘God’ is no longer credible as a personal, supernatural being,” he wrote in a blog post on his site “Shuck and Jive.” “Jesus may have been historical, but most of the stories about Him in the Bible and elsewhere are legends.”

Shuck reiterated his unbelief in his article “I’m a Presbyterian Minister Who Doesn’t Believe in God” on Tuesday, as he asserted that “[b ]elief-less Christianity is thriving.”

“We all have been trained to think that Christianity is about believing things,” he wrote. “Its symbols and artifacts (God, Bible, Jesus, Heaven, etc) must be accepted in a certain way. And when times change and these beliefs are no longer credible, the choices we are left with are either rejection or fundamentalism.”

But Shuck says that although he rejects the Bible as being literal, and denies the existence of Heaven and Hell, he takes offense when people tell him that he’s not a Christian.

    Connect with Christian News

“[E]ven though I hold those beliefs, I am still a proud minister. But I don’t appreciate being told that I’m not truly a Christian,” he stated. “Many liberal or progressive Christians have already let go or de-emphasized belief in Heaven, that the Bible is literally true, that Jesus is supernatural, and that Christianity is the only way. Yet they still practice what they call Christianity.”

However, others state that Shuck’s assertion that one can be a Christian without faith in the saving power of Christ is faulty, and that his words make evident that he does not understand what it means to be a Christian.

“Mr. Schuck proves that he knows very little about Christianity,” Andrew Rappaport of Striving for Eternity Ministries in Jackson, N.J. told Christian News Network. “He talks about ‘belief-less Christianity’ thriving. But what defines a Christian is specifically stated as a belief that Jesus Christ as God (Romans 10:9–10). Therefore, it is impossible to have a belief-less Christianity.”

“To have someone who can claim to be a minister and redefine Christianity against its proper definition is no different than attempting to redefine marriage as possible between the same sex,” he continued. “God defines marriage as being between man and woman, and God defines Christianity based on belief.”

Rappaport said that he believes that Shuck has an ulterior motive in remaining a minister while asserting that one can be a Christian apart from following Christ.

“What you see here is nothing more than someone who wants to infiltrate the Church in an attempt to destroy it,” Rappaport stated. “The two things that he does not understand is, first, the Church will not be destroyed, and second, his whole argument that God does not exist is based on intelligence, logic, ability to reason and morality—all of which require the God that he denies, because immaterial things are not the product of chemical reactions; they require God.”

http://christiannews.net/2015/03/23/minister-who-denies-gods-existence-i-dont-appreciate-being-told-im-not-a-christian/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on March 26, 2015, 09:17:40 am
1 in 4 Americans Don't Believe In God; Lack of Trust In Local Churches Cited as a Reason Why Adults Are Leaving the Faith

Barna Group has released its 2015 study on the state of atheism in America, and has revealed that one in four unchurched adults in the country now identify as atheists or agnostics. The study also found that rejection of the Bible and lack of trust in the church are two main reasons why people are turning away from faith. The study was focused on those who have not attended church within the past six months, and found that the majority of such people identify as non-practicing Christians. One in four, or 25 percent, however, were classed as skeptics, which Barna defines as...   

 MORE : http://www.christianpost.com/news/barnas-2015-state-of-atheism-report-finds-one-in-four-americans-dont-believe-god-exists-136327/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 28, 2015, 07:06:58 pm
Well, we've been discussing the heretical genesis gap theory at length today.

I don't know of this "pastor" believed in it - but nonetheless let's all be careful and GUARD OUR HEARTS...b/c even a tad bit of leaven will leaven the ENTIRE lump!

1 Thes 5:21  Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.

Minister Who Denies God’s Existence: I Don’t Appreciate Being Told I’m Not a Christian

But your not  :P

 A Presbyterian USA minister in Oregon who says that he doesn’t believe in God—and doesn’t require his members to believe either–remarked in a recent article that he is offended by those who assert that he is not a Christian.

“Someone quipped that my congregation is BYOG: Bring Your Own God. I use that and invite people to ‘bring their own God’—or none at all,” wrote John Shuck of Beaverton’s Southminster Presbyterian Church in a guest post for Patheos last week. “While the symbol ‘God’ is part of our cultural tradition, you can take it or leave it or redefine it to your liking.”

Shuck first came out as an unbeliever in 2011, generating controversy as to how one could serve as a minister and not believe in the Bible.

“The concept of ‘God’ is a product of myth-making and ‘God’ is no longer credible as a personal, supernatural being,” he wrote in a blog post on his site “Shuck and Jive.” “Jesus may have been historical, but most of the stories about Him in the Bible and elsewhere are legends.”

Shuck reiterated his unbelief in his article “I’m a Presbyterian Minister Who Doesn’t Believe in God” on Tuesday, as he asserted that “[b ]elief-less Christianity is thriving.”

“We all have been trained to think that Christianity is about believing things,” he wrote. “Its symbols and artifacts (God, Bible, Jesus, Heaven, etc) must be accepted in a certain way. And when times change and these beliefs are no longer credible, the choices we are left with are either rejection or fundamentalism.”

But Shuck says that although he rejects the Bible as being literal, and denies the existence of Heaven and Hell, he takes offense when people tell him that he’s not a Christian.

    Connect with Christian News

“[E]ven though I hold those beliefs, I am still a proud minister. But I don’t appreciate being told that I’m not truly a Christian,” he stated. “Many liberal or progressive Christians have already let go or de-emphasized belief in Heaven, that the Bible is literally true, that Jesus is supernatural, and that Christianity is the only way. Yet they still practice what they call Christianity.”

However, others state that Shuck’s assertion that one can be a Christian without faith in the saving power of Christ is faulty, and that his words make evident that he does not understand what it means to be a Christian.

“Mr. Schuck proves that he knows very little about Christianity,” Andrew Rappaport of Striving for Eternity Ministries in Jackson, N.J. told Christian News Network. “He talks about ‘belief-less Christianity’ thriving. But what defines a Christian is specifically stated as a belief that Jesus Christ as God (Romans 10:9–10). Therefore, it is impossible to have a belief-less Christianity.”

“To have someone who can claim to be a minister and redefine Christianity against its proper definition is no different than attempting to redefine marriage as possible between the same sex,” he continued. “God defines marriage as being between man and woman, and God defines Christianity based on belief.”

Rappaport said that he believes that Shuck has an ulterior motive in remaining a minister while asserting that one can be a Christian apart from following Christ.

“What you see here is nothing more than someone who wants to infiltrate the Church in an attempt to destroy it,” Rappaport stated. “The two things that he does not understand is, first, the Church will not be destroyed, and second, his whole argument that God does not exist is based on intelligence, logic, ability to reason and morality—all of which require the God that he denies, because immaterial things are not the product of chemical reactions; they require God.”

http://christiannews.net/2015/03/23/minister-who-denies-gods-existence-i-dont-appreciate-being-told-im-not-a-christian/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on March 28, 2015, 07:48:41 pm
Rereading that story made me think. You are not a Christian, not at all. But you still have Christ in your Title. You are in fact ANTI CHRIST!!


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 28, 2015, 08:36:18 pm
Rereading that story made me think. You are not a Christian, not at all. But you still have Christ in your Title. You are in fact ANTI CHRIST!!

I don't know if you're familiar with Jason Cooley(pastors at Old Paths Baptist Church MN on Youtube - it's a small non-501c3/KJB-believing church) - but he's been getting alot of flack lately for pushing this heretical Lordship Salvation gospel.

Yes, it's true that we all struggle with sin in the flesh daily(Romans 7 and Galatians 5), and even the greatest prophets in the bible like David fell into grave sin(while Demas loved this present world more) - but nonetheless these same people who give him alot of flack end up missing the entire point of what he's saying - if they listened to his sermons carefully, the point he's keeps driving home is that the way 99% of Apostate churches in America give out a false bill of goods to the lost, ultimately their rotten fruit shows subsequently.(ie-saying a 1-2-3 sinner's prayer will NOT get you saved)

For example - what do you think of a sodomite, who SUPPOSEDLY got saved, but stayed in his/her lifestyle? Or how about a supposedly saved Christian who kept on fornicating, and acted like nothing was wrong? Or how about those that continue to warm up to other religions like Buddhism?

John 10:25  Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me.
Joh 10:26  But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.
Joh 10:27  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
Joh 10:28  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

Yes, I understand having a changed life is NOT a requirement of the salvation gospel - but remember it's the LORD who does these things...

2Corinthians 5:17  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Philippians 1:6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on March 28, 2015, 08:45:11 pm
I don't know if you're familiar with Jason Cooley(pastors at Old Paths Baptist Church MN on Youtube - it's a small non-501c3/KJB-believing church) - but he's been getting alot of flack lately for pushing this heretical Lordship Salvation gospel.

Yes, it's true that we all struggle with sin in the flesh daily(Romans 7 and Galatians 5), and even the greatest prophets in the bible like David fell into grave sin(while Demas loved this present world more) - but nonetheless these same people who give him alot of flack end up missing the entire point of what he's saying - if they listened to his sermons carefully, the point he's keeps driving home is that the way 99% of Apostate churches in America give out a false bill of goods to the lost, ultimately their rotten fruit shows subsequently.(ie-saying a 1-2-3 sinner's prayer will NOT get you saved)

For example - what do you think of a sodomite, who SUPPOSEDLY got saved, but stayed in his/her lifestyle? Or how about a supposedly saved Christian who kept on fornicating, and acted like nothing was wrong? Or how about those that continue to warm up to other religions like Buddhism?

John 10:25  Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me.
Joh 10:26  But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.
Joh 10:27  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
Joh 10:28  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

Yes, I understand having a changed life is NOT a requirement of the salvation gospel - but remember it's the LORD who does these things...

2Corinthians 5:17  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Philippians 1:6  Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

Rom 7:15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.

1Pe 3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:


Big difference between lust and love.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on March 29, 2015, 05:45:01 am
Episcopal Church Bishop: Denying Climate Change 'Sinful'
"Jesus insists…"
.

 According to the presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church Katherine Jefferts Schori, denying climate change is a sin.

She says Jesus "insists" that Earth's citizens reduce their carbon footprint and proselytize others to do the same.

Schori kicked off a 30-day challenge in Los Angeles on Tuesday that the church labeled "The Climate Change Crisis." As keynote speaker, the former-marine-biologist-turned priest, used the event to preach environmental stewardship.

"We have failed to love what God has given us," she stated in her opening address. "We are unwittingly redesigning the Earth on timescales that are infinitesimal compared to previous geologic and evolutionary rates."

Noting that there are "a few very loud voices" who deny climate change, Jefferts Schori opted to brush them aside because they are motivated by "greed, self-centered political interests, [and] willful blindness."

She then labeled those actions a sin:

    The Judeo-Christian tradition has always called those motivations sinful. It’s decidedly wrong to use resources that have been given into our collective care in ways that diminish the ability of others to share in abundant life. [A "sin of omission," she claimed]

    We are making war on the integrity of this planet… the violence of war unleashed by environmental chaos and greed. We were planted in this garden to care for it, literally to have dominion over its creatures. Dominion means caring for our island home.

    We are meant to love God and what God has created and to love our neighbors as ourselves. Jesus insists that those who will enjoy abundant life are those who care for all neighbors, especially the 'least of these' -- the hungry and thirsty, the imprisoned and sick -- and that must include all the species God has nurtured on this planet.

Jefferts Schori blamed "human beings with the most resource intensive lifestyle" as causing the starvation, displacement, and impoverishment of whom she calls "climate refugees" -- human or animal.

The bishop said calling this event a "crisis" was by design because humans are now faced with a "life or death" decision: "Change our destructive and overly consumptive ways, or we can ignore the consequences of our actions or slowly steam like the proverbial frogs in a soup pot."

However, she warned that there is not much time left to choose.

The entire keynote speech and event can be viewed here.

http://www.truthrevolt.org/news/episcopal-church-bishop-denying-climate-change-sinful


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 30, 2015, 09:34:44 am
I was thinking about this over the weekend...

The "falling away" we're seeing is not only ZERO biblical truth in these modern-day churches now, but it also doesn't mean saved people who fall away into this present world will lose their salvation.

Hebrews 10:38  Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.

Pt being that look how much the growing number of born-again believers have fallen away, albeit slightly, from these very important doctrines...

eternal security(now some believe in either lordship salvation or easy believism)

pre-ToJTCA(now a growing number believe in post-trib)

Literal 6 days/24 hour day creation by the LORD(now a growing number believe in this genesis gap theory heresy)

Pt being that all this is doing is increasing confusion among the body of Christ - instead of preaching the gospel to the lost world, and edifying the saints daily in these last days we're living in, more of these subtle twists of doctrine of devils are slowly but surely keeping believers pre-occupied with the carnal things of this world instead(and like said, causing more confusion). And I say confusion b/c in addition to causing confusion within the BoC - now it's coming to a point where ministries are mudslinging each other, accusing each other of being heretics(ie-the genesis gap pushers/easy believerismists would accuse the post-tribbers/lordship salvationists, and vice versa).

2 Corinthians 11:3  But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.
2Co 11:4  For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 30, 2015, 06:43:14 pm
Rom 7:15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.

1Pe 3:18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:


Big difference between lust and love.

1Corinthians 6:9  Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
1Co 6:10  Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
1Co 6:11  And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.


This was in Corinthians(as we all know) - notice the VERB TENSES - the first one being PAST(the one bolded in red), and the rest of them being PRESENT(bolded in blue).

Like I said - I perfectly understand that salvation is by faith alone in Jesus Christ, and we will certainly have a LIFETIME FULL of struggles in the flesh(and there have been those like Demas who departed into this present world). But again - when you look at the lens of this scripture, can anyone honestly say a sodomite or a drunkard who professed to get saved...and continued in their lifestyle...was saved to begin with?

And here's another passage...

Ephesians 2:8  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Eph 2:9  Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Eph 2:10  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.


The first 2 verses say faith alone in Jesus Christ - SUBSEQUENTLY after these 2 verses, look what verse 10 says...it's GOD who ordained us to walk in good works AFTER we're saved.

Again - I'm sick and tired of people accusing others of being lordship salvationists, when all they do is point to these very verses of scriptures.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 06, 2015, 10:48:26 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=61ZKir-JPLU

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSOiThWUHyk


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 07, 2015, 02:00:58 pm
Someone on another internet fellowship group posted this.

What is wrong with this picture?

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-LvQA5zC0b1I/VSQnU5usiXI/AAAAAAAAAKs/3ccGYOsXtKk/w506-h899/15%2B-%2B1)


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on April 09, 2015, 08:28:32 am
babel building


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on April 09, 2015, 08:29:10 am
WOW!!!

‘He Might Be Biblical, But He’s an *******': Blasphemous ‘Christian’ Professor Trashes Christians

In a recent article for Salon, a Rutgers University professor who claims to be a Christian trashed other Christians as she claimed that Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) was meant to give license to “terrorize” blacks and homosexuals, and to stop women from having sex outside of marriage.

“The right’s made-up God: How bigots invented a white supremacist Jesus” is written by Brittany Cooper, who teaches Women’s and Gender Studies and Africana Studies at Rutger’s University in New Jersey. In her opinion piece posted on Wednesday, the professor asserted that religious freedom laws are driven by Christians who are “antagonistic to every single group of people who are not white, male, Christian, cisgender, straight and middle-class.”

“As a practicing Christian, I am deeply incensed by these calls for restoration and reclamation in the name of religious freedom,” she wrote. “This kind of legislation is rooted in a politics that gives white people the authority to police and terrorize people of color, queer people and poor women.”

Cooper also claimed that laws such as RFRA will someday be used to make provision for religiously-targeted racism.

“[G]iven our current anti-black racial climate, there is no reason to trust that these laws won’t be eventually used for acts of racially inflected religious discrimination, perhaps against black Muslims or Muslims of Arab descent,” she stated. “Surely this kind of law in this political climate sanctions the exercise of Islamophobia.”

The professor then proceeded to blast what she called “the religious right” for its beliefs on homosexuality, and decried that “the lives the Church imagines for women still center around marriage and motherhood, and no sex if you’re single.”

“I find myself wishing that this particularly violent and vicious breed of Christianity would die off,” Cooper wrote.

    Connect with Christian News

“This God isn’t the God that I serve,” she continued. “There is nothing holy, loving, righteous, inclusive, liberatory or theologically sound about Him. He might be ‘biblical’ but he’s also an [expletive].”

She claimed that Jesus might have been a homosexual himself, as well as a feminist.

“The Jesus I know, love, talk about and choose to retain was a radical, freedom-loving, justice-seeking, potentially queer (because he was either asexual or a priest married to a prostitute), feminist healer, unimpressed by Scripture-quoters and religious law-keepers, seduced neither by power nor evil,” Cooper wrote.

But some find Cooper’s writing to be troubling, stating that she is among those who distort the Scriptures and are attempting to take others down with them spiritually.

“There is so much wrong here it would take many volumes of books to unravel it all,” stated writer Onan Coca for BarbWire.

“Liberals are attempting to coopt Christianity, to pervert the truth of the word of God, which Jesus told his disciples was offensive, in an effort to silence us,” he said. “We cannot allow this to happen, because they would pervert, twist and even destroy the very word of truth that our Father has given to us.”

Coca exhorted Christians to remember that Jesus stated that His followers would be rejected by the world.

“Remember folks, Jesus told us that the world would hate us,” he wrote. “He said that [since] they had crucified Him, what did we think they would do to us?!”

http://christiannews.net/2015/04/07/he-might-be-biblical-but-hes-an-blasphemous-christian-professor-trashes-christians/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 12, 2015, 03:50:07 pm
Jude 1:4  For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OysnHqOSAKI


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on April 13, 2015, 08:38:59 am
Godless Britain? UK 6th from last in global belief poll

Britain is one of the least religious countries in the world, coming sixth from bottom in a global study of belief carried out across 65 countries. Win/Gallup International polling suggested that over 50 percent of Britons did not believe in any religion, 13 percent were committed atheists and that the rest were unsure how to define their beliefs.   

http://rt.com/uk/249149-religion-britain-global-study/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 19, 2015, 03:21:05 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6o36nvbkOpc


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on April 22, 2015, 08:33:59 am
Practical Bible: More Than Half of Americans Do Not Believe That Jesus is Sinless

Despite more than nine out of 10 Americans agreeing Jesus was a historical figure, what they believe about Him diverges widely, according to a newly released survey from the Barna Research Group, a nonprofit organization that has been analyzing cultural trends related to religious belief since 1984. The survey of more than 4,000 U.S. adults online and by phone suggests Americans are conflicted about the central figure of Christianity and have failed to successfully pass on their faith to succeeding generations.

http://www.practicalbible.com/top-stories/more-than-half-of-americans-do-not-believe-that-jesus-is-sinless


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 25, 2015, 10:27:57 am
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f4vfzXhomCk


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 28, 2015, 10:05:46 pm
http://finance.yahoo.com/news/christians-leaving-faith-droves-trend-173818770.html
Christians are leaving the faith in droves and the trend isn't slowing down
4/28/15

An extensive study done by the Pew Research Center has yielded some fascinating information regarding the trajectory of world religions over the next four decades.

As of 2010, Christianity was the dominant world religion with roughly 2.2 billion adherents and Muslim's were second with about 1.6 billion adherents. If current demographic trends continue however, Islam is expected to catch up to Christianity midway through the 21st century.

(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/f8RpsG5llZLxX9l47tA_hw--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7cT04NQ--/http://globalfinance.zenfs.com/en_us/Finance/US_AFTP_SILICONALLEY_H_LIVE/Christians_are_leaving_the_faith-cf71c25788f89218bfb40fab0205d258)

Furthermore, people are leaving Christianity in droves. About 106 million Christians are expected to switch affiliation from 2010 to 2050 while only about 40 million people are expected to enter Christianity.

The religiously unaffiliated (athiests, agnostics) are expected to see the largest net gains from switching, adding more than 61 million followers.

(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/KcNLi_NMQak9jT_KQCmRdg--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7cT04NQ--/http://globalfinance.zenfs.com/en_us/Finance/US_AFTP_SILICONALLEY_H_LIVE/Christians_are_leaving_the_faith-ca41d4e6939b47e67c4f09c6beb896d4)

In North America, the fastest growing religious groups are Muslims and followers of "other religions" (an umbrella category that includes Baha’is, Jains, Sikhs, Taoists and many smaller faiths). Christianity is expected to decline from 78 percent of the overall population in 2010 to 66 percent in 2050.

Here's what the dominant religious groups in the US are by county:

(http://l3.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/jy5yInvSdD9PM1BO31mfoA--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7cT04NQ--/http://globalfinance.zenfs.com/en_us/Finance/US_AFTP_SILICONALLEY_H_LIVE/Christians_are_leaving_the_faith-efab98db3919516e1f17e208258c0880)

Unaffiliated religions are expected to rise over that same time from 16 percent of the population to 26 percent. By 2050, the United States will have more Muslims (2.1 percent of pop.) than Jews (1.4 percent).

In South America and the Caribbean, Christianity will see a slight dip over the next four decades, from 90 percent in 2010 t0 89 percent in 2050. Over that same time the religiously unaffiliated population will add 45 million followers increasing from 8 percent of the population in 2010 to 9 percent in 2050.

(http://l1.yimg.com/bt/api/res/1.2/63NfU52JNG7at_Rl9wwAEg--/YXBwaWQ9eW5ld3M7cT04NQ--/http://globalfinance.zenfs.com/en_us/Finance/US_AFTP_SILICONALLEY_H_LIVE/Christians_are_leaving_the_faith-249136226d7799074b9cb028b5acc3ee)

((Pew Research) ) If the current trends continue beyond 2050 - which is a big if considering unforeseen events that can happen over a 40 year span (war, famine, innovation etc.) - then by the year 2070 the world's population of Muslims would roughly equal that of Christians.
Here are other chief findings from the report:

1. Islam will grow faster than any other religion over the next 40 years.

2. The number of Muslims will equal the number of Christians around the world by 2050.

3. Atheists, agnostics and other people who do not affiliate with any religion – though increasing in countries such as the United States and France – will make up a declining share of the world’s total population.

4. The global Buddhist population will be about the same size it was in 2010, while the Hindu and Jewish populations will be larger than they are today.

5. In Europe, Muslims will make up 10% of the overall population.

6. India will retain a Hindu majority but also will have the largest Muslim population of any country in the world, surpassing Indonesia.

7. In the United States, Christians will decline from more than three-quarters of the population in 2010 to two-thirds in 2050, and Judaism will no longer be the largest non-Christian religion. Muslims will be more numerous in the U.S. than people who identify as Jewish on the basis of religion.

8. Four out of every 10 Christians in the world will live in sub-Saharan Africa.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 30, 2015, 06:51:22 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3D84DuZKdLg


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 03, 2015, 03:18:48 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=00Yow1HhoqI


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on May 12, 2015, 03:42:32 pm
Christians drop, 'nones' soar in new religion portrait

The United States is a significantly less Christian country than it was seven years ago.

That's the top finding — one that will ricochet through American faith, culture and politics — in the Pew Research Center's newest report, "America's Changing Religious Landscape," released Tuesday.

This trend "is big, it's broad and it's everywhere," said Alan Cooperman, Pew's director of religion research.

Christianity still dominates American religious identity (70%), but the survey shows dramatic shifts as more people move out the doors of denominations, shedding spiritual connections along the way.

Atheists and agnostics have nearly doubled their share of the religious marketplace, and overall indifference to religion of any sort is rising as well. Only the historically black Protestant churches have held a steady grip through the years of change.

rest: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/05/12/christians-drop-nones-soar-in-new-religion-portrait/27159533/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 12, 2015, 03:55:14 pm
And that's b/c alot of doctrines of devils have crept in(albeit unawares) - and now we're seeing it in the YT KJB community with the whole gap theory heresy.

And I'm not immune to deception either - as you all know, I fell for the gap TWICE(hopefully, I don't strike out next time).

Anyhow - that's why we're seeing a great falling away now(b/c one doctrine of devil after another since 1881 has crept into churches unawares).


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on June 02, 2015, 05:27:15 pm
Female Priests Campaign to Call God 'She' in Services

 A group of female priests are pushing for the Church of England to refer to God with the feminine pronoun “she” during services. Christian News Network reports the women, who are a part of Women and the Church (WATCH) believe referring to God solely as “he” is sexist.
 
WATCH member Emma Percy said, “When we used only male language we reinforce the idea that God is like a man and, in doing so, suggest that men are therefore more like God than women. If we take seriously the idea that men and women are made in the image of God, both male and female language should be used.”
 
The priests also argue that referring to God as male makes God sound more human than divine.
 
“Orthodox theology says all human beings are made in the image of God, that God does not have a gender. He encompasses gender. He is both male and female and beyond male and female. So when we only speak of God in the male form, that’s actually giving us a deficient understanding of who God is,” said Jody Stowell, who is campaigning for the change.
 
Though some support the change in language, others argue that to call God “she” or “mother” goes against the teaching in scripture.

http://www.christianheadlines.com/blog/female-priests-campaign-to-call-god-she-in-services.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on June 04, 2015, 09:53:07 am
Poll: Record support for polygamy, suicide, human cloning


Americans are increasingly taking their laissez-faire attitude outside of the marketplace and into the moral arena.

A new Gallup poll released Monday found the numbers of Americans that believe cloning humans, polygamy, having extramarital affairs, and suicide are “morally acceptable” are reaching record highs.

Nineteen percent of respondents said that suicide is “morally acceptable,” tied for the highest percentage since Gallup began asking in 2001. Likewise, 16 percent of respondents said the same of polygamy and 15 percent of cloning humans, both record highs since the survey.

Though at one point in 2002, 9 percent of those surveyed said extramarital affairs are “morally acceptable,” the number stayed at 7 percent or lower up until this most recent survey. Now, 8 percent of Americans say extramarital affairs are OK from a moral standpoint — the most minor increase of any of the behaviors surveyed.

Millennials were found to be the most tolerant of the aforementioned behaviors. Only extramarital affairs polled at less than 20 percent among the age group.

On certain matters, baby boomers aged 50 to 64 were the least permissive, though more boomers found suicide morally acceptable than respondents from generation X.

Only 18 percent of seniors ages 65 and older said that pornography and sex between teenagers are morally acceptable and less than 10 percent of them said polygamy, cloning humans and extramarital affairs are as well.

The survey concluded that “there is evidence of changing moral judgments, at least in relation to suicide, cloning humans and polygamy” among the American public.

Gallup polled 1,024 adults from May 6-10, half via cellphones and half via landlines. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percentage points.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2015/06/poll-polygamy-suicide-human-cloning-support-118485.html#ixzz3c6atVN5V



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 01, 2015, 10:52:21 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fltrcO80o5Y


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 11, 2015, 10:07:07 pm
http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/us/2015/July/U-Turning-Americas-Destiny/
America Headed to the 'Ash Heap of History?'
7/7/15

LANCASTER, Pa. -- America just marked its 239th Independence Day, the birth of what many consider the greatest nation on earth. But after all these years of celebrating, Americans may soon be mourning its downfall.

That's the conclusion of researcher George Barna and historian David Barton in their book U-Turn: Restoring America to the Strength of Its Roots.

These authors say the United States is entering its own version of the Dark Ages and that any civilization that's gone where America's headed now has gone to ruin.

"The founders gave us an amazing foundation," Barna told CBN News. "And for us to trample on it and say 'we're going to build a new one' is folly."

Biblical Roots

The authors point out those early Americans were shaped by the Bible and a Judeo-Christian worldview.

"They believed everybody should read through the Bible cover-to-cover once a year," Barton stated. "That's what we did in school in those times. That's what we did in spiritual life. That's what political leaders did. Not today. We can't even get Christians to read that word."

Today only 30 percent of Christians read the Bible and less than 10 percent have read it from cover-to-cover. And it shows.

"Only 9 percent of born-again Christians have a biblical worldview," Barna said. "Only 51 percent of pastors have a biblical worldview."


Faith is losing its foothold in the land.

"The proportion of unchurched people has risen from 28 percent to 48 percent in six years," Barna shared. "The fastest growing faith group in America is atheists and agnostics."

'Your Life Doesn't Belong to You'

It's making for a complete change in values from what was seen 240 years ago. Then, service to others ruled the day.

"Your order of responsibilities was God, country, and family." Barton explained. "That's part of the biblical thinking they had."

"[That's] why the founding fathers were told and specifically taught in school -- we have their textbooks -- if someone comes to you and says 'we need you to run for public office,' you're not allowed to say 'no,'" he said. "Because, as they point out, your life doesn't belong to you."

Today, it's all about "me."

"Now we're just worried about comfort and experiences and entertainment and security," Barna suggested.
 
That's led to a get-it-all, have-it-all, do-it-all mentality that can pile up the kind of debt capable of killing a country.

A Nation of Debtors

"The average American family: they're looking usually at a mortgage debt of about $130,000," Barton told CBN News. "They're usually looking at credit card debt of about $21,000, they're looking at car debt of about $23,000, a college loan debt of about $24,000, and so we're so far in debt that we tolerate it in others."

Like our federal government.

"Where we are right now, it will take 107 years of the full production of the American economy to pay off the debt we have right now," Barton said.

"We are at a point now where 60 percent of Americans receive more from the government than what they put in," he added. "You can't sustain that."

"We averaged spending $61,000 per poor family last year. You now find that those who are on welfare make more than teachers make in 11 states.  And those on welfare now make more than secretaries do in 39 states. We can't sustain that," he reiterated.

Compare that to the attitude Thomas Jefferson expressed to young America.

Quoting the author of the Declaration of Independence, Barton said, "We can live in debt and extravagance, but we'll be in slavery -- or we can be free, but we have to use frugality."

What Destroys a Nation

"George Washington said 'avoid occasions of expense.' You want out of debt? Just quit spending. And so the founding fathers were very, very, very clear that what would destroy a nation is debt," Barton concluded.

So where does that indicate America's headed?

"Into the ash heap of history," Rev. Sam Rohrer, president of the American Pastors Network, suggested.

Rohrer doesn't want that to happen. He said he's desperate for another outcome.

"God's judgment on America and His hand of judgment, which is very obviously here, will put us down on our knees until we look up," Rohrer said. "When a civilization or a culture begins to recognize that truth has not changed and God is truth and then goes there, then the nation can be made whole."

Rohrer's doing what he can to make that happen. One effort was to invite Barna and Barton to come speak to several hundred church leaders at a recent conference of the Pennsylvania Pastors Network in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

'We Are the Problem'

"This is a hope that in revival, God's people -- who hold the key -- will in obedience say, 'We are the problem. We have walked away from You and the culture has followed us, not the other way around,'" Rohrer explained.

Christians may doubt they're a part of the problem, but Barna and Barton found in their research over and over again that church people -- just as much as their government, just as much as secular people -- are guilty of the same kind of ruinous behaviors that are taking the nation down.

"In a country where between 78 to 80 percent say they're Christian, only 34 percent say they believe in absolute moral truth,"
Barton said.

Barna regularly asks Christians and non-Christians about 70 moral categories -- and these days he's finding no substantive statistical difference between Christians and non-Christians when it comes to most moral issues.

"You can't find a difference in behavior between Christians and non-Christians anymore, and that's not good," Barton warned.

Keys to America's Early Success

Barna had a suggestion for Christians: "Stop pointing the finger and look at ourselves and say, 'Are we really the Church that Christ died on the cross for?"

He pointed out a key reason for the success of early America.

"If you try to understand what made America great, it was a dynamic partnership between church, family, and government," he explained.

Today, many doubt whether religious believers should even get involved in politics or guiding government.

But Barton pointed out, "The entire Bible's loaded up with God's ministers getting right in the face of civil leaders and saying, 'That's wicked policy.'"

And he said ministers were deeply involved for much of the nation's history in the actual making of law, suggesting what legislatures' priorities should be at the start of a new term and what the Bible had to say about proposed laws.

"Back in the founding era, one of the traditional sermons they had was called an Election Sermon," Barton said. "And it went on for 170 years. And it was very common for state legislatures to open up by having a minister come and speak to the entire state government."

Sheer Arrogance

Many today recoil at the idea of church leaders having so much input in secular government and reject it.

But Barna suggested, "For us to say, 'We're going to do it our way for now,' and think that we're not only going to survive but thrive is just sheer arrogance."

Barna said today's Americans believe they're smarter than the founders, maybe because of education and technology. But the founders had that biblical foundation.

"They didn't have all the things that we think are necessary to have a sophisticated society," he said. "But the key isn't sophistication. It's wisdom; it's discernment; it's love; it's grace."

It may be true that many today believe they're wiser than the people who formed America. And yet those founders were so wise they created the greatest nation on the earth, while today's generation is well on its way to losing it.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 24, 2015, 08:02:25 pm
http://freedomoutpost.com/2015/07/hows-that-pagan-conservatism-workin-out-for-ya-christian/
How's that Pagan "Conservatism" Workin' out for Ya, Christian?
7/23/15

So how is our Pagan "conservatism" and America worship working out for us?
Read more at http://freedomoutpost.com/2015/07/hows-that-pagan-conservatism-workin-out-for-ya-christian/#dctYltMXJoiirJEG.99

How's that 40+ year "pro-life commitment" from the GOP panning out? (See: Note to 'Merica: There is no "God-given right" to murder children. Repent accordingly.)

How's that GOP/"conservative" defense of "family values" playing out? (See: Of course Jeb Bush is "fine" with the idea of "transgender" soldiers in the US military. That's just what Pagan Right politicians do.)

How's that Pagan "conservative" defense of marriage working out for us? (See: "Supreme Court" Votes for Wrath of God Upon America.)
How's that Pagan "conservative" "war against the welfare state" gone for the past 50-ish years? (See: Jeb! (not Bush) Launches Presidential Campaign with "Conservative" Case for the Welfare/Warfare Nanny State.)

How have all of those Pagan "conservative" Supreme Court justices helped the cause, especially on The Big Votes (like child sacrifice/abortion and "gay marriage"), where they have been in the clear (and often huge) majority? (See: With ObamaCare and "Gay Marriage" upheld, when (if ever) should we simply say no to Federal control?)

How have all of those hours and hours and days and weeks and months and years of man-centered Pagan "conservative" talk radio helped to shape us into a better, more Christ-centered culture?

How well has the "freedom to openly worship false gods" served us as a core American virtue? (See: Note to 'Merica: There is no "God-given right" to worship false gods. Repent accordingly.)

How's it goin', America?

How's all of this Pagan "conservatism" treatin' ya?

These seem like fair - and necessary - questions to be asking right about now.

How is our rejection of Christ as King in practice where politics, economics, and civil government are concerned treating us? How's it going here in "the land of the free" and the home of the NSA where the rubber meets the road on things like freedom, liberty, law and justice? (See: Privacy is for masters. Transparency is for slaves. Welcome to "the land of the free" and the home of the NSA.)
How's the "American Dream" of even owning a home outright panning out under the guidance of our beloved Pagan "conservatives"? (See: Why home ownership will never be allowed in "the land of the free" and the home of the NSA.)

How's it look, America?

How's it going?

As our still-proud and still very much self-absorbed civilization crumbles under the weight of God's wrath before our "shocked" and "horrified" eyes, these are the questions that we ought to be exploring most vigorously and passionately. Instead, we're mostly still ignoring or dismissing 'em entirely in favor of the same old tired trinkets and "solutions" offered up by the very folks and worldviews that led us here to the gates of hell in the first place. (See: Our Suicidal Lawlessness.)

The bottom line is this: By what standard will we live?

Will we be ruled by Christ the King's clear and detailed life- and civilization-sustaining standard as lovingly revealed in His perfect Word?
Or will we instead insist on being ruled by the man-centered, mankind-enslaving will and words of men?

Here in America, the painful answer still seems to be: Give us men! We will not have Christ to rule over us! We are "free" to govern as we see fit and we have the "right" to do any number of things that Christ forbids. (See: Note to 'Merica: There is no "God-given right" to worship false gods. Repent accordingly.)

Even though the wheels have clearly come off our "We the People" worshipping culture in so many ways just over the past few months, most Americans (including most professing Christians in America) seem no closer to repentance and submission to Christ as King in practice. We continue to resist Him and flock to the same Pagan Political Right "experts" and "leaders" who have played pivotal roles in bringing about (and then sustaining) everything from "legal" child sacrifice (abortion) and the "legal" obliteration of privacy (NSA/TSA) to "legal" "gay marriage" and the "legal" operation of businesses dedicated to making a profit by encouraging and assisting mothers in the murder (and profitable dismemberment) of their own children. (See: Selling murdered baby parts in America? Sure. Why not?)

So what is going to be our basis for law?

What is going to be our basis for justice?

What is going to be our basis for economics?

Will "We the People" repent and submit in broken humility to Christ the King? Or will we keep on swilling the same old "We the People" bilge and propaganda that has been so masterfully used by some to lead us to where we are now? (See: Will America repent or will America be destroyed?)
Will we finally suck it up, admit that we've been profoundly duped and played like violins for a very long time? Or will we pridefully persist in loyalty to our preferred wing of the Pagan Dragon that is devouring our culture?

That's the question put to us now.

That's the stage that God has set to demonstrate the unbreakable nature of His Word throughout His creation. (See: Who owns America? (Hint: Not "We the People".).)

By what standard will we live? (See: How to truly love (and really save) America.)

By what standard will we define and apply law? By what standard will we define and defend family and marriage? By what standard will we define and pursue business and economics? By what standard will we operate civil government?

So as you watch the Trump Show roll on or you hear interviews, town halls, articles and "debates" featuring "top tier" Pagan Right and/or Pagan Left representatives, pay close attention to how they answer (or purposefully avoid) these vital questions...and treat them accordingly.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on August 30, 2015, 09:09:36 am
‘I Don’t Believe in God': Atheist Minister Resists Effort to Boot Her from United Church of Canada

An ordained minister with the United Church of Canada is resisting efforts to oust her from the pulpit because she is an atheist.

“I don’t believe in … the god called God,” Gretta Vosper told the Globe and Mail. “Using the word gets in the way of sharing what I want to share.”

She said that she believes the Bible is “mythology,” and denies that Jesus is the Son of God.

“We build a faith tradition upon it which shifted to find belief more important than how we lived,” Vosper said.

Vosper, 57, and who was ordained in 1993, first came out as an atheist in 2001. However, her congregation still supported her until 2008 when she sought to do away with the use of the Lord’s Prayer and lost approximately 100 members of her 150-member congregation.

Earlier this year, Vosper wrote an open letter asserting that a belief in God can compel people to commit evil, referencing the Charlie Hebdo massacre in France.

“That didn’t go over well,” Vosper, who also founded the Canadian Centre for Progressive Christianity, told reporters. “[But] if we are going to continue to use language that suggests we get our moral authority from a supernatural source, any group that says that can trump any humanistic endeavour.”

    Connect with Christian News

She was soon reported to the United Church of Canada, which launched an investigation into her “effectiveness” as a minister. In May, Nora Sanders, general secretary for the UCC General Council, provided the denomination with standards on which to determine whether Vosper should stay or go.

“In my opinion, a person who is not suitable for ministry in the United Church cannot be ‘effective’ as United Church ministry personnel,” she wrote.

“Do you believe in God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and do you commit yourself anew to God?” and “Do you believe that God is calling you to the ordained ministry of Word, Sacrament and Pastoral Care, and do you accept this call?” are expected to be among the questions asked to determine her fitness for service.

Now, Vosper is fighting the motion to review her effectiveness as well as Sander’s standards.

“We … must submit our arguments regarding the appeal by September 18th,” she told the Christian Post.

In the meantime, Vosper has refused to repent of her atheism.

“If the cost of that is that we are no longer welcome within that denomination, it will be because that denomination has defined us out of it, not because we have defined ourselves out of it,” she said.

Her appeal is scheduled to be heard this fall.

http://christiannews.net/2015/08/09/i-dont-believe-in-god-atheist-minister-resists-effort-to-boot-her-from-united-church-of-canada/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 30, 2015, 09:19:50 am
I was watching one of Sam Gipp's KJB defense seminars in January(which was excellent) - however, if there's one thing that didn't sit well with what he was saying, was that he kept giving the benefit of the doubt to people like James White and Bart Ehrman how, even though they're railing against the word of God, they're saved.

Yes, we're not the ones to judge people's salvation and hearts. However - scripture clearly says that a tree is known by their fruit. People like White and Ehrman clearly show they hate God's words(and therefore unless they repent, I highly doubt if our LORD even knows them). And let's not forget this passage...

Matthew 7:13  Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Mat 7:14  Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.


Sorry, but neither White nor Ehrman are saved. They need to repent of their wickedness.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: RickStudy on October 21, 2015, 06:10:45 pm

This is a pretty good article. Comes reasonably close to getting it.


http://beforeitsnews.com/politics/2015/10/the-great-christian-falling-away-will-be-a-new-world-order-hoax-2751100.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 21, 2015, 07:42:36 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/us-religious-leaders-forceful-appeal-admit-refugees-173908562.html
11/21/15
US religious leaders make forceful appeal to admit refugees

In rare agreement across faith and ideological lines, leaders of major American religious groups have condemned proposed bans on Syrian refugees, contending a legitimate debate over security has been overtaken by irrational fear and prejudice.

Top organizations representing evangelicals, Roman Catholics, Jews and liberal Protestants say close vetting of asylum seekers is a critical part of forming policy on refugees. But these religious leaders say such concerns, heightened after the Paris attacks a week ago, do not warrant blocking those fleeing violence in the Middle East.

"The problem is not the Syrian refugees," said Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami, who noted how his state has welcomed a large number of Cuban refugees over the years. "This is falling into the trap of what the terrorists wanted us to become. We shouldn't allow them to change who we are as a people."

About 70 percent of all refugees admitted to the U.S. are resettled by faith groups, according to the U.S. State Department office for refugees. The bulk of the work is done by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Services. World Relief, the humanitarian arm of the National Association of Evangelicals, and Church World Service, representing Protestant and Orthodox groups, are each responsible for about 10 percent. The Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society and Episcopal Migrant Ministries also handle several thousand cases.

The Rev. Russell Moore, head of the public policy agency for the conservative Southern Baptist Convention, the country's largest Protestant group, said screening is crucial and "we should insist on it," but he said evangelicals should not "demagogue the issue as many politicians are doing right now."

"Evangelicals should be the ones calling the rest of the world to remember human dignity and the image of God, especially for those fleeing murderous Islamic radical jihadis," Moore said.

Lawmakers and more than half of U.S. governors, mostly Republicans, have said they were worried Islamic extremists may try to take advantage of the U.S. refugee process. Some governors are refusing Syrian refugee settlement in their states for now. They point to a passport found near the body of one of the Paris suicide bombers that had been registered along the route asylum seekers are taking through Europe. It's not clear how the passport ended up near the attacker.

On Thursday, the U.S. House voted by a veto-proof majority to pass legislation which in effect would suspend admissions of Syrian and Iraqi refugees. Stephan Bauman, president of World Relief, called the bill "without rational basis" and "a huge disservice."

"Differential treatment, with no clear justification, amounts to discrimination on the basis of nationality," Bauman said.

Reform Judaism, the largest American Jewish movement, joined the American Jewish Committee, an influential policy group, the Anti-Defamation League, the Jewish civil rights organization, and the Orthodox Union, in opposing any halt in resettlement.

Episcopal Church Presiding Bishop Michael Curry, said, "we will not let the nightmare" of terrorism "keep us from carrying out the words of Jesus who told us to be a neighbor to those in need."

Bishop Scott Jones, head of the United Methodist Great Plains Conference, said 35 Methodist congregations in Kansas and Nebraska have offered to sponsor Syrian refugees. "We need to stand by them against the jihadist movement," Jones said Friday.

Some of the faithful are more openly struggling to find the right balance between national security and compassion.

Refugees already go through a comprehensive vetting process that can take as much as three years, including biometric screening, fingerprinting and additional classified controls. Some lawmakers are now demanding even tougher assessments. Still, a Pew Research Center survey last September, conducted soon after President Barack Obama announced an increase in the number of Syrian refugees the U.S. would accept, found just 31 percent of white evangelicals favored the increase, compared to 51 percent of the general public, in the lowest approval level for any Christian group.

The Rev. Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, said new immigration policies are needed because "Islam is not a peaceful religion" and "our nation's security is at stake."

"We cannot allow Muslim immigrants to come across our borders unchecked while we are fighting this war on terror," Graham said in a Facebook post.

Still many, faith leaders who share those security concerns are condemning the tone of the current discussion.

The Orthodox Union said "we encourage a sensible process of reviewing and enhancing security," with the goal of "getting to yes" on admitting asylum seekers. But the group said, "Neither partisan politics nor xenophobia can have a place in that debate."

The Arizona Muslim Community, which helps resettle Syrian refugees in suburban Phoenix, planned a public picnic Sunday in Scottsdale for more than a dozen refugees, hoping to improve understanding of the families' plight.

Catholic Charities in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, has reported threats against a Syrian refugee family the agency assisted. Sister Donna Markham, president of Catholic Charities USA, said her office has received "very disturbing mail coming to us from people who are very angry that we are trying to extend help to these people."

"It's tragic," she said.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 08, 2015, 01:50:08 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/defining-evangelical-121100329.html
Defining 'Evangelical'
December 7, 2015

The religious historian George Marsden once quipped that in the 1950s and 1960s an evangelical Christian was “anyone who likes Billy Graham.” But when Billy Graham was asked to define the term in the late 1980s, he replied, “Actually, that’s a question I’d like to ask somebody too.” As it turned out, even America’s most famous evangelical preacher couldn’t describe what the term meant.

Graham isn’t alone. While the word evangelical pops up in American media to describe everything from mega-churches to voting blocs, few people seem to know what an evangelical is exactly. Those who claim to know often disagree.

The disparate nature of evangelicalism makes its members difficult to define. They don’t have a single authority like the Roman Catholic pope or Mormon First Presidency, so you can’t just phone a central office and ask for the official definition. Since they span a range of denominations, churches, and organizations, there is no single membership statement to delineate identity. As a result, individual observers are left to decide how to define what makes someone or something evangelical. To the pollster, it is a sociological term. To the pastor, it is a denominational or doctrinal term. And to the politician, it is a synonym for a white Christian Republican.

So what is an evangelical, for the love of God, and why does it even matter? The answer requires an understanding of both the history and theology of the movement.

Recommended: Why Obama Isn't Afraid of ISIS

The term evangelical derives from the Greek word euangelion meaning “gospel” or “good news.” Technically speaking, evangelical refers to a person, church, or organization that is committed to the Christian gospel message that Jesus Christ is the savior of humanity. The Greek root word is used in the New Testament and was popularized in the first centuries A.D. to distinguish the love-centric movement of Jesus followers from the violent Roman Empire that often made its own “good news” announcements to celebrate military victories.

But words are more than their etymologies and dictionary definitions. They carry connotations with them too, which change over time and across geographies as they are used in different ways and settings.

According to the Institute for the Study of American Evangelicals at Wheaton College outside of Chicago, Martin Luther first used the Latinized form of the word evangelium to describe the non-Catholic churches birthed by the Protestant Reformation in the 1500s.

But the term largely took hold in the English-speaking world more than a century later during the Great Awakening, a series of revivals in Britain and the American colonies led by fiery preachers such as Jonathan Edwards and George Whitfield. Due to their influence, evangelicalism became a synonym for revivalism, or a fervent expression of Christianity marked by an emphasis on converting outsiders. By the early 1800s, it was “by far the dominant expression of Christianity” in the United States.

Recommended: Donald Trump Assumes That a Majority of Republican Voters Are Bigots

In some ways, Christianity took a beating in the early 1900s in America. The carnage of two World Wars and a Great Depression raised questions about whether God existed, and if so, whether God was both powerful and good. And modern science raised doubts about the viability of Christianity’s explanations for the origins of life. Evangelical leaders spanning denominations contemplated forming an organization to represent what one pastor called “the unvoiced multitudes,” and in 1942, the National Association of Evangelicals was born.

While the NAE couldn’t claim to be the sole or definitive voice speaking on evangelicals’ behalf, it helped redefine the term. According to Robert Wuthnow, the director of Princeton University’s Center for the Study of Religion and the author of Inventing American Religion, the de facto definition for evangelical was any person who belonged to a church aligned with the 40-odd denominations under the NAE’s umbrella.

Depending on how you define the term, evangelicals comprise between 7 percent and 47 percent of the American population.
But in 1976, the term went mainstream when a peanut farmer named Jimmy Carter won the Democratic primary and then the general election. He became the first U.S. President to call himself a “born again” evangelical Christian. Pundits scrambled to understand who evangelicals were and how many existed. Newsweek ran a cover story declaring 1976 the “year of the evangelical.”

Not to be left out, more conservative evangelicals who diverged from Carter politically began mobilizing under new organizational banners like the Christian Coalition and the Moral Majority—collectively labeled the religious right. These politically active conservative Christians were well-funded and media savvy, but they were only able to become synonymous with evangelicalism with the help of American pollsters.

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When the NAE was founded, Wuthnow says, new reports estimated the organization represented about two million people. Ten years later, in 1953, the NAE claimed it represented 10 million. Lack of data made the number impossible to verify at the time. In 1967, one New York Times reporter estimated the number to be around 20 million. With Carter’s emergence, George Gallup decided to conduct a poll in which he defined evangelical as anyone who claimed to be “born again.” This simplistic definition led Gallup to report that as many as 50 million Americans—a third of the eligible electorate—were evangelical.

The “unvoiced multitudes” now had their microphone. Conservative Christian leaders embraced the spotlight and their newfound legitimacy, and pastors began showing up on the nightly news and in major magazines to endorse candidates and push forward policy proposals. Over time and in the minds of many, evangelical became a catch-all term for politically conservative Christians.

In recent years, however, a range of definitions for evangelical have been proposed. Many polling firms, like Pew Research, count everyone who identifies themselves as “evangelical” or “born again.” A prominent Christian polling firm, Barna Group, has traditionally used a very specific nine-question definition that requires, for example, the person to claim they believe Satan exists. And Molly Worthen, University of North Carolina professor and author of Apostles of Reason: The Crisis of Authority in American Evangelicalism, defines evangelicals as Christians who are wrestling with a set of specific questions.

This may all sound obscure, but it matters.

“Evangelicals’ influence may be waning, but it is still important for us to understand who evangelicals are, who speaks for them, and what the future looks like,” says David Kinnaman, the president of Barna Group and author of the forthcoming Good Faith: Being a Christian When Society Thinks You’re Irrelevant and Extreme. “The way one defines ‘evangelical’ influences the story they tell about the most influential group within the most influential religion in the world’s most influential country.”

Depending on how you define the term, evangelicals comprise between 7 percent and 47 percent of the American population. Divergent definitions have led to inconsistent, even contradictory survey results about evangelicals’ beliefs and characteristics. Reports based on these surveys can shape elections, public policies, and broader public opinion.

The most widely accepted definition of evangelical is probably the one put forward by historian David Bebbington in 1989. It’s called the “Bebbington quadrilateral” because it identifies evangelicals as Christians who share four main qualities:

Biblicism: a high regard for the Bible
Crucicentrism: a focus on Jesus’s crucifixion and its saving effects
Conversionism: a belief that humans need to be converted
Activism: the belief that faith should influence one’s public life
While some have criticized this quartet of beliefs as being too capacious, many scholars—including sociologists like Wuthnow and historians like Marsden—believe it is the best of all proposed definitions. LifeWay Research and the National Association of Evangelicals have recently suggested a definition that closely mirrors Bebbington’s after receiving input from a diverse group of religious thinkers and academics. Even Barna’s David Kinnaman says his firm has been experimenting with a similar definition in some overseas studies in place of their nine-point criteria.

This four-point criterion is the most widely accepted definition among scholars and the only one approved by the NAE, America’s largest coalition of evangelicals. And it provides a tool to help researchers classify evangelicals by belief, which seems like an appropriate way to handle almost any religious group. Additionally, it leads to a more reasonable estimate of the movement’s size—somewhere around a quarter of all Americans.

Like all definitions, Bebbington’s description of evangelical isn’t perfect. But it allows the term to be appropriately narrow while making room for a diverse range of Christians who fit the bill. If it sounds complex, it should be. Religion is always more complicated than “hallelujah” and “amen.”Read more from The Atlantic:


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on January 19, 2016, 06:00:14 pm
Wheaton Alumni Threaten to Withhold Donations if ‘We Worship Same God’ Professor Is Fired

Hundreds of Wheaton College alumni are threatening to withhold future donations to the school if officials follow through with the firing of a controversial associate political science director who was placed on leave after she declared in a self-initiated campaign to fight “Islamophobia” that Christians and Muslims worship the same God.

According to reports, alumni submitted a petition to the college board and administrators on Friday calling for reconciliation with the professor.

“Until full restoration and reconciliation are reached, each of us will prayerfully re-consider our commitment to financially support the mission of Wheaton College,” it read.

Petition organizers told the Chicago Tribune that the petition generated at least 800 signatures from seven decades of Wheaton graduates.





As previously reported, professing Christian Larycia Hawkins posted to Facebook two photos of herself wearing a hijab last month, and stated in a lengthy explanation that she planned to wear it everywhere she goes during the Advent—including at the Christian college and to church. She outlined in her reasons for solidarity that she believes that Christians and Muslims worship the same God.

“I stand in religious solidarity with Muslims because they, like me, a Christian, are people of the book,” Hawkins asserted. “And as Pope Francis stated last week, we worship the same God.”

In light of controversy over the matter, especially Hawkins’ “same God” assertion, the professor was placed on paid administrative leave by university officials while a review would be conducted.








 Connect with Christian News



 

“Wheaton College faculty and staff make a commitment to accept and model our institution’s faith foundations with integrity, compassion, and theological clarity,” the college said in a statement. “As they participate in various causes, it is essential that faculty and staff engage in and speak about public issues in ways that faithfully represent the college’s evangelical Statement of Faith.”

Wheaton officials acknowledged late last month that talks had come to a standstill as Hawkins refused to continue discussions with members of administration about her “same God” beliefs following initial meetings. They soon issued Hawkins a “Notice of Recommendation to Initiate Termination-for-Cause Proceedings.”

While some have expressed support for the professor in light of the situation, others have used the opportunity to outline why it is flawed to believe that Christians and Muslims worship the same God.

“Muslims hold that ‘God is one.’ Allah has no partners and assigning partners to him is shirk, the highest blasphemy,” explained Thabiti Anyabwile, pastor of Anacostia River Church in Washington, D.C., in a blog post for the Gospel Coalition. “Christians believe ‘God is one in three Persons.’ Each Person in the Trinity is fully and eternally God. Yet there is one God.”

He noted that as Muslims do not worship Jesus, who is God, Christians and Muslims do not worship the same God.

“No one knows God who does not know the Son, who is the only mediator between God and man,” Anyabwile said. “The goal of Christianity is the salvation of sinners through the righteousness, substitutionary atonement and resurrection of Jesus Christ.”

http://christiannews.net/2016/01/19/wheaton-alumni-threaten-to-withhold-donations-if-we-worship-same-god-professor-is-fired/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 13, 2016, 11:04:58 am
http://news.yahoo.com/happens-donald-trump-wins-big-south-carolina-130005301.html
What happens if Donald Trump wins big in South Carolina?

Despite Palmetto State polling, establishment insiders still think Donald Trump won't grab the nomination, but, if so, when will he stop winning?

2/13/16

Donald Trump is rolling along and gaining momentum. At what point will he have enough electoral/kinetic force that no other candidate will be able to prevent him from winning the nomination?

That’s our immediate reaction to a new poll out of South Carolina that shows Mr. Trump maintaining a wide lead in the state. He’s the choice of 36.3 percent of South Carolina voters, according to the Augusta Chronicle survey. Sen. Ted Cruz (R) of Texas is a fairly distant second at 19.6 percent, with Sen. Marco Rubio (R) of Florida is third at 14.6.

There hasn’t been a lot of polling in the Palmetto State but these results are consistent with polls conducted prior to the New Hampshire primary. What they show is that the race may remain static. Trump leads. Senator Cruz is his only real competition. Behind them come the peloton of contenders for the title of establishment alternative, jammed up and elbows out.

That sound you hear is the slap of face-palming pundits as the reality of the situation sinks in.

“Folks, I’ve been as skeptical as anyone about Trump, but make no mistake he wins SC by 15+: it’s possible but tough to stop that train,” tweeted FiveThirtyEight poll expert Harry Enten on Friday afternoon.

Poll data shows Trump winning almost all South Carolina GOP demographic categories. He even wins voters who say they are “very conservative,” though by only one point over Cruz.

Add the poll figures for the so-called establishment candidates – Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush, and John Kasich – and the total number is still a couple of points lower than Trump’s 36 percent. That suggests that even if party elites could rally around one candidate and get the other two to drop out, Trump would still win.

“What I wonder now after New Hampshire is if anyone can stop Trump even if someone gets to the point where they’re one of the final three,” said University of New Hampshire political scientist Dante Scala on a February 12 episode of POTUSCast, a political podcast.

Recommended:    The Trump effect (+video)

Trump could still lose, Mr. Scala added. It’s just becoming more doubtful that will happen.

It’s true the Augusta Chronicle poll is just one poll in just one state. Trump’s national numbers have dropped a few points in recent weeks.

Cruz remains the pivot point. Can he gain strength in the South by hammering Trump as a closet liberal? If so, could he actually win? If not, where would his voters go?

A large majority of the members of Politico’s Caucus, a group of insiders in early voting states, still think Trump’s a goner. Eighty-five percent of them say Trump is not on track to win the nomination, despite his recent big New Hampshire primary win.

But insiders have been saying that for months now. When does Trump’s losing start?




Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: christistruth on February 14, 2016, 06:16:43 pm
http://news.yahoo.com/happens-donald-trump-wins-big-south-carolina-130005301.html
What happens if Donald Trump wins big in South Carolina?

Despite Palmetto State polling, establishment insiders still think Donald Trump won't grab the nomination, but, if so, when will he stop winning?

2/13/16

Donald Trump is rolling along and gaining momentum. At what point will he have enough electoral/kinetic force that no other candidate will be able to prevent him from winning the nomination?

That’s our immediate reaction to a new poll out of South Carolina that shows Mr. Trump maintaining a wide lead in the state. He’s the choice of 36.3 percent of South Carolina voters, according to the Augusta Chronicle survey. Sen. Ted Cruz (R) of Texas is a fairly distant second at 19.6 percent, with Sen. Marco Rubio (R) of Florida is third at 14.6.

There hasn’t been a lot of polling in the Palmetto State but these results are consistent with polls conducted prior to the New Hampshire primary. What they show is that the race may remain static. Trump leads. Senator Cruz is his only real competition. Behind them come the peloton of contenders for the title of establishment alternative, jammed up and elbows out.

That sound you hear is the slap of face-palming pundits as the reality of the situation sinks in.

“Folks, I’ve been as skeptical as anyone about Trump, but make no mistake he wins SC by 15+: it’s possible but tough to stop that train,” tweeted FiveThirtyEight poll expert Harry Enten on Friday afternoon.

Poll data shows Trump winning almost all South Carolina GOP demographic categories. He even wins voters who say they are “very conservative,” though by only one point over Cruz.

Add the poll figures for the so-called establishment candidates – Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush, and John Kasich – and the total number is still a couple of points lower than Trump’s 36 percent. That suggests that even if party elites could rally around one candidate and get the other two to drop out, Trump would still win.

“What I wonder now after New Hampshire is if anyone can stop Trump even if someone gets to the point where they’re one of the final three,” said University of New Hampshire political scientist Dante Scala on a February 12 episode of POTUSCast, a political podcast.

Recommended:    The Trump effect (+video)

Trump could still lose, Mr. Scala added. It’s just becoming more doubtful that will happen.

It’s true the Augusta Chronicle poll is just one poll in just one state. Trump’s national numbers have dropped a few points in recent weeks.

Cruz remains the pivot point. Can he gain strength in the South by hammering Trump as a closet liberal? If so, could he actually win? If not, where would his voters go?

A large majority of the members of Politico’s Caucus, a group of insiders in early voting states, still think Trump’s a goner. Eighty-five percent of them say Trump is not on track to win the nomination, despite his recent big New Hampshire primary win.

But insiders have been saying that for months now. When does Trump’s losing start?




I got caught up in "Trumpmania" a few months ago, but now I am just ashamed for it. This guy is a joke. I can not, in all good conscience, lend support to a man who unabashedly lives such a degenerate, anti-Christian lifestyle. I will support Rubio, and even he has a lot of flaws, come my primary.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 27, 2016, 10:13:37 am
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9AxPyreKEdQ


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 15, 2016, 09:38:10 pm
The confusion that's driving support for Trump
3/14/16
http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/14/opinions/confusion-drives-support-for-trump-opinion-dearing/index.html

(CNN)—At some level, the 2016 presidential race has stopped being a presidential race and become a fight about who we are as a country. We clearly don't know the answer. We do know one thing, though. People seem confused. Confusion breeds Donald Trump.

A caller to a national radio program recently noted that he had been a Rand Paul supporter until Paul left the race. Now he's supporting Bernie Sanders. Paul is a libertarian. Sanders is a socialist. Moving from one to the other is like saying, "I was a vegetarian, but the store was out of broccoli, so I bought a steak."

An interviewee on NPR on Super Tuesday was asked who she supports. She's a self-identified Christian and began her answer by lamenting false claims of Christianity by many Republican candidates. I figured she'd be a lock for Ted Cruz.

Almost. She was undecided between Cruz or Trump. Yeah, because they'd definitely score the same on a Bible quiz.

People aren't confused because they're stupid. People are confused because the state of the social contract is a mess. The symbols and short cuts we traditionally use to tell us who stands for what are a mess, too. To make matters worse, those taking the clearest stances on what the social contract should be are not necessarily the ones who could get the hard work done to fix it.

Put it all together and we get a nightmare, three-way grid. There's Insider versus Outsider. Then, Who Gets It versus Who Can Govern. Then, there's a jumble of characteristics like Christian, or Fiscal Conservative, or Pro-Choice, that used to align pretty cleanly with tags like "Democrat," "Republican," "liberal" or "conservative," but now basically work as "independent variables." They could show up anywhere.

If you're an upper-class liberal from the Northeast, the country is going to hell in a handbasket. If you're a working-class conservative from the South, the country's also going to hell, just in a different basket. As a Gallup poll noted in February, only 27% of Americans felt the country was headed in the right direction, and it's been a year since that number topped 30.

Either way, we can't afford business as usual and need someone who understands that. That means the Outsider Who Gets It. So, we get a voter who might prefer Rand Paul, but also Bernie Sanders.

But some voters consider themselves realists. They want a person who can govern, or maybe just someone who doesn't want to blow up the very infrastructure of governance they're asking to run. That's likely an "Insider," even if she or he doesn't Get It, and it's one way to get an un-enrolled Massachusetts voter who went for John Kasich in the primary but is ready to for vote for Hillary Clinton in the general.

What about voters who feel specific values are critically important? If you're an evangelical Christian, conservative Christian values are critical. Historically, politicians who represented such values also represented ideas like protected trade, a strong national defense or American Exceptionalism. Think George W. Bush circa 1999-2000, when he ran as a Christian and also authored the aggressive security doctrine of "preemptive defense." You could pick a candidate who took one of those positions and feel fairly certain he held the others you cared about, too. Not so much in 2016. But that's hard to see, so we get a voter undecided between Cruz and Trump. Throw in a preference for Outsider, though, and that evangelical dumps Cruz.

People don't like confusion. We like certainty. Nothing fits that bill better than someone who offers absolutes. Combine absolutism with an Outsider Who Gets It -- and who is so slippery he can convincingly sell, "Whatever values you think you care about, those are my values, too" -- and we get a juggernaut. We get Donald Trump.

This election isn't about who the president will be. It's about who America will be. If the Insider candidates Who Can Govern don't do a better job of Getting It, owning that they helped mess it up in the first place, and connecting their plans for fixing it to the core, traditional values of their parties, we're all in trouble. We've seen the alternative.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 15, 2016, 09:48:59 pm
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2016/03/15/evangelical-christians-are-enormously-divided-over-donald-trumps-runaway-candidacy/
3/14/16
Why Donald Trump is tearing evangelicals apart
 
Pastor Rick Scarborough has spent 20 years traveling the country to politically mobilize evangelical voters and knows better than most just how un-monolithic they are. In recent years, those differences have just gotten more pronounced, said Scarborough.

“In the past when we’d talk about abortion, 90 percent said: ‘You’re right.’”  Now half seem to have experienced it or know someone who has, he said.  And “when Falwell spoke against gay marriage there was unanimity. Now half the congregation has a niece or brother who is impacted.”
But the Texas Baptist says he’s never witnessed the bitter divisions among evangelicals that this GOP primary season has unleashed.

Every day, Scarborough fields calls from distressed pastors who don’t know which candidate they’re supposed to support. Many, especially the conservative ones, are floored that candidates seem to show little interest in gay marriage, abortion and religious liberty issues. Some Trump supporters are threatening to leave their churches if their pastors preach against the Republican frontrunner. Arguments have broken out among prominent evangelical leaders about whether the Biblical mandate to love the sinner should include Donald Trump.

“Evangelicals are so divided….It’s because we are living in a growing age of secularism that is forcing itself on people who hold traditional values,” Scarborough said. “Along comes a champion to the common man, a guy who says to Christians: ‘I’m going to take care of you.’ Now it’s a numbers game and I don’t know if he can be stopped. People are confused.”

Evangelical divisions over Trump –53 percent of white evangelicals have a favorable view of the magnate, a recent Public Religion Research (PRRI) poll found – appear to be a stand-in for a deeper identity crisis. Negative comments about Muslims and Mexicans, for example, are revealing the extent to which self-described evangelicals are split in their belief that racial and ethnic equality is a core Christian value. Trump’s support of torture reveals a similar rift over what an evangelical means by saying he or she is “pro-life.”

The debate over whether evangelicals can legitimately support Trump without betraying their beliefs “may be shaping the very nature of evangelicalism,” dividing evangelicals between those who are able to reconcile their support of Trump with their Christianity and those who view his ideas and language as blasphemy, Mark Galli, editor of the flagship evangelical magazine Christianity Today, wrote last week.

“I mean that literally: “The act or offense of speaking sacreligiously…about sacred things.’ Racial and ethnic justice has become a ‘sacred thing,’ an item that defines what it means to be an evangelical Christian to many,” Galli wrote.

The embrace and endorsement of Trump by evangelical leader Jerry Falwell Jr. – son of a founding father of the religious right – led to a recent public break  with one of Falwell’s father’s closest confidants: Mark DeMoss, now an influential public affairs executive.

“The bullying tactics of personal insult have no defense – and certainly not for anyone who claims to be a follower of Christ. That’s what’s disturbing to so many people,” DeMoss told the Post, chastising Falwell Jr. The spat was major news among evangelicals as DeMoss chairs the executive committee – the governing board — of Liberty University, the massive Virginia evangelical university Falwell Sr. founded and Falwell Jr now heads.

 [Watch singers all over the world join in ‘Hallelujah’ in this impressive Mormon video] 

If Fox is conservative Christianity’s flagship media institution, Liberty is its academy.

But Becki Falwell, wife to the university president, expanded the public argument, saying there is nothing remotely unevangelical about Trump, or his behavior.

“Dr. Falwell was outspoken with his politically incorrect statements and embraced sinners,” she wrote March 2 on her Facebook page, in a rebuke to DeMoss. Then she went further. Not only did Falwell Sr. embrace sinners, she suggested, but they were his more loyal friends. “When he first had his heart problems in 2005, the only national figures who wrote him letters of well wishes were Jesse Jackson, Larry Flynt and Ted Kennedy. He supported a divorced and remarried Hollywood actor over a Southern Baptist Sunday school teacher and now, suddenly, Liberty has changed because its leader has embraced Donald Trump. Jesus was called a friend of publicans and sinners and called the religious elite of his time hypocrites.”


more


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on May 23, 2016, 05:42:38 pm
Children's Pastor Arrested in Human Trafficking Sting

A church terminated it's children pastor after he was caught in a human trafficking sting.

Jason Kennedy of Grace Baptist Church was one of two pastors arrested in the operation that netted 32 men and women last week. The other, Zubin Parakh, was reportedly a volunteer creative pastor for Lifehouse Church outside Knoxville, Tennessee.

"I was devastated, I was totally shocked. It is something you can not anticipate, in fact I speak about it constantly," Grace Baptist Church Ron Stewart says. "I have nine other pastors and I speak to them constantly, 'We are held to a higher standard and what someone else may do and be accepted is not accepted and anything you do will be magnified and we understand much is given, much is required.' It goes with being a pastor."

Parakh reportedly expected to meet a 17-year-old girl and to pay $100 for a half-hour of sex. Court records report Kennedy negotiated a $100 fee for a half-hour of sex with a 15 and 18-year-old girl.

"We are saddened today as a result of information relating Zubin Parakh who was a volunteer worker at our church. Our church and its leaders were not aware of any alleged misconduct regarding Mr. Parakh. However, we are praying for all parties involved," LifeHouse posted in a statement. "We both ask for and hope our church family's privacy will be respected throughout this process."

Grace Baptist Church also asked for prayer as the congregation moves forward after Kennedy's arrest and subsequent firing:

We are deeply saddened by the recent events affecting our church family. The children's pastor of Grace Baptist Church has been terminated as a result of his arrest which is in violation of the statement of ethics that he signed and church standards of moral conduct.

The actions of the children's pastor for which he has been arrested were part of his life outside the church, and we have received no questions or concerns related to his conduct within the church or its ministries.

The children's pastor was hired two-and-a-half years ago. The church's background check turned up no issues that indicate any previous problem. In fact, the children's pastor in his application affirmed that he had no issues in his background of a criminal or other nature.

We want to reassure our church family that we are committed to the safety and security of our members, and especially our children. Our security system includes 78 security cameras, electronic check-in, background checks of employees and volunteers, and security officers during gatherings at the church.

We are praying for the children's pastor's family and will continue to provide the services of our ministry to them.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) says the entire incident happened within 1,000 feet of yet another church. 

"What so many people in our community don't quite understand is that human trafficking is a demand driven crime. And that demand comes from every single part of our society, including those parts that we'd all like to believe are not part of the problem," said Kate Trudell with the Community Coalition against Human Trafficking.

http://www.charismanews.com/us/57358-children-s-pastor-arrested-in-human-trafficking-sting


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 26, 2016, 10:17:29 am
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4eHr-HOZRA


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 13, 2016, 11:00:01 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWP_4qstDaY


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 03, 2016, 10:06:24 pm
http://www.foxnews.com/us/2016/08/02/chicago-man-kills-wife-leaving-church-couple-active-members-for-20-years.html
8/2/16
Chicago Man Kills Wife Leaving Church; Couple Active Members for 20 Years

A 38-year-old man fatally shot his 36-year-old wife as she came out of her church in Chicago, Illinois, after Sunday service, and then shot himself to death. Both were found dead on the scene.

The shooting took place shortly after the morning service ended at Second Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church on the West Side of Chicago on Sunday afternoon, the Rev. Kenneth Giles, the church's pastor, said, according to Chicago Tribune.

The woman, identified as Trinyce L. Sanders-Wilson, attended the service and was just leaving when she was shot, Giles added. "I think they were probably estranged at this time. I think there was probably some things going on between the two of them."

The woman had parked her car across the church and her husband waited for her to come and shot her as she reached the car. He then shot himself.

"She was a wonderful woman," the pastor said. "It's a tragedy on both sides for the church. He was also a good guy. But you never know what's going on in the minds of people," he added.

The couple had been members of the church for about two decades, and the woman actively served at the church voluntarily.

A witness, Andrew Davis, told ABC7 Chicago that he first heard a gunshot and then saw the woman falling to the ground. The man then shot the woman two more times, he added.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 04, 2016, 02:27:09 pm
http://www.vox.com/2016/8/4/12369912/hillary-clinton-pro-life

I'm a pro-life Christian. Here's why I'm voting for Hillary Clinton.

Updated by Rachel Held Evans on August 4, 2016, 8:40 a.m. ET


I’m pro-life.

Or, put another way, as a Christian, I believe the sacred personhood of an individual begins before birth and continues throughout life, and I believe that sacred personhood is worth protecting, whether it’s tucked inside a womb, waiting on death row, fleeing Syria in search of a home, or playing beneath the shadow of an American drone.

I’ve also voted for both pro-life and pro-choice candidates for political office, including Barack Obama in 2012 and 2008, and George W. Bush in 2004 and 2000.

So I speak as someone who has struggled with, and in some cases regretted, her decisions at the ballot box, and who recognizes that no single political party boasts a consistent pro-life ethic, just as no single political party embodies the teachings of Jesus or the values of his kingdom. I speak too as someone acutely aware of the inconsistencies and uncertainties in my own pro-life convictions, which continue to be challenged and changed in the midst of lived experience.

Related Evangelicals like me can't vote for Trump — or Clinton. Here's what we can do instead. 
 
As a frequent blogger and commentator and the author of several books, I’ve written in the past about feeling caught between the pro-life and pro-choice camps. Still, I’ve never used my platform to endorse a presidential candidate.

But as so many others have said, this year is different. Knowing many of my pro-life friends feel torn between voting for an unpopular but highly qualified pro-choice candidate in Hillary Clinton and an incompetent narcissist who poses a unique threat to our American democracy in Donald Trump, I’d like to make a proposal:

You should vote for Hillary Clinton.

And I’d like to suggest that voting for a pro-choice candidate in this election, or any election, need not overburden your conscience.

Here’s why.

In the eight years since we’ve had a pro-choice president, the abortion rate in the US has dropped to its lowest since 1973. I believe the best way to keep this trend going is not to simply make it harder for women to terminate unwanted pregnancies but to create a culture with fewer unwanted pregnancies to begin with.

Data suggests progressive social policies that make health care and child care more affordable, make contraception more accessible, alleviate poverty, and support a living wage do the most to create such a culture, while countries where abortion is simply illegal see no change in the abortion rate.

By focusing exclusively on the legal components of abortion while simultaneously opposing these family-friendly social policies, the Republican Party has managed to hold pro-life voters hostage with the promise of outlawing abortion (which has yet to happen under any Republican administration since Roe v. Wade), while actively working against the very policies that would lead to a significant reduction in unwanted pregnancies.

So even though I think abortion is morally wrong in most cases, and support more legal restrictions around it, I often vote for pro-choice candidates when I think their policies will do the most to address the health and economic concerns that drive women to get abortions in the first place.

For me, it’s not just about being pro-birth; it’s about being pro-life. All children deserve to live in a home and in a culture that welcomes them and can meet their basic needs. Every mother deserves the chance to thrive. Forcing millions of women to have children they can’t support, or driving them to Gosnell-style black market clinics, will not do.

I believe we have to work together — pro-life and pro-choice, Democrat and Republican, conservative Christian and progressive Christian — to create a culture of life that celebrates families and makes it easier to have and raise kids. This is the only way to make our efforts to rarify abortion truly sustainable.

This year, I believe Hillary Clinton has better policy proposals to help improve the lives of women, children, and families than Donald Trump, whose pro-life convictions are lukewarm at best; whose mass deportation plan would rip hundreds of thousands of families apart; whose contempt for Latinos, Muslims, refugees, and people with disabilities would further marginalized the "least of these" among us; and whose support for torture and targeting civilians in war call into question whether Christians who support him are truly pro-life or simply anti-abortion.

Those are my views in summary, but I’d like to unpack them in four main points:

1) Voting pro-choice is not the same as voting for abortion

Regarding the 2016 election, the Washington Post recently declared, "For evangelicals, the question has become: which is a worse sin, abortion or racism?" While the people quoted in the article offer far more nuanced perspectives, the headline betrays a common but reductive sentiment — that people who vote for pro-choice candidates are voting for abortions.

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been called a "baby killer" by conservative Christians, some of whom routinely sent me images of mutilated fetuses during my pregnancy, which is no way to treat any woman, regardless of her views on abortion.

But characterizing all pro-choice voters as pro-abortion is inaccurate and unfair. In fact, a majority of Americans (56 percent) say abortion should be legal in most cases, even though nearly half (49 percent) believe it is immoral. Even those numbers don’t tell the whole story.

While it would be easier to debate one another if reproductive issues fell neatly into black and white categories of right and wrong, good and evil, most of us recognize this is simply not the case. The fact that a woman’s body naturally rejects hundreds of fertilized eggs in her lifetime raises questions about where we draw the line regarding the personhood of a zygote. Do we count all those "natural abortions" as deaths? When does personhood begin — at fertilization? Implantation? The presence of brainwaves? The second trimester?

There is disagreement among Christians (and historically, even among evangelicals) about this, so is it really my place, or the government's job, to impose my beliefs on people of all faiths and convictions? If abortion is criminalized, should every miscarriage be investigated by police? Should in vitro fertilization be outlawed?

Most of us would question whether this couple should have been forced to deliver their stillborn baby, or this woman told by her insurance company that terminating a desperately wanted but unviable pregnancy counted as an abortion. Given the complex nature of these and other issues, the degree to which the government should make decisions on behalf of women and families regarding pregnancy is, and should be, debatable.

I think it’s safe to say that few people who vote for Hillary Clinton this year will do so because they want the abortion rate to go up. Every person I’ve spoken with personally, whether pro-life or pro-choice or somewhere in between, wants to see abortions reduced.

That said, I’m concerned by efforts from some in the Democratic Party to move beyond the "safe, legal, and rare" posture on abortion to one that treats it as just another routine health procedure. (The recent "comedians in cars getting abortions" sketch is a troubling reflection of this trend.) I intend to speak out about this, and other concerning changes to the Democratic platform, and would encourage other pro-life progressives to do the same.

2) Criminalizing abortion won’t necessarily reduce abortions

Recent data published by the Lancet journal shows that countries where abortion is illegal or heavily restricted — mainly in Africa and Latin America — don’t have lower abortion rates than the rest of the world. In those countries, the rate is 37 abortions per 1,000 women, compared with 34 per 1,000 in countries where it is legal. In fact, in Latin America, a region with highly restrictive abortion laws, one in three pregnancies (32 percent) ended in abortion in 2010–'14, higher than in any other region.

This data underscores an important reality: that women will continue to seek out abortions even if they are illegal. This was certainly true in the US before Roe v. Wade, and remains true for women who resort to dangerous and clandestine methods of terminating pregnancies in countries where it is illegal.

Still, we have to be careful of comparing apples to oranges when it comes to the statistics. Most of the countries where abortion is illegal also suffer from widespread poverty and limited access to contraception — huge drivers in the abortion rate. In addition, some surveys show that here in the US, states with more abortion restrictions do in fact have lower abortion rates, suggesting legal changes may indeed have some effect.

So with those considerations in mind, I think it’s safer to say that while legal restrictions on abortion might put a dent in the abortion rate, they won’t put an end to abortion as we know it, and, most importantly, they won’t do a thing to alter the number of unwanted pregnancies.

Rather than waiting around for a hypothetical and unlikely legal scenario to play out, our efforts would be better spent working to decrease the number of unwanted pregnancies using the tools we already have. Which brings me to my next point.

3) Pro-life advocates should support, rather than oppose, efforts to help low-income families care for their children

When President Obama recently announced an initiative aimed at improving the distribution of free or low-cost diapers to poor families struggling to care for their babies, many conservatives sneered, calling it the ultimate example of a "nanny state."

It was frustrating to see an idea that was so obviously pro-life and pro-family get lampooned by the very people who say they want millions of low-income women to have millions more babies. I know I’m not the only one who gets red-faced whenever a self-proclaimed pro-life politician or pastor belittles and demeans "welfare queens" and "moocher moms," seemingly unaware of the hypocrisy of forcing women to have children they can’t afford while simultaneously dismantling the social safety net that helps them care for those children.

The fact is that most women who choose to have abortions do so because they feel they cannot manage the financial burden of carrying out the pregnancy and raising another child. The latest survey from the Guttmacher Institute found that 49 percent of abortion patients in 2014 had incomes of less than 100 percent of the federal poverty level ($11,670 per year), and 26 percent had incomes of 100 to 199 percent of the federal poverty level.

The survey reports:

The reasons patients gave for having an abortion underscored their understanding of the responsibilities of parenthood and family life. The three most common reasons — each cited by three-fourths of patients — were concern for or responsibility to other individuals; the inability to afford a child; and the belief that having a baby would interfere with work, school or the ability to care for dependents.

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Imagine you’re a mother of two working 40 hours a week at a minimum wage job in food service while your husband hunts for a job. (At $7.25 per hour, that works out to $15,080 a year.) Child care takes about 30 percent of those earnings; rent, groceries, and other bills the rest.

Now imagine that, like a third of American workers, you don’t get any paid sick days, so every time one of your children gets an ear infection or catches the flu, your pay is docked for taking time off to care for them. Imagine, too, that you can barely afford your health insurance, much less days off for doctor visits, and your employer doesn’t offer any paid maternity leave.

Now imagine you get pregnant…

This is the reality faced by millions of women who consider abortions each year. And the sad irony is the same pro-life politicians who want to force them to have their babies typically oppose raising the minimum wage, ensuring paid sick leave and parental leave for all American workers, and protecting the 20 million people who can finally afford health insurance thanks to the Affordable Care Act. Those politicians also tend to oppose additional funding for successful programs like WIC, which provides food assistance to low-income pregnant and postpartum women and their children.

Creating a culture of life isn’t just about standing in a picket line with a "Choose Life" sign. It’s about seriously addressing the problem of income inequality in this country so that no woman has to choose between getting an abortion and raising her child in poverty.

It means celebrating parenthood by making America the most generous country in the developed world when it comes to maternity and paternity leave, not the least generous, and it means working together on efforts to reduce the costs of food, diapers, child care, pediatrician visits, college tuition, adoption, and resources for special needs children.

Like her or not, agree with her or not, Hillary Clinton has devoted much of her life to tackling these very issues, and she’s made them a centerpiece of her campaign. (Check out Shannon Dingle’s post "I'm pro-life. And I'm voting for Hillary. Here's why" for more on this.)

Some of Clinton’s plans include guaranteeing 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave, expanding early childhood education, capping child care expenses at 10 percent of a household’s income, helping the families of children with autism and other special needs get access to more resources and support, and insuring more families through the Affordable Care Act.

In the past, she has worked with Republicans on legislation that reformed the foster care system and encouraged more adoptions, issues I know matter to many pro-life evangelicals who advocate on behalf of adoption and open their homes to children.

Sometimes I think it’s easier for us to talk about "saving millions of babies" than it is to work to create a culture that can sustainably welcome those babies as they grow into children and adults. Speaking in abstract terms about blank, amorphous "innocent lives" keeps us from confronting the reality that if most of these children are born at or near the poverty line, then the lives we are saving are more likely to be troubled ones, and if nothing changes, those lives will get caught in vicious cycles powered by poverty and systemic racism.

Thinking holistically about pro-life values means thinking beyond the labor and delivery unit. If we don't address income inequality in this country, and if we don't support robust plans to improve health care and education, we simply can't sustain the very lives we're advocating be protected.

4) If we want to dramatically reduce the abortion rate in this country, we must support efforts to make contraception more accessible and affordable

Study after study after study shows this to be true.

Not only would improved access to contraception impact the abortion rate in the US, it would also dramatically reduce maternal and infant deaths around the world. There are more than 220 million women in developing countries who don’t want to get pregnant but who lack access to family planning information and contraceptives. Every year, nearly 300,000 of them will die during pregnancy or from complications giving birth, and many more will be permanently disabled. More than 2.6 million babies will be stillborn, and another 2.9 million will die before they are a month old.

As Melinda Gates explains here, giving women the opportunity to time their pregnancies and space out their children through effective, low-cost contraception is key to turning these numbers around. Some estimate it could save as many as 2 million children every year, and dramatically curb maternal mortality rates.

If that isn’t pro-life, I don’t know what is.

This essay is adapted from a post that appeared on Rachel Held Evans’s website.

Rachel Held Evans is a New York Times best-selling author whose books include Faith Unraveled (2010), A Year of Biblical Womanhood (2012), and Searching for Sunday (2015). Hailing from Dayton, Tennessee — home of the famous Scopes monkey trial of 1925 — she writes about faith, doubt and life in the Bible Belt. Her website is RachelHeldEvans.com.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: christistruth on August 04, 2016, 02:45:15 pm
I couldn't even stomach to finish that article. Very disturbing.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 04, 2016, 03:35:41 pm
I couldn't even stomach to finish that article. Very disturbing.
I'm not a Trump supporter either, but nonetheless we're seeing the work of God here at the same time - I believe he's blinding the minds and hearts of those that don't believe his word (and hence we may be witnessing the signs of the strong delusion before this current dispensation period concludes).

Acts 28:26  Saying, Go unto this people, and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and not perceive:
Act 28:27  For the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.



Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: christistruth on August 04, 2016, 03:40:29 pm
I'm not a Trump supporter either, but nonetheless we're seeing the work of God here at the same time - I believe he's blinding the minds and hearts of those that don't believe his word (and hence we may be witnessing the signs of the strong delusion before this current dispensation period concludes).

Acts 28:26  Saying, Go unto this people, and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and not perceive:
Act 28:27  For the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.



Deu 1:30  The LORD your God which goeth before you, he shall fight for you, according to all that he did for you in Egypt before your eyes;
Deu 1:31  And in the wilderness, where thou hast seen how that the LORD thy God bare thee, as a man doth bear his son, in all the way that ye went, until ye came into this place.

These people are insane. Shillary will not protect the lives of the innocent -- I will say, however, that apparently Trump's speech at the RNC was the first nominees speech for years that does pertain a Pro-Life view.

So I will say that neither Shillary or Don are pro-life.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 05, 2016, 11:57:35 am
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIoR9CxY-oI


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 05, 2016, 07:51:08 pm
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/opinions/wp/2016/08/05/the-two-wings-of-conservatism-have-combined-to-finally-destroy-the-republican-party/
8/5/16
The two wings of conservatism have combined to finally destroy the Republican Party

They had a good run, from Morning in America until the Dark Night of Donald Trump, but the internal contradiction in the GOP coalition has finally hit the inevitable fail moment.

Social conservatives had hoped to forestall and/or roll back social change that includes women’s rights, minority rights and LGBT rights. So they allied themselves with a form of unregulated economics that was nearly certain to trample all of their agenda. There is nothing about laissez-faire economics that is concerned with preserving existing social norms other than the prerogatives of the wealthy.

On the other side, the economic conservatives built their political base on the backs of people they fundamentally didn’t really like or respect, and had no real intention of delivering anything to. How long did they think that would work? Pretty long, as it turned out, but all good scams must come to an end.

So the great and very successful GOP coalition is now collapsing. That is the real story of this election, not Donald Trump. That’s what the GOP will be staring at, as will the rest of us, after Trump’s nearly inevitable November defeat.

Reassembling the GOP is the Humpty Dumpty problem. That is, it can’t be done. We are entering an era where there may be only one party that is a viable presidential-level party. This state of affairs won’t last forever either, but it is a great mystery now trying to think of a coalition that could successfully replace the previous one. I’m stumped. If you have an answer, please share it.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 15, 2016, 01:34:41 pm
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-stebenne/hillary-clintons-religiou_b_11507644.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 15, 2016, 02:49:17 pm
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/charles-redfern/is-american-evangelical-christianity_b_11459552.html
8/15/16
Is American Evangelical Christianity Sinking On The GOP Ship?





Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 22, 2016, 01:11:55 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yxB9JQ90mqI


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 24, 2016, 02:14:54 pm
https://www.yahoo.com/news/m/44b9d476-b741-3d7b-b2ce-15afdfd76604/ss_with-christianity-in-decline%2C.html
8/23/16
With Christianity in Decline, Britain Sees Rise of Humanist ‘Pastors’

London (CNSNews.com) – With participation in traditional faiths at near-record lows, Britain is seeing the rise of what humanists describe as “pastors” for the non-religious.

Last month the University of Westminster in London broke new ground by appointing its first official secular advisor for students.

The move followed efforts by the British Humanist Association since 2014 to train more than 100 volunteers to go into schools, hospitals and prisons in order to provide counseling support for those who don’t believe in a deity.

Early this year hospitals run by Britain’s National Health Service in Leicester also saw their first humanist appointed to the local chaplaincy team.

Government guidelines published in 2015 obligate medical trusts in England to provide pastoral support on an equal basis to those who are atheists as well as the religious.

This month, the landmark British Social Attitudes Survey showed that decline in religious belief in Britain has plateaued out but is still near its historic low point.

The survey, which has been run since 1983 and surveys roughly 3,000 British residents on a range of social-related issues, said that that 48 percent reported having “no religion.”

Ian Simpson, a senior researcher at NatCen, the social research firm that runs the survey, said that if anything this showed a small rebound for Christianity and other religions in the United Kingdom.

“The proportion of people saying they have no religion peaked at 51 percent in 2009 and has plateaued since then,” he said. “It appears that the steady decline of religion in Britain has come to a halt, at least for now.”

In the first year of the survey, only 31 percent of respondents described themselves as non-religious.

With nearly half of the population now describing themselves as not having a belief in God of gods, the British Humanist Association (BHA) says those people need a “listening ear” during difficult times in their lives, much in the same way that the religious have.

“Religious chaplains work to support people at some of life’s most trying times, or in moments of emotional difficulty or moral uncertainty,” said BHA chief executive Andrew Copson. “For a very long time, non-religious people haven’t been able to benefit in that same way from having a non-judgmental person to speak to who shares their outlook on the world.”

The association said it has also trained and accredited more than 300 people in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to lead humanist-themed ceremonies for occasions such as weddings and funerals.

more


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on August 25, 2016, 04:13:50 am
Pew: Americans giving up on God, miracles

Half of Americans who have left their church no longer believe in God, leading a surge of nearly one quarter of the nation who have no affiliation with any religion, according to a new survey.

Pew Research Center said Wednesday that 49 percent of what they term "nones" left their church and religion because they "don't believe." Another 20 percent said they don't like organized religion. Other reasons included "common sense" and a lack of belief in miracles.

The survey is the latest from Pew that demonstrates a growing trend in America: more and more people are junking religion and many are giving up on God.

Pew interviewed several respondents to try and find a reason. Pew Said for example:

"About half of current religious 'nones' who were raised in a religion (49%) indicate that a lack of belief led them to move away from religion. This includes many respondents who mention 'science' as the reason they do not believe in religious teachings, including one who said 'I'm a scientist now, and I don't believe in miracles.' Others reference 'common sense,' 'logic' or a 'lack of evidence' – or simply say they do not believe in God."

(http://www.pewresearch.org/files/2016/08/FT_16.08.23_religNones_examples.png)

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/pew-huge-surge-in-americans-who-no-longer-believe-in-god-miracles/article/2600066


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 25, 2016, 08:25:14 am
The rotten fruits of "fundamentalism" - this is largely happened b/c the HOMES didn't do their jobs, first and foremost - they would show an outward appearance of being "holy" on Sundays, but by the time Sunday was all said and done, most in their HOMES went back to their worldly, albeit secular lifestyles...as a result, their next generations saw the hypocrisy of all this.

Ephesians 5:22  Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.
Eph 5:23  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.
Eph 5:24  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.
Eph 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Eph 5:26  That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Eph 5:27  That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
Eph 5:28  So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.
Eph 5:29  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:
Eph 5:30  For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.
Eph 5:31  For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
Eph 5:32  This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
Eph 5:33  Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on August 29, 2016, 07:29:27 pm
Pastor Who Says Single Christians Can Have 'Mutually Pleasurable' Sex Doesn't See Bible as God's Infallible Word

This is why feminist liberals cant be a Pastor.

(http://images.christianpost.com/full/99685/bromleigh-mccleneghan-good-christian-sex.jpg)
The Reverend Bromleigh McCleneghan and the cover of her new book, 'Good Christian Sex.'

The Rev. Bromleigh McCleneghan, the married mother of three and associate pastor for ministry with families at Union Church of Hinsdale in Illinois, who argues that single Christians can have sex as long as it's "mutually pleasurable and affirming," says she doesn't interpret the Bible as God's infallible Word.

"I profess Jesus as the Word of God, and the Bible as a witness to His life, ministry, death and resurrection. Which is to say that I take it seriously as a living witness, but also as a historic document written in a particular time and place," McCleneghan said in a Q&A via email with The Christian Post on Tuesday.

McCleneghan, who is advocating that single Christians can have sex in moderation in her new book, Good Christian Sex: Why Chastity Isn't the Only Option — And Other Things the Bible Says About Sex, also responded to criticism from CP readers about the subject of her book.

The following is an edited transcript of CP's Q&A with McCleneghan:

CP: Readers are concerned that you might not believe in the Bible as the infallible Word of God. What in a nutshell is your understanding of the Bible in this context? Do you think the Bible is the infallible Word of God?

McCleneghan: Different Christian churches read and interpret the Bible differently. I profess Jesus as the Word of God, and the Bible as a witness to His life, ministry, death and resurrection. Which is to say that I take it seriously as a living witness, but also as a historic document written in a particular time and place.

CP: The Bible advises against fornication in 1 Thessalonians 4:3-4. What is your interpretation of this Scripture? Isn't what your book is recommending to unmarried Christians fornication?

McCleneghan: I think that there have to be additional norms for what makes sex moral or immoral, just or unjust; the question of marriage is insufficient.

Because, of course, there can be harmful or non-consensual (abusive) sex in marriage. So we need to reflect on, with the biblical authors and other theologians, what sex is about: what makes it moral or immoral? What makes something loving, holy, and good? On page 144 of my book, I reflect a bit on the word "fornication:"

If sex is for the appropriate practice and experience of vulnerability, then repeated behaviors that mask that purpose are unethical. I've always wondered what to do with the Apostle Paul's condemnation of "fornication" in that letter to the church at Corinth (6:18 in particular). In the Greek, it's "porneia." In the new Common English Bible, it's "sexual immorality." Fornication is traditionally seen as extramarital sex. But that seems both overly broad and overly narrow. Porneia includes just about every naughty thing you can think of, including sex with relatives and animals, but also some that seem categorically "not like the others" to our modern ears (i.e., sex with someone who has been divorced). "Sexual immorality" is similarly all-inclusive, and unhelpfully vague. What makes something immoral?

My book is really an invitation for people to reflect on Scripture and their experiences in the light of their faith. It is not an "anything goes" approach to sexuality, but it does ask readers to consider what is at stake in the ways they order their sexual relationships.

http://www.christianpost.com/news/pastor-who-says-single-christians-can-have-mutually-pleasurable-sex-doesnt-see-bible-as-gods-infallible-word-168434/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 29, 2016, 08:50:34 pm
Quote
"I profess Jesus as the Word of God, and the Bible as a witness to His life, ministry, death and resurrection. Which is to say that I take it seriously as a living witness, but also as a historic document written in a particular time and place," McCleneghan said in a Q&A via email with The Christian Post on Tuesday.

It means she had nothing more than a mental ascent - nothing more than a HEAD BELIEF, with NO conviction and godly sorrow of her sins.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on August 29, 2016, 09:38:53 pm
More Americans Than Ever Are Losing Their Religion

Never before in U.S. history have so many Americans chosen to be unaffiliated with any particular religious group. As you will see below, the percentage of “nones” in this country has absolutely skyrocketed over the past decade. But not all faiths are losing members in the United States. In fact, Islam, Buddhism, Wicca and various New Age organizations have all experienced excellent growth in recent years. Sadly, almost all of the growth for the “nones” has come at the expense of Christianity. Americans are leaving the Christian faith in droves, and this is why many of our churches are less than half full on Sunday mornings. What we are doing right now is clearly not working, and hopefully we can get the church in America to wake up while there is still time to do so.

Earlier today I came across a brand new study from the Pew Research Center entitled “Why America’s ‘nones’ left religion behind“. One thing that particularly stood out to me was the fact that most “nones” were once affiliated with a particular religion but have now discarded that label…

    Perhaps the most striking trend in American religion in recent years has been the growing percentage of adults who do not identify with a religious group. And the vast majority of these religious “nones” (78%) say they were raised as a member of a particular religion before shedding their religious identity in adulthood.

Overall, the percentage of “nones” in this nation has been absolutely soaring in recent years. Back in 2007, “nones” made up 16 percent of the population, but now that number has risen to 23 percent. The following is from a different Pew Research Center report that was published last year…

    Religious “nones” – a shorthand we use to refer to people who self-identify as atheists or agnostics, as well as those who say their religion is “nothing in particular” – now make up roughly 23% of the U.S. adult population. This is a stark increase from 2007, the last time a similar Pew Research study was conducted, when 16% of Americans were “nones.” (During this same time period, Christians have fallen from 78% to 71%.)

I want you to notice one particularly sobering fact in the excerpt posted above. The seven percent increase in the percentage of “nones” was matched exactly by a seven percent decrease in the percentage of Christians.

It is time to face a very hard truth – Christianity is in rapid decline in America.

So why is this happening?

Is there an explanation for why so many people are leaving the church?

Well, here is some of the feedback that the Pew Research Center received while conducting their new survey…

    About half of current religious “nones” who were raised in a religion (49%) indicate that a lack of belief led them to move away from religion. This includes many respondents who mention “science” as the reason they do not believe in religious teachings, including one who said “I’m a scientist now, and I don’t believe in miracles.” Others reference “common sense,” “logic” or a “lack of evidence” – or simply say they do not believe in God.

This is such a tragedy, because during my decades of research into these things I have found that logic and reason should always point people toward the Christian faith and not away from it. There is an absolutely gigantic mountain of evidence for Christianity out there, but unfortunately most people don’t know about it or they are not interested in considering it.

The biggest cultural shift has been happening among our young people. Most of them have been raised in an environment where God has been removed from almost every corner of public life, and the results have been beyond catastrophic.

In America today, 35 percent of all Millennials are “nones”.

Millennials are more than twice as likely to be “nones” as Baby Boomers (17 percent), and they are more than three times as likely to be “nones” as the Silent Generation (11 percent).

In other words, the younger you are the more likely you are to be religiously unaffiliated.

And this shows up in the church attendance numbers as well. Millennials are much, much less likely to be in church on any particular Sunday morning than the oldest Americans are. The following information comes from another Pew Research Center report…

    Millennials – especially the youngest Millennials, who have entered adulthood since the first Landscape Study was conducted – are far less religious than their elders. For example, only 27% of Millennials say they attend religious services on a weekly basis, compared with 51% of adults in the Silent generation. Four-in-ten of the youngest Millennials say they pray every day, compared with six-in-ten Baby Boomers and two-thirds of members of the Silent generation. Only about half of Millennials say they believe in God with absolute certainty, compared with seven-in-ten Americans in the Silent and Baby Boom cohorts. And only about four-in-ten Millennials say religion is very important in their lives, compared with more than half in the older generational cohorts.

We are slowly losing an entire generation.

When you walk into most churches in America on Sunday morning, what are you going to find?

You are going to find that the congregation is dominated by “the greys”, and I am not talking about space aliens.

As the oldest Americans die off, the United States is becoming less and less Christian. We are on the exact same path that Europe has already gone down, but most churches are just going on with business as usual and don’t seem to even understand that we have a major crisis on our hands.

As I said at the top of this article, what we are doing right now is clearly not working, and if we continue on the path that we are currently on we will continue to lose young people by the millions.

America needs revival more than it has ever needed it before.

Let us pray that one arrives very soon.

http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/more-americans-than-ever-are-losing-their-religion


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on August 29, 2016, 09:39:42 pm
Witchcraft, Islam And Humanism Are Filling The Spiritual Void Left By The Dying Church

A dramatic spiritual paradigm shift is taking place in the western world. At the end of last week, I discussed the fact that more Americans than ever before appear to be turning away from the Christian faith, and this is particularly true among our young people. And while it is undeniable that atheism and agnosticism are both growing rapidly, it is also important to point out that other faiths are on the rise in the western world at the exact same time that Christianity is shrinking. If you are a Christian, what you are about to read should concern you greatly.

Let’s start with witchcraft. It has been estimated that Wicca (one very popular form of witchcraft) is now the fastest growing faith in America. Books and movies featuring Harry Potter and others that use “magic” for good have fueled a tremendous amount of interest in the dark arts these days. Just consider the following excerpt from a Salon article that was published earlier this month…

    Stores specializing in metaphysical sundries (think ritual candles, blended oils, sacred herbs) like Spellbound Sky and House of Intuition in Los Angeles, while not brand-new, are suddenly crowded. In Brooklyn, Witches of Bushwick has evolved from a venue on the underground party circuit to a social collective that celebrates witchcraft as a feminist art and collaborates with fashion companies like Chromat. Of course, for those who prefer whipping up potions at home, several new witch- and occult-themed subscription boxes deliver the magical arts to the doorstep.

And social media has enabled young people interested in magic to connect with one another in a way that we have never seen before. Here is more from Salon…

    Check social media: A search for #witch on Instagram yields about 2,375,000 posts — whereas one for #kardashian scores only 1,630,000. Search next time at a boutique: Tarot decks are coming back in high style, thanks to retailers like the Wild Unknown — its artful cards are in stores across the country, from upscale meccas like ABC Home in New York City to indie hot spots like Skylark in Venice Beach, California. K-Hole was right, “mysticore” is the new norm.

Yes, there are still many more Christians than witches in America.

But the ranks of those that are into the occult are growing very quickly – especially among our young people – and in many churches on Sunday morning you will be fortunate to find even a handful of young adults.

Meanwhile, Islam is on the rise in the western world as well. Much of this is due to immigration, and new mosques are springing up all over the United States and Europe.

As Islam gains ground, there has been a concerted effort in some quarters to bring Christianity and Islam together. This movement has become known as “Chrislam”, and in recent years we have seen some things that many of us never imagined that we would ever see in the Christian world.

For example, earlier this year the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church USA was opened with a prayer offered to Allah…

    “Allah bless us and bless our families and bless our Lord. Lead us on the straight path – the path of all prophets: Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad.”

    These were the words that rang out over the congregation at The General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church, USA meeting in Portland, Oregon. Wajidi Said, co-founder of the Muslim Education Trust, led the attendees in the prayer to the Islamic deity, a move arranged by the Ecumenical and Interfaith ministry staff at the assembly.

    The prayer was part of the “first order of business” during the meeting’s opening session, a time dedicated to praying for those affected by the Orlando shooting that occurred just weeks before.

And of course the Presbyterian Church USA is far from alone. As I have documented, Pope Francis has stated that Christians and Muslims both “worship the one God”, and in 2014 he authorized Islamic prayers and readings from the Quran at the Vatican for the first time ever.

But despite such efforts to “bring Christians and Muslims together”, the truth is that Islamic terrorists continue to slaughter Christians on a continual basis all over the planet. The most recent attack on a church took place in Indonesia on Sunday…

    An ISIS suicide bomber today attacked a Catholic priest with an axe as he tried to blow up hundreds of worshippers at a church during Sunday Mass.

    Priest Albert Pandiangan, 60, was holding the holy ceremony at the altar when the 18-year-old fanatic rushed towards him with a backpack bomb and tried to blow himself up.

    But the bomb burned without setting off the explosives, so the jihadi pulled an axe from his bag and slashed the priest’s arm at St Yoseph Church in Medan, the capital of North Sumatra in Indonesia.

So far there have been well over 1000 Islamic terror attacks in 2016, and ISIS appears to have a renewed emphasis on attacking churches and Christians wherever they can find them.

Without a doubt, we are also witnessing a huge increase in the number of atheists and agnostics in the western world. Europe is much farther along than the United States is in this regard, and many areas of the continent are rightly regarded to be “post-Christian” at this point.

In the UK, the Christian faith has declined so dramatically that now we are seeing the rise of “humanist chaplains” that don’t hold to any sort of faith at all…

    With participation in traditional faiths at near-record lows, Britain is seeing the rise of humanist chaplains providing “pastoral” support for the non-religious.

    Last month the University of Westminster in London broke new ground by appointing its first official secular advisor for students.

    The move followed efforts by the British Humanist Association since 2014 to train more than 100 volunteers to go into schools, hospitals and prisons in order to provide support for those who don’t believe in a deity.

Fortunately, things are much different in much of the rest of the world. In fact, the Christian faith is currently experiencing explosive growth in China, India, South America and many portions of Africa.

But in the United States and Europe people are leaving the faith of their forefathers in astounding numbers, and that spiritual void is often being filled by other faiths such as witchcraft and Islam.

So what does this mean for the future of our society?

http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/witchcraft-islam-and-humanism-are-filling-the-spiritual-void-left-by-the-dying-church


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 04, 2016, 09:31:25 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-KD_5JZDtP4


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on September 27, 2016, 01:47:29 am
For the Bible Tells Me So: Biblical Authority Denied...Again

 “Jesus loves me — this I know, for the Bible tells me so.” This is a childish error?

Evangelical Christianity has a big problem, says Andy Stanley, and that problem is a reliance on the Bible that is both unwarranted and unhelpful. In a recent message delivered at North Point Community Church and posted online, Stanley identifies the evangelical impulse to turn to the Bible in our defense and presentation of Christianity as a huge blunder that must be corrected.

Some years ago, in light of another message Stanley preached at North Point, I argued that his apologetic ambition was, as we saw with Protestant liberalism a century ago, a road that will lead to disaster. No doubt, many Christians might be surprised to see an apologetic ambition identified as an entry point for theological liberalism, but this has held constant since Friedrich Schleiermacher, the father of modern theological liberalism, issued his book, On Religion: Speeches to its Cultured Despisers in 1799.

In the wake of the Enlightenment, Schleiermacher understood that the intellectual elites in Germany were already turning a skeptical eye to Christianity, if not dismissing it altogether. The Enlightenment worldview was hostile to supernatural claims, suspicious of any claims to absolute truth beyond empirical science, and dismissive of any verbal form of divine revelation.

No problem, Scheiermacher responded — we can still salvage spiritual and moral value out of Christianity while jettisoning its troublesome doctrinal claims, supernatural structure, and dependence upon the Bible. He was certain that his strategy would “save” Christianity from irrelevance.

His ambition, in other words, was apologetic at its core — to defend Christianity against claims of its eclipse. The formula offered by theological liberals is the same now. Save what you can of Christianity by surrendering truth claims. Acknowledge the inevitable hostility that these doctrines face in the modern age and adjust the faith accordingly. No theological liberal declares himself the enemy of Christianity. To the contrary, he offers liberalism as the only means of avoiding Christianity’s demise in a secular age.

Of course, the “Christianity” that remains after this doctrinal surgery bears little resemblance to biblical Christianity and, as Scripture makes abundantly clear, it cannot save.

Let’s be clear — Andy Stanley does not mean to deny the central truth claims of Christianity. In his message, “Who Needs God? The Bible Told Me So,” he affirms the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. But he does so while undercutting our only means of knowing of Christ and his resurrection from the dead — the Bible.

And he does so directly and without risk of misunderstanding. In his message he stated: “So I need you to listen really carefully and the reason is this — perhaps you were taught, as I was taught, ‘Jesus love me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so.’ That is where our trouble began.”

That is where our trouble began? What trouble?

Stanley’s apologetic concern is clear from the beginning of this message. He identifies the crisis of “de-conversion” as adults leave the church because they have outgrown their child-like faith and no longer believe. He traces their de-conversion to the fact that their adult “fact based” questions were met with only childish “faith based” answers.

He goes on to say that the “the Bible told me so” is “one of the threads we hear in de-conversion stories all the time, and I have a feeling for many, many, many of you who are losing faith or have lost faith, especially in the Christian faith, this is a bit of the part of your story.”

Later, he follows by dismissing a “the Bible says it, that settles it” approach to Christianity. “The problem with that is this: if the Bible goes, so goes our faith.”

At this point, Stanley goes on to amplify his concern with a Bible-based Christianity. “If the Bible is the foundation of your faith, here’s the problem: it is all or nothing. Christianity becomes a fragile, house of cards religion.”

And, as he states boldly, “it is next to impossible to defend the entire Bible.”

In short order, Stanley argues that claiming infallibility for the entire Bible is a losing project. Furthermore, he argues that Christianity “made its greatest strides during the 282 years before the Bible even existed.”

There is more in that statement than can be unpacked in his message or in this essay, but the central problem with his argument is that he seems to believe that the church did not have the Bible until the early fourth century. This claim can only refer to the official listing of the canon of the New Testament, but it is clear that the early church recognized the Old Testament as Scripture and that the early church quickly had both the gospels and, even earlier, the letters of the Apostle Paul (see 1 Tim 5:18; 2 Pet 3:15-16).

Indeed, the early church provides abundant evidence of the “for the Bible tells me so” dependence upon Scripture, even if the earliest Christians did not yet have the colelected New Testament. In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul grounds both the crucifixion and the resurrection of Christ as “according to the Scriptures.”

Perhaps the oddest part of Andy Stanley’s approach to defending the resurrection is his insistence that we have some access to historically verifiable accounts of the resurrection outside of the New Testament. He rests his confidence in recent historiographical work by apologists who defend the historicity of the resurrection by affirming historical sources that are prior to Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.

But where do these historians claim to find those sources? In the four gospels.

Stanley seems to base the defense of the resurrection in historical traditions he claims are prior to the gospels, but the Holy Spirit gave the church the four gospels, and the entire New Testament, as verbally inspired, authoritative, and infallible revelation. All of Scripture, the Old Testament and the New Testament, was given to the church so that we would know the rule of faith and everything revealed therein. This is the evangelical Scripture principle, and it is precisely what the Reformers defended as sola Scriptura.

And what is our alternative? Are we to believe that those who are “de-converting” from Christianity can be weaned off of the Bible and on to some other sufficient authority?

In the strangest turn, noted in Stanley’s presentations before this message, he argues that if we can somehow believe in the fact of Christ’s resurrection on the authority of prior historical sources, then find that Jesus (presumably as revealed in the four gospels) respects the inspiration of the Old Testament, and then assume that if one who rose from the dead affirmed the inspiration of the Old Testament, then so should we.

But Jesus actually pointed to the Old Testament and demonstrated the very approach to the truthfulness and authority of the Bible that Stanley identifies as the problem. When Jesus pointed to the Old Testament and said “these are they that testify of me,” (John 5:39) he was effectively saying, “for the Bible tells me so.”

Add to this the problem that Stanley effectively refutes his own argument, undercutting the authority and inerrancy of the very Scripture that he would have us to understand that Jesus would want us to trust.

This is an apologetic disaster and would leave Christians with no authoritative Scripture. Instead, we would be dependent upon historians (among others) to tell us what parts of the both testaments we can still believe.

Those parts will inevitably grow fewer and fewer. This is what must happen when the total trustworthiness, sufficiency, and authority of the Bible is subverted.

We are back with Friedrich Schleiermacher, trying to convince the “de-converted” of his day that Christianity can be retained as an intellectually defensible morality and spirituality without its central truth claims and doctrines.

Andy Stanley is no Friedrich Schleiermacher, but the path he charts for the church is a road to abject disaster.
In the end, we simply have no place to go other than the Bible as God’s authoritative revelation. Christ, not the Bible, is the foundation of our faith — but our only authoritative and infallible source of knowledge about Christ is the Bible.

A true defense of the Christian faith has never been more needed than now, but an attempt to rescue Christianity from its dependence upon Scripture is doomed to disaster.

We are left in the same predicament as Martin Luther at the Diet of Worms. If Scripture cannot be trusted, then we are doomed.

“Jesus loves me — this I know, for the Bible tells me so.” A mature Christian faith will say more than that, not less than that. “For the Bible tells me so” does not mean that we do not have reasoned answers to difficult questions, but it does mean that we admit our dependence upon Scripture — and that we confess that God intended for us to be dependent on Scripture.

“For the Bible tells me so” is not “where our trouble began.” To the contrary, it is right where God wants us.

http://www.christianheadlines.com/columnists/al-mohler/for-the-bible-tells-me-so-biblical-authority-denied-again.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on October 03, 2016, 05:58:12 pm
More US Evangelicals Than Americans in General Believe 'Everyone' Will Go to Heaven

A new online survey on theology, released by LifeWay, shows that while two-thirds of Americans with evangelical beliefs say heaven is a place where all people will ultimately be reunited with their loved ones, a slightly lesser number of Americans in general believe so.

While 64 percent of evangelicals say everyone will go to heaven, the percentage decreases to 60 percent for Americans in general who believe so, according to the survey, released by LifeWay Research and sponsored by Orlando-based Ligonier Ministries.

The survey notes that by definition, all those with evangelical beliefs affirm that only people who trust in Jesus Christ alone as their Savior receive God's free gift of eternal salvation. And it adds that even more than half of Americans, or 54 percent, also say only those who trust in Jesus Christ alone receive eternal salvation.

The survey, which asked 47 questions on topics from prayer and the Bible to heaven and hell, also found that the majority of evangelical believers say hell is for real, but other Americans aren't so sure.

Eighty-four percent of those who hold evangelical beliefs say hell is a place of eternal judgment, where God sends all people who do not personally trust in Jesus Christ, but only 30 percent of Americans who don't have evangelical beliefs hold that view.

Overall, only 40 percent of Americans say those who don't believe in Jesus will go to hell.

Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research, says in the survey report that while most Americans still identify as Christians, they seem to be confused about some of the details of their faith.

For example, he says, about two-thirds of Americans believe Jesus is God while half say Jesus is a being created by God. Those two beliefs don't seem to match, he adds. "Contradictory and incompatible beliefs are OK for most people."

The survey also found that 64 percent of Americans say God accepts the worship of all religions, including Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Only 24 percent disagree, and 12 percent are not sure.

About sin, 74 percent of Americans disagree with the idea that even the smallest sin deserves eternal damnation, the survey shows, pointing out that the figure includes almost 62 percent who strongly disagree.

However, 64 percent of Americans say the biblical accounts of the physical, to bodily, resurrection of Jesus are completely accurate. About 23 percent disagree, and 13 percent are not sure. But 98 percent of evangelicals agree, as do more than half of Americans who do not hold evangelical beliefs.

Among other findings of the survey, about half of Americans say sex outside of traditional marriage is a sin, while 44 percent say it's not a sin. Forty-nine percent say abortion is a sin, and 40 percent say it is not. Forty-two percent of Americans say the Bible's condemnation of homosexual behavior doesn't apply today, while 44 percent disagree.


Read more at http://www.christianpost.com/news/more-us-evangelicals-than-americans-in-general-believe-everyone-will-go-to-heaven-170332/#yOTl3BpAG2os4vi4.99


Mat 7:13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Mat 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 03, 2016, 06:53:05 pm
The rotten fruits of "fundamentalism" - where they push the idea that we "just believe" so we can have our place in heaven eternally - no changed life by regeneration of the Holy Ghost. No preaching warning about the wrath of eternal hell. No preaching about the law being our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ. No living for our LORD Jesus Christ and establishing a personal relationship WITH HIM while we're living on this earth. And most importantly, NO PREACHING WARNING about the family unit from scripture.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 15, 2016, 05:19:29 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6aTgtc_o-0


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 19, 2016, 12:45:58 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZdFh1M_J_Ms


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 09, 2016, 01:16:01 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PMRdVCTeltE


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 10, 2016, 09:50:57 am
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2016/11/09/why-some-fear-this-elections-lasting-damage-to-american-christianity/
11/9/16
Why some fear this election’s lasting damage to American Christianity

Teryn O’Brien has stopped calling herself evangelical. As a 28-year-old living in Colorado Springs, O’Brien has held concerns with the conservative brand of evangelical Christianity for several years now, but she described this election as “the final straw.”

O’Brien said American evangelicals have historically held the upper hand in America and are seeing that power slip away. Searching to recapture it, many of them turned to Donald Trump, someone she sees as racist, misogynist and antithetical to Christian behavior.

Conversations about faith and values.

Now O’Brien, who attends an Anglican church, has dropped the “evangelical” label, simply calling herself a Christian. But she said it has become hard to distinguish “evangelical” from “Christian,” given that evangelicals make up about a quarter of the U.S. population.

Among evangelicals, which as a group are about three-quarters white, are definitely the loudest group by far, she said. And so they often get the most attention. Exit polls show 81 percent of white evangelicals across the country backed Trump, the vast majority of whom are Republican and lean conservative, constituting the highest percentage that has voted for the Republican nominee since they voted overwhelmingly for President George W. Bush in 2004.

[White evangelicals voted overwhelmingly for Donald Trump, exit polls show]

“This election has truly shown the underbelly of the toxic relationship that can develop between politics and religion,” O’Brien said.

Political divisions have run deep within churches and families, and observers say this election cycle has exposed underlying political and racial divisions within Christianity as a whole, but especially among evangelicals. As a result, some religious leaders are afraid of damage done to the perception of the Christian faith in the United States during this election cycle and fear its long-term effects.

Tensions high

Evangelical pastors say tensions have soared during the election season, and some are questioning whether they can even continue to use the label evangelical for fear of being associated with Trump.

“I keep trying to disavow that I am ‘that’ brand of evangelical, but after tonight, I don’t know if I even want to have any association with that label anymore,” Helen Lee, an evangelical author, said on Tuesday.

Eugene Cho, a pastor of an evangelical church in Seattle, said that his church building was recently painted with “F— organized religion,” though he is unsure whether it’s connected to Trump or the election.

“The election has made things more hostile or given permission to people to be more aggressive on both sides,” Cho said.

Cho, who has pledged that he will never endorse a candidate from the pulpit, joined a group of evangelicals in the fall condemning Trump, arguing his campaign “affirms racist elements in white culture.”

The letter, which was also backed by about 80 evangelical pastors and other leaders, decried Trump’s comments on women, Muslims, immigrants, refugees and the disabled.

“People just think that all evangelicals support Donald Trump or support particular platforms or a certain way of thinking,” Cho said. “This was just to communicate there isn’t a monolithic thought within the so-called evangelical wing of Christianity.”

Who speaks for evangelical Christians?

After a video of Trump was released showing he joked about sexually assaulting women, some religious leaders said that while his comments were inappropriate, he was still the best leader for the country. Others rejected the idea that those leaders were speaking on everyone’s behalf.

“The evangelical support of Trump will be an indictment against its validity as a Christian movement for generations to come,” Richard Rohr, a Franciscan author and teacher, tweeted after those comments.

Some leaders are worried about the lasting impact this election will have inside churches. Russell Moore, who leads the Southern Baptist Convention’s political advocacy arm, is deeply concerned about the impact of Christian leaders who defended Trump and the potential damage it has had within churches, especially among women and younger evangelicals.

“One evangelical woman said to me, ‘I’ve spent all my life saying the church is going to be a place where you can go when you face this sort of thing.’ Now I’m looking around, and a pastor is saying ‘This isn’t a big deal.’ That’s going to take a lot of work to undo,” he said.

Christianity’s political ties

The contrast between different groups of religious voters this election season is striking, said Mark Silk, professor of religion in public life at Trinity College. Polls ahead of the election showed Catholics divided, and that many Mormons abandoned the Republican Party compared with years past. But evangelicals voted for Trump in even greater numbers than they voted for Republican candidates Mitt Romney and John McCain.

“Trump has been a candidate where one could say, ‘Is there no point at which you won’t vote for the Republicans?’ ” Silk said. “I think that’s what’s given away the extent to which personal identity for religious conservatives and churchgoers has become wrapped up in Republicanism.”

In their book, “American Grace: How Religion Divides and Unites Us,” Harvard sociologist Robert Putnam and Notre Dame political scientist David Campbell argue that the extraordinary rise of people who affiliate with no religion is due in part to their rejection of its entanglement with politics. Today 22 percent of the population says they have no faith.

“For many, their aversion to religion is rooted in unease with the association between religion and conservative politics,” Putnam and Campbell wrote. “If religion equals Republican, then they have decided that religion is not for them.”

Michael Wear, who did evangelical outreach for President Obama’s campaign in 2008 and now consults with evangelical groups, said that people have been talking about rebranding evangelicals or even Christianity in America now for several years.

“The people I work with view Trump as a moment for Christians to actually separate themselves from towing a particular party line,” Wear said. “We’re going to have four years to test that theory.”

Shifting demographics

White Christian Protestants have dominated America’s political and social landscape for most of its history. But in recent decades, the number of Americans who stopped affiliating with religion has surged, along with a rise in Catholic, Jewish, Muslim and other Americans. The year 2008 marked the last in which Protestants represented a majority of Americans, according to demographer Robert P. Jones.

    Here's a map of #white Protestant density in the country. Looking familiar… #ElectionDay pic.twitter.com/7vKW6ToB2z

    — Robert P. Jones (@robertpjones) November 9, 2016

For most of American history, mainline and evangelical Protestants have dominated the landscape, spiritually and politically. But as Protestants’ majority has waned, Jones writes in his book, “The end of White Christian America,” Americans who are between 18 and 29 are less than half as likely to be white Christians as those who are 65 and older.

This election season, there was a divided voice among Christian leaders as a whole, Jones said. The Catholic bishops in the United States were much quieter than in elections past, while the so-called “values voters,” Christian conservatives who historically coalesced on issues, such as abortion and same-sex marriage, largely backed Trump.

“It’s going to be poignant that the group that has sold themselves as ‘values voters’ has abandoned those arguments and justifications,” Jones said.

The dividing lines

Faith often becomes front and center during election years, said Barna Research President David Kinnaman, because it reveals the fault lines along gender, generations and ethnicities, and between theological traditions.

“It’s a powerful moment where people are organizing themselves and making those differences more clear,” he said. “There are larger questions about why and how Christians should engage on cultural matters, and this election is redefining how Christians interact.”

When reports emerge about whom evangelicals voted for, they usually mean “white evangelicals,” glossing over a growing racial division within Christianity. Latino evangelicals are one of the fastest growing segments of churchgoers in America and have largely been fueling the growth among evangelicals, and many did not favor the Republican candidate.

“There is some real angst when there is a blanket statement that ‘evangelical supports . . .’ ” Salguero said.

Latino Christians are different from their white Christian peers, Salguero said, because they don’t have a history of being a majority in America.

“We don’t have messianic expectations for our politicians,” Salguero said. “We don’t have this moment of ‘we’re not at the center of power anymore.’ Latino evangelicals were never at the center of power, so we can be a prophetic voice independent of who gets into office.”


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 15, 2016, 08:43:20 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juSYobzcjIc


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on November 21, 2016, 08:22:09 pm
New Resolution Clearly Violates Romans 11:1, Isolates Jews From Salvation

At their annual synod, the EKD, a group of Lutheran, Reformed and United churches who comprise the liberal wing of Protestantism in Germany, passed a resolution renouncing its mission to convert Jews to Christianity. They wrote, "All efforts to convert Jews contradict our commitment to the faithfulness of God and the election of Israel."

Aaron Lewin, a Jewish believer in Jesus and the Berlin director of Jews for Jesus, commented: "The words of the apostle Paul seem to have escaped the drafters of the EKD resolution. Paul, one of the most fervent advocates of the enduring election of Israel, said, 'God has not rejected His people, has He?  May it never be!' (Rom. 11:1). The New Testament records that whenever Paul ministered in a new city, he first brought the gospel to his fellow Jews. That is not the action of one who believes Jews don't need to be saved (Rom. 10:1). That's why we are committed to making Jesus known to Jews and everyone else here in Germany who don't know our Messiah."

This resolution comes as the 500th anniversary of the Reformation is being celebrated. According to Religion News Service (RNS): "The move to renounce the Judenmission was part of the EKD's drive to deal with this embarrassing strain of anti-Semitism in their history so the Reformation anniversary could focus on Luther's other legacies."

Jews for Jesus International Director David Brickner commented, "It is disheartening that in this special year of celebration, an even more virulent form of anti-Semitism than Martin Luther's 'The Jews and Their Lies' is being perpetrated. If Jesus is Messiah and Savior of the world, and as Jesus said in John 14:6, 'No one comes to the Father but by Me,' then withholding that message from Jewish people is a grossly misplaced way of showing love."

A definitive consultation advocating for Jewish evangelism called the Berlin Declaration on the Uniqueness of Christ and Jewish Evangelism in Europe Today, (see attached, 106kb PDF), was circulated in Germany and throughout Europe in 2008. Among the signatories were German theologians, Dr. Eckhard Schnabel, distinguished professor of New Testament, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Dr. Bernhold Schwarz, department head in Systematic Theology at the Free Theological College of Glessen and Dr. Rolf Hille, evangelical theologian and pastor of the Württemberg Church.

Jews for Jesus is a direct-approach evangelical organization with branches in 13 countries and 26 cities.

http://www.charismanews.com/world/61425-new-resolution-clearly-violates-romans-11-1-isolates-jews-from-salvation


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 22, 2016, 04:29:36 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q4R4KvZ7pks


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on November 26, 2016, 01:13:33 pm
(http://vps.sermonaudio.com/resize_image/speakers/podcast/300/300/CooleyJason-01.jpg)

Sermon: Con-Man or Converted
Audio: http://www.sermonaudio.com/saplayer/playpopup.asp?SID=1123162152514


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 12, 2016, 09:24:22 pm
https://www.yahoo.com/beauty/former-pastor-allegedly-kills-daughter-175043302.html
Former Pastor Allegedly Kills Daughter
12/12/16

A former university and Air Force chaplain bought a shotgun after completing treatment for substance abuse and drove to the home of his estranged family, where he killed his adult daughter and then himself, police said Friday.

A neighbor discovered the bodies of Daniel Randall, 56, and Claire Randall, 27, on Thursday in Hebron. Police said Daniel Randall shot and killed Claire Randall in the bathroom. They believe he then killed himself. His body was found on a porch with a shotgun nearby.

Daniel Randall had broken into the house through a garage door, police said. They said he had just completed substance abuse treatment in Portland when he left Thursday, bought a shotgun, drove to the home and committed the shootings.

Police said Randall spray-painted messages to his family on the walls of five rooms of the house before shooting himself. They did not immediately disclose what the messages said.

Claire Randall had recently moved from Rhode Island to stay with her mother and teenage brother. Neither the mother nor brother was home at the time of the shootings, police said.

From 2009 to 2012, Roger Williams University paid Daniel Randall as a vendor to be an affiliated chaplain. Randallwas also a former pastor at First Congregational Church in Bristol, Rhode Island, WJAR-TV reported.

Police in Maine said Randall also once served as a chaplain in the Air Force.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 20, 2016, 03:34:20 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9h_TnPly1k


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on December 22, 2016, 03:51:56 pm
What people talk about before they die
12/20/16
http://www.cnn.com/2016/12/20/health/what-people-talk-about-before-dying-kerry-egan/index.html

As a divinity school student, I had just started working as a student chaplain at a cancer hospital when my professor asked me about my work. I was 26 years old and still learning what a chaplain did.

"I talk to the patients," I told him.

"You talk to patients? And tell me, what do people who are sick and dying talk to the student chaplain about?" he asked.

I had never considered the question before. "Well," I responded slowly, "Mostly we talk about their families."

"Do you talk about God?

"Umm, not usually."

"Or their religion?"

"Not so much."

"The meaning of their lives?"

"Sometimes."

"And prayer? Do you lead them in prayer? Or ritual?"

"Well," I hesitated. "Sometimes. But not usually, not really."

I felt derision creeping into the professor's voice. "So you just visit people and talk about their families?"

"Well, they talk. I mostly listen."

"Huh." He leaned back in his chair.

A week later, in the middle of a lecture in this professor's packed class, he started to tell a story about a student he once met who was a chaplain intern at a hospital.

"And I asked her, 'What exactly do you do as a chaplain?' And she replied, 'Well, I talk to people about their families.' " He paused for effect.

"And that was this student's understanding of faith! That was as deep as this person's spiritual life went! Talking about other people's families!"

The students laughed at the shallowness of the silly student. The professor was on a roll.

"And I thought to myself," he continued, "that if I was ever sick in the hospital, if I was ever dying, that the last person I would ever want to see is some Harvard Divinity School student chaplain wanting to talk to me about my family."

My body went numb with shame. At the time I thought that maybe, if I was a better chaplain, I would know how to talk to people about big spiritual questions. Maybe if dying people met with a good, experienced chaplain they would talk about God, I thought.

Today, 13 years later, I am a hospice chaplain. I visit people who are dying -- in their homes, in hospitals, in nursing homes. And if you were to ask me the same question -- What do people who are sick and dying talk about with the chaplain? -- I, without hesitation or uncertainty, would give you the same answer. Mostly, they talk about their families: about their mothers and fathers, their sons and daughters.

more


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on January 30, 2017, 11:30:11 am
"How would you know if someone stole your mind?"

The ship is sinking...FAST NOW! Get OUT OF THE WAY of any thing that is even a HINT of deception!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJjp1RnBZrM


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on February 05, 2017, 10:01:54 am
“Christians don't tell lies they just go to church and sing them.”
― A.W. Tozer


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 09, 2017, 12:14:01 am
Again, get off the sinking ship before it's too late!! black magic has reached an ultimate high now!!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oeN-jDGQlpQ


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 10, 2017, 10:51:15 pm
“Until we have seen ourselves as God see us, we are not likely to be much disturbed over conditions around us as long as they do not get so far out of hand as to threaten our comfortable way of life. We have learned to live with unholiness and have come to look upon it as the natural and expected thing.”
― A.W. Tozer, The Knowledge of the Holy


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 14, 2017, 04:11:53 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-nOm6NcjKbU


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on March 14, 2017, 07:40:42 pm
Study: 39 Percent of Evangelicals Approve of Women Pastors

 New research has revealed that only 39 percent of evangelical Christians approve of women serving in leadership roles within the church.

Research into how women in leadership roles are perceived was conducted by the Barna Group. The study is called “What Americans Think about Women in Power” and revealed that, while most Christian groups did not have a problem with women serving in leadership roles, evangelical Christians were the exception.

According to Relevant Magazine, the research revealed that 79 percent of Americans said they were comfortable with women leading ministry. Breaking the statistics down by denomination, researchers found that 71 percent of Protestants, 80 percent of Catholics, and 62 percent of simply “practicing Christians” said they were comfortable with women in leadership roles within the church.

Only 39 percent of evangelical Christians said the same, however--the only group that opposed women serving in the church more than they approved of it.

Interestingly, research also revealed that these same evangelical Christians did not hold the same views about women serving in leadership roles in business or politics.

The majority of Americans from all religious denominations expressed approval for women’s leadership in more secular roles.

http://www.christianheadlines.com/blog/study-39-percent-of-americans-approve-of-women-pastors.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on March 24, 2017, 12:02:02 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atp7DjrtJFY


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on April 10, 2017, 07:37:37 pm
Resurrection did not happen, say quarter of Christians

A quarter of people who describe themselves as Christians in Great Britain do not believe in the resurrection of Jesus, a survey commissioned by the BBC suggests.

However, almost one in 10 people of no religion say they do believe the Easter story, but it has "some content that should not be taken literally".

A fifth of non-religious people believe in life after death, the poll suggests.

The Church of England said it showed many people held religious beliefs.

ComRes surveyed 2,010 British adults by telephone, between 2 and 12 February 2017. The research was commissioned by BBC local radio for Palm Sunday.

The survey suggested:

    17% of all people believe the Bible version word-for-word

    31% of Christians believe word-for-word the Bible version, rising to 57% among "active" Christians (those who go to a religious service at least once a month)

    Exactly half of all people surveyed did not believe in the resurrection at all

    46% of people say they believe in some form of life after death and 46% do not

    20% of non-religious people say they believe in some form of life after death

    9% of non-religious people believe in the Resurrection, 1% of whom say they believe it literally

(https://ichef-1.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/ECA8/production/_95148506_chart_resurrection_birmingham.png)

rest: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-39153121


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on April 26, 2017, 06:19:39 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaORh5KAZzQ


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on May 19, 2017, 08:00:53 pm
The One Biblical Sin Even Unbelievers Agree Crosses the Line — Charisma News

American's may have misplaced their collective moral compass on a majority of issues—but apparently extramarital affairs are still off limits.

According to a new Gallup poll, Americans are still on board with the 7th Commandment: "Do not commit adultery."

Only 9 percent say adultery is morally acceptable.

Americans are softening their stance on other moral issues that are traditionally considered sinful—reaching levels of acceptance never seen before.

Birth control, divorce, sex between an unmarried man and woman, gay or lesbian relations, having a baby outside of marriage, doctor-assisted suicide, pornography and polygamy all had the highest percentage of U.S. adults claiming they were morally acceptable since Gallup began asking about each issue, according to LifeWay.

The largest approval jump is of gay or lesbian relations—support has grown by 23 points since Gallup first started polling on the topic. Only adultery has a consistently low level of approval.

LifeWay Research found most Americans agree that morality is declining but can't agree on what's moral; there is disagreement over what constitutes adultery.

A Deseret News poll found that a majority of Americans consider having sexual relations with someone other than your partner—whether regular or a one-night stand—constitutes cheating. However, many also agreed that romantically kissing someone other than your partner, sending explicit messages, having an online dating profile, being emotionally involved with someone besides your partner and even going to dinner with someone you're attracted to—could count as cheating.

http://www.charismanews.com/culture/65018-the-one-biblical-sin-even-unbelievers-agree-crosses-the-line


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 19, 2017, 09:03:46 pm
Yes, adultery rips apart marriages 10 out of 10 times. There's no such thing as an "open marriage" (like you see in Hollywood scripts).

Proverbs 6:30  Men do not despise a thief, if he steal to satisfy his soul when he is hungry;
Pro 6:31  But if he be found, he shall restore sevenfold; he shall give all the substance of his house.
Pro 6:32  But whoso committeth adultery with a woman lacketh understanding: he that doeth it destroyeth his own soul.
Pro 6:33  A wound and dishonour shall he get; and his reproach shall not be wiped away.
Pro 6:34  For jealousy is the rage of a man: therefore he will not spare in the day of vengeance.
Pro 6:35  He will not regard any ransom; neither will he rest content, though thou givest many gifts.


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 23, 2017, 06:40:24 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4fhL5rr1IIM


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 24, 2017, 11:56:33 am
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYhlkC2i-nY


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on May 24, 2017, 03:51:43 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ilwj2Mb5czc


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 02, 2017, 11:55:34 am
Published on Jun 1, 2017

A frank and plain speaking video talking about the rise of a cafeteria style Christianity where we bizarrely pick what is right and wholly ignore what is wrong about the men (not women) that we watch and follow on YouTube. Please remember that the issue brethren is not about finding a "perfect teacher" but someone who has sound doctrine. Please stop following broken ministries - especially those that are doing NOTHING and bearing NO fruit!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgqmmiZgWs4


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on June 26, 2017, 02:55:22 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Oj_VNVNY1A


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 10, 2017, 08:05:19 pm
No Christian Has Ever Taken The Entire Bible Literally  ???



Recently the Barna Group reprised research that finds only 17 percent of self-described Christians who regularly attend church actually believe the core tenets of Christian teaching. Its new poll, conducted this spring, found that one-quarter of Christians think what is right depends on the views of each individual, and that four in ten are sympathetic to Muslim beliefs.

This spring Gallup also released a survey heralding the decline of biblical Christian belief in the United States. The story ran under the blaring headline: “Record Few Americans Believe Bible is Literal Word of God.” Unlike the Barna research, however, this survey says more about Gallup’s ignorance of Christianity than it does about the state of American Christian belief.

The survey purports to show that less than a quarter of Americans—only 24 percent—believe that the Bible is actually God’s word. By contrast, 26 percent say that it is a collection of manmade myth, history, and precept. Gallup offers as a possible explanation the hypothesis that Americans want to embrace the scriptures as divinely inspired while leaving themselves free to interpret away negative biblical statements about issues like gay marriage and physician-assisted suicide.

“Americans…still largely accept the Bible as a holy document, but most…downplay God’s direct role in it,” Gallup reports. The story sums up its findings by reiterating the conclusion that Americans hesitate to describe the Bible as actually God’s word: “Over the past three decades, Americans’ view of the Bible as the literal word of God has been declining.”
Devil in the Details

The problem is that the question Gallup asked its respondents has no bearing on the alleged finding of the survey. The question does not ask whether the Bible is literally the word of God, but whether the Bible is the word of God and should always be interpreted literally.

The question Gallup asked reads as follows: “Which of the following statements comes closest to describing your views about the Bible – [1] the Bible is the actual word of God and is to be taken literally, word for word, [2] the Bible is the inspired word of God but not everything in it should be taken literally, or [3] the Bible is an ancient book of fables, legends, history, and moral precepts recorded by man?”

Belief that the Bible is not “the literal word of God”—the wording used in Gallup’s conclusion—seems to mean belief that the Bible is not actually God’s word. (That Gallup means this is confirmed by its description of its contrasting second option as the belief that the Bible is “at least God-inspired if not God’s own words.”) On the other hand, belief that the Bible is not “to be taken literally, word for word”—the wording actually used in Gallup’s question—means to believe that some parts of the Bible are not to be interpreted literally, without making any judgment about whether the Bible is God’s word.

The two ideas are entirely distinct. Americans did not reject the idea that the Bible is literally God’s word. They rejected the notion that every part of it is to be interpreted literally.
No One Interprets Everything Literally

There is a further problem. No Christian well-educated in the faith would agree with the statement that the Bible is “the actual word of God and is to be taken literally, word for word.” The first part of the statement may be true, but the second part is certainly false. And a statement that conjoins a true clause and a false clause is false. This is not a question of liberal versus conservative interpretation. Qualified expositors of whatever stripe will agree that reading all parts of the Bible literally is simply terrible exegesis.

Gallup appears to think that reading the Bible faithfully means always reading it literally. Nothing could be further from the truth. Some forms of communication are not supposed to be read in a literal manner. Poetry is the most obvious example, and a significant part of the Bible consists of poetry. When the book of Psalms speaks of trees clapping their hands and mountains skipping about, no one in their right mind takes this poetic expression as intended to convey literal truth.

Idiom and figures of speech are also not meant to be read literally. If you tell Amelia Bedelia that you drank a glass of water, she might think you swallowed your cup, but most people understand that such expressions convey something different from the literal meaning of the individual words. Similarly, when Deuteronomy speaks of God leading the Israelites “with a strong hand and an outstretched arm” one is not supposed to take the expression as implying that an immaterial being has physical body parts.

Still another example is apocalyptic. The book of Revelation seems lurid and strange to the uninitiated reader, but it belonged to a well-known genre in the ancient world. Apocalypses were intensely figurative books. Instead of writing literally about the evil of serving pagan gods with one’s thoughts and actions, one might write figuratively about the evil of being branded on head and hand with the mark of an evil beast. To drive the point home, one might give that beast a “number,” 666, that corresponds to the name of a well-known despot (the emperor Nero).

In all of these instances, literal reading and faithful reading are two very different things. The purpose of faithful analysis of a text is to discover the author’s intention. If one interprets literally what the author meant to be figurative, one will fail to interpret the text correctly. The problem for orthodox Christianity in America, in other words, is not that fewer people agreed to Gallup’s first statement that the Bible should be interpreted literally, word for word. The problem is that anyone agreed to it at all.
What Does the Survey Mean?

Gallup’s survey did not find that few Americans believe the Bible to be literally God’s word. It is hard to say what it found, actually. Did fewer people say the Bible is to be interpreted literally because fewer Americans take Christianity seriously? Or did fewer people give that response because Christians are becoming better educated about their faith? And how many were confused because they realized there was no good answer and therefore chose option one or option two randomly as a result? It is impossible to say, based on Gallup’s data.

All one can really be sure of is the broadest dichotomy Gallup offered. Twenty-six percent of Americans believe the Bible is a human document. That is an increase of about 5 percentage points from two years back. Yet 71 percent of Americans still believe that the Bible is, at least in some sense, God’s word. That is perhaps a more surprising result, and certainly a more optimistic one for American Christianity, than the faulty conclusion of the study. Reports of the demise of American Christianity may have been greatly exaggerated.

Jonathan Ashbach is a PhD student in politics at Hillsdale College. Jonathan has worked in the hospitality industry and as assistant editor for the Humboldt Economic Index. His work has also been published on Patheos.

http://thefederalist.com/2017/07/10/memo-gallup-no-christian-ever-taken-entire-bible-literally/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 20, 2017, 03:38:09 am
‘Harry Potter and the Sacred Text’ podcast draws non-believers who find meaning in magical fiction

Mark Kennedy grew up a Catholic, and a Harry Potter fanatic. Only one stuck.

“I considered myself a non-spiritual person,” he said. He thought he was done with religion. And then he stumbled on the podcast “Harry Potter and the Sacred Text.”

The podcast told him that the Harry Potter series — the books that he always turned to for solace when he was angry or stressed or in need of an escape — could be a source of spiritual sustenance.

“I feel like I’m born again,” he said.

On Tuesday night, Kennedy came to an event space at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue in the District with hundreds of fellow fans of the podcast, who have found a surprising spirituality in the magical fiction series, which turns 20 years old this year.

Hosted by Harvard Divinity School graduates Casper ter Kuile and Vanessa Zoltan, the podcast “Harry Potter and the Sacred Text” became the number-two podcast in America on iTunes soon after it debuted last summer. It has inspired face-to-face Potter text reading groups, akin to Bible study more than book club, in cities across the country. In Harvard Square, ter Kuile and Zoltan host a weekly church-like service for the secular focused on a Potter text’s meaning.

In the episode they taped at Sixth & I, they used one chapter of the third Harry Potter book as a vehicle for discussing the topics of trust, betrayal, love and prejudice (against werewolves).

Touring the country this summer, the podcasters have been met night after night by adoring, mostly millennial crowds who want to soak up their secular meaning-making. For the growing slice of Americans who label themselves “spiritual but not religious,” Casper ter Kuile and Vanessa Zoltan are kind of pop stars.

[Meet the ‘nones,’ the Democratic Party’s biggest faith constituency]

The irony is, the pair are skeptical about secularism.

“It doesn’t speak to people’s hearts and souls,” Zoltan said during a recent interview. “I get that people get connection and meaning from Soul Cycle, but will [those people] visit you when your mom is dying?”

Zoltan and ter Kuile are complicated evangelists for their own cause. Even as their following grows, they are still pondering some big questions: Can non-traditional types of meaning-making build community? Can texts that are deeply moving to readers truly hold them to account in the way Scripture has among the God-fearing?

Neither one of them puts much faith in Humanism, though Zoltan tried working as a chaplain at the lively, cutting-edge secularism center at Harvard called the Humanist Hub, where there is a Sunday school for kids based on ethics. People who don’t want to join an organized religion aren’t looking to label themselves part of a religion for atheists either, ter Kuile said.

“That’s all being unbundled. You might get your ecstatic experience at Soul Cycle, and your community in your book group, and your [spiritual] formation in Harry Potter or ‘On Being,'” he said.

[Clergy who don’t believe in organized religion? Humanists think 2017 is their time to grow.]

The podcasters said they worry that these disparate experiences leave people much lonelier than experiences that are all tied up within one faith community.

“I’m scared what we’re going to do without the buildings. Some of the best things in the world happen in church basements,” Zoltan said. “That’s where you have sex ed classes, and that’s where you have kids on their church trip to build houses, and that’s where you house the new immigrant, and that’s where you register to vote…. I’m terrified if there aren’t these designated spaces. They’re called sanctuaries for a reason.”

On their summer cross-country tour, which concluded in the District this week, the podcasters did fill church and synagogue auditoriums with fans in their 20s and 30s, many of whom hadn’t set foot in a house of worship in years.

[How decades of divorce helped erode religion]

They said that their podcast doesn’t aim to offer all the benefits of a religious community, but does strive to provide the moral insights that seekers gain from study of Scripture. In their podcast, they use the rigorous methods they learned in divinity school, like the Benedictine monks’ practice of lectio divina and the medieval florilegium, to parse the lines of Harry Potter, which they typically refer to as “the text.”

In the seven-book adventure story of Harry Potter growing up, mastering his magical powers, forming friendships and fighting the evil wizard Voldemort, ter Kuile and Zoltan find an ethical theme in every chapter, like “duty,” “forgiveness,” “mercy,” love,” “heartbreak,” “sanctuary” and “grace.”

Onstage at Sixth & I, they parsed a solitary sentence from the third book, selected by the audience: “The important thing is, I was watching it carefully this evening.”

Following a Jewish study method called Pardes, they analyzed the sole sentence on four levels, leading from the actual events of the story — a professor, looking at a moving map to see if it reveals that his students are in trouble — to an eventual sermonic conclusion. “I think what I would preach is that everybody needs to be taken care of in different ways. You should take care of the person in the form they need to be taken care of, not in the way that works for you. We have to teach each other how to take care of each other,” Zoltan said.

She said in an interview that she hopes this sort of close reading teaches moral values.

“To me, the goal of treating the text as sacred is that we can learn to treat each other as sacred. If you can learn to love these characters, to love Draco Malfoy, then you can learn to love the cousin you haven’t spoken to for 30 years, then the refugee down the street,” Zoltan said.

Attendees at Sixth & I lined up to buy t-shirts reading “Harry Potter is my sacred text,” but Zoltan and ter Kuile say they’re not trying to create a new religious identity, and they don’t think anyone comes away from the podcast thinking his or her religion is now Harry Potter-ist. (They also say they have never communicated with J. K. Rowling, who wrote the texts that they study and promote.)

Sally Taylor, 23, came to Sixth & I toting her journal. The trip to Washington to see the podcast taping was her graduation gift to herself for finishing her degree at the University of North Carolina in Asheville. She’s been writing down “sparklets” — a word she learned from the show for phrases that stand out to the listener as imbued with meaning — and she wanted to write more during the live taping.

“It always gives me guidance in a way I didn’t know I needed,” Taylor, who said she has no religion, said about the podcast.

That’s the goal. For a book to be sacred, Zoltan said, “You have to believe a text can give you blessings. You have to read it with rigor, commitment and practice, and do it with others.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2017/07/19/harry-potter-and-the-sacred-text-podcast-draws-non-believers-who-find-meaning-in-magical-fiction/?utm_term=.f47cf023331c


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 28, 2017, 07:19:00 pm
Australian Leaders React to Proposed ‘Jesus Ban’ in Schools – Faithwire



Government officials in the Australian state of Queensland have introduced a policy that would ban Christmas cards, references to Jesus, and anything that could be classified as “evangelization” from public schools, the Daily Mail Australia reported.

A recent Department of Education report voices concerns that unbridled freedom of religion has led to non-religious children being “forced” to entertain the Christian beliefs of their peers.

According to these officials, schools are expected “to take appropriate action” if they find that students who receive “religious instruction” are evangelizing to those who do not. “Evangelization” covers a range of speech and actions, including distributing Christmas cards with photos or words referencing Jesus’ birth and life, making religious-themed ornaments, and handing out bracelets to share “the good news about Jesus.”

If such evangelization is left unchecked, the report claims that it could “adversely affect the school’s ability to provide a safe, supportive and inclusive ­environment.”

According to the Daily Mail, the recent initiative comes after Queensland Education Minister Kate Jones promised to crack down on religious practices. The report has received negative reactions from religious freedom advocates and political leaders who fear Jones has gone too far.

Speaking to The Australian, Neil Foster, a religion and law professor, called the Department of Education’s requests “deeply concerning” and “possibly illegal.”

Centre for Independent Studies research fellow Peter Kurti said the report constitutes a “massive assault on freedom of speech and freedom of religion” and believes that the government’s concerns are completely unwarranted.

“I don’t think that children have the maturity to comprehend let alone evangelize,” he told The Australian.

On Thursday, Education Minister Jones assured that there have been no officials changes to state policy regarding the issue, stressing that “no one is telling a child what they can and can’t say in the playground,” Sky News reported.

Still, a number of Queensland members of parliament, including Fisher MP Andrew Wallace and Fairfax MP Ted O’Brien, have called the mere suggestion of such a policy “ludicrous,” and have called for the government to officially denounce the ban.


http://www.faithwire.com/2017/07/27/its-a-massive-assault-on-free-speech-australian-leaders-react-to-proposed-jesus-ban-in-schools/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on July 31, 2017, 07:31:43 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFKSXRpGYVw&t=0s


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 08, 2017, 02:16:24 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lGUnRh_dDxM&t=629s


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 08, 2017, 07:55:22 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lTfVWbk3sp4


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on August 28, 2017, 04:22:35 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBvFUr3cfwE


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on August 30, 2017, 08:11:05 pm
John Piper, James Dobson and John MacArthur Join Hands to Stand Against Apostasy

(http://www.freesmfhosting.com/gallery/endtimesandcurrentevents/1_20_08_12_7_47_52.gif)

funny

https://www.charismanews.com/politics/issues/67070-john-piper-james-dobson-and-john-macarthur-join-hands-to-stand-against-apostasy


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on September 04, 2017, 09:01:39 pm
More than half in UK are non-religious, suggests survey

For the first time, more than half of people in the UK do not identify as religious, a survey suggests.

Last year 53% of people described themselves as having "no religion", in a survey of 2,942 adults by the National Centre for Social Research.

Among those aged between 18 and 25, the proportion was higher at 71%.

The Bishop of Liverpool said God and the Church "remains relevant" and that saying "no religion was not the same as considered atheism".

The figures, shown to BBC Radio 5 live, reveal a downward trend for religious belief in the UK.

When the national centre's British Social Attitudes survey began in 1983, 31% of respondents said they had no religion.

A random sample of adults were involved in the latest survey and they were asked whether they regarded themselves as belonging to a particular religion.

Almost two in three 25 to 34 year olds said they were non-religious, while 75% of people aged 75 and over said they were religious.

Tamsin, a 26-year-old travel journalist, goes to the Sunday Assembly, a secular congregation that meets in London every fortnight.

Speaking to 5 live's Rosanna Pound-Woods, she said: "I'm not religious at all. I like the fact that this is a way for community to come together, without having to be about religion."

At times in her life where religion might be important traditionally, like deaths or weddings, she said: "I turn to my friends and just tend to celebrate or commiserate together."

Another member of the congregation, Mitsky, was raised as a Jain - an ancient Indian religion - but now considers himself more atheist.

"Most religions have good basic principles, but certain religions take them maybe in a different direction which I didn't really tend to agree with," the 38-year-old said.

"I was heavily involved in that community here in London and I do miss it, which is why I was looking for something else."

The latest figures show that for people who were born into a religious household, four in 10 are no longer religious.

rest: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-41150792


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 14, 2017, 09:13:37 pm
(http://media.sermonaudio.com/gallery/photos/CooleyJason-02.jpg)

http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=91417740492

The Spirit of Constant Conspiracy And Paranoia
9/14/2017 (THU)
Audio: http://mp3.sa-media.com/download/91417740492/91417740492.mp3


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 21, 2017, 08:35:48 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wgg8l4VISFQ


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 26, 2017, 12:27:06 pm
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojwOUvUcnN4&t=0s


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on September 29, 2017, 09:11:53 pm
http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/christian-church-england-dead-theyre-renting-church-buildings-glamping-pods/
The Christian Church In England Is So Dead They’re Installing Glamping Pods To Attract Customers
The scheme, which is being steered by the Archbishops’ Council, the Church’s "cabinet" chaired by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, comes as churches face smaller congregations and growing repair bills. The first church to have a pod will be St Michael’s in Dulas, near Hay-on-Wye, in Herefordshire’s Golden Valley.

9/29/17

Sleeping in a church is an unusual way to spend more time with God. But those wishing to soak up more liturgical atmosphere can now do so in luxury, thanks to a new Church of England glamping scheme.

“And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.” Revelation 3:14-16 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: Stop for a moment to consider that the entire world speaks the English language. Absolute temperature is Greenwich Mean Time, absolute temperature is measured in British Thermal Units. The preserved word of God resides within the pages of the King James Bible. Yet in spite of all this, and after the past 20 years of the UK ceding more and more ground to muslims and Islam, UK churches are so dead they have started to rent out glamping pods as tourist attractions and weekend spas. The Revelation 3 prophecy of Laodicea continues to be fulfilled before our eyes.

Cash-strapped churches are set to cash in on their scenic charms by hiring out “glamping” accommodation, with lets costing as much as £890 a week. Instead of asking guests to squeeze a sleeping bag between pews, churches will install luxurious oak “pods” – even in buildings where there are still regular services.

    WHAT IS GLAMPING? Glamping is a portmanteau of glamour and camping and describes a style of camping with amenities and, in some cases, resort-style services not usually associated with “traditional” camping. Glamping has become particularly popular with 21st-century tourists seeking the luxuries of hotel accommodation alongside the escapism and adventure recreation of camping.

The pods, which can be removed, will sleep up to six people and will be equipped with the latest flat-screen televisions, free wi-fi, state-of-the-art-kitchens, a lounge and bathroom, as well as under-floor heating and wood-burning stoves.

Ruth Knight, Environmental Policy Officer for the Church of England said, “The aim is for small, quite isolated churches that don’t have a community around them to be able to afford to maintain the building.”

Rural churches were, she said, “among our most cherished architectural heritage sites” as well as ‘community resources”.  She added, “We hope it will catch on. It is responding to a need.”
Holidaymakers will be able to book for days or even weeks, enjoying exclusive use of the historic buildings. But, in churches where Sunday services are still held, their stays will have to be tailored to avoid clashes with services or weddings.

“We would want to shut the pod when we are having services,” said Ms Knight.

“But churches are used to people going in and out, so it’s nothing new there.”

The money raised, which could run into tens of thousands of pounds, would be ploughed back into maintaining the ancient buildings, which, nationally, costs an estimated £100 million a year.

    The scheme, which is being steered by the Archbishops’ Council, the Church’s “cabinet” chaired by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York, comes as churches face smaller congregations and growing repair bills. The first church to have a pod will be St Michael’s in Dulas, near Hay-on-Wye, in Herefordshire’s Golden Valley.

Architects have designed a £140,000 prototype that should be open in the 13th century church in 2019. But it is expected that the cost of the pods would drop to £70,000 when they are mass-produced.

Reactions from locals had been “positive” said Tim Bridges, Church Building Support Officer for the Hereford Diocese.

“The church has been closed for ten years,” he said. “But people are keen not to see the church fall down and want it to have a sustainable future.

“This will mean that we can repair this Grade II Listed building and give it a future.”

However, traditionalists have criticized the scheme. Former Conservative Party chairman, Lord Tebbit said, “I don’t think a church is an appropriate place for what would be such a secular use as this, not while it continues to be a working church.”

Anthony Kilmister, the president of the Anglican Association, added, “This has the potential to destroy the prayerful atmosphere of many churches.

“I understand the need for money in the bank, but the spiritual ethos of these buildings must be preserved. This scheme is a step too far.”

Church officials say that, depending on the size of the church, the pod could be constructed sufficiently far away from the altar to allow room for services to continue. The move capitalizes on the growing popularity of “champing”, basic camping in disused churches, which has seen bookings rise 300 percent this year. source


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Psalm 51:17 on October 02, 2017, 03:53:09 pm
http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/schools-across-england-remove-calendar-references-jesus-christ-switching-ce-bce/
Schools Across England Removing All Calendar References To Jesus Christ By Switching To CE And BCE
The traditional terms BC, Before Christ, and AD, Anno Domini, are being ditched for BCE – Before Common Era, and CE – Common Era. The new terms still denote the periods before and after the birth of Christ. Local authority committees drawing up religious education syllabuses say the old terms may upset minorities or non-believers. But critics blasted the move as a ‘capitulation to political correctness’.
10/2/17

Schools across the country have stopped using the terms BC and AD in religious education lessons for fear of offending non-Christians.

“And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.” Revelation 19:16 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: For hundreds of years, the world has used a calendar where each and every year is a direct reference to Jesus of Nazareth. Now in the country from whence the King James Bible first came into being, those references – AD and BC – are being removed from all calendars in the school systems. It is being replaced with CE for ‘common era’ and BCE ‘before the common era’ so favored by atheists, agnostics and Jehovah’s Witnesses. As we get closer to the Rapture of the Church, the world being left behind is preparing to meet Antichrist.

The traditional terms BC, Before Christ, and AD, Anno Domini, are being ditched for BCE – Before Common Era, and CE – Common Era. The new terms still denote the periods before and after the birth of Christ.

Local authority committees drawing up religious education syllabuses say the old terms may upset minorities or non-believers. But critics blasted the move as a ‘capitulation to political correctness’.

Former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey said the rulings by the religious education committees were a ‘great shame’.

Muslim and Jewish leaders were also mystified, saying they were not offended by the familiar terms.

Local authority committees – known as Standing Advisory Councils for Religious Education (SACREs) – from Brighton and Essex are among a growing number urging heads to ditch BC and AD.

The syllabus for schools in East Sussex, for example, reads: ‘BCE and CE are now used in order to show sensitivity to those who are not Christians.’

Lord Carey said: ‘I have never met a Muslim or Jewish leader who is offended by the Gregorian calendar’ while leading Imam Ibrahim Mogra said: ‘I don’t believe it causes Muslims offence.’ A spokesman for the Board of Deputies of British Jews said: ‘I don’t think anyone would mind if in mainstream schools they use BC and AD.’

Chris McGovern, the chairman of the Campaign for Real Education, said: removing BC and AD ‘is a capitulation to political correctness’.

National Association of Standing Advisory Councils on Religious Education chair Paul Smalley said: ‘Individual SACREs and schools can make a judgment over which form of dating is appropriate.’ source


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on October 17, 2017, 05:25:39 pm
Good without God? More Americans Say Amen to That

 For the first time, a majority of Americans — 56 percent — say it is possible to be a good person without a religious belief.

So says new Pew Research Center data drawn from two polls conducted among about 5,000 American adults in June and July.

“God is not a prerequisite for good values and morality,” Greg Smith, Pew’s associate director of research, said in a post about the findings. ” … [T]he public’s increased rejection of the idea that belief in God is necessary for morality is due, in large part, to the spike in the share of Americans who are religious ‘nones.'”

Nones now account for about one-quarter — 23 percent —  of American adults, up from 16 percent in 2007. But their growth is not the whole story behind the numbers.

In the current poll, Protestants and Catholics were also polled, and 45 percent of them agree that God is not necessary for personal morality, up from 42 percent in 2011.

Even white evangelicals, who traditionally believe a relationship with God is crucial to morality, have budged. In 2011, one quarter of them (26 percent) said it was possible to be good without God, while now almost a third (32 percent) say so.

“To be sure, most white evangelicals still say belief in God is necessary for morality,” Smith writes. “But the share who say belief in God is a necessary underpinning of being moral has declined from 72 percent to 65 percent in just six years.”

The poll’s findings were published Monday (Oct. 16), four days before “Openly Secular Day” on Oct. 20, an event promoted by multiple organizations of atheists, humanists, agnostics and other secular individuals to highlight their lack of religious beliefs.

Hemant Mehta, who wrote about the poll on his Friendly Atheist blog, attributes the bump to the “coming out” of nonreligious people, including celebrities and friends and family members.

“It’s getting to the point where even devoutly religious people know somebody who’s an atheist,” he said in an email.

“Just as we saw with the LGBTQ movement, it becomes a lot harder for religious people to demonize us when they know us, and knowing us poses a direct challenge to the absurd idea that people can’t be good without God.”

http://www.christianheadlines.com/blog/good-without-god-more-americans-say-amen-to-that.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on February 20, 2018, 12:42:44 am
Toledo pastor, family charged with aggravated robbery

A downtown Toledo pastor and his family are accused of robbing a Sunday school teacher at the church over the weekend.

St. Paul’s AME Zion Church Pastor Anthony Morris, 49, along with his wife, Zelda Morris, 46, and 19-year-old daughter Kamali Morris, are each charged with aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon, a first-degree felony.

Nickema Turner, 39, of Maumee was teaching Sunday school at the church, 954 Belmont Ave., when the younger woman grabbed her by the hair, according to a Toledo police report.

Mrs. Morris then began punching Ms. Turner, police said. The pastor also pushed Ms. Turner to the ground, according to the police report.

During the assault, Mrs. Morris is accused of dumping items from Ms. Turner’s purse and taking them.

Ms. Turner attempted to recover her belongings when Mr. Morris allegedly pulled out a gun and pointed it at her, police said. The woman told police the pastor threatened to kill her.

Two prescription bottles, a Taser, and a cell phone were taken from Ms. Turner’s purse, according to the police report. The cell phone was recovered, but the glass was broken.

The Morris family, who reside in the 3000 block of Evergreen Road, fled the church before police arrived. The couple have been arrested, though the daughter has yet to be located, according to Toledo police.

Ms. Turner was treated at the scene by Toledo Fire and Rescue crews. Ms. Turner and independent witnesses verified the information to police detectives.

The Blade attempted to reach Ms. Turner.

http://www.toledoblade.com/Police-Fire/2018/02/19/Warrants-issued-for-pastor-family-for-aggravated-robbery.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on June 07, 2018, 07:11:24 pm
UMC Minnesota Conference Edited 'Father' Out of the Apostles’ Creed

At a recent multi-day conference, the Minnesota Conference of the United Methodist Church used an edited version of the Apostles’ Creed which removed a reference to God as “Father.” When the conference handed out liturgical folders for a worship service, Rev. Keith Mcilwain noticed the change to the historic creed.

Throughout Christian history, churches have recited the creed, which confesses, “I believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth. The edited version read, “I believe in God, the Creator Almighty, creator of heaven and earth.”

Rev. Mcilwain, the pastor of Slippery Rock United Methodist Church, snapped a photo of the edited creed and posted it on Twitter. He told the Christian Post that he obtained a copy of the liturgy from a friend who attended the service.

This move by the Minnesota Conference comes as many denominations are rethinking the way they refer to God, seeing the language as too restrictive. The UMC has been engaged in a discussion about how to use more gender-inclusive language since the 1980’s.

Mcilwain expressed disbelief that this major change to the creed took place with no debate or discussion. He told the Christian Post, "No United Methodist individual or body has the authority to edit those creeds which were formulated by the early Church and have helped define orthodox Christianity for the better part of 2000 years.”

Mcilwain sees this move as driving a deeper wedge into an already splintering denomination. The church has been embroiled in difficult debates for the last few years over marriage, gender, and sexuality. "To see the creed abused in this way is extraordinarily disheartening, further distances our already troubled denomination from the Church Universal, exacerbates already existing tensions within the Church, and harms those affirming the creed by failing to faithfully teach and uphold one of the core essential doctrines of the Christian faith — the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity."

He further added that this stands as a major undermining of traditional Methodist doctrine. "All ordained United Methodist clergy promise to faithfully uphold and teach the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity, which is shared and defined in Article 1 of our Articles of Religion; I fear that this edited creed represents a failure to be faithful to what The United Methodist Church believes."

The Christian Post reached out to the Minnesota Conference for comment, but they have not yet responded.

https://www.christianheadlines.com/contributors/scott-slayton/umc-minnesota-conference-edited-father-out-of-the-apostles-creed.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on June 25, 2018, 10:51:35 pm
Arkansas False Teacher Claims at Funeral: 'Hell Is an Imaginary Place,' 'All That Stuff Is a Fairytale'

Concerns are being raised after the leader of Prince of Peace Church in Blytheville, Arkansas recently claimed at a young man’s funeral that “Hell is an imaginary place,” and that Hell is just what a person creates upon the Earth.

Footage of the funeral was posted to social media this past week, showing Timothy Rogers asserting that people have been “bamboozled” into believing in Hell, and suggesting that Heaven isn’t an eternal destination either.

“If he’s asleep, he ain’t got to endure the pale horse or escape the pale horse no more,” he said, the casket just feet away. “You see, because when you’re dead, you’re done.”

“I know they told you … ya’ll wondering, is he going to Hell? Did he accept Jesus as his [Savior]?” Rogers asked of the man who died. “See, y’all have been sold a lie. You’ve been bamboozled. All that stuff is a fairytale. To believe in Hell means you have to believe in Santa Claus.”

His remarks were met with applause and exclamations of affirmation.

“I don’t care how you cut it. Hell is an imaginary place,” Rogers claimed, as a woman called out, “Come on, pastor!”

“And I was told that if anything that does not have an explanation must be imagination,” he said.

Rogers asserted that no one has ever come back to say that they went to either Heaven or Hell.

“So that’s why you can talk about a Hell that you don’t know nobody went to. For a billion years ain’t nobody ever came back and told you that they were hot. For a billion years, ain’t nobody ever came back and told you that they up in yonder singing around in a choir,” he stated, with some applauding.

“Pastor, tell it, and I got your back!” the woman who had called out moments earlier shouted out.

Rogers claimed that Hell is simply what a person creates on the Earth, and that Heaven was in the garden of Eden.

He went on to assert that God didn’t give people a Bible to send them to either Heaven or Hell, but rather to give them instructions for the here and now, to make their life on Earth a Heaven or Hell.

“I don’t believe in a lot of stuff that church gave me. I quit. Matter of fact, I don’t want church. I want good,” Rogers stated. “I don’t want to do church; I want to do good because everybody that doing church ain’t doing good.”

“Most folks who are doing good don’t even go to church,” he claimed.

Rogers’ remarks may be viewed in full here. His comments begin at approximately 33 minutes into the recording.

Rogers’ claims have generated deep concern, including from Robert Matthews, leader of Kingdom Vision International Church in Columbus, Mississippi.

“The erroneous teaching of Pastor Tim Rogers (whom I do not know personally, but am praying for fervently) proves the necessity of discipleship and sound doctrine in our times,” he wrote on social media on Thursday. “The description of Hell (subsequently Heaven) as a fairy tale, is both a dangerous, deadly and demonic doctrine designed by Satan to steal the souls of men who live with no fear of judgment. The counter for this is anointed sound Biblical doctrine (1 Tim. 4; 2 Tim. 4:2-5).”

“As leaders, We must do more than assimilate people through church systems and church culture. We must seek to develop them in Christlikeness (which seems to be a lost term). As believers (members, Christians), we must commit to grow beyond milk and not settle for cotton candy sermons that taste/sound good but lack life-transforming Scriptural substance,” Matthews urged. “Believers must also commit to Bible study (personally and corporately), prayer, godly fellowship, and meditation on the word beyond online snippets & soundbytes.”

He said that it is important that those who claim the name of Christ understand the foundational doctrines of the faith, which include eternal judgment.

“I am an advocate of expository preaching but not even that is enough by itself. We must ensure that people understand the elementary doctrines of Christ mentioned in Hebrews 6:1-2, one of which is eternal judgment,” Matthews outlined. “Without elementary principles, we will never master spiritual trigonometry if we cannot master addition, subtraction and multiplication. Some Christians cannot answer what the Great Commandment and Great Commission are. Can we explain John 3:16? Sermonizing without sound doctrine may draw crowds but it will never build strong disciples.”

Hebrews 9:27 says, “t is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.” Jesus also warned in Matthew 10:28, “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul, but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body in Hell.” In Matthew 25:46, He spoke of those who “shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into life eternal.”

Revelation 21:8 additionally teaches, “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”

https://christiannews.net/2018/06/25/arkansas-false-teacher-claims-at-funeral-hell-is-an-imaginary-place-all-that-stuff-is-a-fairytale/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 05, 2018, 05:32:56 pm
Episcopal Committee Hears Call to Revise Book of Common Prayer, Replacing Masculine Terms for God, Mankind

A committee tasked with hearing desired revisions to the Book of Common Prayer listened to remarks on Wednesday from Episcopalian leaders and others who want to make the historical book’s text more gender-neutral by removing masculine nouns and pronouns for God and mankind. Some Episcopalians disagree, and have presented a resolution asking that no changes be made to the book, but rather that deeper devotion be given to the existing text.

“As long as a masculine God remains at the top of the pyramid, nothing else we do matters. We construct a theological framework in which we talk about gender equality … then we say that which is most holy in the universe is only and exclusively male. That just undoes some of the key theology that says we are equal in God’s sight, we are fully created in God’s image,” Wil Gafney, a Hebrew Bible professor at Brite Divinity School in Texas, who is among those calling for the change, told The Washington Post.

According to the Episcopal News Service, among those who spoke before the “Committee to Receive the Report of Resolution A169” (referring to a 2015 resolution calling for the changes) were two women who identify as men, Ian Stanford of the Diocese of Oregon and the Cameron Partridge of the Diocese of California. They asserted that gendered language is an hindrance to the youth that they seek to bring into the church.

Stanford said that she was worried about how the young people will receive the language they hear during the services.

“What am I inviting them into?” she asked.

Kathleen Moore, a seminarian from the Diocese of Vermont, similarly told the committee that gender specific language is an impediment to her work to reach youth.

“Let’s let God be God,” she said.

Rowan Pantalena, who identifies as “non-binary transgender” and a candidate for the Diocese of Connecticut, contended, “I am not your brother or your sister. I am your sibling.” Pantalena asked for language that would expand on the existing text, rather than a complete overhaul.

The listening period took place during the 79th General Convention, which will continue through July 13. A subcommittee regarding how to move forward has now been formed, citing two proposed resolutions, one of which specifically calls for “inclusive and expansive language” in the Book of Common Prayer.

“That the 79th General Convention recognize the urgent pastoral and evangelical need for revision of the 1979 Book of Common Prayer, particularly in regard to the use of inclusive and expansive language for humanity and divinity, continuing work which began even as the 1979 BCP was being developed,” Resolution 36 reads.

Read the resolution in full here.

However, while some support the concept of revising the Book of Common Prayer, others have presented a resolution to the Standing Commission on Liturgy and Music that calls for deeper study of the Book within congregations for the next three years.

It asks that the “Episcopal Church … devote the next triennium to deep engagement with the structure, content, language and theological thrust of The Book of Common Prayer (1979), with a view to increasing the Church’s familiarity with the book in its entirety; and directs the SCLM to develop materials to aid local dioceses, congregations, seminaries, and schools in the process of this deep engagement, focusing particularly on the use of the Prayer Book as an instrument for the catechesis and spiritual formation of the whole people of God.”

Read Resolution 69 in full here.

As previously reported, in 2015, when a group of women known as WATCH moved for the Church of England to start referring to God as a “she” during the weekly liturgy, stating that to make mention of God solely in the male pronoun is sexist, some expressed strong opposition.

“Referring to God as ‘mother’ drives a horse and cart through Scripture. Such an innovation is guaranteed to split the C of E as never before,” wrote Damian Thompson in the Daily Mail.

“Lord Carey, former Archbishop of Canterbury, has warned us that the church could be extinct in 25 years’ time unless services become more spiritually fulfilling. Calling God ‘she’ will not achieve that fulfillment,” he stated. “The proposed twist of language will do nothing to stop the decline of Christian faith in this country. On the contrary, it will make worshippers squirm. And nothing empties pews faster than that.”

1 John 4:14 reads, “And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Savior of the world.”

Jesus also said in John 15:26, “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, He shall testify of Me.”

https://christiannews.net/2018/07/05/episcopal-committee-hears-call-to-revise-book-of-common-prayer-replacing-masculine-terms-for-god-mankind/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 05, 2018, 05:41:12 pm
Episcopal Church Puts Mary, Joseph and Jesus in Cage to Protest Trump Immigration Policy

 An Episcopal church in Indianapolis has placed statues of Mary, Joseph and baby Jesus in an outside cage to protest President Trump’s “zero tolerance” policy of arresting people at the U.S.-Mexico border.

The rector of the congregation, Christ Church Cathedral, said the chain-link fence with barbed wire is meant to symbolize a detention center.

“I know what the Bible said,” the Rev. Stephen Carlsen told the Indianapolis Star. “We're supposed to love our neighbors as ourselves.”

The display, which can be seen on the church’s lawn, was the idea of the Rev. Lee Curtis.

“This symbol is something that speaks to every one of us at our most basic level, because of who we are as a church and as Christians,” Curtis told CNN.

Curtis asserted that Mary and Joseph were seeking asylum, similar to the families crossing the border. He referenced Matthew 2:13:14, which says, “When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. ‘Get up,’ he said, ‘take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.’ So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt.”

Curtis told The Star, “This family is every family, and every family is holy.”

 Not everyone on the newspaper’s Facebook page agreed with the church, though.

“Joseph and Mary were not breaking laws to travel to other countries, and they were not arrested for breaking laws, so this makes no sense,” one person wrote.

https://www.christianheadlines.com/contributors/michael-foust/church-puts-mary-joseph-and-jesus-in-cage-to-protest-trump-immigration-policy.html


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 10, 2018, 06:39:34 pm
Mass Exodus From The Church: The Percentage Of Young Adults With No Religious Affiliation Has Nearly QUADRUPLED Since 1986

We are witnessing a religious shift that is unprecedented in size and scope in American history.  With each passing year, the percentage of Americans that claim no religious affiliation is growing, and this trend is especially pronounced among our young people.  If things continue to steadily move in this direction, that is going to have enormous implications for the future of our society.  The United States was founded by people that were extremely committed to their faith, and now we are rapidly becoming a nation where people are choosing no religion at all.  We live at a time when there is a mass exodus from Christian churches, and while it is true that some smaller faiths are growing, the reality of the matter is that most of the people that are leaving are remaining unaffiliated.  According to PRRI, if you go back to 1991 only 6 percent of all Americans were “unaffiliated”, but today that number has shot up to 25 percent…

    In 1991, only six percent of Americans identified their religious affiliation as “none,” and that number had not moved much since the early 1970s. By the end of the 1990s, 14% of the public claimed no religious affiliation. The rate of religious change accelerated further during the late 2000s and early 2010s, reaching 20% by 2012. Today, one-quarter (25%) of Americans claim no formal religious identity, making this group the single largest “religious group” in the U.S.

The most dramatic change during this time period has been among our young people.

If you go all the way back to 1986, just 10 percent of Americans in the 18 to 29-year-old age group were “unaffiliated”.  Today, that number has skyrocketed to 39 percent.  Here is more from PRRI…

    Today, nearly four in ten (39%) young adults (ages 18-29) are religiously unaffiliated—three times the unaffiliated rate (13%) among seniors (ages 65 and older). While previous generations were also more likely to be religiously unaffiliated in their twenties, young adults today are nearly four times as likely as young adults a generation ago to identify as religiously unaffiliated. In 1986, for example, only 10% of young adults claimed no religious affiliation.

And just because Millennials claim a religious affiliation of some sort does not mean that they actually go to church.

In fact, a study from the Pew Research Center discovered that only 27 percent of Millennials say that they “attend religious services on a weekly basis”…

    Millennials – especially the youngest Millennials, who have entered adulthood since the first Landscape Study was conducted – are far less religious than their elders. For example, only 27% of Millennials say they attend religious services on a weekly basis, compared with 51% of adults in the Silent generation. Four-in-ten of the youngest Millennials say they pray every day, compared with six-in-ten Baby Boomers and two-thirds of members of the Silent generation. Only about half of Millennials say they believe in God with absolute certainty, compared with seven-in-ten Americans in the Silent and Baby Boom cohorts. And only about four-in-ten Millennials say religion is very important in their lives, compared with more than half in the older generational cohorts.

Of course not all of those that are “attending religious services” are going to Christian churches.  Some are going to mosques, others are attending synagogue, and yet others are involved in other faiths.

At one time you could count on fast growing groups such as the Southern Baptists and the Mormons to produce positive growth numbers, but those days are long gone…

    The Southern Baptists have lost more than a million members over the last decade, according to LifeWay. Giving and attendance are down, and Baptists are seeing more gray and silver heads in the pews.

    Meanwhile, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has seen its once-enviable U.S. growth rate slow to under 1 percent in each of the last two years. Mormonism, which grew by just .75 percent in this country in 2017, is barely keeping pace with the growth of the U.S. population (+.71 percent).

Europe has been described as a “post-Christian society”, and we are well on our way to joining them.

So what is causing this to happen?

Well, there is certainly a lot of debate about this within Christian circles.  From the outside, many experts are pointing to demographic changes.  The following comes from a recent article by Jana Riess…

    One of the biggest demographic trends of our time is that millennials are delaying marriage or not getting married at all. And since there’s a strong correlation between being married and being involved in religion, the fact that fewer Americans are getting married is worrisome news to clergy.

In addition to a decline in marriage numbers, experts also point to the fact that Americans are having fewer children these days…

    The number of children a family has is related to the couple’s religious involvement — couples without kids are a bit less likely to be religious. So the fact that fertility is on the decline is, again, worrisome news for organized religion.

But are those factors a cause of the decline of religious faith in America, or are they the result of it?

It could be argued that churches have always heavily promoted marriage and family, and if young Americans are no longer as engaged in church it would make sense that they put less of a priority on those things now.

The good news for churches is that even though atheism is rapidly growing, most Americans (even the unaffiliated ones) still believe in God…

    Despite their lack of connection to formal religious institutions, most unaffiliated Americans retain a belief in God or a higher power. A majority of unaffiliated Americans say God is either a person with whom people can have a relationship (22%) or an impersonal force (37%). Only one-third (33%) of religiously unaffiliated Americans say they do not believe in God. Strong majorities of Americans who belong to the major Christian religious traditions hold a personal conception of God. Compared to Christians, Americans who identify with a non-Christian tradition are significantly less likely to hold a personal conception of God (33%) and are more likely to say God is an impersonal force in the universe (49%).

Americans still have a keen interest in spiritual things, but many of them are now attempting to fill that void in alternative ways.  For example, it has been claimed that Wicca (a very popular form of witchcraft) is now the fastest growing faith in America.

Many like to focus on the political changes that are happening in this country, but the truth is that these cataclysmic shifts in our faith numbers are going to have far more to do with determining the future course of this nation.

If we ever hope to restore the Constitutional Republic that our founders once established, we must return to the Christian values and principles that this nation was originally founded upon.

Any other approach is simply not going to work, and time is running out.

http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/mass-exodus-from-the-church-the-percentage-of-young-adults-with-no-religious-affiliation-has-nearly-quadrupled-since-1986


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on December 04, 2018, 04:26:18 am
‘Ministers’ Claim Sex Before Marriage, Hookups ‘Not Sinful,’ Say Chastity Is ‘Outdated and Silly’ Expectation

Three false ministers, including one who identifies as homosexual and another as polyamorous, recently told the Huffington Post that they believe that sex before marriage is “not sinful,” and that it is rather “unreasonable,” “outdated and silly” to expect people to stay chaste until marriage. One said that he doesn’t “judge” those who choose to engage in random hookups, even if he doesn’t do so himself.

The outlet interviewed Brandan Robertson, an open homosexual who leads Missiongathering Christian Church in San Diego; Chalice Overy, who is an associate pastor at Pullen Memorial Baptist Church in Raleigh, North Carolina; and a man that was only identified as Michael, who says he is currently dating three women and a man, and serves as a clergyman in San Antonio, Texas.

The article, written by Brittany Wong, was entitled “We Asked Ministers What It’s Like To Date Today. Here’s What They Said.”

“I think the evangelical church world that I come from has taught some really unhealthy ideas about sex and sexuality, and I spend a lot of my time trying to deconstruct ‘purity culture’ in favor of a healthier, more holistic view of sexuality,” opined Robinson, who caused controversy in 2011 for his pro-homosexual views as a student at Moody Bible Institute, but went on to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in pastoral ministry and theology.

“I believe for some people, waiting for marriage before having sex can be a very healthy path. I also believe that for most people, sex before marriage is a healthy expression of the gift of sexuality and is not ‘sinful’ or morally wrong,” he said.

Overy made similar remarks.

“I honestly think it’s unreasonable to expect people to wait until they are married to have sex if we expect people to make thoughtful decisions about who they marry,” she said, although noting that she personally prefers a man who “wants to get to know me, not just my body.”

“But if we are willing to do the spiritual and emotional work of intimacy, should we deny ourselves the joy of physical intimacy? I don’t think so,” Overy added.

Michael, who is divorced, outlined that his church is aware of his multiple relationships, and says that he has been engaged in polyamory since his youth.

“One of the worst things the Church has done is take God and the Divine out of the bedroom and shame people for their desires and practices,” he claimed. “I have always believed that contractual arrangements (including marriage) are not the boundary on sex—our own personal ethics are.”

“Most of the single clergy I know have sex, even when the rules of their denomination prohibit it,” Michael continued. “It simply is an outdated and silly expectation, in my opinion. Like anything else, sex can be manipulative, unhealthy or used as a power differential. Sex, or even dating without sex with a congregant is never okay because of the power differential. Within relationships of equals or with agreed-upon boundaries, though, it is healthy and beautiful.”

The three also stated that they have no issues with dating someone who is not a Christian, and would actually prefer so. Robertson said that he emphasizes the “normal-ness” of his life on dating apps, noting that he enjoys “craft beer, going clubbing [and] traveling.” Michael outlined that he mostly dates atheists and agnostics, stating that he desires those who “at the very minimum, question the historic faith.”

As previously reported, the Bible teaches against—apart from prohibitions on homosexuality, such as in Romans 1:26-27—premarital sex in numerous Scriptures, and strongly warns that those who engage in unrepentant fornication will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Ephesians 5:3-6 admonishes, “But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints, neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient, but rather giving of thanks. For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words, for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.”

1 Thessalonians 4:1-8 likewise instructs, “Furthermore then, we beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication, that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor—not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God.”

“For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us His Holy Spirit.”

Scripture also warns in 2 Timothy 4:3-4, “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears. And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.”

https://christiannews.net/2018/12/03/ministers-claim-sex-before-marriage-hookups-not-sinful-say-purity-is-outdated-and-silly/


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 08, 2019, 04:47:52 am
Official Lutheran Church is really a Coven of Witches

Practice Goddess Worship: Shamanic Journeying, Crystals, and a Sacred Dance To Ishtar

Leviticus 19:31 “Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.”

Revelation 21:8 “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

Ellie Gardey  | Contributor at Daily Caller –  A church holding membership in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, the largest Lutheran denomination in the country, worships God almost exclusively as a woman. The church, Ebenezer Lutheran in San Francisco, also participates in rituals to honor ancient goddesses.

Calling their Sunday service “The Liturgy of the Divine Feminine,” the church uses crystals, animal masks, Reiki healing, Kundali Yoga, and goddess idol-making in their liturgies and events. The church uses names like “Womb,” “Kundalini,” “Sophia,” and “Midwife” to worship God, according to their website.

The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) confirmed to the Daily Caller that Ebenezer Lutheran is an official member of their Church.

“The ELCA has no authority to discipline congregations; that process starts at the synod level,” a spokesperson said.

Ebenezer Lutheran is led by Pastor Stacy Boorn, who has been an ordained Lutheran pastor for 29 years. She is sometimes known as the “priestess of ritual” to the congregation.

Pastor Stacy Boorn bestows an honor upon the artist of a mural at Ebenezer Lutheran which features: “The Earth Mother, the Black Madonna, the Christ-Sophia, and an androgynous Kali-Kundalini figure.” (YouTube)

Pastor Boorn says her congregation worships God as a woman because there will “never be full equality or justice” for women “as long as the religions of the world continue to personify the Holy Other (God) exclusively or evenly as male.”

Worshiping God “exclusively or evenly as male,” according to Pastor Boorn, can “sustain the various forms of domination that are pursuant of that image.”

Pastor Tom Brock, who led his congregation out of the ELCA after it adopted more liberal stances on abortion and gay clergy, told the Daily Caller Ebenezer’s worship of God as a woman is “arrogant.”

“Jesus taught us ‘Our Father who art in heaven.’ For us to change the Lord’s prayer is arrogant,” Pastor Brock said, adding, “It is arrogant that they think they know better than God.” (RELATED: Newly Consecrated Gay Bishop Declares God Is A Woman)

In February, Ebenezer Lutheran Church held a Sunday liturgy that seemed to worship Inanna, also known as Ishtar, a Mesopotamian goddess. “We honor and celebrate Sister Wisdom who comes to guide us and Inanna,” the church said to advertise the liturgy. The service was described on their website as having an “original Hymn to Inanna” accompanied by a “Sacred Dance,” reports Exposing the ELCA.

Members of Ebenezer Lutheran gather around a mural depicting “an androgynous Kali-Kundalini figure whose chakras merge with the phases of the moon and the universe.”

Every month the group holds a painting class called “Goddess Painting and More.” The group has painted Akna (Inuit goddess), Athena (Greek goddess), Mary Magdalene (disciple of Jesus), Cerridwen (Celtic goddess), and Guadalupe, Patroness of the Americas (the Virgin Mary in Mexico).

The church also taught a class on Shamanic journeying. “Explore connection with totem animal allies through a Shamanic journeying and mask making process,” they advertise on their website.

The congregation has developed a “Goddess Rosary,” with which they pray on prayer beads every Wednesday night. During the Goddess Rosary, “Tibetan bowls, bells, incense, water, [and] she-icons,” are provided.

Pastor Boorn once led a group of her congregation in making clay figures of the Canaanite goddess Asherah, and provided a picture of Asherah for guidance, reports Ichabod the Glory Has Departed.

A member of Ebenezer Lutheran who participated in the figure-making said Asherah was selected as one of the “discounted feminine images of God in the Old Testament.”

Pastor Tom Brock told the Daily Caller this “idol-making” goes against scripture: “The Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord; they forgot the Lord their God and served the Baals and the Asherahs,” says Judges 3:7.

The website of Ebenezer Church says they derive their traditions from both scripture and “ancient and modern Goddess traditions.”

“The voice of the Divine Feminine is not only being mined in the pages of scriptures and the stories trapped between the lines but also from ancient and modern Goddess traditions,” the Lutheran church says.

In 2010, the bishop of Iowa, Bishop Michael Burk, looked into concerns that Ebenezer Lutheran was not in line with ELCA teaching, reports Ichabod. After speaking to the bishop overseeing Ebenezer Lutheran, Bishop Burk concluded the preaching at Ebenezer is “decidedly within Lutheran orthodoxy and worship that is familiar and done with integrity.”

Bishop Burk also said there was an acknowledgement by the bishop overseeing Ebenezer Lutheran, Bishop Mark W. Holmerud, that the congregation “pushes around the edges.”

A spokesperson for the nationwide ELCA told the Daily Caller: “We have no authority to intervene or override” decisions “made locally” because “congregations are separately incorporated and self-governing.” Thus, because the disciplinary process is done at the synod level, the nationwide ELCA has “no authority to discipline congregations.”

Pastor Brock lamented the national ELCA’s policy to not discipline churches, saying “there used to be a culture of discipline in the ELCA.” He said, “The problem is the ELCA has gone so far off the cliff they can’t discipline anyone.”

The Sierra Pacific Synod, which is headed by Bishop Holmerud, confirmed to the Daily Caller Ebenezer Lutheran Church is part of their synod, but declined further comment.

Other rituals and liturgies at Ebenezer Lutheran, which is also known as “Herchurch,” include “Make your own Goddess Totem,” a weekly drumming circle with a “drumming priestess,” and a “Spring Equinox Women’s Ritual” to connect with “animal spirit guides.”

https://www.exposingsatanism.org/official-lutheran-church-is-really-a-coven-of-witches/?fbclid=IwAR1pVOGH5eImCR-cCX4LzvSwFd5Fx8k5pJiZl81_1BaPm5XjjGiiBhtdLIs


Title: Re: The Falling Away
Post by: Mark on July 31, 2019, 07:09:10 am
End Times Complacency Spreading Through The Church

In 1970, Hal Lindsey published The Late Great Planet Earth. The book sold millions of copies and introduced a generation to the miraculous fulfillment of end times bible prophecies in our day and time.

Coming on the heels of World War II, the rebirth of Israel, the Six Day War, and widespread societal upheaval, many were convinced the rapture would take place before the end of the decade. But the 1970's came and went, and Jesus did not return.

Then, in the 1980's and 1990's, numerous bible prophecy books with titles like "Countdown to Armageddon" and "Final Warning" sold all over the world. Again, many people were convinced Jesus would return before the end of the century. Yet Jesus didn't come.

Then the world experienced Y2K, the September 11th terrorist attacks, and the phenomenal success of the Left Behind series. Once again, it seemed as though Jesus would return at any moment. But once again, he didn't. And then something happened. Complacency set it.

End Times Burnout

Because Jesus hadn't come, many Christians began to openly doubt whether He ever would. Why? I believe there are at least two reasons. First, we live in a culture that demands instant gratification. We don't like to wait as little as two minutes for a microwave to cook a meal it took our grandparents half a day to prepare. We're impatient, and we're used to getting what we want when we want.

The second reason is the errant predictions of date setters. False prophets such as Harold Camping and Edgar Whisenant told the world Jesus would return on specific dates - even though Jesus said "no one knows the day or hour" (Matthew 24:36). The media gives widespread attention to these predictions. When these days come and go, the false prophets are exposed.

This leads to ridicule of bible prophecy, and in some cases, even Christian leaders publicly dismiss bible prophecy as a playground for crackpots and the ignorant. But these critics forget false prophets made these claims, not the Bible. The Bible's track record remains perfect. In fact, the Bible predicted this complacency long ago.

The Bible Said This Would Happen

Almost two thousand years ago, Peter issued a warning. He said in the last days people will deny the signs we see today. He said they'll mock the idea of Jesus returning. They'll make fun of those who believe in the Second Coming and say the exact things we hear today - things like, "I thought Jesus was coming back? What happened to His promise?

Generation after generation has said He's coming. Yet, since the beginning of the world, everything has remained the same!" (2 Peter 3:3‐4). You've probably heard variations of this complaint yourself. Maybe you've heard it in church. But is it true? No. It's not. Nothing could further from the truth.

Are Things The Same As They've Always Been?

To say the world is the same today as in years past - that we don't live in unique times - is just not true. More than any other generation, ours has reason to expect the Second Coming. Jesus and the prophets said to look for specific signs heralding the end times. For over 1,800 years, you couldn't find one of the signs they said to look for. Today, in one form or another, you can find all of them. Here are just a few examples:

The Jewish People Back in the Land - God promised to bring the Jewish people back into the land of Israel before He returned (Jeremiah 23:7-8). He said He would call them from "among the nations" (Ezekiel 39:28), from "the farthest corners of the earth" (Isaiah 11:12), and from "north, south, east, and west" (Psalm 107:3).


He promised to welcome them home from the lands where they were scattered (Ezekiel 20:34). When they did, He promised to return and establish His everlasting kingdom (Isaiah 11:11-12). For 1,878 years (A.D. 70 to A.D. 1948), the Jewish people lived in exile. On May 14, 1948, they reestablished the nation of Israel, fulfilling God's promise to bring them back into the land.

The Jewish People Back in Jerusalem - Jesus prophesied armies would surround Jerusalem, destroy the city, and enslave its citizens. In A.D. 70, the Roman legions fulfilled this prophecy. In the days that followed, Jesus said Gentiles would control Jerusalem until "the times of the Gentiles are over." Then, the Jewish people would once again take control of Jerusalem. When they did, Jesus promised to return (Luke 21:24-28). In June 1967, the Jewish people retook control of Jerusalem.

The Gospel Preached Throughout the World - When the disciples asked about the end of the age and the signs of His coming, Jesus told them to look for a very specific sign. He said the Gospel will be preached throughout the entire world. Every nation will hear it. Then, the end will come (Matthew 24:14). For centuries after the crucifixion, the Gospel mostly reached a small area surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. But in the past two centuries, Christians carried the Gospel to every country on earth.

Today, missionaries live in every nation. The Bible is translated in hundreds of languages, and the message of Jesus is sent around the world by radio, TV, satellite, and the Internet. Our generation is the first one on the verge of spreading the Gospel to every last person on earth.

Increased Travel and Knowledge - Six hundred years before Jesus, an angel gave Daniel a special message. He said "travel and knowledge" will increase in the end times (Daniel 12:4). For centuries of human history, dramatic gains in travel and knowledge did NOT take place. Yet the last two hundred years have seen explosions in the speed and frequency of travel as well as the amount and availability of knowledge. For example, up until around two hundred years ago, a man could travel no faster than a horse could carry him.

Today, we can travel faster than the speed of sound. Many consider the Library of Alexandria to be the greatest collection of written knowledge in the ancient world. While we don't know for sure how much knowledge was housed there, some estimates say it was as many 500,000 papyrus scrolls. Two thousand years ago, this was the height of human knowledge.

Today, you probably have a bigger library in your pocket. Your smartphone can download almost any book that's ever been written in a matter of seconds. Our generation is experiencing an exponential increase in travel and knowledge.

Israel Surrounded by Enemies - According to the Bible, enemies will surround Israel in the end times. Those enemies will say "Come, let us wipe away the nation of Israel. Let's destroy the memory of its existence" (Psalm 83:4) and "Let us take for ourselves these pasturelands of God" (Psalm 83:12). Ezekiel said Israel's neighbors will say "God has given their land to us" (Ezekiel 11:14‐17), and "Israel and Judah are ours. We will take possession of them. What do we care if their God is there?" (Ezekiel 35:10). Ever since the rebirth of Israel in 1948, the daily headlines have included these exact sentiments. Israel's Muslim neighbors claim the land of Israel for themselves, and they have no regard for the God of Israel.

Israel's Exceedingly Great Army - Ezekiel said, in the last days, Israel will field "an exceedingly great army" (Ezekiel 37:10). Zechariah said Israel will be like a fire among sheaves of grain, burning up the neighboring nations (Zechariah 12:6) and even the weakest Israeli soldier will be like David (Zechariah 12:8). Since 1948, Israel has fought no less than four conventional wars against its neighbors. Despite being outnumbered more than 50 to 1, Israel has achieved overwhelming victory every time.