Tuesday, 22 January 2019

We Were Not Alone

We Were Not Alone

Her nerves are stretched to where she feels she can stand this no more. She slams on the brakes of the car in the parking lot and sits staring at nothing as the motor idles. Her mind seems to have gone on hold. No thoughts, no feelings, no nothing. It’s been too much.

Finally, shaking her head as though to awaken from a deep sleep, she turns the ignition off and takes a long agonizingly deep breath and steps out of the car.

Walking into the building she walks to the elevator and rises to the third floor. Slowly she opens a door and enters into a plush waiting room with a fake palm tree in one corner, enticing comfortable chairs, and carpet so thick she feels she could curl up on it like a cosy warm bed.

She signs the sheet on the clipboard and takes a seat. Glancing at the stack of magazines she ignores a Man sitting across the room. Then her name is called.

For thirty minutes she sits with her hands folded tightly in her lap and tells her counsellor about a horrifying memory of her childhood. Tears stream, she wants to scream but takes a deep breath and fights to maintain control.

He’s sympathetic and asks several questions. She replies as best she can. One question arises that throws her into a tizzy. “Where was Jesus when this happened?”

She bolts out of the chair and paces.

The Doctor waits.

Unbeknownst to her, the Man has entered the room.

He waits.

She stomps across the room and with fists tightly clenched at her sides, she stares out the window at the parking lot below. Tears stream down her face. She fights to subdue her anger.

“Where was Jesus?” the Doctor asks again and she spins around facing him. “I don’t know!” she almost screams.

She runs her hands through her hair in a frantic, hopeless and frustrated gesture, and plops down on the couch. She closes her eyes trying to fight the flood of tears that want to rush down her cheeks, and before the Doctor can say anything a vision appears before her.

The vision is so clear of Jesus on His knees with tears streaming down His face and begging His Father to stop what is happening to this child. His pain is so evident and His agony is even greater than the child’s that He’s praying for, her!

On the couch, she is shaking violently and sobbing. Now she knows the answer.


Luke 22:42 – “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”

Even Jesus asked His Father to not let this happen, and yet He suffered greatly, even unto death. Children do not have the physical or emotional ability to stop the abuse that is being inflicted upon them; be it emotional, physical, or sexual. They cry out in many instances to deaf ears and blind eyes begging for it to stop.

The hurt goes so deep it becomes anger and many times that anger is directed straight at God. “Why didn’t You stop it!?” “He did nothing!” is how many deals with those issues. As in the story above, the great I Am was there. He can’t reach down and stop the torment being inflicted, but He is praying fervently for the child. He knows our suffering. He knows our tears, His heart is being ripped out at seeing what we are going through, then and now. He is with us through it all.

We can blame God, or we can reach out to Him to help us overcome all that was done. If the suffering is continuing through your thoughts and memories, reach out to Christ. Invite Him into your suffering. He’s waiting to take you in His arms and heal your heart.

Sunday, 20 January 2019

Dealing with Evil in the Church, without losing your faith


19  But Joseph replied, “Don’t be afraid of me. Am I God, that I can punish you? 20  You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people. 21  No, don’t be afraid. I will continue to take care of you and your children.” So he reassured them by speaking kindly to them.
Genesis 50:19-21 (NLT2)

In one of his (Boccaccio) stories in the Decameron, a practical Jewish businessman, Abraham, is contemplating conversion and baptism, at the gentle leading of the pious archbishop of Paris, but has to reside at Rome for a season to do business with the Borgia family and the papal bankers. The archbishop asks him if he wouldn’t like to receive baptism before his trip, but he is a practical man, and business must come first. The bishop is convinced that Abraham will never join the Church once he sees her corruptions with his own eyes; but when he returns to Paris, he asks to be baptized! He explains to the startled archbishop, “I’m a practical Jewish businessman. I don’t know theology, but I know the business. And one thing I know with certainty is that no earthly business that corrupt and venal could possibly last fourteen weeks; this one has lasted over fourteen centuries. It’s a miracle! Count me in!”

I have been grieving over the church recently.

It seems like we are entering a season where evil seems to be winning, thrusting its devastation both near and far. I see the broken lives, some still in denial about what is going on, about their role in the game, I sense that others don't really care, passing by the broken lives as the priest and the Levite did on the road.

On the national level, the battles are like icebergs. In my denomination, you see it in the reactions to a document which alleges chronic, planned and coordination bullying. The Catholic Church has its internal wars going, as do the Methodists, Baptists, and other groups.

And what is even scarier, the wars we see are often not the real war. As any counsellor/manager knows, the stated problem is rarely the real problem. Those are deeper, even at the point of sub-conscious, as our souls can't bear the trauma.

On a local level, sin has raised its bitter head to many times in the past two months. Again, the temptation is to deny the seriousness of the impact on individuals and parishes. We want to say, "that's their problem, it won't affect me or mine." Yet, even in saying that, we acknowledge the division in the church.

To that point, Peter Kreeft's Socrates referents Boccaccio, and makes me think deeper. Could our evil be used by God to draw others to Him? (This is by no means an excuse, or should we use it to justify or be complacent about evil - we need to confront it) The Jewish businessman finds hope because the church perseveres in spite of the corruption, in spite of the evil.

It requires a great deal of faith or true depending on God to see this. It takes the attitude of Joseph, who can piece together all the things God used to come to a point where the family is preserved, where they are provided for in the midst of another storm.

God doesn't like such things or plan them, and I am sure they break His heart. Yet, His love finds a way to use them to bless us, all things, even the evil, even the brokenness. He promises that so many times, along with the fact that He will never leave us or forsake us.

We need to know that in these dark days, and in those to come.

He is with us, He will be with us, and somehow, He will use even these times.

May the peace of God, which passes all understanding, guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus

Friday, 11 January 2019

Why It's Complicated Being a Messianic Jew During Election Season

The political fabric of the State of Israel is more complicated than many may realize, and it becomes more so if you’re a believer in Yeshua.


With the upcoming elections, a lot of questions have popped up for Messianic voters in the Land. One might assume that if you’re a Believer, you must support the conservative party, but then you must ask, which conservative party? Unlike in America, there are multiple conservative and liberal parties, each representing their own ideological, religious and ethnic groups with their own unique needs and interests.

Let’s take a look at the Likud party, for example; the most popular political party in recent years. Likud was officially founded by Menachem Begin and Ariel Sharon - both famous political figures in Israel’s history - later to be succeeded by the current prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. The Likud party is considered to be right on the political spectrum, as evident from their support for Jewish settlements in the West Bank and a general rejection of a Palestinian state. Economically, the party advocates for free trade, privatizing government-owned companies, and the dismantlement of monopolies (though many exclusive services companies still operate in Israel, dictating high prices).

With the above said, the party also has a less conservative side; for example, taking a positive stance on gay marriage and, more crucially, on the ability of same-sex couples to adopt. Netanyahu once said in regards to the surrogacy law, “I made it clear in the past; it is not a matter of right or left. First of all, it is a private and human matter. I would like to remind you that in the earthquake in Nepal in 2015, we worked extensively with the various aid agencies in flying male couples as part of the surrogacy process.” The party even has its own LGBT branch, “Pride in the Likud,” headed by MK Amir Ohana. They actively participate in public events and gay parades throughout the country.

The ones who dare disagree with this definition of marriage and family are the Jewish Orthodox parties. Similar disagreements arise over laws regarding abortion, as the Likud and other "secular" right-wing parties generally hold liberal views on these issues. On such moral issues, the right is deeply divided between its secular and religious blocs. Usually, they sit together in the coalition, as they seek to propel their agendas in the Knesset, but just as they are the only stronghold against an atheistic and liberal worldview, they are also big advocates against everything Messianic.

Marriage for Messianic couples, or mixed couples who may not be Jewish by birth on their mother’s side, is impossible here. Believers are forced to fly out of the country in order to become legally married, only then being permitted to register with the Ministry of Interior. The Rabbinate holds the monopoly over marriage, burial, and perhaps one of the most controversial things for Believers – immigration. Even if you happen to be Jewish on both sides of your family, traceable all the way back to King David, if the government finds out that you have put your trust in Yeshua, you will be met with closed doors. In essence, more power to the right-wing bloc equals less freedom for the body of Messiah here in the Land.

In contrast, some left-wing parties have a tendency to embrace a more pluralistic approach towards Believers, but we also must take into consideration what they stand for as liberals. Few of the leftist parties hold to socialistic views anymore, even the Labor party, making the main difference between the right and left the issue of settlements, and of how much of a grip Judaism has on the character of the nation. If that grip is loosened and the Rabbinate loses its monopoly over the definition of who is Jewish, we may see the Believing population begin to rise; for with our “Jewishness” given back to us, we might see Jewish Believers finally being allowed their right of return.

All of this may seem very confusing, and many times followers of The Way will be required to choose the “lesser evil”, or simply withhold from voting altogether. Israel’s political scene is not as clearly defined as that of America’s, thus Believers in the Land may have a harder time making their choice.

Ultimately, whoever ends up taking a seat this year, among the 120 available, will require the frequent and fervent prayers of Believers both in Israel and around the world. As the political war rages on and the politicians' decisions, both on the right and left, encumber the Body of Messiah, I would like to suggest that we ought not merely stand with Israel, but rather, stand with God in Israel.



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The Strongest Weapon Against Demonic Religious Intolerance

Your Strongest Weapon


On the mission visit to Eastern Europe, we ministered inside a city in south-central Ukraine. This as being a major metro section of in regards to a million people, the church there hired us a person to chauffeur us around. Thus we met an old Soviet army colonel I'll call Sergei, using the intimidating appearance from the army officer he was previously. Beneath his tough exterior, however, lay a light heart of gold.

Sergei eagerly told us his story, and that I never tire of repeating it. In the army unit would be a youthful private, a Baptist Christian. Every day the boys arranged information to recite the pledge of allegiance towards the USSR. Based on his Christian conscience, this youthful private declined.

Clearly, this caused an issue for Sergei, who perceived it as being a menace to discipline within the ranks. Frustrated and getting no clue how to proceed, he made the decision to talk with the youthful private's pastor, and together they laboured out an answer. The non-public could recite the pledge to the part that violated his conscience, after which he could remain silent because everybody else could be facing forward at attention, nobody would notice. To date, so great, with the exception that Sergei now considered this youthful man to become a troublemaker.

To handle the issue, he started to assign this Baptist conscript all of the worst jobs, from cleaning toilets to shovelling dirt. It had not been lengthy, though, before he observed something he did not expect. Regardless of what he did for this youthful man, he never heard a complaint from him, no hint of rebellion or anger. He saw just the heart of the respectful servant.

Searching a little much deeper, he saw that whenever other people of his unit had problems, they switched for this Baptist private for counsel and solace. Sergei told us, "Which was the very first stop by the bucket toward me repenting and achieving a Christian."

As so frequently occurs when cultures deny God, crime and thievery run rampant-so it did within the culture from the Soviet army. Two times or even more each year, each commander needed to go prior to the "minister," because they known as the federal government representative, to take into account conditions under his command. No commander ever anticipated these conferences.

A Christian at this time, Sergei searched for the counsel of his pastor on how to lessen the crime rate in the unit prior to his next ending up in the Soviet minister. "Well, would you pray for the men?" the pastor queried. Sergei required his pastor's advice and started to wish.

In the next ending up in the federal government minister, he reported that crime in the unit had decreased to almost nothing. Actually, he earned up two occurrences that did not really happen, wishing to prevent an accusation he was laying concerning the crime rate. The minister accused him of laying anyway, insisting that this type of huge decrease in crime couldn't have happened. An analysis premiered that was discovered that Sergei had lied concerning the two occurrences to avoid being charged with laying concerning the decrease in crime.

After admonishing him not to lie again, the minister clearly mentioned the decrease in crime needed to be due to God otherwise it could have been impossible. Sergei's wife then grew to become a believer through her husband. She offered to be an aide towards the commander of some other unit. She too searched for her pastor's counsel by what she could do like a believer and started to wish. This brought towards the conversion of her unit's political officer.

Within the USSR a political officer was, essentially, the priest from the communist way billed with enforcing proper communist doctrine and holding the military rank of major. Talking with this type of person about Jesus, therefore, involved tremendous risk, as atheism was in the past the state Communist Party doctrine regarding religion. She obeyed God, however, not allowing the sunshine to become obscured by fear.

Hearing the reality in her own heart and her words, the main gave his existence to Jesus. Battling with how you can continue spouting communist doctrine incompatible together with his new found belief, the political officer also searched for out his pastor for advice, asking, "Exactly what do I actually do now?" His pastor told him he must tell his troops about God.

All of this came into being because one minor, no-name private within the army of the godless government declined to permit a gift basket to become placed over his light. Darkness collected around him, but light shines brightest in dark places. His simple witness and servant's heart were the pebble that began a landslide. He might have protested and reported injustice, but he chose to become a servant, strategically placed, who acted for each other and bore enormous fruit

Monday, 24 December 2018

Reflecting on the Names of Jesus


Long before there was a Baby in a manger, the prophet Isaiah depicted Him with some powerfully descriptive words. In Isaiah 9:6, we read that Jesus was to be called:

Wonderful 

Over time, we’ve watered down this word to just be a synonym for “good.” We use it to describe everything from tacos to tires to television shows. But something that is truly wonderful inspires wonder. It stops you in your tracks and makes you consider just how astonishing it is. It fringes on the borderline of disbelief. A God who loves so deeply that He would become one of us? That’s wonderful. Why do we not stop more often to wonder, to worship, to wait in amazement?

Counsellor

That’s not just a take-it-or-leave-it advice giver. He’s a confidant and friend. He guides us and walks beside us in our darkest of times. He is trustworthy, and He knows the answer. When we don’t know what to do, He does—and always has. His counsel is steadfast and wise and pure. It is wholeheartedly in our best interest. Why do we not immediately go to Him with every decision, every concern, every thought—to learn His counsel?

Mighty God

How do you wrap the Creator of the universe in swaddling clothes? How do you fit Omnipotence itself into a manger? Jesus is the Almighty God, with the power to do anything—even to fit His deity into a tiny human embryo. Even to conquer death and the grave. Even to redeem a race that is too far gone. Why do we not plug into that power daily?

Everlasting Father

We should address Him as “Sir.” We should call Him “Your Highness.” We should refer to Him as “Your Honor.” But He invites us to call Him “Father.” He is a loving and caring and providing Dad who knows us intimately as sons and daughters—and loves us anyway. He has been since the beginning, and He shall always be, a Daddy who rejoices in a relationship with His kids. Why do we not spend every spare moment in the presence of our kind and loving Father?

Prince of Peace 

Our lives are fraught with conflict and combat. With competition and contention and collision. Even our deepest and most intimate relationships have their times of tension and strife. Our lives are filled with howling winds and raging seas. But we are in the presence of the One who can proclaim ‘Peace, be still” and put all of our anxieties at rest. He has not only the power to calm the storm, but the patience to walk through the storm with us. Why do we not give rule and reign to the Prince of Peace in the circumstances of our lives?

I hope you are finding time this season to reflect on the indescribable gift we have been given in Jesus Christ! God bless you.



By
Arnie Cole
BackToTheBible

The truth about this scam is fascinating

The truth about this scam is fascinating.
Credit: bydgraceofgod.com/
#onedip

La verdad sobre esta estafa es fascinante.
Crédito: bydgraceofgod.com/

#onedip
Video  the Diply

10 Bible Verses help you out of depression




Friday, 21 December 2018

Our Victory in Christ

What do we think of when we hear the word victory? For the serviceman, it means winning a war, often with bloodshed as a trophy. For the addict, it means conquering the desire to hurt themselves physically, morally, and spiritually. For the policeman, it means that a crime has been solved and the criminal is punished. For the fireman, it means that the flames are extinguished and lives are saved.

But, as noble and important as these things are, to those of us who are convicted of our sins and desire peace with God, victory is when we surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ and death, hell, and the grave hold no place for us for eternity.

We are made free from the grip of the devil and have an ever-present Friend who will guide and protect us from the wiles of the enemy. Romans 10: 9-10 says: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”(KJV) We can ask Him to save, cleanse, and forgive us by the blood He shed on our behalf on the cross.


We can sing with the redeemed the old hymn:

“Oh Victory in Jesus, my Savior forever, He sought me and bought me with His redeeming blood. He loved me ere I knew Him, and all my love is due Him. He plunged me to victory, beneath the cleansing flood.” (Public Domain)

Victory for the child of God is based upon the fact of salvation found only in Christ.

-Jesus is promised victory over death, hell, and the grave (Isaiah 53:12)

-Through Jesus, we overcome the world and all its sins (John 16:33)

-Jesus will deliver the kingdom to the Father at the end of time, with His work of redemption concluded (1 Corinthians 15:24)

-Jesus has victory over the events of the world and will bring all things under His rule (Revelation 5:5)

-He will be victorious over the evil of the world and usher in a time of peace for all time (Isaiah 9:6-7; 11:1-10).


When we see the terrible things happening on the earth and within the souls of people, we can get discouraged and somewhat frightened for our lives. We see that the clock is ticking and the forces of Antichrist are soon coming upon this world, enveloping all who take his mark into a future of absolute hell on earth and eternal hell forever.

This is why, against all the odds, we must continue to be faithful and effective witnesses for Jesus. Our loved one’s lives are in the balance. God’s calendar does not need to be corrected or hurried. Even in this seemingly chaotic world, everything is going according to His plan, even if we can’t see the “big picture”.

Remember, we are victorious in Christ and we have become one of His children by trusting Him for salvation. He will have the last word and nothing will stop Him from accomplishing His triumphal mission. Remember that when you feel overwhelmed or discouraged. It’s going to be all right. We are on the winning side! Amen!




By Dr Donald Whitchard

Sunday, 16 December 2018

United Nation's Immigration Compact – Bad news for Canada

United Nation's Building
A Christian educator in Canada is outraged that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has signed on to a U.N. compact that the educator says puts Canadian sovereignty in "great jeopardy."

More than 160 countries recently gathered in Marrakesh, Morocco, to formally agree upon the U.N. Global Compact for Migration, which had been drafted under the auspices of the United Nations General Assembly back in July. A number of countries have opted out, including the United States, Israel, Japan, Australia, and 11 European countries.

However, one of the countries that did not opt out was Canada. OneNewsNow spoke with Dr. Charles McVety, president of Canada Christian College & School of Graduate Theological Studies in Toronto.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
"[This would allow Canada] to bring in 245 million migrants by 2030 [from] across the countries that have signed it," he explains. "Now thankfully your president [Trump] has not signed it, but our prime minister has – and this puts Canada in great jeopardy going forward."


According to McVety, Prime Minister Trudeau supports the Compact's goal to control the media.

"Trudeau just promised our media outlets $595 million so he can stop allocation of public funding or material support to media outlets that systematically promote intolerance, xenophobia, racism, and other forms of discrimination towards migrants," says the Christian educator. "That is code ... for silencing the opposition."

And that, he adds, means those who speak against the Compact will be cut off from any government benefits.



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Baptist church Female youth worker accused of statutory rape

A 35-year-old Tennessee woman is behind bars for allegedly having sex with a 16-year-old boy she met at church.

Courtney Bingham photo courtesy of Loudon County Sheriff’s Office

Courtney Michelle Bingham was arrested on Dec. 4 after allegedly sending nude photos to the teen she met at Bethany Baptist Church in Loudon, Tennessee, where she served as a youth leader.

“She chaperoned him at several church events,” Detective Sgt. Jason Smith of the Loudon County Sheriff’s Office told the Knoxville News-Sentinel. “She was actively involved with the youth.”

Bingham faces charges of aggravated statutory rape and soliciting sexual exploitation of a minor. She is being held at the Loudon County Jail in Lenoir City, Tennessee, in lieu of bond totalling $57,500 for both counts. Her next court appearance is scheduled April 3.

According to local media, both Bingham and the boy told police they had sex but disagreed about how many times. Authorities believe the pair began communicating over the summer but that nothing inappropriate happened until November.

The News-Herald in Lenoir City said Bingham served the past four years as family activities coordinator at Bethany Baptist Church.

“You just don’t think about this kind of thing going on in your Christian church family and certainly we loved her and considered her a special part of what we did here,” Pastor Rick Harrell told the newspaper. “She was faithful to the church, always had a bubbly attitude. The young people loved her, were drawn to her.”

News of the arrest coincides with an investigative report by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram documenting hundreds of sex abuse allegations involving independent fundamental Baptist churches around the country.

Bethany Baptist Church is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, a separate Baptist movement with abuse problems of its own.

This summer the SBC passed a resolution acknowledging “an obligation to implement policies and practices that protect against and confront any form of abuse” after a string of denominational leaders left jobs under suspicion of sexual misconduct.

Two studies – one commissioned by SBC President J.D. Greear and the other by the International Mission Board – are looking into ways to help the denomination better respond to abuse allegations. They come on the heels of the arrest of a former missionary who slipped through the cracks after being fired to continue his ministry in Southern Baptist churches and a Baptist state convention and the firing of a seminary president accused of mishandling rape allegations.

In August Greear, pastor of The Summit Church in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina, promised “bold steps” to address abuse in Southern Baptist life after a Pennsylvania grand jury released a 900-page report finding evidence of widespread sexual abuse by Catholic priests in the Keystone State.

Mark Aderholt, who resigned in June as associate executive director of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, was arrested July 3 for allegedly sexually abusing a 16-year-old girl while serving as her youth minister in the 1990s. His case is expected to go soon before a grand jury in Texas, where he faces possible felony indictments.

Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, recently appointed its first “women’s support coordinator” to handle matters involving sexual harassment, assault or disrespect toward women on campus.

“This appointment makes certain that female students and staff have someone to whom they can express any concerns — without fear of having to discuss matters inappropriately with a male administrator or member of the faculty,” seminary president Albert Mohler said. “It just makes sense that we would provide this kind of support for all the women on this campus.”

In August the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma settled a lawsuit over the rape of a 13-year-old girl attending church camp at Falls Creek Baptist Conference Center in 2016.

In recent days a volunteer at NewSpring Church in South Carolina was arrested after allegedly molesting numerous preschool boys left in his care while their parents attended worship. The suspect, 28-year-old Jake Hazlett, had previously attended other multi-site SBC churches that don’t use “Baptist” in their name, where he also had access to children.

A decade ago Southern Baptist leaders recommended against establishing a database of convicted, confessed or credibly accused sexual predators and an independent review board to receive and evaluate abuse allegations, saying the denomination lacks authority to hold churches accountable for whom they call as a minister.




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