JREnsey blog for May 2017

Welcome to the JREnsey blog for May, 2017.

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The Word for Today

“Go up to this land that flows with milk and honey. But I will not travel among you, for you are a stubborn and rebellious people. If I did, I would surely destroy you along the way.” When the people heard these stern words, they went into mourning and stopped wearing their jewelry and fine clothes. For the Lord had told Moses to tell them, “You are a stubborn and rebellious people. If I were to travel with you for even a moment, I would destroy you. Remove your jewelry and fine clothes while I decide what to do with you.” So from the time they left Mount Sinai, the Israelites wore no more jewelry or fine clothes (Exodus 33:3-6).

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I have friends…

I have many friends who have been loyal through the years. They don’t change with the weather. Their words of encouragement have meant much in difficult times through the years. Yet they have not spared me, scolding me at times when I was wrong and needed correction. They have offered me solace when I was hurting, and they guided me through many dark valleys. Such friends you want to keep around. You will need them again and again along the way.

…in high places

Some of my special friends are truly in high places. In fact, some of my most treasured friends are honored by being in lofty positions. When I reach a hand up, I know they will be there to meet it. Close friendships must be nurtured and protected.

…and low places

Even my friends in low places are there when I need a favor. They don’t run away when challenges arise. They are there for me when I am down (on my knees) looking for a word, or just seeking some inspiration.

Yes, it’s true—some of my dearest friends are the books in my library.

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Another reason to avoid state universities

As if we needed another one.

A Northern Arizona University student was recently received a lower grade on an essay because her English professor didn’t like that she used the word “mankind.” Instead, the professor told the student to use “gender-neutral” language.

According to Campus Reform: Cailin Jeffers, an English major at NAU said she received an email from one of her professors, Dr. Anne Scott, informing her that she had been docked one point out of a possible 50 on a recent paper for “problems with diction (word choice)” related to her use of the word “mankind” as a synonym for “humanity.”

Will the craziness in our colleges never end?

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God is not the author of confusion

Some who are confused about their gender keep digging into the Scriptures to try to find a justification for their feelings. Why? Virtually all of them have rejected the Bible as authoritative. They appear to want everyone, particularly Christians, to abort both faith and common sense and affirm the weirdness of the current culture.

According to reports, gay performer Peterson Toscano, just made a movie called “Transfigurations,” based on a book he wrote a few years ago. It depicts several male and female Bible characters in nontraditional ways in order to project their “gender fluidity.”

He is taking his conclusions to the universities to try to convince everyone else, particularly the vulnerable Millennials, that God is into transgenderism and the Bible proves it.

His film will be coming to a theater near you. This is reason number 345 to avoid theaters and reason number 4,273 to stay out of liberal college classrooms where such claptrap is taught.

Taking the other side of the coin, Andrew Walker, author of a new book called God and the Transgender Debate, says, “We’re actually at the absolute foundation of the anthropological crisis because the assumption that men and women are objectively distinct categories—that’s now suspect in broader culture,” he said. “So all these other questions about race, abortion, sexuality—these all flow downstream from this larger question of, ‘What does it mean to be either a man or a woman?’”

And if society can’t reach a universal understanding of the essence of man and woman, Walker warned, “we’re undercutting the very essence of human nature. Left to ourselves and our own devices, we’ll create endless pathways of self-destruction,” he said. “And, ultimately, the attempt by progressives to affirm anything as normative and good is inconsistent and unstable and ultimately leads to human unhappiness.”

Amen.

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An article worth reading

http://www.theblaze.com/contributions/matt-walsh-dear-christians-theres-nothing-compassionate-about-helping-people-get-to-hell/

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Bob sez

1. I changed my car horn to gunshot sounds. People move out of the way much faster now.

2. I didn’t make it to the gym today. That make five years in a row.

3. I stopped calling the bathroom the John and renamed it the Jim. I feel so much better saying I went to the Jim this morning.

4. Last year I joined a support group for procrastinators. We haven’t met yet.

5. When I was a child I thought nap time was a punishment. Now it feels like a mini-vacation.

6. If God had wanted me to touch my toes He would have put them on my knees.

7. The kids text me “plz” which is shorter than please. I text back “no” which is shorter than yes.

8. I’m going to retire and live off my savings. I don’t know what I will do the second week.

9. Even duct tape can’t fix stupid, but it can muffle the sound.

10. Why do I have to press one for English when you’re just gonna transfer me to someone I can’t understand anyway?

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A “resister” speaks out

I’m an Apostolic pastor. I’m concerned. I’m troubled. I’ve decided to resist modernism and secular ideas of “enlightenment.” I’ve decided to resist spurious, choreographed worship that reeks of carnality and sensualism (I Corinthians 14:40). I resist the blatant deconstruction of holiness, the doctrine of separation and the disparagement of the holiness lifestyle. I resist theatrical services and sermons devoid of the Spirit, devoid of discernment. I resist the democratizing or privatization of doctrine (John 18:20). This is not the time to put our beliefs up for debate. This is not a time to tell our congregations, “Whatever works for you!” This is the time to defend steadfastly the Apostles doctrine as never before. We cannot afford to break down spiritual authority—if we do, we lose the concept of right and wrong altogether. – Paul Mooney, Assistant General Superintendent of the UPCI in Perspectives

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Understanding is on its way

School administrators at a small Florida college suspended a Christian student last week after he confronted a Muslim professor who told students that the crucifixion of Jesus Christ was a hoax and that Jesus’ disciples didn’t believe that he was God.

Marshall Polston, a 20-year-old sophomore at Rollins College, alleges that he recently confronted his Muslim humanities professor, Areeje Zufari, for her outlandish claims that aren’t supported by factual history.

“It was very off-putting and flat out odd,” he told the Central Florida Post, adding that he’s traveled the world and studied in Muslim countries. “Honestly, it reminded me of some of the more radical groups I researched when abroad.”

But after he confronted Zufari, Polston said she gave him a failing grade on a major essay—a 52—and refused to explain the poor grade.

“I was upset, understandably,” Polston told the Post. “I’ve never gotten anything less than straight A’s, so I was really interested in figuring out how to possibly improve or at least understand the grade.”

Marshall, trust me. You will understand it better in the future as Middle Easterners continue to multiply here in America.

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Fascism defined

I keep seeing protesters toting signs denouncing fascism here in America, particularly as it is purportedly displayed in the Donald Trump administration. Is the President really a fascist? Just what is fascism? There are several definitions given on the ’Net, all offering a shade of difference.

Oxford prof Roger Griffin describes fascism as “a genus of political ideology whose mythic core in its various permutations is a palingenetic form of populist ultranationalism.” Let’s see…unpack that for us, Roger.

September 1937: Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini (1883 – 1945) and Adolf Hitler (1889 – 1945).

Meanwhile, Gary over at the Urban Dictionary states: “The only official definition of Fascism comes from Benito Mussolini, the founder of fascism, in which he outlines three principles of a fascist philosophy.
1. “Everything in the state.” The Government is supreme and the country is all-encompassing, and all within it must conform to the ruling body, often a dictator.
2. “Nothing outside the state.” The country must grow and the implied goal of any fascist nation is to rule the world, and have every human submit to the government.
3. “Nothing against the state.” Any type of questioning the government is not to be tolerated. If you do not see things our way, you are wrong. If you do not agree with the government, you cannot be allowed to live and taint the minds of the rest of the good citizens.
The use of militarism was implied only as a means to accomplish one of the three above principles, mainly to keep the people and rest of the world in line. Fascist countries are known for their harmony and lack of internal strife. There are no conflicting parties or free elections in purely fascist countries.

Nazi Germany was an example of extreme Fascism, better examples of fascist countries were Mussolini’s Italy, Iraq, Iran, and many middle eastern countries.

If Gary is right, how can Trump’s agenda stack up as fascist?

According to the Business Dictionary, fascism is a “political ideology that imposes strict social and economical measures as a method of empowering the government and stripping citizens of rights. This authoritative system of government is usually headed by an absolute dictator who keeps citizens suppressed via acts of violence and strict laws that govern the people. The most noted form of Fascism was implemented under Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler, who both stripped citizens of their rights and maintained strict regimes that resulted in the deaths of thousands of humans. Some of the defining characteristics of fascism are: (1) racism, (2) militarism, (3) dictatorship, and (4) destructive nationalistic policies.

Last time I checked, many were saying the Obama administration was heading in this direction (except maybe the militarism thing), but Trump seems to be backing the government out of people’s lives and emphasizing individual rights. Am I wrong?

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Oops

“Do you believe in life after death?” the boss asked one of his employees. “Yes, sir.” the new recruit replied. “Well, then, that makes everything just fine,” the boss went on. “After you left early yesterday to go to your grandmother’s funeral, she stopped in to see you.”

Colossians 3:9 would apply here.

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Mirror, mirror on the wall

The world is a looking glass,                                                                         

And gives back to every man

The reflection of his own face.

Frown at it, and it in turn

Will look sourly at you;

Laugh at it, and with it,

And it is a jolly, kind companion.

– William Thackeray

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Imagine that—prayer in the White House

President Trump, his two eldest sons, Vice President Pence and wife Karen, Reince Priebus, and Justice Scalia’s widow Maureen and son Fr. Paul Scalia, among others, praying with Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch and his wife Marie Louise in the White House.

The time taken to publicly pray for the Senate confirmation and future career of man who may become one of America’s top decision-makers for decades to come is a momentous occasion for Christians who considered Trump’s Supreme Court pick to be a primary reason for voting for him.

As the Supreme Court, and lower circuit courts, have increasingly pulled America away from biblical principles, it is refreshing to see a presidential administration’s focus turned back toward God in helping lead our country.

It’s an event that the Left might consider outrageous (on federal property), but it is gratifying to see.

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I suppose

I suppose…if Egyptian Christians had bombed Islamic mosques in Cairo, the mainstream media in the U.S. would be all over it, but since it was the other way around, they largely ignored it. Should we also suppose that Christians in America can expect the same treatment when it begins to happen here?

I suppose…it is OK to ask God questions, one elder has said—just don’t tell him what to do. He followed with the fact that Job asked God 181 questions. God asked Job 184 questions.

I suppose…it could be taken either way when the church business meeting minutes stated, “Mr. Bradford was elected as Head Deacon. We could not find a better man for the job.”

I suppose…everyone makes a typo now and then. On the minister’s wedding service sheet: “At this point the bridegroom takes the bride’s hind in his.” To top it off, the announcement in the next Sunday bulletin stated that “the accompanying photograph shows Mr. and Mrs. Smith leaping the Hurlingham Church Hall yesterday after the marriage ceremony.” (The Smiths must have been in a hurry to get out of there.)

I suppose…the printer’s face was red when he noticed he had printed the Bible, of all things, with a serious typo. At Exodus 20:14 in a 1631 edition of the King James Bible, the word “not” was left out. This changed the 7th commandment to read: “Thou shalt commit adultery.” Most of the copies were recalled immediately and destroyed on the orders of King Charles I. But there are 11 copies still remaining. It is known as the “Wicked Bible.” (The Bible Museum in Branson, MO has one on display.) The printer was fined the equivalent of $400, about $33,000 in today’s money. (I just finished Bill O’Reilly’s latest book Old School and noted two glaring typos in it. I feel better already.)

I suppose…doctrinal challenges are like the poor—they will always be with us or be us. The Light Doctrine has surfaced again to make us have to respond with a clear affirmation of the Apostles’ doctrine. Perhaps that is not all bad.

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BooksBooksBooksBooksBooksBooks

Apostolic Ministerial Studies – Levels I and II

Years in the making, these two levels, Basic and Advanced, are available in two binders. There are twelve lessons in each level prepared for use by a pastor to train the ministers in his local assembly. Outlines for the ministers are also included. Written and compiled by J. R. Ensey, the studies are very practical and easy to teach. Here are the lesson topics:

Level I

The Word Handlers I
Conquering the Enemies of the Ministry
From Moses to King James
Managing Ministerial Finances
Taking the Pressure Off Your Marriage
Life in the Fishbowl
Leadership in the Local Church I
Gods Ministry Gifts
Making Full Proof of Your Ministry
Standards of Christian Conduct
The Ministry and Morality
Social Ethics

Level II

The Word Handlers II
Shutting the Backdoor of the Church
Ministerial Ethics
The Christian Counselor
A Page From Paul’s Ministers Manual
Requirements For the Priesthood
Maturing In the Ministry
Feeding the Flock
Leadership in the Local Church II
Pursuing the Will Of God
Shoulders For A Prophet’s Mantle
The Gifts of the Spirit

“The 21st century Apostolic preacher faces challenges every day that past generations of preachers could have never imagined. We need all the resources and tools possible to equip us for this time. Ever since Brother Ensey told me he was working on a new study course for preachers a few years ago, I have been anxiously waiting to see the finished product. After having a chance to review the course I have not been disappointed. The experience from decades of hands-on ministry and years of training ministers have been distilled into a very user friendly manual. This is a must for every young minister and for ministers that are involved in training others for service. Thank you, Brother Ensey, for another great resource to strengthen the ministry.” -Pastor Gary Howard

AM price – $119.95

This set also can be ordered in pdf for only $89.95

Order from advanceministries.org/store or phone 936-537-0250.

Don’t forget your Bible studies this month!

The best soul winning aid produced in the last 25 years.

IHMLCover

Only $1.75 each up to 49 copies, 1.50 each from 50-99 copies, and only 1.25 for orders IHML_GFL_Revisedof 100 or more. Follow-up study Guide For Living is the same price.

Still the best soulwinning tool you can use!

Order online at www.advanceministries.org/ or phone 936-537-0250.

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Laugh to keep from crying

Redneck fire alarm

No laughing matter:

Show your teeth, please!

The Bible class teacher asked for an explanation of the phrase “the quick and the dead.” One elderly gentleman offered this: “The quick is the man who got out of the way.”

Jesus cured Peter’s mother-in-law when she was sick of a fever. Peter swore and went out and wept bitterly. (Hmmmm…I don’t think those Bible stories go together.)

According to I Timothy 3:2, Christian leaders are allowed only one wife, and this is known as monotony…er, monogamy.

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Last shot

I notice that Jesus, who said “I am the truth,” didn’t come to His people speaking Urdu or Swahili or Amharic. He spoke the language of the people to whom He ministered. Doubtless He was heard to speak in Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic as the need arose. His hearers could understand what was said in one or all of those languages. The NT was written in Greek but quotes Jesus the Hebrew as speaking in Aramaic at times. The point is that Jesus spoke in a language in which the meaning would be clear to His hearers. I believe He still feels that all nations and cultures should have God’s Word in their native tongue.

Jesus knew Greek and He quoted often from the Septuagint as well as from the Hebrew text, even though they differed slightly in some places. Scholars say that Jesus quoted from 22 of the 39 books of the OT.

The gospel is designed for “all men everywhere.” Would that mean that He would appreciate our making His Word available to them in their own vernacular? I think so.

JREnsey

Published in: on May 1, 2017 at 1:43 AM  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Great articles, as usual. Thanks Bro. Ensey!

  2. Thank you – truly – for sharing some of your treasured friends with me. I assure you that I will treasure them as well.


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