Monday, June 30, 2008
HAS GOD SENT THIS DELUSION?
By Jan Markell
I quote my good friend and ministry colleague Jim Hutchens of "The Jerusalem Connection International" when he says, "The veiled anti-Israel action by the Presbyterian Church USA is nothing less than blatant anti-Semitism." I also agree with him. So what is the issue?
As I write truthful but unpleasant comments about the Presbyterian Church, I know many Presbyterian readers of this do not agree with their church leadership. But at the recent Presbyterian Church USA annual meeting a number of Presbyterian leaders pled passionately for a declaration of solidarity with the Palestinian Arabs. The appeal included a recommendation to adopt a series of anti-Israel measures, including proposals for divestment and for backing a suspension of American military aid to the Jewish state. In essence they called for Presbyterians to side with the Palestinians and take serious shots at the Israelis.
"The situation in Palestine is dire. The call from our Palestinian brothers and sisters has fallen on deaf ears," a Presbyterian minister, Reverend William McGarvey of San Francisco, said. "The American Christian church has largely watched this catastrophe continue as if we did not care."
Some Presbyterian leaders spoke out against the anti-Israel proposals and offered alternatives calling for a "nonpartisan" approach to the Israeli-Palestinian dispute. But a Palestinian religious leader attending this annual meeting said, "I urge you to get your hands dirty, to take sides."
Six senators who are Presbyterians urged the church not to endorse the proposal to cut off defense help to Israel. "We are adamantly opposed to the call for the U.S. government to temporarily suspend military aid to Israel," Senators Kyl of Arizona, Bond of Missouri, DeMint of South Carolina, Carper of Delaware, Shelby of Alabama, and Inhofe of Oklahoma wrote. "We ask that you take no action that would make a case for moral equivalency between the Israeli military, which is fighting to keep Israel safe, and Palestinian terrorists, who seek to destroy it."
A former American negotiator in the Middle East, Dennis Ross, also warned against taking the Palestinian side in the long-running dispute. "If your church is going to adopt a position that is one-sided in favor of the Palestinians, it takes no account of what the Israelis have done," Mr. Ross said in a videotaped message to delegates. "I find the resolution on divestment from companies doing business with Israel and the others who criticize Israel to be divorced from reality. They don't take into account the price the Israelis have paid or the concessions they made or the many times the Israelis in negotiations have been prepared to go very far and not found responsiveness on the other side."
With these men weighing in with truth, doesn't this all sound just a bit delusional?
So, in a sense, whether any bill passes this year or next, the Presbyterian Church USA has declared war on our only ally in the Middle East. This is what happens when denominations hold to Replacement Theology; that is, that the Church is now Israel. The Church has replaced Israel in all New Testament references. It remains a mystery to me how they deal with Romans 9 - 11.
But the Presbyterian Church USA and others who think like they do miss the most important point. It is not Israel making the Palestinians miserable; it is the Palestinian leadership and the United Nations who keep them in bondage so they can be political pawns.
Also, it is difficult to find a more neglected story than the relative satisfaction of Palestinian Arabs living in Israel -- about 20% of the population in Israel -- as revealed by a recent Harvard study. Researchers asked Palestinian Arabs if they would rather live in Israel than any other country in the world. Dream away, folks. You can fantasize that they said they would rather be in Dubai or the U.K. or the U.S. But nearly 80% said they like Israel best. These are Arabs living in Israel who are under Israeli rule, not corrupt Palestinian rule.
Arabs in Israel are not subject to compulsory military service though they may volunteer to serve in the military and some do. So we have some Arabs living in Israel serving in Israel's military while the Presbyterian Church USA suggests America suspend all military aid to Israel! Have I fallen into Alice's Wonderland or has the Presbyterian Church USA fallen down the hole? Where's the Mad Hatter?
This issue will not die. Other denominations are following suit and making similar proposals at annual meetings. In the past there have usually been enough in high church leadership to denounce these proposals, but it is my belief that will not always be the case.
Is it any wonder that the church today is in a mess? All Mainline Protestant denominations hold to Replacement Theology. I am not saying all Mainline Protestants hold to the proposals stated above. But Mainline Protestants and Catholics today almost universally adhere to the false teaching that the Church today is the new Israel. A remnant in these categories would disagree with this theology.
The Bible says, "I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spoke, they did not hear: But they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not" (Isa. 66:4). So it begs the question: Did God send them this delusion because in their hearts they just have serious issues and are blind to the truth about Israel's miraculous rebirth? The Bible indicates that when one remains firm in a lie and rejects the truth, they will become blinded. (2 Thess. 2:11)
The desire to harm a nation that is a friend and ally and a nation that remains God's Chosen People, makes little sense in the natural.
RADIO: Both hours of this past weekend's radio provide provocative commentary. Dr. Michael Coffman explains the hidden agenda behind the man-made global warming myth. The real agenda is global government. Hour two is for anyone discouraged about reaching a loved one with the gospel who refuses to hear or see biblical truth. These are found at "Radio Archives." For podcasting, check this link. For more radio information including outlets, go here.
Awaiting His return,
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Well, it's been a couple of months and I'm happy to say that everything is ok. No mass exodus of readers, no crickets chirping in the activity logs. And, I've gotten used to the relative peace and quiet, knowing that I'm not doing this for verbal affirmation. True, I've not been posting as much but then much of that comes with warmer weather and the increased activity that comes with it.
I've been thinking a bit about opening comments back up. Just thinking. And I'll think some more about it. Yes, we still get our trolls blowing by on a regular basis, including one that said he'd never come back. That's ok. That's not the reason why comments went out anyway.
But I do know the frustration of seeing things on a blog and not being able to respond in some fashion. It's more often the positive things I want to say that I can't.
So, this is just a post to acknowlege this thought that's been floating around in my mind for a few days.
I'll keep you posted.
Again, thanks for stopping by.
"Here's some background on Spurgeon's argument below. In 1890, William Platt Ball published Heredity and Evolution.; Are the Effects of Use and Disuse Inherited? An Examination of the View Held by [Herbert] Spencer and [Charles] Darwin. Ball was himself an evolutionist, but he (along with others in the same vein) departed from Darwin—and even more so from Herbert Spencer—on the question of whether and how our parents' and ancestors' behavior influences the characteristics we inherit from them. Will the offspring of a hardworking man who uses his muscles inherit any benefits from his working out? Or if the tails of Cocker Spaniels are clipped for enough years so that generation after generation of dogs never use their tails, will a breed of naturally tailless Spaniels eventually result through the evolutionary process?
Spencer, for one, seemed to think so. He pointed to giraffes as proof of the "use and disuse" theory, claiming giraffes could never have evolved such long necks unless their tendency to stretch ever higher had some effect toward actually lengthening the necks of their offspring across many generations. Thus Spencer (and evolutionists who followed him) argued, evolution is a hopeful doctrine for the future of humanity. It suggests that humanity will eventually get better if we act better. That was the standard evolutionary doctrine of salvation through the 1870s or so.
The actual progeny of that brand of humanistic optimism, however, was a whole new species of evolutionists, including William Ball. They pointed out a stubborn fact: the laws of genetics mitigate against our inheriting the effects of our parents' behavior through any kind of purely biological process. As an illustration, Ball pointed out that Jewish men have practiced circumcision from time immemorial, and Jewish infants are nevertheless still always born with fully intact foreskins. Ball insisted that evolutionary changes needed to be explainable by some more scientific means than the theory of use and disuse. He wasn't sure how animals evolved fantastic traits, but he insisted the process could not be explained by the use-and-disuse theory; that was simply unscientific.
Those who held the older evolutionary opinions employed human morality as a counter-example. The use-and-disuse theory is the only way to account for human guilt in the evolutionary paradigm, they insisted. They pointed to the immoral proclivities so evident in human behavior as undeniable proof that we have inherited behavioral influences from our animal ancestors. Suddenly some of the same modernists who had long scoffed at the idea of original sin were now acknowledging the ubiquitous manifestations of original sin in order to prop up their now-outmoded evolutionary theories.
That debate was raging when Spurgeon preached this sermon, and it explains the setting in which these comments were made. Spurgeon seems to indicate that he expected the theory of evolution itself to be debunked and replaced by some other fallacy in a very short time. If so, he would be disappointed by the tenacity of that theory today. In the most important respect, however, Spurgeon was exactly right: evolutionists have never found a stable, tenable theory to explain the most fundamental difficulty of their system: how did ordered information get programmed into the genetic code in the first place, and why are there zero observable instances of positive mutations in which additional information is added to a species' genetic code by some "natural" process? In their quest for answers to that question, evolutionists keep changing their story, and the textbooks still have to be completely rewritten every three years or so. Spurgeon observed this trend more than 130 years ago.
And for good measure, he threw in a rebuke aimed at the trendy, emerging, modernist church leaders of his day who aped the style of secular scientists and philosophers by shifting their opinions every three years or so to suit the times. Don't miss that part in the closing paragraph of this excerpt."
The rest can be found here. . ..
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Well, Christian Research Network has an article on this topic. Here's an excerpt:
"Todd Wilken, host of the Issues, Etc. radio program, has a fantastic article in the latest Issues, Etc. Journal that discusses how the average Christian and those in the anti-discernment crowd play the ‘Pharisee card’ as a means of silencing those who Biblically critique and challenge pop evangelicalism. Said Wilken:
I have been called a Pharisee more times than I can remember. It goes with the territory. I host a conservative Christian radio talk show. I publicly defend the teachings and practices of the historic Church. I also publicly point out false teaching and practices in the Church today. For these reasons alone, some believe that I deserve to be called a Pharisee.
But I’m not alone. Today, the label “Pharisee” is applied to many Christians just like me - perhaps you’re one of them. We are Christians who cherish God’s Word, the Church’s historic Creeds, confessions and practices. When we see the Church abandoning these things to follow the latest fads and entertainments, we lament. When we see the Gospel itself being left behind in the Church’s rush to mimic popular culture, we are grieved. And when we question the Church’s infatuation with the spirit of the age, we are labeled Pharisees."
And, of course, the rest can be found here.
In a recent "discussion" on "when life begins", the following was posted. The person was not familiar with the NIH and scientific community establishing that an embryo's identity is established at 14 days of development. Wasn't aware of it and of course didn't know what they had to back up their conclusion. But that didn't stop them from putting their stupidity on display:
"Before I tell you why they are wrong, show me the document".
Presupposition? "No matter what the evidence to back up the conclusion may be, their conclusion is wrong".
You just gotta laugh.
Friday, June 27, 2008
No, it doesn't have anything to do with the state of our country although that can be depressing. The Lord, I am convinced, isn't bothered by the issue of our country standing or falling. He is sovereign and the things that are going on are part of his plan. So be it.
There are many things, "large" and "small" that have kind of been a steady drip.
A neice of mine has cervical cancer. She will be doing chemotherapy to try to beat it. Haven't heard anything in a while. I won't go into the details here but maybe the Lord will use this to break her down. She has been a very proud person most of her 40 years. Right now, her lifestyle is much like mine was before I bottomed out 10 years ago prior to my conversion. No, she doesn't profess to be a Christian.
My work is going to become interesting very quickly, to say the least. I do private in home care for an elderly lady. She has had two grandaughters and myself taking care of her. Come Monday, one will be moving a couple hundred miles from here. And the other has a full time job. We aren't sure how we're going to juggle this -- and that doesn't even take into account those out of control variables such as "what if one of us gets sick"? I've been doing this work for a year in late September. I love my work -- it is very rewarding and it does pay relatively well. But this could get very tiring beginning next week. Lots of back and forth trips and even when you aren't there, your cell phone is a call light. So when you're "off" you're not really "off". Needless to say, both the remaining grandaughter and I are going "How're we going to handle this???" Even the lady I take care of is wondering how we'll deal with this. Well, we'll all find out.
Found out we have a hole in our roof. We're making arrangements to get a new roof put on.
And there are other things. Smaller stuff. You'd laugh if I mentioned it, and some of it is being resolved so I won't include it here.
Sometimes, life gets plain messy.
I'm thankful for a church family that I can trust and share my problems with. I am thankful that I have a pastor that, however imperfectly, tries to preach the Word. He also stresses evangelism. So I'll try to focus on those things.
Sunday, June 22, 2008
I hate "hibye" trips. Don't get me wrong, they are better than not seeing family at all but I hate "hibye" trips. We got to Jeff City at 7pm or so on Friday and left at 1pm Saturday so we could be here on time for the weddng. Hibyes. I don't like them. You're barely settled and calmed down enough to visit and you have to leave. And the last time we were here was 11 years ago. Time flies.
And I wanted to get my ozark accent back. I youstacould talk rayt. . .but that therapy will have to wait for another trip.
In any case, my cousin, wife and I were able to go out and spread the Gospel. Nothing major, mind you. No street preaching. But we did go out to breakfast yesterday morning and we gave out some tracts. As things have been in my life lately, I've not been as active as I was maybe a year ago. But having done what we did do, it was a reminder of how simple it is to spread the gospel. It's a simple matter of grabbing yourself by the scruff of the neck and diving in.
And people never seem to mind the tracts we give out. You can get some like ours at LivingWaters.com. They are never thrown out (although in the last four years I think I've seen one torn up. . .but with the pieces left on a table arranged in readable order!).
We gave a drive thru worker a million dollar bill tract. He really enjoyed it. And he grabbed the small stack we offered him so he could give them to his friends. And who knows what may result from the seeds that were planted? And we are called to sow seeds.
So if you are like me, caught in a slump, grab yourself by the scruff of the neck and take the first step toward obeying the Great Commission. Proclaim the gospel. The days are getting dark. The time may be coming soon when evangelism will be risky in our country. Not that the risk matters. But if we won't do it when it is easy, what makes us think we'll do it when it becomes dangerous?
Just one for the road.
Friday, June 20, 2008
We all know them. They used to be called "girl watchers". You know, the ones who are married and say "Yeah, I love my wife, but I love to look at other women".
What would you say about that person's love for his wife? I'm thinking you'd probably not have much of anything positive to say. His words and actions betray his claim to love his wife, doesn't it?
We are told by Jesus that we are to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind. We are to give it 100%. Furthermore, we are told we are to love our neighbors as ourselves. In other words, do for them what we would do for ourselves. Help them in times of need.
But loving our neighbor is really only a subset of how we show love for God.
How's your thought life? Do you claim to love the lord but would have to admit that you put a higher priority on other things? "Yeah, I love God but you gotta have a little fun too"? What?
Do you set aside time for God's Word on a daily basis? Do you weigh your thoughts before God's Law?
I caught myself thinking about this lately, and I thought I'd pass it on to you.
Thanks for reading!
"Once upon a time in a past far, far away and now clouded with timid trepidation there lived men of God powerful in Christ. In this piece J.C. Ryle begins:
There are certain facts in history which the world tries hard to forget and ignore. These facts get in the way of some of the world’s favourite theories, and are highly inconvenient. The consequence is that the world shuts its eyes against them. They are either cut dead as vulgar intruders, or passed by as tiresome bores. Little by little they sink out of sight of the students of history, like ships in a distant horizon, or are left behind like a luggage train in a siding.
Of such facts the subject of this paper is a vivid example:-" The Burning of our English Reformers; and the Reason why they were Burned." It is fashionable in some quarters to deny that there is any such thing as certainty about religious truth, or any opinions for which it is worth while to be burned…"
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Monday, June 09, 2008
Sunday, June 08, 2008
From "Christian Research Net":
"Bob DeWaay was on Iron Sharpens Iron 6/5/2008 discussing the Purpose Driven Movement and his recent meeting with Rick Warren of which he has not changed his views upon. You can download this interview here."
Apparently, it depends on what country Rick Warren is promoting his Purpose Driven PEACE plan. Let's take a look at Rick Warren's geographically-driven position on homosexuality. . .."
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Yesterday, and again today, I received another email from Christian Worldview Network. Both had references to the same article, which is linked to here, namely the account of how the seeds of our country's present decadence can be traced back to 1933 and the arrival of the Frankfurt School of leaders. That would have been during the "watch" of my grandparent's generation. From the report linked to here, the purpose of these people was to ultimately cause the demise of the American way of life and the destruction of Christianity.
Tuesday, June 03, 2008
Monday, June 02, 2008
The Reign of the LORD'S Anointed.1Why are (A)the nations in an uproar
And the peoples (B)devising a vain thing?
2The (C)kings of the earth take their stand
And the rulers take counsel together
(D)Against the LORD and against His [a](E)Anointed, saying,
3"Let us (F)tear their fetters apart
And cast away their cords from us!"
4He who [b]sits in the heavens (G)laughs,
The Lord (H)scoffs at them.
5Then He will speak to them in His (I)anger
And (J)terrify them in His fury, saying,
6"But as for Me, I have installed (K)My King
Upon Zion, (L)My holy mountain."
7"I will surely tell of the decree of the LORD:
He said to Me, 'You are (M)My Son,
Today I have begotten You.
8'Ask of Me, and (N)I will surely give (O)the nations as Your inheritance,
And the very (P)ends of the earth as Your possession.
9'You shall [c](Q)break them with a rod of iron,
You shall (R)shatter them like earthenware.'"
10Now therefore, O kings, (S)show discernment;
Take warning, O [d]judges of the earth.
11Worship the LORD with (T)reverence
And rejoice with (U)trembling.
12Do homage to (V)the Son, that He not become angry, and you perish in the way,
For (W)His wrath may [e]soon be kindled
How blessed are all who (X)take refuge in Him!
Yup, they want to break what they perceive as a yoke of bondage. But all the while, we faithfully proclaim the Gospel. In the end, for those who don't repent, God will "shatter them like earthenware". He will be vindicated, in His own time, through the exaltation of Jesus, His Son, whom He has appointed ruler of all things.