Sermon Sunday – George Whitefield – The Almost Christian

October 9, 2011 at 6:30 am | Posted in Sermon Sunday | Leave a comment
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The Almost Christian


by


George Whitefield


(1714-1770)

Acts 26:28 – “Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.”

The chapter, out of which the text is taken, contains an admirable account which the great St. Paul gave of his wonderful conversion from Judaism to Christianity, when he was called to make his defense before Festus a Gentile governor, and king Agrippa. Our blessed Lord had long since foretold, that when the Son of man should be lifted up, “his disciples should be brought before kings and rulers, for his name’s sake, for a testimony unto them.” And very good was the design of infinite wisdom in thus ordaining it; for Christianity being, from the beginning, a doctrine of the Cross, the princes and rulers of the earth thought themselves too high to be instructed by such mean teachers, or too happy to be disturbed b such unwelcome truths; and therefore would have always continued strangers to Jesus Christ, and him crucified, had not the apostles, by being arraigned before them, gained opportunities of preaching to them “Jesus and the resurrection.” St. Paul knew full well that this was the main reason, why his blessed Master permitted his enemies at this time to arraign him at a public bar; and therefore, in compliance with the divine will, thinks it not sufficient, barely to make his defense, but endeavors at the same time to convert his judges. And this he did with such demonstration of the spirit, and of power, that Festus, unwilling to be convinced by the strongest evidence, cries out with a loud voice, “Paul, much earning doth make thee mad.” To which the brave apostle (like a true follower of the holy Jesus) meekly replies, I am not mad, most noble Festus, but speak forth the words of truth and soberness.” But in all probability, seeing king Agrippa more affected with his discourse, and observing in him an inclination to know the truth, he applies himself more particularly to him. “The king knoweth of these things; before whom also I speak freely; for I am persuaded that none of these things are hidden from him.” And then, that if possible he might complete his wished-for conversion, he with an inimitable strain of oratory, addresses himself still more closely, “King Agrippa, believest thou the prophets? I know that thou believest them.” At which the passions of the king began to work so strongly, that he was obliged in open court, to own himself affected by the prisoner’s preaching, and ingenuously to cry out, “Paul, almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.” Continue Reading Sermon Sunday – George Whitefield – The Almost Christian…

Sermon Sunday – Charles Spurgeon – A Faithful Friend

July 24, 2011 at 7:20 am | Posted in Sermon Sunday | Leave a comment
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A Sermon
(No. 120)
Delivered on Sabbath Morning, March 8, 1857, by the
REV. C. H. Spurgeon
At The Music Hall, Royal Surrey Gardens


“There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.”—Proverbs 18:24.

CICERO has well said, “Friendship is the only thing in the world concerning the usefulness of which all mankind are agreed.” Friendship seems as necessary an element of a comfortable existence in this world as fire or water, or even air itself. A man may drag along a miserable existence in proud solitary dignity, but his life is scarce life, it is nothing but an existence, the tree of life being stripped of the leaves of hope and the fruits of joy. He who would be happy here must have friends; and he who would be happy hereafter, must, above all things, find a friend in the world to come, in the person of God, the Father of his people. Continue Reading Sermon Sunday – Charles Spurgeon – A Faithful Friend…

Design of the Week – Praise (In His Presence)

July 20, 2011 at 1:41 pm | Posted in Designs of the Week | Leave a comment
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This week’s special design is called Praise (In His Presence).

The design uses some simple graphic elements as well as color to portray the love and joy of being in the presence of God and praising Him for what He’s done for us. As Christians, we have the privilege to come before the throne of God with boldness/confidence to ask Him for grace and mercy in times of need (Heb. 4:16). We also have the joy of praising Him for protecting us, providing for us, and most of all saving us from certain destruction. He has given us much to be thankful for and deserves to be praised just for who He is, much less what He’s done.

If you’re having a rough day, you can still praise God for who He is. Life in itself is a blessing. He is good to us and even disciplines us because He loves us. If you are having a great day, then rejoice! It is a perfect time to lift up your voice and sing to the Lord of Heaven.

If you’re not born again, then much of this probably doesn’t make sense. Christians rejoice because God has, in His grace, decided to forgive us of our sins and erase them. He has cleared our consciences of guilt and made us His own. He has saved us from His wrath and allowed us to have the assurance that we will be in heaven when we die. If you don’t have any of that, then you are in danger, regardless of how great your life is. The Bible says that it is appointed unto man once to die and then the judgment (Heb. 9:27). Once you stand before God, He will judge you for every thought, word, and deed committed in your life. All the lies, lusting, theft, disobeying your parents, hatred, and other sins will be laid bare before God and if you have no way to pay for them, you will be cast into hell for eternity. This may seem unfair, but it would to a criminal wouldn’t it? It is right because God is holy, just, righteous, and perfect. He is eternal as well, so punishment in hell is the only just action to be taken. But, God has made a way for you and I to be spared this tragic end.

If you will repent of your sins (turn from them) and put your faith in Jesus Christ and His death on the cross to pay for your sins, the Bible says that you will be born again and that you can have the same assurance that when you die, you will be saved from hell and enter heaven; not because of what you did, but because of what Christ did. Will you do it? Will you repent of your sins and put your faith in Christ? If so, then you and I can praise God together today!

Sermon Sunday – J.C. Ryle – Freedom

July 3, 2011 at 6:30 am | Posted in Sermon Sunday | Leave a comment
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Freedom
by
J. C. Ryle
(1816-1900)

___________________________________________________________________

© Copyright 2001 by Tony Capoccia. This updated file may be freely copied, printed out, and distributed as
long as copyright and source statements remain intact, and that it is not sold. All rights reserved.

Verses quoted, unless otherwise noted, are taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION © 1978
by the New York Bible Society, used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

A copy of this sermon, Preached by Tony Capoccia, is available
on Audio Tape Cassette or Audio CD at www.gospelgems.com
___________________________________________________________________

“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”–John 8:36

The subject before us today deserves our attention. It should ring in the ears of every person like the voice of a trumpet. We live in a land which is the very cradle of freedom. But are we ourselves free?

The question is one which demands special attention during the present state of public opinion. The minds of many are absorbed in politics. Yet there is a freedom, within the reach of all of us, which few, I am afraid, ever think of–a freedom independent of all political changes–a freedom which neither the prevailing government, nor the cleverest politician can bestow. This is the freedom about which I speak today. Do we know anything of it? Are we free? Continue Reading Sermon Sunday – J.C. Ryle – Freedom…

Sermon Sunday – Jonathan Edwards – Christian Cautions

June 12, 2011 at 6:30 am | Posted in Sermon Sunday | Leave a comment
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Christian Cautions

or

The Necessity of Self-Examination

by

 Jonathan Edwards
 (1703-1758)

Dated September 1733.

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my thoughts; and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” — Psalm 139:23, 24


INTRODUCTION

Subject: Persons should be much concerned to know whether they do not live in some way of sin.

This psalm is a meditation on the omniscience of God, or upon his perfect view and knowledge of everything, which the psalmist represents by that perfect knowledge which God had of all his actions, his downsitting and his uprising; and of his thoughts, so that he knew his thoughts afar off; and of his words, “There is not a word in my tongue,” says the psalmist, “but thou knowest it altogether.” Then he represents it by the impossibility of fleeing from the divine presence, or of hiding from him. So that if he should go into heaven, or hide himself in hell, or fly to the uttermost parts of the sea, yet he would not be hid from God. Or if he should endeavor to hide himself in darkness, yet that would not cover him. But the darkness and light are both alike to him. Then he represents it by the knowledge which God had of him while in his mother’s womb, Psa. 139:15, 16, “My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret; thine eyes did see my substance, yet being imperfect; and in thy book all my members were written.” Continue Reading Sermon Sunday – Jonathan Edwards – Christian Cautions…

Sermon Sunday – Charles Spurgeon Remembrance of Christ

May 29, 2011 at 7:51 am | Posted in Sermon Sunday | Leave a comment
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A Sermon

Delivered on Sabbath Evening, January 7th, 1855, by the

REV. C. H. Spurgeon

At New Park Street Chapel, Southwark.

“This do in remembrance of me.”—1 Corinthians 11:24.

It seems, then, that Christians may forget Christ. The text implies the possibility of forgetfulness concerning him whom gratitude and affection should constrain them to remember. There could be no need for this loving exhortation, if there were not a fearful supposition that our memories might prove treacherous, and our remembrance superficial in its character, or changing in its nature. Nor is this a bare supposition: it is, alas, too well confirmed in our experience, not as a possibility, but as a lamentable fact. It seems at first sight too gross a crime to lay at the door of converted men. It appears almost impossible that those who have been redeemed by the blood of the dying Lamb should ever forget their Ransomer; that those who have been loved with an everlasting love by the eternal Son of God, should ever forget that Son; but if startling to the ear, it is alas, too apparent to the eye to allow us to deny the fact. Forget him who ne’er forgot us! Forget him who poured his blood forth for our sins! Forget him who loved us even to the death! Can it be possible? Yes it is not only possible, but conscience confesses that it is too sadly a fault of all of us, that we can remember anything except Christ. The object which we should make the monarch of our hearts, is the very thing we are most inclined to forget. Where one would think that memory would linger, and unmindfulness would be an unknown intruder, that is the spot which is desecrated by the feet of forgetfulness, and that the place where memory too seldom looks. I appeal to the conscience of every Christian here: Can you deny the truth of what I utter? Do you not find yourselves forgetful of Jesus? Some creature steals away your heart, and you are unmindful of him upon whom your affection ought to be set. Some earthly business engrosses your attention when you should have your eye steadily fixed upon the cross. It is the incessant round of world, world, world; the constant din of earth, earth, earth, that takes away the soul from Christ. Oh! my friends, is it not too sadly true that we can recollect anything but Christ, and forget nothing so easy as him whom we ought to remember? While memory will preserve a poisoned weed, it suffereth the Rose of Sharon to wither. Continue Reading Sermon Sunday – Charles Spurgeon Remembrance of Christ…

Newslinks 11/14/10

November 14, 2010 at 9:10 pm | Posted in Newslinks | 2 Comments
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

Republican Co-Author of Incandescent-Bulb Ban Seeks Chair of House Energy Committee
(CNSNews.com)
– Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) may have some explaining to do to fellow GOP colleagues as he seeks the chairmanship of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, given the incoming wave of new conservatives who may not appreciate some aspects of Upton’s voting record.

House G.O.P. Promises Open Amendment Process on all Spending Legislation
(CNSNews.com)
– Once Republicans take control of the House of Representatives in January, even minority Democrats will be able to offer amendments to reduce spending for all spending legislation that comes before the chamber — something that was not allowed under House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

Planned Parenthood Seeks Donations after GOP Electoral Gains, Even as Group Gets Millions in Taxpayer Dollars
(CNSNews.com)
– In a letter sent to supporters by e-mail on the day after Republicans were swept in as the new majority in the House of Representatives and gained seats in the Senate, Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards used the election results to press for an “emergency donation” to help fight against “dangerous politicians who oppose women’s health and the right to choose.”

Pakistan Happier Than India With Obama’s Comments on Terror
(CNSNews.com)
– In his comments on terrorism delivered at Mumbai’s Taj Mahal Hotel – the location of a deadly attack two year ago – President Obama dismayed many in India by making no mention of Pakistan. Continue Reading Newslinks 11/14/10…

Newslinks 08/01/10

August 1, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Posted in Newslinks | Leave a comment
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

LCMS President Laments Churches’ Pro-Gay Directions
The outgoing president of the second largest Lutheran church body in America lamented the directions taken on matters of sexuality by some member churches of the Lutheran World Federation.

Lutheran World Federation Elects Palestinian Bishop as President

Orthodox Anglicans Urged to Hold Fast to Sound Teaching

Conservative Leaders Sound Off Against Kenya’s ‘Pro-Abortion’ Constitution

Thousands of Christian Zionists Gather to Support Israel

Government-Incited Gang in Vietnam Attacks House Church

Energy Department Official Can’t Say How Much Greenhouse Gas Is Generated on Capitol Hill
(CNSNews.com)
– At a House subcommittee hearing last week, an Energy Department official could not answer a question from a Republican lawmaker about how much pollution is emitted in the process of generating electricity for federal government operations in the nation’s capital. When CNSNews.com asked for the greenhouse gas emissions inventory for the federal government operations in Washington, D.C., a spokesperson for the Energy Department said that greenhouse gas emissions are not measured by regions, but by each agency nationwide. The spokesperson also said that in the future, greenhouse gas emissions will be collected by zip code.

Lockerbie Probe May Prove Uncomfortable for Obama Administration
(CNSNews.com)
– The four Democratic U.S. senators probing the early release of the Libyan convicted in the Lockerbie bombing believe there were links to a BP oil deal, but their inquiry may have the unintended consequence of raising questions about just how strongly the Obama administration opposed the Libyan’s release. Scottish government ministers, stung by accusations that they released Abdel Baset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi to ease a massive oil exploration contract in Libya, are pointing out that it is the U.S. government that is blocking the release of two documents relating to the decision.

U.S. Spent $314,613 Studying Increase in Family Violence After NFL Upset Losses
(CNSNews.com)
– The National Institutes of Health spent $314,613 over two years on a study that found family violence increases about three times as much on the Fourth of July as it does after the local NFL team suffers an “upset” loss. The researchers also determined that an “upset” loss by the local NFL home team was not linked to nearly as great an increase in family violence as were Christmas Day, Thanksgiving Day, Memorial Day, New Year’s Day, and New Year’s Eve.

Sen. Baucus Won’t Say If Obama’s Controversial Recess-Appointee to Run Medicare Will Get Confirmation Hearing
(CNSNews.com)
– Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) would not say whether Dr. Donald Berwick, who received a recess appointment to run the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, would ever receive a Senate confirmation hearing in the committee that Baucus oversees, as the Constitution requires. On Capitol Hill last week, CNSNews.com asked Sen. Baucus, “Why didn’t you schedule a hearing for Dr. Berwick?”

Schumer’s New Campaign Finance Bill Preserves NRA Loophole
(CNSNews.com)
– An updated version of a campaign finance bill written by Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) preserves a controversial loophole that would exempt the National Rifle Association from tough new disclosure and speech restrictions during election cycles. The new bill, an updated version of Schumer’s original DISCLOSE Act, was introduced on the Senate floor on July 21 without being referred to committee.

Massive US-South Korea Naval Maneuvers Held Amid North Korean Threats
(CNSNews.com)
– Despite characteristically belligerent rhetoric, there were no reports of North Korean troop movements or threatening behavior as South Korea and the United States continued large-scale naval exercises Monday aimed at deterring aggression by the isolated communist state. A statement by U.S. Army Gen. Walter Sharp, commander of U.S. Forces Korea, said the drills were “designed to send a clear message to North Korea that its aggressive behavior must stop.”

ACLJ Asks Commission to Make N.Y. Building a Landmark to Keep 13-Story Mosque from Being Built at Ground Zero
(CNSNews.com)
– A conservative civil liberties group has formally requested landmark status for a building in lower Manhattan that an Islamic group wants to replace with a 13-story mosque and community center. The American Center for Law and Justice said it is “urging city officials to landmark the site because it stands as a symbol of America’s strength and survival in the face of brutal, sadistic terrorism.”

Rangel a liability to the party
An ethics watchdog organization believes Congressman Charles Rangel is becoming an increasing liability to the Democratic Party — thus the decision to file ethics charges against the veteran lawmaker.

AZ judge doesn’t ignore reality
Immigration reform activist Ira Mehlman is encouraged that the judge hearing challenges to Arizona’s immigration law has raised the realities of what’s happening in the state because of out-of-control illegal immigration there.

Students support prof’s conservative stand
Support is mounting for a University of Illinois professor who was fired for telling students in his Catholicism class that he agrees with the Catholic Church’s teaching against homosexuality.

Sex-ed program delayed, modified
Outrage from parents has apparently resulted in delaying the implementation of a proposed controversial sex-ed program in Montana.

Perspective: Real change is possible
As long as there are Christians willing to consecrate themselves to God in prayer for the spiritual state of America, real change is possible.

Ted Haggard Aims for Simplicity with New Church
Colorado Springs pastor Ted Haggard is done with the dark auditoriums, smoke machines, emotional hype and the dry professional preachers.

Megachurch Pastor Seeks 100,000 Christians to ‘Save America’

Traditional Marriage Group Goes on 23-City Campaign

German Christians Pray After Love Parade Tragedy

LWF President-Elect: Who Could Imagine the Holy Land without Christians?

Study: Few Americans Say Faith is Top Priority

Obama Won’t Speak In Person at Boy Scouts’ 100th Anniversary Celebration But Will Appear on ABC TV’s ‘The View’
(CNSNews.com)
– President Barack Obama, the honorary chairman of the Boy Scouts of America, will not speak in person before tens of thousands of boys gathered at the National Scout Jamboree in Virginia. However, the president is sending a videotaped message to the scouts to be played on Wednesday, the same day he will be in Manhattan to tape an appearance on ABC’s talk show “The View.”

Britain’s National Health Service, Praised by Obama’s Medicare Chief, to Undergo Cost-Cutting Overhaul
(CNSNews.com)
– Britain’s National Health Service, which rations basic health care services to control costs, will undergo major budget cuts and restructuring, ostensibly to make the government-run system less bureaucratic and more “bottom-up,” according to detailed news reports over the weekend from the United Kingdom. Dr. Donald Berwick, who recently received a recess-appointment to run the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in America, has praised Britain’s National Health Service, saying he loves the single-payer system.

U.S. Opposition to Release of Lockerbie Convict Was Clear and Consistent, State Department Says
(CNSNews.com)
– The Obama administration has no plans to release any further correspondence with Scotland relating to the release of the Libyan convicted in the Lockerbie bombing. “Nothing more needs to be released,” State Department spokesman Philip Crowley told CNSNews on Monday, after the department made public the text of a letter sent to Scottish ministers eight days before Abdel Baset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi was freed and flown home to Libya. Ahead of a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the matter scheduled for Thursday, CNSNews asked Crowley whether a final, still-unreleased document would now be made available.

President Obama Once Again Makes Erroneous Claim That Foreign Entities Can Spend Unlimited Amounts in U.S. Elections
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– President Barack Obama on Monday incorrectly stated that a landmark campaign-finance ruling allows foreign entities to pour money into U.S. elections. It’s the second time he’s made such a claim, and this time it happened while he was promoting the Democrats’ DISCLOSE Act in a Rose Garden speech. The Senate on Tuesday is taking up the legislation that would put strict new requirements on campaign advertising. The House already has passed a similar version of the bill.

Homeland Security Efforts to Combat Increase in Human Trafficking-Related Violence Along Border ‘Static,’ GAO Says
(CNSNews.com)
– In recent years there has been an increase in violence associated with human trafficking along the southwest border. Despite this, the Immigration and Custom Enforcement agency’s investigative resources committed to alien smuggling in that area have remained “static,” according to a government audit.

Opposition Mounts Against ObamaCare Tax Provision
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– Business advocates are hoping Congress scraps a tax provision in the health care overhaul law that they say is overly burdensome to smaller companies.

New Claims of ISI Terrorist Links Overshadow Pakistan’s Decision to Extend Army Chief’s Job
(CNSNews.com)
– The decision to extend the tenure of Pakistan’s powerful army chief Gen. Ashfaq Kayani comes at a time of renewed scrutiny into alleged collusion between the military intelligence agency, which Kayani oversaw from 2004-2007, and terrorists in Afghanistan. The move comes amid controversy over a cache of Afghanistan battlefield reports released by the whistleblower site, WikiLeaks, some of them describing collusion between Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Former Surgeon General Koop Calls Kagan’s Alteration of ACOG’s Partial Birth Abortion Statement ‘Unethical’ and ‘Disgraceful’
(CNSNews.com)
– In an open letter delivered last week, former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop is urging senators to vote against Elena Kagan’s nomination to the Supreme Court, in light of her role in the alteration of a medical statement about partial-birth abortion from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). “I was deeply disturbed to learn the Elena Kagan, the nominee for Supreme Court scheduled for a Senate committee vote next week, manipulated the medical policy statement on partial-birth abortion of a major medical organization, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, in January 1997,” Koop wrote in his letter.

Washington State to Allow Pharmacies A Choice in Stocking ‘Morning-After Pill’
(CNSNews.com)
– Pharmacists in the State of Washington may soon be free to choose the medications they want to provide in their pharmacies after a lawsuit prompted the state’s pharmacy board to reevaluate the current regulations. Pharmacists in Washington currently are required to stock the “morning-after pill,” which is marketed as Plan B, regardless of any moral or ethical concerns they may have.

Ford alive because of bailouts?
While GM and Chrysler struggle financially, the other of the “Big Three” — the one that refused government bailout money — is doing fine.

GOP faction challenges military ban
A conservative military watchdog says a “gay Republican group” is attempting to use the courts to bring irreparable harm to the military.

AZ law simply good business practice
Arizona Governor Jan Brewer recently called the owner of the Phoenix Suns basketball team to task for his opposition to the state’s tough immigration enforcement bill.

Praying pro-lifers see positive results
Pro-lifers who prayed at a well-publicized abortion clinic in Illinois are claiming success after a number of women chose life over abortion.

Perspective: Pornography and women
Dignity is not a quality most girls value — it’s not a quality they see held in high regard, or modeled by our female cultural icons.

‘No Leverage’ in Newt Gingrich’s Ground Zero Mosque Argument
Newt Gingrich offers a “provocative” argument about the proposed Ground Zero mosque and Saudi Arabia’s church building policy, but it has “no leverage,” said a religious freedom expert.

Anglican Panel Rejects Proposal to Cut Episcopal Church

PC(USA) Pensions Board Proceeds Cautiously with Domestic Partner Benefits

Evangelicals Confront Western Europe’s Spiritual Malaise

U.S. Should Help N. Korean Orphans, Say Korean-Americans

Christian Nursing Student Nearly Dies from Assault in Pakistan

Biden Claims $600 Billion in Stimulus Funds Spent — ‘We’re Building a Government That Delivers More Bang for the Buck Than Ever Before’
(CNSNews.com)
– Vice President Joe Biden says “Americans deserve a government that actually works,” and he also assured liberals that the Obama administration is “trying to build a government that delivers much more bang for the buck than it ever has before.” In remarks on Tuesday, Biden said the government has spent $600 billion in economic stimulus funds — “and we’re seeing waste, fraud, and abuse claims at just about two-tenths of 1 percent of the entire amount of money spent.”

Hoyer Refuses to Rule Out Raising the Retirement Age to Address Social Security
(CNSNews.com)
– House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer on Tuesday would not rule out raising the retirement age in attempt to save Social Security. “What I have said, in a speech that was pretty specific, was that I think everything needs to be on the table,” Hoyer said.

EPA Puts ‘Environmental Justice’ Front and Center in Its Rulemaking Process
(CNSNews.com)
– The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has released a 55-page “guidance” to help its employees “advance environmental justice” for low-income and minority communities. “Achieving environmental justice is an Agency priority and should be factored into every decision,” the document says.

Progress Towards July 2011 Troop Drawdown in Afghanistan Mixed, U.S. Envoy Says
(CNSNews.com)
– Richard Holbrooke, the U.S. special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, when questioned during a Senate panel hearing, indicated that the progress towards Obama’s July 2011 drawdown date is mixed, and he added that “there is no single answer yet to this extraordinarily complicated situation.”

Rep. Pence: Medicare Chief Berwick ‘Not Entitled to That Job,’ Must Explain Praise for UK ‘Socialist Health Care System’
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) says he is concerned about the prospect of health care rationing following the recess appointment of Dr. Donald Berwick to serve as the administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicare Services. “I think it was wrong for the president to bypass the confirmation process at a time when the American people are so focused on legislation where the ink is barely dry,” Pence told CNSNews.com.

Democrat Postpones Senate Hearing on Lockerbie Controversy, After Key Witnesses Rebuff His Request to ‘Clear the Air’
(CNSNews.com)
– Accusing Scottish and British officials and BP executives of “stonewalling,” the Democratic senator who was to have chaired a hearing this week on the Lockerbie controversy announced Tuesday that it would be postponed. “We are at a place where no witnesses of consequence has the courage to step forward and clear the air,” Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey told reporters. With the key witnesses declining to attend, Tuesday’s postponement announcement was not unexpected.

Afghanistan Presses U.S. to Take Firmer Line With Pakistan Over Terror Links
(CNSNews.com)
– Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s national security council chided the U.S. government Tuesday for not taking a tougher line with Pakistan over its alleged collusion with terrorists operating in Afghanistan. The unauthorized leak of U.S. military documents revealing collaboration between members of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) and the Taliban and other jihadist groups may slow down Karzai’s recent policy of seeking warmer relations with Islamabad.

Key cause of AIDS ‘off the table’
Pro-family activist Peter LaBarbera says an important aspect was missing from last week’s International AIDS Conference in Vienna, Austria, when the Obama administration pledged the support of the U.S. in the global fight against AIDS.

Perspective: Hide-and-seek hypocrites
When a piece of legislation dubbed the “DISCLOSE Act” surfaces, the voter’s instinctive reaction should be: What are the politicians trying to hide now?

Seniors’ group blasting Berwick
A conservative alternative to AARP is speaking out against President Obama’s healthcare agenda and recent appointment to oversee Medicare and Medicaid.

Choi sees ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ at work
Elaine Donnelly thinks the U.S. military was extremely lenient in its treatment of an officer who engaged in radical homosexual activism before he was discharged for his sexual orientation.

Candidate criticized for remark about Islam
A Republican candidate for governor of Tennessee is being criticized by a Muslim rights group for questioning whether Islam is more of a cult than a religion.

Gospel Music Association Moves Dove Awards to Atlanta
The Gospel Music Association (GMA) said it was taking a “bold step” Tuesday in hosting the next Dove Awards in a place outside of Nashville for the first time.

LWF 11th Assembly Concludes with ‘Message’ to Churches

Report Reveals Ineffectiveness of Methodist Structures

Fla. Church Plans ‘Burn a Quran’ Day to Mark 9/11

ELCA Presiding Bishop Calls for Immigration Reform in Letter to Obama

Spain Orders Judge to Return Salary Over Gay Adoption Trial

Fed’s argument against AZ law ‘ludicrous’
An Arizona sheriff on the front lines in the battle against illegal immigration believes the Supreme Court will ultimately have to overturn Wednesday’s ruling that blocked implementation of most of the new state measure cracking down on those who are in the country illegally.

Conscience vs. creed
Some Democratic senators say they don’t feel a need to accept all of their churches’ teachings.

Court sides with university, ADF to appeal
Alliance Defense Fund will appeal the federal court decision that allows Eastern Michigan University to expel Christian student Julea Ward from the counseling program for not affirming homosexual behavior as morally acceptable.

Perspective: Shirley Sherrod, quit while you’re ahead
Andrew Breitbart erred in not viewing Shirley Sherrod’s entire NAACP speech — but she shouldn’t be given a pass for her own past racist comments.

Educator excellence – a fair expectation
A Christian educator is praising a decision by the Washington, DC, public school system to fire more than 240 teachers because of poor performance.

Free Enterprise — Not Government Oversight — Key to GM Turnaround, Say Company Officials
(CNSNews.com)
– Free enterprise and the American marketplace – not the guiding hand of government – have revitalized the beleaguered automaker General Motors, which expects to announce another profitable quarter, according to GM officials. President Barack Obama plans to visit a GM plant in Hamtramk, Michigan on July 30, and his administration is linking GM’s return to profitability with the bailout of the old GM the administration orchestrated last summer.

Republicans Say Obama’s Drilling Moratorium Could Have Taxpayers Picking Up Tab for More Unemployed Oil Workers
(CNSNews.com)
– Critics of the Obama administration’s moratorium on offshore drilling say it will put more workers on the unemployment rolls – at taxpayer expense — especially those in the Gulf region, which is struggling to recover from the April 20 Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion and subsequent oil leak. Marking the 100th day after the disaster on Wednesday, House Republicans held a press conference to denounce both the moratorium and Democrat-sponsored legislation arising from the oil spill.

Reid: Democrats’ Energy Bill Will Create Jobs and Lower Energy Costs for Consumers
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Wednesday the Senate’s energy bill is necessary for the “environment and for national security.” He also said the legislation will generate jobs and lower energy costs for consumers. But Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), ranking member of the Senate Energy and Public Works Committee, indicated that the Senate’s energy bill will eliminate jobs by making Obama’s oil drilling moratorium permanent.

Michelle Obama’s Request for Birthday Wishes for Her Husband Links to Donation Page
(CNSNews.com)
– It seems like a nice gesture –- an e-mail message from a loving wife, urging thousands of people to join her in wishing her husband a happy 49th birthday by signing an electronic birthday card. But in Washington, D.C., nothing is that simple. The electronic card to Barack Obama also serves as a Democratic Party fundraiser.

Senators DeMint and Brownback Open to GOP Filibusters to Force Hearing on Medicare Chief
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– Sens. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) and Sam Brownback (R-Kan.) on Wednesday indicated that they are open to filibustering any and all legislation in the Senate until a confirmation hearing is held for Dr. Donald Berwick, who was recently recess-appointed by President Obama to head the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

GAO: Some Mexican Drug Traffickers ‘Specialize’ in Smuggling Aliens From Countries With Ties to Terrorism Into the U.S.
(CNSNews.com)
– Some Mexican drug-trafficking organizations are involved in smuggling potential terrorists across the southwestern border, according to the Government Accountability Office. “Aliens from countries of special interest to the United States such as Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, and Pakistan…illegally enter the United States” across the southwest border, the GAO’s Richard Stana said in a report issued July 22.

Dem Governors Condemn ‘Patchwork’ AZ Law; GOP Governors Hedge
(CNSNews.com)
– As a federal judge in Phoenix barred enforcement of major elements of Arizona’s immigration law Wednesday, Democratic governors continued to express their opposition to a “patchwork” of state laws, while GOP state executives were split on the issue.

Pro-Life Groups Seek Probe Into Kagan’s Clinton-Era Role in Partial Birth Abortion Debate
Washington (CNSNews.com)
– More than 30 pro-life organizations are calling on senators to investigate Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan’s record on partial-birth abortion while she served as a Clinton administration attorney. The pro-life groups are concerned about discrepancies between Kagan’s testimony before Congress and written documentation of her influence on medical organizations while advising President William J. Clinton on partial-birth abortion.

Tanker Incident Raises Concerns About Oil Transit Through Persian Gulf
(CNSNews.com)
– Mystery surrounds an incident in which a laden oil tanker was damaged in the Strait of Hormuz Wednesday. Maritime and shipping officials are at odds over whether an intentional explosion or a freak wave hit the tanker. The incident again highlights the vulnerability of the world’s most important energy waterway, one which Iran has periodically threatened to block, in retaliation for international pressure over its nuclear program.

Japan Welcomes News That U..S Envoy Will Attend Hiroshima Commemoration for First Time
(CNSNews.com)
– The State Department announced that U.S. Ambassador John Roos would represent the U.S. at the August 6 event at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, “to express respect for all of the victims of World War II.” Asked why the gesture was being made at this time, spokesman Philip Crowley said, “At this particular point, we thought it was the right thing to do.” Japanese media attributed the decision to President Obama’s agenda of pursuing “a world without nuclear weapons.”

Faith Leaders Protest Arizona Immigration Law
Some religious leaders from Arizona and elsewhere are coordinating nationwide protests against the state’s new immigration law, which takes effect Thursday.

Mayors Urged to Resist Atheists’ Demands to Drop Invocations

Episcopal Head Talks Conflict, Diversity, Immigration

Fla. Megachurch Readies Oil Spill Kids for Back to School

Christian Relief Group: Kyrgyzstan in Turmoil

Pastor in Russian Republic of Dagestan Killed

Hoyer: Expiration of Bush Tax Cuts Equals a ‘Republican Tax Increase’ on Middle Class
(CNSNews.com)
– House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said on Wednesday that the expiration built into the Bush tax cuts is a “Republican tax increase” for “working Americans,” and that Democrats have “no intention” of allowing it to go into effect. “We’re going to act and make sure that the Republican phase out and increase in taxes does not end as they provided for in the laws they passed.”

Obama Administration Giving Millions to States to Build Their New Health Insurance Exchanges
(CNSNews.com)
– The Health and Human Services Department on Thursday moved ahead with its plans to establish “the health insurance marketplace of the future.” It announced “two key steps” – including $51 million in grant money — in its effort to “partner with states” in setting up the new health insurance exchanges.

Obama, Who Ended D.C.’s Voucher Program, Talks About Improving Education for Children ‘Born in the Wrong Neighborhood’
(CNSNews.com)
– The Obama administration is phasing out a program that allows underprivileged children to get scholarships to expensive private schools in Washington, D.C., such as Sidwell Friends, the school the Obama girls attend. Nevertheless, Obama on Thursday spoke about his “obligation to lift up every child” to help them achieve a quality education.

DNC Chair Kaine Complains of Media Effort to ‘Brand’ Sherrod, but Stops Short of Calling FoxNews ‘Racist’
(CNSNews.com)
– Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine refused Wednesday to say whether he agreed with former DNC Chairman Howard Dean that FoxNews “did something that was absolutely racist” by airing the Shirley Sherrod video and story. But Kaine also didn’t rule it out. Kaine told CNSNews.com at a news conference Wednesday, “It is outrageous that there was this effort to brand her and use her to suggest that she and others were being divisive.”

Administration Stresses Pakistani Cooperation, But Haqqani Threat Persists
(CNSNews.com)
– Administration officials and senior military officers are emphasizing that Pakistan’s cooperation in routing terrorists has improved significantly in the last 18 months, but the ongoing threats posed by the Taliban faction known as the Haqqani network shows there is a long way to go. Despite tens of thousands of leaked U.S. military documents alleging collaboration between members of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) and terrorists fighting coalition forces in Afghanistan, the administration insists Pakistan has changed direction.

Conservative Media Watchdog Issues Ethics Challenge to Washington Post
(CNSNews.com)
– Conservative media watchdog L. Brent Bozell III is calling on Washington Post Executive Editor Marcus Brauchli to fully divulge the involvement of several Post employees with the controversial Journolist e-mail list. The association, he said, puts the paper’s credibility and impartiality in doubt.

NY Congressman Calls for Probe of Funding for Mosque Near Ground Zero and Its Promoter
(CNSNews.com)
– Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) is calling for an investigation into the funding for a proposed Islamic community center at Ground Zero, as well as the imam who is promoting the project. “I think we should investigate the imam who is going to be at that mosque,” King said. “He is portrayed as being a moderate, a bridge builder. The fact is he was on television after 9/11 saying the U.S. brought this on themselves.”

No abortion funding – ‘an empty promise’
Irrespective of a presidential executive order and rule rewriting ordered by America’s Health and Human Services secretary, healthcare reform does provide for tax-funded abortions — so says a government report.

Perspective: The enablers of Charlie Rangel
Drain the swamp? Lead the most ethical Congress in history? House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is the world’s worst cleaning lady.

Obama’s ‘credibility gap’
President Obama recently spoke at a town hall meeting where he told his listeners that “things could be worse,” but a dean of a major university says he doesn’t understand how.

‘Modern family’ film not all right
Focus on the Family’s Plugged In is raising a warning flag about a movie called The Kids are All Right, which is making its way into American theatres.

Perspective: Knowing your enemy
Only three Americans doubt that terrorist acts plotted against Americans have been inspired by the Muslim call for jihad — unfortunately, they’re all in the White House.

GOP: Obama developing ‘backdoor amnesty plan’
The Obama administration is considering ways it could go around lawmakers to let illegal immigrants stay in the United States, according to an agency memo.

Another Democrat facing ethics charges
A second House Democrat, Rep. Maxine Waters of California, could be facing an ethics trial this fall, further complicating the midterm election outlook for the party as it battles to hold onto its majority.

Outrage over local salaries
Residents of a California city are outraged after learning of the high salaries their city council members make by working for a town where many live in poverty.

U.S. adoption market on the rise
Bethany Christian Services, the nation’s largest adoption agency, is reporting a higher interest in adoptions.

A papal first
Church officials say Catholics will have to pay admission of up to $39 to attend two of the public events in England to be led by Pope Benedict XVI during his visit in September.

‘Vampire’ Author Anne Rice ‘Quits’ Christianity
Interview with the Vampire author Anne Rice declared Wednesday that she “quit being Christian.”

Evangelical Body: Cancel ‘Burn a Quran’ Day

Baptists from 105 Countries Unite in Honolulu

House Bill Seeks to Permanently Ban Abortion Funding

Progressive Christian Weighs In on Influence of Religious Left

Suspected Islamists Shoot 5 Christians to Death in Pakistan

Do they apply?

March 8, 2010 at 8:37 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
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It seems that in the American church’s rush to appease the lost and the non believers (I was going to say pagans but that would probably offend someone), or their effort to bilk trusting, tested Christians of all the money they have by “sowing their seed”; the church has forgotten one of its greatest tools. Ok, I don’t think that they’ve forgotten it as much as they’ve tossed it aside for church growth plans and light-hearted, shallow events that bring people in based on their greed and have them leaving the same way (if they’re lucky). Now, any pastor can pick whatever they want to say and then go traipsing through the scriptures and cherry-pick whatever verses they want to support their “sermon”. To do this, of course, they have to twist the scriptures until they squeeze every last drop of life out of them; but the ends justifies the means even if the means completely destroys the foundation upon which the “sermon” should be built on.

This attitude bleeds to the flock of the “shepherd” over time until the entire group goes through the Bible picking out “life verses” and “claiming” specific verses as “theirs”. After awhile, the church is full of puffed up men and women who expect everything from God because they can string together a group of verses that have no real connection and then muster up their most faith filled voice to command Him to bring it to pass right now because they deserve it. Mix in the idea that we have to look blessed (whatever that looks like) and act blessed even if we don’t have two nickels to rub together and you’ve got a large portion of America’s churches.

So, what is this missing tool? What is the thing that would stop all of this nonsense? Hermeneutics. Continue Reading Do they apply?…

The reason for the season?

December 21, 2009 at 3:50 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
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This time of year, you see it all over the place – “Jesus is the reason for the season”. I guess it’s an effort to try and get people to focus on the real meaning of Christmas, but as I was thinking about all of this, I had some questions about it. Is Jesus really the reason for the season in the hearts and minds of most people? Is this just a weak attempt to try and evangelize without having to really do anything? If people know Jesus as He’s portrayed in the Bible, should this be necessary?
 
I understand the statement and I totally agree with it. Jesus is the reason for the Christmas season. Of course, He’s the reason for every other season as well… The problem comes when I see the same people that tell me that Jesus is the reason for the season slide tackling an 80 year old woman and hurdling two shopping carts full of crying newborns (who were dragged out into the freezing cold weather at 4 a.m.) just so that they can join in a death match for the last Patty Wets-her-pants. Ok, so it may be more than a little problem…I guess I have gotten to where I don’t understand some of the things that people do in the name of celebrating the birth of the Lord Jesus. We trek out to the malls to find that perfect gift for that special someone at the best price. All the while, we gripe about the traffic and the waiting in line. Meanwhile, we try as hard as we can to latch on to the Christmas carol playing over the mall speakers so that we can drown out the horrible groans our conscience is making as it keeps a running total of how much we’re spending. The only solace is that we’re using our credit cards so fast there is a slight chance that they will actually melt before we spend ourselves out of house and home and into oblivion. When the amount actually does register, it reminds us to pick up that super-sized bottle of Tums so that we stay healthy enough to come up with a plan for paying off all the debt we’re building up. Continue Reading The reason for the season?…


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