Welcome to the OCTOBER 2014 blog!
The Word for today
“Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you. 2 For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3 While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. 4 But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief” (I Thessalonians 5:1-4 ESV).
Words to remember
“The only people who don’t want to disclose the truth are people with something to hide.” – Barack Hussein Obama, address to the nation, 2010.
“According to II Timothy 3:16–17, ‘All Scripture is … profitable’ in four ways: for doctrine—that’s what’s right; for repoof—that’s what’s not right; for correction—that’s how to get right; and for instruction in righteousness—that’s how to stay right.” – Warren Wiersbe, Be Skillful
What is it with “leaders”?
Yet another Presbyterian congregation has opted to leave the Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA), being willing to pay millions in order to officially depart from the group to join a more conservative organization. Citing “an increasingly liberal theology,” the Highland Park Presbyterian Church in Dallas has had enough. Specifically, the church expressed concern that many Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) leaders do not believe in the deity of Jesus, nor do they embrace salvation through Christ. They hold that these are central tenets of most mainstream Christian churches, leading to a difficult ideological splintering.
A similar Presbyterian church in Menlo Park, CA also bolted from the overseeing church body noting that the church’s “evangelical identity around who Jesus is and our understanding of the authority of scripture are increasingly out of alignment with the denomination as a whole.”
The Rev. Janet DeVries was named to the post of “general presbyter” of PCUSA in 2010, exercising authority over the Texas Presbyterian churches. She stated that she was thankful for the $7.8 million settlement the church must pay to leave. There was no shift in her position. It was like something was wrong in local congregations that want to hold to biblical tenets of the faith. What’s wrong with wanting to maintain a biblical perspective of major doctrines? Is there a clause somewhere that states that part of the job description of organizational leaders is to seek changes in the church’s doctrinal or lifestyle positions? Why must movements continue to drift left because their leaders do? Is there no vetting process involved in choosing leaders? A “whatever, whoever” attitude of the constituency invites problems.
This is why the UPCI and every Apostolic fellowship must forever and always choose proven leaders who are known to be committed to the fundamentals of our faith—then pray for them regularly that they will remain strong and steady.
After reading stories like the above, we can put them in perspective better with a maxim from the pen of Frank J. Fleming: “The problem for a modern day military is figuring out how to destroy an evil enemy without hurting their feelings.” Has such a strategy invaded the ranks of the Evangelical movement, allowing political correctness to trump truth? Yea, the prevailing attitude seems to be: Don’t stir up the devil—placate him. If we do that, he will greet us enthusiastically at the door of his eternal abode.
T. D. Jakes and the “other sheep” doctrine
In John 10:16 Jesus was discussing His being the Shepherd of the sheep—His people who were followers of His leadership. Here He spoke of “other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice.” Some would like to use this verse to affirm that pagan unbelievers may also be on the path to salvation.
This is a passage that T. D. Jakes used when a caller to his program asked if Christians were the only ones saved. He responded that the President had asked him to serve on an Interfaith Commission that included Muslims, Jews, Christians, Mormons, Hindus, Catholics, etc…and they were working closely together on matters that can only be classified as the social gospel. This was to say that he was not going to promote anything that would be divisive to the objectives of the Commission.
The caller asked if he believed they would go to Heaven. Jakes would only say that Jesus spoke of “other sheep not of this fold,” so he was not going to say who they might be, leaving the question open to the opinion of the caller. The Bishop should not have let his friends and associations steal the truth and shut his mouth. [Why don’t they ever ask the Muslims if Christians are going to go to Paradise? You can wager that the Muslims on the Commission would not say the infidel Christians were going to be saved. But, of course, that’s OK.]
Jesus was speaking prophetically about Gentiles who would become a part of the body of Christ—specifically, Gentiles (Acts 10:9-28)—as though they were already a part of His fold. He will “bring” them in due time.
There are two groups that God continues to deal with and work through—the Hebrew nation and Christians. A Jewish remnant will surface after the Rapture and play an important role in the Tribulation after the true Christians have been removed from the earth.
John 10:16 in no way suggests that those in religions that worship and serve other gods have the promise of eternal life.
Tired of keeping records on computer?
Here’s an idea from the fourth century B.C. Idumea, an area south of Jerusalem.
Today’s businesses increasingly relying on sophisticated computer software to document transactions and track fiscal performance. But in fourth-century B.C. Idumea, about 40 miles southwest of Jerusalem, business records were kept by writing in black ink on ostraca (broken pieces of pottery).
While the Aramaic ostraca mainly record the delivery of wheat, barley and straw, they also document the delivery of everything from olive oil to workers and even to mice. Yes, ladies, there was an order on the “books” for 30 mice! (Check out that next pot of gumbo before diving in!) Found on the ostraca were 600 personal names—one hundred were Edomite and a large group were Arabic. In the fourth century, the population of the Hebron hills was indeed diverse, with many engaged in agricultural practices.
Next time your bookkeeper complains about the work load, especially the filing system, suggest that you go back to the ostraca system.
Source: 9/8 Bible History Daily
Psychiatric Drugs Send 90,000 to Emergency Rooms Each Year
With the release of a recent JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) psychiatry study showing that psychiatric drugs send nearly 90,000 Americans to emergency rooms annually, CCHR, the leading mental health watchdog, says there is a need for consumers to search its Psychiatric Drug Side Effects Database to learn the documented risks of these drugs.
The JAMA study reinforces the need for full disclosure and, with 79 million Americans taking at least one psychiatric drug, the study’s limited data at least provides an honest appraisal of the growing problem of adverse events associated with psychiatric drugs.
Click here to read the rest of this article.
ISIS/ISIL is not Islamic
So said the president in his ISIS speech.
Oh? Are they Methodists? Presbyterians? Pentecostals? They don’t seem to be Hindus or Sikhs or Wiccans. I wonder….who could they possibly be?
Since they call themselves “Islamic,” Mr. President, it would seem only right to use that term. They are actually jihadists who have declared themselves to be an Islamic State, carved out of Syria and Iraq.
In Arabic, the group is known as Al-Dawla Al-Islamiya fi al-Iraq wa al-Sham, or the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham. The term “al-Sham” refers to a region stretching from southern Turkey through Syria to Egypt (also including Lebanon, Israel, the Palestinian territories and Jordan). The group’s stated goal is to restore an Islamic state, or caliphate, in this entire area—minus an Israel.
The standard English term for this territory is “the Levant,” which is broadly why Mr. Obama uses the acronym “ISIL.” Technically, ISIS stands for The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria. ISIL stands for The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Our president prefers to use the latter. [Someone has suggested that the reason he is willing to fight ISIL is that he thought they wanted to control the “Persian Golf.” Fore, please, Abdul, and give your camel caddy a mint—his breath is wilting my poppy.]
Regardless of its moniker, the leaders are Islamists who want to establish a “caliphate,” or Islamic state with laws and policies based on the Qu’ran and Shariah. They want it to be called “Islamic State (IS).” I guess they will be joining the U.N. very soon.
So, Mister President, I suppose you are really advocating the bombing of the Islamic State. That may pain you to say it, but it is what it is.
The President’s real message?
Glenn Beck (not my fave) said it like this: “So by the President saying ‘this is ISIL,’ he is sending the message: I know who you are. I know what lands you are planning to take,” he concluded. “The President knows who these guys are. [But] he’s not telling you who they are. He’s trying to downplay that they are putting together a caliphate from Egypt to Iran. It does not include Israel. Maybe we should have a real frank conversation about what’s really going on.”
Good luck with that, Glenn.
History does repeat itself
Wasn’t it the Assyrians and the Babylonians (Iraqis) who troubled Israel and Judah in Bible times, destroying the Temple and enslaving the people? Didn’t they change their names, deny them the privilege of prayer, and put them in fiery furnaces? Isn’t that something like what they want to do to Israelis and Westerners, particularly Americans, today?
Parents and pastors—here is how our educational system is poisoning our children
Brigitte Gabriel, founder of ACT!! For America, explains:
Common Meds May Raise Risk of Alzheimer’s in Seniors
Seniors dealing with insomnia or anxiety might want to take it easy on commonly prescribed drugs such as Ativan, Xanax, Valium, and Klonopin, a new study in the British Medical Journal suggests. Researchers in Canada found what looks to be a strong link between Alzheimer’s and this class of drugs, called benzodiazepines, reports the CBC. Specifically, those who took the drugs for longer than 3 months were 51% more likely to develop the disease. The study compared 1,800 people age 65 and older recently diagnosed with about 7,100 seniors who did not have Alzheimer’s.
The findings don’t establish definitive proof that long-term use of benzodiazepines causes Alzheimer’s, “but it does strengthen such suspicions,” observes the Los Angeles Times. Scientists already knew that benzodiazepines take a toll on memory and mental sharpness, and the study authors write that their findings make it crucial for doctors “to carefully balance the risks and benefits when initiating or renewing a treatment with benzodiazepines and related products in older patients.” The American Geriatrics Society already considers the drugs a bad choice for seniors, writes Alice Walton at Forbes.
After the election will come the fiats…
Obama promised the Russian president that he would have more latitude or flexibility to make decisions and offer concessions after the Presidential election of 2012. He is keeping his promise.
One of the things he is promising illegals in the U.S. is that he will single-handedly “fix” the broken immigration system if necessary. The U.S. immigration laws have been in place for many years. Rather than being “broken” they are being abused and by-passed by the administration in responding to the multitudes of foreigners who want to come to America to escape poverty but do not want to go through the system that our forefathers were obliged to do. They want open borders and freedom for everyone to come and go as they please. Our president seems bent on providing them unfettered access to America. They come with the promise of free health care, free food stamps, and ultimately voters’ rights, regardless of whether they have full citizenship papers or even a valid ID. The message being received south of the border: “Come one, come all. Welcome!”
He is promising that after the congressional elections next month he will sign executive orders circumventing the congress, the Constitution, or anything standing in his way to “help the folks,” whatever that means in his strange view of what America should be.
Spray the burglar
You gotta read this:
I wonder…are they proposing this idiocy in preparation for confiscating citizen’s guns? I can just hear the hawker: “Turn in your guns here and get a free can of wasp spray!” The line forms to the left.
It’s all in perspective
“When you are the leader sometimes you don’t know if you are being followed or chased.”
“After spending time with the saints, you know why Jesus spent so much time with sinners.” — Pastor Lee Ingram
Leading by example
As you know, I have never used this blog to tout our church, its members or its leadership. However, the historic record offering given this year to Sheaves For Christ by Living Way Church, pastored by my son Randy, prompted the following unsolicited Facebook post by LeSann Oglethorpe, one of the early members of the church, and I felt it appropriate to pass the well-written piece along to our readers.
“And some may say, well, it’s just because of Michael Ensey, the General Youth Division President of the UPCI. This is his home church..and I will say, yes , in a way it is. You would have had to be here in the past 18 years as we have to understand, but maybe I can help you a little.
Before Michael ever knew his life path would lead him to being even the Texas Youth President, Michael was leading by example. He had led a disciplined youth of Bible quizzing—a sacrifice of time, attention and study, building a relationship with God that was humbling, and we saw it in his tender heart. Then into ministry he preached with conviction and tears. He disciplined himself to train for marathons and ran to benefit missionaries around the world. His first marathon run, I will never forget, set our church on a course of sacrificial giving that forever changed us. He ran early that Sunday morning and collapsed at the finish. Those driving with him scooped him up off the road side and drove him to the ER. He had trained well and been diligent in care but the best preparation sometimes is not enough for this human body. He brought himself near death for this burden for spreading the gospel. That Sunday as our service started, when most would have taken advantage of the situation to go home and rest, his passion insisted that he be in church. As they brought him in and he sat in a back corner of the sanctuary, a powerful spirit and burden swept over that congregation. As we wept, one after another began to offer their offering of sacrifice to God and for the cause of Sheaves for Christ. Many had financially supported Michael’s marathon run for SFC but how could we ignore his burden and physical sacrifice? As he sat limp and weak, the church melted with a burden to sacrifice in prayer and giving for the world to be reached with the gospel.
Michael recovered from that experience and continued his daily dedication to training and getting sponsors year after year so he could give all to God’s cause. That was before Texas District Youth President, before Gen.Youth Division President, before anyone knew the path God would take him. He led with passion and exampled true love and sacrifice and humility. He forever pierced the heart of Living Way Church with a love for sacrifice in giving. Many in LWC today were not even here when Michael was here, but the spirit that engulfs this church embraces everyone who comes. To God be the glory for the opportunity to be a part of a cause that is greater than us all, and for the experiences and example that so moved us and crushed our hearts to be tender towards the Kingdom of God. We love and appreciate you, Michael Ensey, and how you affected each of us at LWC.”
The Antidepressant Fact Book
by Dr. Peter Breggin
Known as “the Ralph Nader of psychiatry,” Dr. Peter Breggin has been the medical expert in countless court cases involving the use or misuse of psychoactive medications. This unusual position has given him unprecedented access to private pharmaceutical research and correspondence files, information from which informs this straight-talking guide to the most prescribed and controversial category of American drugs: antidepressants. From how these drugs work in the brain to how they treat (or don’t treat) depression and obsessive-compulsive, panic, and other disorders; from the documented side and withdrawal effects to what every parent needs to know about antidepressants and teenagers, The Anti-Depressant Fact Book is up-to-the minute and easy-to-access. Hard-hitting and enlightening, every current, former, and prospective antidepressant-user will want to read this book.
We have 8 copies in stock. First come, first served. AM Price $14.99
Your Drug May Be Your Problem
Whether the drug is a sleeping pill, tranquilizer, stimulant, antidepressant, mood stabilizer, or antipsychotic, Your Drug May Be Your Problem reveals its documented withdrawal symptoms, demonstrating what many doctors don’t know, understand, or even consider: withdrawal symptoms often mimic the symptoms for which a person has been medicated in the first place, a fact that frequently prompts doctors to mistakenly re-medicate their patients at even higher doses. Armed with this essential background information, readers will better know how to make wise choices for their mental health in the future.
Groundbreaking and empowering, Your Drug May Be Your Problem offers readers what they have long sought—a medically and psychologically sound program for freeing themselves from psychiatric drugs, emphasizing throughout the importance for patients to keep control over the withdrawal process. AM Price $15.99
“Being a leader is a lot like being a lady—if you have to go around telling people you are one, you aren’t.”– Margaret Thatcher
“You are free to choose, but you are not free from the consequences of your choices. Unless, of course, you fall into one of those ‘victim voter categories,’ in which case taxpayers will have their income redistributed to compensate you for your choices.” – The Patriot Post