Sermon Sunday – Johnathan Edwards – How to Know If You’re A Real Christian

August 21, 2011 at 8:33 pm | Posted in Sermon Sunday | Leave a comment
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How to Know if You are a Real Christian

by

 Jonathan Edwards
 (1703-1758)

“You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that-and shudder.” [James 2:19]

How do you know if you belong to God? We see in these words what some people depend on as an evidence of their acceptance with God. Some people think that they are all right before God if they are not as bad as some evil person. Other people point to their family history or church membership to show that God approves of them. There is an evangelism programme in common use that asks people certain questions. One of the questions is, “Suppose you were to die today. Why should God let you into his heaven?”  A very common response is, “I believe in God.” Apparently the apostle James knew people who said the same thing: I know I am in God’s favor, because I know these religious doctrines.

Of course James admits that this knowledge is good. Not only is it good, but it is also necessary. Nobody can be a Christian who doesn’t believe in God; and more than that, the One True God. This is particularly true for those who had the great advantage of actually knowing the apostle, someone who could tell them of his first-hand experience with Jesus, the Son of God. Imagine the great sin of a person, who knew James, and then refused to believe in God!  Certainly this would make their damnation greater. Of course, all Christians know that this belief in the One God is only the start of good things because “anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” (Heb. 11:6.)

However, James is clear that although this belief a good thing, it is definitely not proof that a person is saved. What he means is this: “You say you are a Christian and you are in God’s favor. You think God will let you into heaven, and the proof of it is, you believe in God. But that is no evidence at all, because the demons also believe, and they are sure to be punished in hell.”

The demons believe in God, you can be sure of that! They not only believe that He exists, but they believe that God is a holy God, a sin-hating God, a God of truth, who has promised judgments, and who will carry out his vengeance upon them. This is the reason the demons “shudder” or tremble–they know God more clearly than most human beings do, and they are afraid. Nevertheless, nothing in the mind of man, that devils may experience as well, is any sure sign of God’s grace in our hearts.

This reasoning may be easily turned around. Suppose demons could have, or find within themselves, something of God’s saving grace-proof they would go to heaven. This would prove James wrong. But how absurd! The Bible makes it clear that demons have no hope of salvation, and their believing in God does not take away their future punishment. Therefore believing in God is not proof of salvation for demons, and it is safe to say, not for people, either.

Demons Have a Knowledge of God.

This is seen even more clearly when we think about what demons are like. They are unholy: anything that they experience, cannot be a holy experience. The devil is perfectly wicked. “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44) “He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning.” (1 John 3:8 ) Therefore the demons are called evil spirits, unclean spirits, powers of darkness, and so on. “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Eph 6:12)

So it is plain that anything in the minds of demons cannot be holy, or lead to true holiness by itself. The demons clearly know many things about God and religion, but they do not have a holy knowledge. The things they know in their minds may make impressions in their hearts- indeed we do see that the demons have very strong feelings about God; so strong, in fact, that they “shudder.” But they are not holy feelings because they have nothing to do with the work of the Holy Spirit. If this is true of the experience of demons, it is also true of the experience of men.

Notice this, that it does not matter how genuine, sincere, and powerful these thoughts and feelings are. Demons, being spiritual creatures, know God in a way that men on earth cannot. Their knowledge of God’s existence is more concrete than any man’s knowledge could be. Because they are locked in battle with the forces of good, they have a sincerity of knowledge as well. On one occasion Jesus cast out some demons. “What do you want with us, Son of God?” they shouted. “Have you come here to torture us before the appointed time?” (Mat 8:29) What could possibly be a more clear-cut experience than this? However, while their thoughts and feelings are genuine and powerful, they are not holy.

Also we can see that the holy objects of their thoughts doesn’t make their thoughts and feelings holy. The demons know God exists! Matthew 8:29 shows they know more about Jesus than many people do! They are thoroughly that Jesus will judge them some day, because He is holy. But it is clear that genuine, sincere, and powerful thoughts and feelings about holy, spiritual things, is no proof of God’s grace in the heart. Demons have these things, and look forward to eternal punishment in hell. If men have no more than what the demons have, they will suffer in the same way.

Knowledge of God alone is no proof of salvation.

We may make several conclusions based on these truths. First, that no matter how much people may know about God and the Bible, it is no sure sign of salvation. The devil before his fall, was one of the bright and morning stars, a flame of fire, one excelling in strength and wisdom. (Isa. 14:12, Ezek. 28:12-19) Apparently, as one of the chief angels, Satan knew much about God. Now that he is fallen, his sin has not destroyed his memories from before. Sin does destroy the spiritual nature, but not the natural abilities, such as memory. That the fallen angels do have many natural abilities may be seen from many Bible verses, for example Eph 6:12 “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” In the same way, the Bible says that Satan is “more crafty” than other created beings. (Gen 3:1, also 2 Cor. 11:3, Acts 13:10)

Therefore we can see that the Devil has always had great mental ability and is able to know much about God, the visible and invisible world, and many other things. Since his job in the beginning was to be a chief angel before God, it is only natural that understanding these things has always been of first importance to him, and that all his activities have to do with these areas of thoughts, feelings, and knowledge.

Because it was his original employment to be one of the angels before the very face of God, and sin does not destroy the memory, it is clear that Satan knows more about God than just about any other created being. After the fall, we can see from his activities as a tempter, etc., (Matt 4:3) that he has been spending his time increasing his knowledge and its practical applications. That his knowledge is great can be seen in how tricky he is when tempting people. The craftiness of his lies shows how clever he is. Surely he could not manage his deceit so well without an actual and true knowledge of the facts.

This knowledge of God and his works is from the very beginning. Satan was there from the Creation, as Job 38:47 shows: “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. . .while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?” So he must know much about the way God created the world, and how He governs all the events in the universe. Furthermore, Satan has seen how God has worked his plan of redemption in the world; and not as an innocent bystander, but as an active enemy of God’s grace. He saw God work in the lives of Adam and Eve, in Noah, Abraham, and David. He must have taken a special interest in the life of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of men, the Word of God incarnate. How closely did he watch Christ? How carefully did he observe his miracles and listen to His words? This is because Satan has set himself against Christ’s work, and it is to his torment and anguish that Satan has watched Christ’s work unfold successfully.

Satan, then, knows much about God and God’s work. He knows heaven first-hand. He knows hell also, with personal knowledge as its first resident, and has experienced its torments for all these thousands of years. He must have a great knowledge of the Bible: at the least, we can see he knew enough to try tempting our Saviour. Furthermore, he has had years of studying of the hearts of men, his battlefield where he fights against our Redeemer. What labours, exertions, and cares the Devil has used over the centuries as he has deceived men. Only a being with his knowledge and experience of God’s working, and the human heart, could so imitate true religion and transform himself into an angel of light. (2 Cor 11:14)

Therefore we can see that there is no amount of knowledge of God and religion that could prove a person has been saved from their sin. A man may talk about the Bible, God, and the Trinity. He may be able to preach a sermon about Jesus Christ and everything He has done. Imagine, somebody might be able to speak about the way of salvation and the work of the Holy Spirit in the hearts of sinners, perhaps even enough to show others how to become Christians. All these things might build up the church and enlighten the world, yet it is not a sure proof of the saving grace of God in a person’s heart.

It also may be seen that for people to merely agree with the Bible is no sure sign of salvation. James 2:19 shows that the demons really, truly, believe the truth. Just as they believe there is one God, they agree with all the truth of the Bible. The devil is not a heretic: all the articles of his faith are firmly established in the truth.

It must be understood, that when the Bible talks about believing that Jesus is the Son of God, as a proof of God’s grace in the heart, the Bible means not a mere agreement with the truth, but another kind of believing. “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God.” (1 John 5:1) This other kind of believing is called “the faith of God’s elect and the knowledge of the truth that leads to godliness.” (Titus 1:1) There is a spiritual holding to the truth, which will be explained later on.

Religious experiences are no proof of salvation.

Some people have strong religious experiences, and think of them as proof of God’s working in their hearts. Often these experiences give people a sense of the importance of the spiritual world, and the reality of divine things. However, these, too, are no sure proof of salvation. Demons and damned human beings have many spiritual experiences which have a great effect on their heart attitudes. They live in the spiritual world and see first-hand what it is like. Their sufferings show them the worth of salvation and the worth of a human soul in the most powerful way imaginable. The parable in Luke chapter 16 teaches this clearly, as the suffering man asks that Lazarus might be sent to tell his brothers to avoid this place of torment. No doubt people in hell now have a distinct idea of the vastness of eternity, and of the shortness of life. They are completely convinced that all the things of this life are unimportant when compared to the experiences of the eternal world.

People now in hell have a great sense of the preciousness of time, and of the wonderful opportunities people have, who have the privilege of hearing the Gospel. They are completely aware of the foolishness of their sin, of neglecting opportunities, and ignoring the warnings of God. When sinners find out by personal experience the final result of their sin there is “weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matt 13:42) So even the most powerful religious experiences are not a sure sign of God’s grace in the heart.

Demons and damned people also have a strong sense of God’s majesty and power. God’s power is most clearly displayed in his execution of divine vengeance upon his enemies. “What if God, choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath-prepared for destruction?” (Rom 9:22) Shuddering, the devils await their final punishment, under the strongest sense of God’s majesty. They feel it now, of course, but in the future it will show to the greatest degree, when the Lord Jesus “is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels.” (2 Thess 2:7) On that day, they will desire to be run away, to be hidden from the presence of God. “Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of him.” (Rev 1:7) So everyone will see him in the glory of His Father. But, obviously, not all who see him will be saved.

Objection #1- People are different from demons.

Now it is possible that some people might object to all this, saying that ungodly men in this world are quite different from demons. They are under different circumstances and are different kind of beings. An objector might say, “Those things that are visible and present to demons are invisible and future to men. Besides, people have the disadvantage of having bodies, which restrain the soul, and keep people from seeing these spiritual things first-hand. Therefore, even if demons do have a great knowledge and personal experience of the things of God, and have no grace, the conclusion does not apply to me.” Or, put another way: if people have these things in this life, it may very well be a sure sign of God’s grace in their hearts.

In reply, it is agreed that no man in this life has ever had the degree of these things as the demons have them. No person has ever shuddered, with the same amount of fear that the demons shudder with. No man, in this life, can ever have the same kind of knowledge that the Devil has. It is clear that demons and damned men understand the vastness of eternity, and the importance of the other world, more than any living person, and so they crave salvation all the more.

But we can see that men in this world can have experiences of the same kind as those of demons and damned people. They have the same mental outlook, the same opinions and emotions, and the same kind of impressions on the mind and heart. Notice, that for the apostle James it is a convincing argument. He claims that if people think believing in one God is proof of God’s grace, it is not proof, because demons believe the same. James is not referring to the act of believing only, but also to the emotions and actions that go along with their belief. Shuddering is an example of emotions from the heart. This shows that if people have the same kind of mental outlook, and respond from the heart in the same way, it is no sure sign of grace.

The Bible does not state how much people in this world may see God’s glory, and not have God’s grace in their hearts. We are not told exactly to what degree God reveals himself to certain people, and how much they will respond in their hearts. It is very tempting to say that if a person has a certain amount of religious experience, or a certain amount of truth, they must be saved. Perhaps it is even possible for some unsaved people to have greater experiences than some of those who have grace in their hearts! So it is wrong to look at experience or knowledge in terms of amount. Men who have a genuine work of the Holy Spirit in their hearts have experiences and knowledge of a different kind.

Objection #2- People can have religious feelings that demons cannot.

At this point, someone might answer these thoughts by saying, “I agree with you. I see that believing in God, seeing His majesty and holiness, and knowing that Jesus died for sinners is not proof of grace in my heart. I agree that demons can know these things as well. But I have some things they don’t have. I have joy, peace, and love. Demons can’t have them, so that must show that I am saved.”

Yes, it is true that you have something more than a demon can have, but it is nothing better than a demon could have. A person’s experience of love, joy, etc., may not be because they have any cause in them different from a demon, but just different circumstances. The causes, or origins, of their feelings are the same. This is why these experiences are no better than those of demons. To explain further:

All the things that were discussed before about demons and damned people, arise from two main causes, natural understanding and self-love. When they think about themselves, these two things are what determine their feelings and response. Natural understanding shows them that God is holy, while they are wicked. God is infinite, but they are limited. God is powerful, and they are weak. Self-love gives them a sense of the importance of religion, the eternal world, and a longing after salvation. When these two causes work together, demons and damned men become aware of the awesome majesty of God, whom they know will be their Judge. They know that God’s judgment will be perfect and their punishment will be forever. Therefore, these two causes together with their senses will bring about their anguish on that judgment day, when they see the outward glory of Christ and His saints.

The reason many people feel joy, peace, and love today, while demons do not, may be more due to their circumstances, rather than any difference in their hearts. The causes in their hearts are the same. For example, the Holy Spirit is now at work in the world keeping all of mankind from being as wicked as they could be (2 Thess 2:17). This is in contrast to demons, who are just as wicked as they can be all the time. Furthermore, God in his mercy gives gifts to all people, such as the rain for crops (Matt 5:45), heat from the sun, etc. Not only that, but often people receive many things in life to bring them happiness, such as personal relationships, pleasures, music, good health, and so on. Most important of all, many people have heard news of hope: God has sent a Saviour, Jesus Christ, who died to save sinners. In these circumstances, the natural understanding of people can cause them to feel things that demons never can.

Self-love is a powerful force in the hearts of men, strong enough without grace to cause people to love those who love them, “But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners  love those who love them.” (Luke 6:32) It is a natural thing for a person who sees God being merciful, and who knows that they are not as bad as they could be, to therefore be sure of God’s love for them. If your love for God comes only from your feelings that God loves you, or because you have heard that Christ died for you, or something similar, the source of your love to God is only self-love. This reigns in the hearts of demons as well.

Imagine the situation of the demons. They know they are unrestrained in their wickedness. They know God is their enemy and always will be. Although they are without any hope, still they are active and fighting. Just think, what if they had some of the hope that people have? What if demons, with their knowledge of God, had their wickedness restrained? Imagine if a demon, after all his fears about God’s judgment, was suddenly led to imagine that God might be his Friend? That God might forgive him and let him, sin and all, into heaven? Oh the joy, the wonder, the gratitude we would see! Would not this demon be a great lover of God, since, after all everybody loves people who help them? What else could cause feelings so powerful and sincere? Is it any wonder, that so many people are deceived this way? Especially since people have the demons to promote this delusion. They have been promoting it now for many centuries, and alas they are very good at it.

True Spiritual experiences have a different source.

Now we come to the question, if all these various experiences and feelings come from nothing more than demons are capable of, what are the kinds of experiences that are truly spiritual and holy? What do I have to find in my own heart, as a sure sign of God’s grace there? What are the differences that show them to be from the Holy Spirit?

This is the answer: those feelings and experiences which are good signs of God’s grace in the heart differ from the experience of demons in their source and in their results.

Their source is the sense of the overwhelming holy beauty and loveliness of the things of God. When a person grasps in his mind, or better yet, when he feels his own heart held captive by the attractiveness of the Divine, this is an unmistakable sign of God’s working.

The demons and damned in hell do not now, and never will experience even the tiniest bit of this. Before their fall, the demons did have this sense of God. But in their fall, they lost it, the only thing they could lose of their knowledge of God. We have seen how the demons have very clear ideas about how powerful God is, his justice, holiness, and so on. They know a lot of facts about God. But now they haven’t a clue about what God is like. They cannot know what God is like any more than a blind man can know about colors! Demons can have a strong sense God’s awesome majesty, but they don’t see his loveliness. They have observed His work among the human race for these thousands of years, indeed with the closest attention; but they never see a glimmer of His beauty. No matter how much they know about God (and we have seen that they know very much indeed) the knowledge they have will never bring them to this higher, spiritual knowing what God is like. On the contrary, the more they know about God, the more they hate Him. The beauty of God consists primarily in this holiness, or moral excellence, and this is what they hate the most. It is because God is holy that the demons hate Him. One could suppose that if God were to be less holy, the demons would hate Him less. No doubt demons would hate any holy Being, no matter what He was like otherwise. But surely they hate this Being
all the more, for being infinitely holy, infinitely wise, and infinitely powerful!

Wicked people, including those alive today, will on the day of judgment see all there is to see of Jesus Christ, except His beauty and loveliness. There is not one thing about Christ that we can think of, that will not be set before them in the strongest light on that brilliant day. The wicked will see Jesus “coming in clouds with great power and glory.” (Mark 13:26) They will see his outward glory, which is far, far greater than we can possibly imagine now. You know the wicked will be thoroughly convinced of all who Christ is. They will be convinced about His omniscience, as they see all their sins replayed and evaluated. They will know first-hand Christ’s justice, as their sentences are announced. His authority will be made utterly convincing when every knee will bow, and every tongue confess Jesus as Lord. (Phil 2:10,11) The divine majesty will be impressed upon them in quite an effective way, as the wicked are poured into hell itself, and enter into their final state of suffering and death (Rev 20:14,15) When that happens, all their knowledge of God, as true and as powerful as it may be, will be worth nothing, and less than nothing, because they will not see Christ’s beauty.

Therefore, it is this seeing the loveliness of Christ that makes the difference between the saving grace of the Holy Spirit, and the experiences of demons. This sight or sense is what makes true Christian experience different from everything else. The faith of God’s elect people is based on this. When a person sees the excellence of the gospel, he senses the beauty and loveliness of the divine scheme of salvation. His mind is convinced that it is of God, and he believes it with all his heart. As the apostle Paul says in 2 Cor 4:34, “even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” That is to say, as was explained before, unbelievers can see that there is a gospel, and understand the facts about it, but they do not see its light. The light of the gospel is the glory of Christ, his holiness and beauty. Right after this we read, 2 Cor 4:6 “For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.” Clearly, it is this divine light, shining into our hearts, that enables us to see the beauty of the gospel and have a saving belief in Christ. This supernatural light shows us the superlative beauty and loveliness of Jesus, and convinces us of His sufficiency as our Saviour. Only such a glorious, majestic Saviour can be our Mediator, standing between guilty, hell-deserving sinners such as ourselves, and an infinitely holy God. This supernatural light gives us a sense of Christ that convinces us in a way nothing else ever could.

A true spiritual experience transforms the heart.

When a most wicked sinner is caused to see Christ’s divine loveliness, he no longer speculates why God should be interested in him, to save him. Before, he could not understand how the blood of Christ could pay the penalty for sins. But now he can see the preciousness of Christ’s blood, and how it is worthy to be accepted as the ransom for the worst of sins. Now the soul can recognize that he is accepted by God, not because of who he is, but because of the value God puts on the blood, obedience, and intercession of Christ. Seeing this value and worth gives the poor guilty soul rest which cannot be found in any sermon or booklet.

When a person comes to see the proper foundation of faith and trust with his own eyes, this is saving faith. “For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life.” (John 6:40) “I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me.” (John 17:6-8) It is this sight of the divine beauty of Christ that captivates the wills and draws the hearts of men. A sight of the outward greatness of God in His glory may overwhelm men, and be more than they can endure. This will be seen on the day of judgment, when the wicked will be brought before God. They will be overwhelmed, yes, but the hostility of the heart will remain in full strength and the opposition of the will continue. But on the other hand, a single ray of the moral and spiritual glory of God and of the supreme loveliness of Christ shone into the heart overcomes all hostility. The soul is inclined to love God as if by an omnipotent power, so that now not only the understanding, but the whole being receives and embraces the loving Saviour.

This sense of the beauty of Christ is the beginning of true saving faith in the life of a true convert. This is quite different from any vague feeling that Christ loves him or died for him. These sort of fuzzy feelings can cause a sort of love and joy, because the person feels a gratitude for escaping the punishment of their sin. In actual fact, these feelings are based on self-love, and not on a love for Christ at all. It is a sad thing that so many people are deluded by this false faith. On the other hand, a glimpse of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ causes in the heart a supreme genuine love for God. This is because the divine light shows the excellent loveliness of God’s nature. A love based on this is far, far above anything coming from self-love, which demons can have as well as men. The true love of God which comes from this sight of His beauty causes a spiritual and holy joy in the soul; a joy in God, and exulting in Him. There is no rejoicing in ourselves, but rather in God alone.

Genuine spiritual experiences have different results.

The sight of the beauty of divine things will cause true desires after the things of God. These desires are different from the longings of demons, which happen because the demons know their doom awaits them, and they wish it could somehow be otherwise. The desires that come from this sight of Christ’s beauty are natural free desires, like a baby desiring milk. Because these desires are so different from their counterfeits, they help to distinguish genuine experiences of God’s grace from the false.

False spiritual experiences have a tendency to cause pride, which is the devil’s special sin. “He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil.” (1 Tim 3:6) Pride is the inevitable result of false spiritual experiences, even though they are often covered with a disguise of great humility. False experience is enamored with self and grows on self. It lives by showing itself in one way or another. A person can have great love for God, and be proud of the greatness of his love. He can be very humble, and very proud indeed of his humility. But the emotions and experiences that come from God’s grace are exactly opposite. God’s true working in the heart causes humility. They do not cause any kind of showiness or self-exaltation. That sense of the awesome, holy, glorious beauty of Christ kills pride and humbles the soul. The light of God’s loveliness, and that alone, shows the soul its own ugliness. When a person really grasps this, he inevitably begins a process of making God bigger and bigger, and himself smaller and smaller.

Another result of God’s grace working in the heart is that the person will hate every evil and respond to God with a holy heart and life. False experiences may cause a certain amount of zeal, and even a great deal of what is commonly called religion. However it is not a zeal for good works. Their religion is not a service of God, but rather a service of self. This is how the apostle James puts it himself in this very context, “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that-and shudder. You foolish man, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless ?” (James 2:1920) In other words, deeds, or good works, are evidence of a genuine experience of God’s grace in the heart. “We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” (1 John 2:34) When the heart has been ravished by the beauty of Christ, how else can it respond?

The sight of Christ’s beauty- God’s greatest gift!

How excellent is that inner goodness and true religion that comes from this sight of the beauty of Christ! Here you have the most wonderful experiences of saints and angels in heaven. Here you have the best experience of Jesus Christ Himself. Even though we are mere creatures, it is a sort of participation in God’s own beauty. “Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature.” (2 Pet 1:4) “God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness.” (Heb 12:10) Because of the power of this divine working, there is a mutual indwelling of God and His people. “God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.” (1 John 4:16) This special relationship has to make the person involved as happy and as blessed as any creature in existence. This is a special gift of God, which he gives only to his special favorites. Gold, silver, diamonds, and earthly kingdoms are given by God to people who the Bible calls dogs and pigs. But this great gift of beholding Christ’s beauty, is the special blessing of God to His dearest children. Flesh and blood cannot give this gift: only God can bestow it. This was the special gift which Christ died to obtain for his elect. It is the highest token of his everlasting love, the best fruit of his labours and the most precious purchase of his blood.

By this gift, more than anything else, the saints shine as lights in the world. This gift, more than anything else, is their comfort. It is impossible that the soul who possesses this gift should ever perish. This is the gift of eternal life. It is eternal life begun: those who have it can never die. It is the dawning of the light of glory. It comes from heaven, it has a heavenly quality, and it will take its bearer to heaven. Those who have this gift may wander in the wilderness or be tossed by waves on the ocean, but they will arrive in heaven at last. There the heavenly spark will be made perfect and increased. In heaven the souls of the saints will be transformed into a bright and pure flame, and they will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Amen.

Originally titled True Grace Distinguished from the Experience of Devils by Jonathan Edwards, 1752. This modern language version is Copyright 1994 by William Carson. Permission is granted for reproduction, so long as this file is not altered, this notice is included in any reproduction, and it is not sold for profit.

Sermon Sunday – George Whitefield – Christ, the Believer’s Husband

June 5, 2011 at 8:34 am | Posted in Sermon Sunday | Leave a comment
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Christ the Believer’s Husband
by
George Whitefield
(1714-1770)

Isaiah 54:5 – “For thy Maker is thy Husband.”

Although believers by nature, are far from God, and children of wrath, even as others, yet it is amazing to think how nigh they are brought to him again by the blood of Jesus Christ. Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of any man living, fully to conceive, the nearness and dearness of that relation, in which they stand to their common head. He is not ashamed to call them brethren. Behold, says the blessed Jesus in the days of his flesh, “my mother and my brethren.” And again after his resurrection, “go tell my brethren.” Nay sometimes he is pleased to term believers his friends. “Henceforth call I you no longer servants, but friends.” “Our friend Lazarus sleepeth.” And what is a friend? Why there is a friend that is nearer than a brother, nay as near as one’s own soul. And “thy friend, (says God in the book of Deuteronomy) which is as thy own soul.” Kind and endearing applications these, that undoubtedly bespeak a very near and ineffably intimate union between the Lord Jesus and the true living members of his mystical body! But, methinks, the words of our text point out to us a relation, which not only comprehends, but in respect to nearness and dearness , exceeds all other relations whatsoever. I mean that of a Husband, “For thy Maker is thy husband; the Lord of Hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel, the God of the whole earth shall he be called.” Continue Reading Sermon Sunday – George Whitefield – Christ, the Believer’s Husband…

What has Jesus done for me? (long)

April 22, 2011 at 11:08 am | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
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It seems that more and more these days people are asking one simple question. It may take a few different forms, but at it’s root, it’s all the same: “What has Jesus done for me?”. Sometimes it comes out in the attitudes, sometimes in actual words but it’s there none the less. Man’s pride puts himself at the top of the pyramid with everything else beneath him. Even family and friends are often under self. Some that ask this question, do so because they can’t see how Jesus has done anything for them. They think that they are responsible for their own success. Ironically, they always seem to blame God for their failures. Continue Reading What has Jesus done for me? (long)…

A buried treasure

November 13, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
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Think of something precious to you. Not someone, some thing. Maybe this is a ring that has been handed down in your family for generations. Maybe this is a tool your grandfather gave you. It may be something from a loved one who is no longer here. Whatever it is, think about it. Could you describe it to me? What color is it? How big is it? What is it made of? Does it have any distinguishing features? Do you remember the day that you got it? Where you were? What was going on when you got it?

For most of us this exercise comes pretty easily. As humans, we hold on to those things that we hold dear. The things that are most important to use have a prominent place in our hearts. Now, think back on that object that is precious to you. See yourself holding it (if possible). Now imagine that you took the item outside; somewhere in your backyard. And you dug a hole, dropped that precious object into it, covered it back up with dirt, and tamped it down. Continue Reading A buried treasure…

A Scout is…

August 2, 2010 at 10:04 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
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On February 8th, 1910, William Boyce began an organization that has impacted millions of people over the course of 100 years. Mr. Boyce wanted to instill in young men the values of citizenship and morality, as well as life skills that will help them build solid relationships and families. Mr. Boyce is the founder of the Boy Scouts of America. This past week, thousands of scouts from all over the world converged on Ft. A.P. Hill in Virginia for the Jamboree celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Boy Scouts. The news focused on the fact that the President decided to go tape a session of “The View” rather than preside over the Jamboree as the honorary leader of the scouts. The news of the Jamboree struck a chord though.

I went through the scouting organization from Cub Scouts at eight years old to Eagle scout at eighteen and then on to be a leader for 4 years. The time that I spent in scouts allowed me a lot of things. It provided strong friendships that I still have today. It also gave me something consistent and conrete at a time when I moved around a lot and didn’t have a father figure to help me out. The men in my troop taught me the things that I would need to know as a man. One of these men eventually became my stepdad.

As I continued to think about the scouts, my mind drifted to the different things that we had to memorize. Things like the Scout Oath, Scout Law, Scout Motto, and Scout Slogan were things that we said at every meeting. These things were the foundation of why we were scouts and they gave us guidelines for our troop as well as our individual lives. I can still recite all of these things after years of not being affiliated with the scouting organization. In honor of my time in the scouts and the 100th anniversary of the organization that gave me so much, I just wanted to offer up some food for thought. Going over the Oath, Law, Motto, and Slogan; I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if more people adopted these things in their lives. These different ideals are completely based in Christianity. They shouldn’t be used in place of Christ, but they could definitely be used as a pointer and guide to Christianity. Continue Reading A Scout is……

America’s Answer

April 19, 2010 at 3:30 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment
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As we watch the federal government grow to an unheard of size, taking liberties and freedoms with it, we keep hearing talk about answers. The president says that his plans are the answers for America’s problems. He tells us as often as possible how great his plans are and how lucky we are to have him as our president. The problem is that the math doesn’t add up when you look at the numbers and just about everything that the president has said to the American people has been a lie. He has broken almost every promise and took steps to make things extremely worse for not only us but future generations of Americans as well. Our grandchildren will have no idea what America used to be like (unless they have an honest history teacher) unless we stop this progression.
 
But, if the president’s plans aren’t the answer than what is? Many talk about cutting taxes and reducing spending. Those will both work economically, but they aren’t the answer to restoring the moral fabric of the country. Personally, I will be surprised if the Republicans do any better than the Democrats when they get the majority again. They seem to be Democrat lite to me… The answer to our country’s problems doesn’t lie in economic plans or government programs. It doesn’t fall on the president, Congress, or big business to fix our situations (they all proven many times over that they are too incompetent to do this anyway). America’s answer lies in One person. God. Continue Reading America’s Answer…

Tea party in the church?

April 12, 2010 at 4:16 am | Posted in Christianity | 2 Comments
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The climate of the US has changed dramatically in just over a year. Where there was talk of “hope and change”, there is now talk of disappointment and disgust. Where there was talk of a better tomorrow, there has been more of the same. The politicians that supposedly lead this country have shown themselves, for the most part, to be incompetent at even the most basic of tasks. They can’t do the things that the Constitution gives them the power to do and they still try to grow beyond the limits the Constitution places on them. Some of them don’t even know basic geology (Guam, or any other island, cannot capsize and sink…). Enter the Tea Party. The Tea Party has been mocked as an “Astroturf” type of movement that is all fluff and no substance. Those who support the Tea Party have been labeled as “right-wing extremists”, “terrorists”, and “racists”. They have made their voices heard as they stand up for truth and integrity from our so-called leaders. They share the same principles that our God-fearing founders did. All of this started with the people… Continue Reading Tea party in the church?…

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?…

Newslinks – 02/21/10

February 21, 2010 at 6:56 pm | Posted in Newslinks | Leave a comment
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Sunday’s Newslinks brought to you by At Ease Tees

 

What is Planned Parenthood really doing in Haiti?
International Planned Parenthood has focused on the earthquake in Haiti to raise funds — but for what purpose?

Detained Americans seek distance from adviser
Relatives of a group of jailed U.S. missionaries thought a man who volunteered legal assistance – but who may be wanted for human trafficking in El Salvador – was a good Samaritan, a family member said.

Please don’t send me roses…
Saudi Arabia has launched a nationwide crackdown on stores selling items that are red or otherwise allude to the banned celebration of Valentine’s Day.

Obama’s New OIC Envoy Defended Activist Who Aided Terrorist Group
(CNSNews.com)
– President Obama’s newly appointed envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference was quoted in 2004 as saying an American who aided a Palestinian terrorist group was the victim of “politically motivated persecutions.” Rashad Hussain was quoted as telling a Muslim students’ event in Chicago that if U.S. Muslims did not speak out against the injustices taking place in America, then everyone’s rights would be in jeopardy.

Concerns About U.S. Passenger Send Jumbo Jet Back to U.K.
(CNSNews.com)
– Concerns about an American passenger prompted U.S. officials to bar a British Airways flight from U.S. airspace on Friday. The plane was heading from London to Mexico City when it was forced to turn around.

Americans Most Satisfied in Cold Northern States, Least Satisfied in Nevada
(CNSNews.com)
– Americans are most satisfied with their standard of living in cold northern states—including North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Alaska — and least satisfied in Nevada, which is represented in the Senate by Majority Leader Harry Reid, according to a new Gallup poll.

NARAL Dedicates Annual Report to Late-Term Abortionist; Gives the Nation a ‘D’ Grade for Reproductive Rights
(CNSNews.com) – In a new status report on women’s reproductive rights, a pro-abortion group gives the nation a cumulative grade of “D,” based on state and federal legislation it sees as “pro-choice” or “anti-choice.” NARAL Pro-Choice America dedicated its 2009 report to the late George Tiller, the abortionist who was shot and killed last year by a man with a history of mental problems.

Construction Industry Opposes Obama Pro-Union Order
(CNSNews.com)
– A federal commission has not yet enacted a year-old executive order that President Barack Obama thinks will avoid labor unrest. Critics, including the construction industry, say the executive order discriminates against non-union companies and non-union workers in federal contracting.

Amid Turmoil at Home, Iran Eyes Seat on Top U.N. Human Rights Body
(CNSNews.com)
– As Iran’s continuing crackdown on opposition supporters roils the country and makes headlines around the world, the Islamic republic is seeking support for a fresh bid to join the U.N. Human Rights Council. In May, Iran will be one of five contenders for four available Asia seats.

Speak the truth, defend your rights
Michigan pro-family advocate Gary Glenn is honored to be on the front lines in fighting for First Amendment rights to speak out against homosexuality.

Pollster: Palin has ‘mountain to climb’
A Republican consultant and pollster says a new survey showing Sarah Palin has a low favorability rating is not a “kiss of death” for her White House ambitions.

Perspective: Social Security reform cooking again
Barack Obama has an opportunity to truly make history by restoring an American retirement system based on ownership rather than socialism.

University student gets probabtion for evangelist assault
A Middle Tennessee State University student has entered a plea agreement on a charge that she assaulted an evangelist on campus last year.

Heckling of Israeli ambassador ‘shameful’
An Arab-American and terrorism expert says it’s absolutely shameful that the University of California-Irvine allowed a group of Muslim students to heckle the Israeli ambassador to the U.S. during a recent address on campus.

Churches Spotlight Safe Water During Lent
Several church bodies are tying a worldwide campaign for safe water to this year’s Lenten season.

Legal Counsel for Americans in Haiti Suspected of Trafficking

Progressive Institute Calls for More Talk on Sexuality from Pulpit

Billboards Claim Abortion Industry Targets Blacks

Gayle Haggard’s Book Makes NY Times Bestseller List

Christian Music Stars Unite for Haiti; Release ‘Come Together Now’

States gain support in ‘personhood’ battle
Signatures are being submitted to let voters decide on a Personhood amendment in Mississippi, and Colorado residents may once again have the chance to determine when a person is legally a person.

Obama appoints Muslim envoy
An Islamic critic and terrorism expert says President Barack Obama should not have named a special envoy to an Islamic organization that is an absolute enemy of the United States.

Netanyahu: Ezekiel 37 fulfilled
The leader of a Messianic Jewish ministry is pleased that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently proclaimed the fulfillment of the prophecy in Ezekiel, Chapter 37.

Global-warming arguments contested yet again
The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change faces more challenges to its claim that human pollution is causing global temperatures to rise.

Creation News: Bird-from-dinosaur theory
Read the latest from Answers in Genesis and the Creation Museum examining news from the biblical viewpoint.

Nation’s Top Conservatives Will Sign Philosophical Declaration of War against Big Government
(CNSNews.com)
– The nation’s top conservative leaders will gather Wednesday in Alexandria, Va.—at a property that once was the site of George Washington’s River Farm—to sign a document organizers are calling the Mount Vernon Statement. It is designed to signal that a united and resurgent conservative movement is declaring philosophical war against the big government and moral relativism advanced by the nation’s liberal cultural, academic and political establishments. The statement emphatically rejects the type of “change” pushed by political leaders who ignore the Constitution’s limits on government power.

Taxpayers Paid Federal Workers Hundreds of Millions of Dollars Not to Work Last Week
(CNSNews.com)
– When the federal government closed for four days and two hours last week because of snow and ice in the Washington area, U.S. taxpayers still had to shell out an estimated $425 million to $670 million in wages and benefits to those workers. The federal government was officially shut down on Feb. 8, 9, 10, and 11 and opened for business two hours late on Feb. 12.

Islamic and Leftist Allies Defend Iran’s Human Rights Record at U.N. Gathering
(CNSNews.com)
– As the U.N. Human Rights Council scrutinized Iran’s domestic rights record on Monday, Western nations raised concerns about abuses including executions, torture and mass arrests, while Tehran’s Islamic and leftist allies lined up to defend and praise the regime. The events once again highlighted the deep divisions in the Geneva-based U.N. body, which the Obama administration joined last year.

Hillary Clinton Views Previous Iranian Governments as ‘Democratically Elected’
(CNSNews.com)
– Expanding her views on Iran “becoming a military dictatorship,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps was increasingly filling the space once held by Iran’s clerical and political leaders. Speaking in Saudi Arabia Monday, she suggested that the situation in Iran today has changed from an earlier one in which Iran had “democratically elected governments…which had the support of the Iranian people.”

Sen. Graham Wants Military Commanders’ Input On Whether Ending ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Will Hurt Recruitment
(CNSNews.com)
– While the Obama administration is pushing to repeal the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy regarding homosexuals in the military, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told CNSNews.com that he wants to hear from military commanders, not from politicians. He said he will not make a “political decision” to “reward a political movement.”

MSNBC’s Maddow Regrets Misquoting Senator Inhofe But Then Misquotes Him Again, Says Inhofe’s Office
(CNSNews.com)
– MSNBC news host Rachel Maddow corrected the record for misquoting Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) on her Feb. 9 broadcast — when she incorrectly claimed that the senator had praised federal economic stimulus spending. But she apparently has misquoted the senator again and, as Inhofe’s office told CNSNews.com, “We appreciate that Rachel is a proud liberal defending the massive government spending bills now flowing out of Washington, but hope she will consider making another correction.”

Kenneth Starr Named Baylor University President
The world’s largest Baptist university has named Kenneth Winston Starr, who is most well-known for his work as special prosecutor in the Clinton scandals, as its next president.

4 Christians Shot, 1 Kidnapped Since Start of Iraqi Campaign Season

Activists Call for N. Korea Freedom on Kim Jong-il’s Birthday

Millions to Mark Lent, Countdown to Easter

Report: Recession Keeping Marriages Intact, For Now

Megachurch to Kick Off Event Amid ‘Scathing’ Allegations

White House Marks Anniversary of Stimulus Despite Lack of Public Confidence
(CNSNews.com) –
Though unemployment is at 9.7 percent, and just six percent of Americans think the government has created jobs, President Barack Obama will hold a White House reception on Wednesday to mark the one-year anniversary of signing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, better known as the economic stimulus bill…

Obama’s Budget Deficit Could be Trillions of Dollars Higher Than CBO’s Outlook, Budget Watchdog Group Says
(CNSNews.com) –
Republicans railed against the Obama administration last month when the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) predicted a $6 trillion dollar deficit over the next decade. But an analysis by the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB), a taxpayer watchdog group, of President Obama’s proposed budget baseline for fiscal year 2011 points out it actually could spur more like $8.5 trillion in deficits…

New Initiative to Attract Latinos to Conservative Movement Mirrors Liberals’ Policy, Critic Charges(CNSNews.com) – The American Principles Project (APP) has launched an initiative designed to bring Latinos into the conservative movement by “supporting policies that are welcoming to immigrants,” but critics said one of the policies – the pathway to citizenship plan – is identical to the open border stance of President Barack Obama and other liberals…

Obama’s Faith-Based Adviser Harry Knox Bashed Pope and Catholic Church For Many Years, Records Show
(CNSNews.com) –
Harry Knox, who serves on President Barack Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and who has said the Pope is “hurting people in the name of Jesus,” has a record of making anti-Catholic statements…

Publication Denies Cover-Up on OIC Envoy, Implies Anti-Muslim Bias Lies Behind Story
(CNSNews.com) –
A Washington-based publication said Tuesday that it incorrectly quoted President Barack Obama’s newly appointed envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference as saying in 2004 that an American who aided a Palestinian terrorist group was the victim of “politically motivated persecutions.”…

Dubai Government Issues Warrants for Mystery Killers of Hamas Terrorist
(CNSNews.com) –
Authorities in the United Arab Emirates said Tuesday they were issuing international arrest warrants for 11 people – traveling on British, Irish, French and German passports – suspected of assassinating a top Hamas terrorist in a Dubai hotel room last month…

‘Mount Vernon Statement’ to unite conservatives
Leaders from different branches of the conservative movement are planning to release a document today in Washington that one longtime activist hopes will “codify what it means to be a small-government, principled conservative.”

Iowa faith leaders back same-gender ‘marriage’
More than 160 faith leaders in Iowa have voiced their support for same-sex “marriage” and are criticizing opponents who cite the Bible in raising objections.

Census fraud example of gov’t ineptitude
The Heritage Foundation’s Brian Darling says the findings of a new audit of the U.S. Census Bureau illustrate why the government cannot be trusted to stimulate the economy.

Ken Ham calls for ‘new Reformation’
The founder of the Creation Museum says American Christians are losing the culture war because many of them now believe what he calls the “pagan religion” of evolution.

Feature: Resurgence – Islam and the West
Christianity and Islam — the world’s two largest religions are quite similar in important ways, not the least of which is a core belief that its tenets are to be spread throughout the world.

Catholic Father, Jewish Mother Battle Over Daughter’s Faith
There’s a strong possibility a Chicago man could be jailed for defying a court order that temporarily barred him from taking his daughter to church.

Haitian Judge Frees 8 Americans; 2 Remain in Jail

Survey: Millennials Attend Religious Services Less Often than Older Adults

Mission Strategist: Camel Method ‘Very Useful’ for Muslim Outreach

Family of Slain Woman Drops Attempt to Sue Joyce Meyer Ministries

Pakistani Christians Outraged at Release of Suspects in Girl’s Death

‘Faith leaders’ undermine God’s plan for marriage
An official with the Institute on Religion & Democracy says it’s a sad sign of the times that a group of “faith leaders” in Iowa signed a document declaring their support for same-sex “marriage.”

Is ‘stimulus’ creating more jobs – or more debt?
A budget analyst with the Cato Institute says the one-year anniversary of President Obama’s economic “stimulus” package is yet another reminder that government cannot create new wealth, only redistribute it.

Perspective: O’s ‘faith-based economics’
The White House has no use for evidence that the stimulus failed. It has its computer models — and it’s not letting economic reality get in the way.

‘Public option’ still breathing
Some Senate Democrats apparently still believe they can pass a public health insurance option by going outside the Senate’s regular rules of order.

Missionaries freed by Haitian judge now in U.S.
Eight of the ten American missionaries charged with child kidnapping in Haiti returned to the U.S. aboard a military cargo plane early Thursday after nearly three weeks in a Haitian jail.

Top U.S. Climate Official: 15 Years With No Global Warming Is Not a Trend
(CNSNews.com) –
When asked yesterday whether she agreed or disagreed with one of the world’s top climate-change scientists that there had been no statistically significant global warming over the last fifteen years, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Administrator Jane Lubchenco would only say “that it is inappropriate to look at any particular short period of time to discern the long-term trend.”…

White House Still Can’t Say if Obama Knew in Advance on Christmas Day That Underwear Bomber Would Be Mirandized
(CNSNews.com) –
Almost two months after the attempted Christmas Day terror-bombing on a Northwest airlines flight from Amsterdam to Detroit, the White House still cannot say whether President Barack Obama knew in advance that the suspect would be read his Miranda rights on the same day as the attempted attack and after he had been interrogated for only 50 minutes…

White House: KSM will be Executed But Civilian Trial Defendants Presumed Innocent
(CNSNews.com) –
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs agreed that part of a civilian trial is the presumption that the accused is innocent until proven guilty, but Gibbs also said that Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the mastermind behind the 9/11 attacks, would be “convicted”  and  “executed for his crimes.”…The U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Christopher Hill, said on Wednesday that he is inspired by the upcoming March 7 election in Iraq and that democracy is taking root there, but he stopped short of giving any credit to the Bush administration for Iraq’s transition from a dictatorship to one where people will cast a vote for their future leaders…

U.S. Ambassador Praises Progress in Iraq, Skirts Question on Bush Legacy
(CNSNews.com) –

Event Attended by Obama’s Muslim Envoy Was Held by Group With Troubling Views, Ties
(CNSNews.com) –
The Islamic organization whose event was attended by President Obama’s new envoy to the Muslim world six years ago has a history of radical stances, and at the time of the event it was urging members to support incarcerated Muslims including terror suspects and a convicted cop killer…

‘Mt. Vernon Statement’ of Conservative Principles Released to Public
(CNSNews.com) –
America must return to “constitutional conservatism” and her  founding principles, which have been “under sustained attack,” reads a statement to be signed on Wednesday by 80 leaders of the conservative movement…

Freed Baptist Volunteers Arrive in Miami
Eight of the ten American volunteers detained in Haiti for the past three weeks on suspicion of child abduction were finally released and arrived in Miami early Thursday morning.

Christian Student Killed in Iraq; Fourth Murder in Days

Ugandan Pastor’s Gay Porn Stunt Upsets U.S. Christians

2 Years Later, Eritrea Frees 14 Christians

Salvation Army Reaches Settlement in Church-State Suit

Poll: Mississippians Most Likely to Attend Church Frequently

Romney to Obama: Stop Blaming Others for Failure
(CNSNews.com)
– Saying that America is not better off than it was $1.8 trillion ago, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney said President Obama should stop blaming his predecessor and the American people for high unemployment and growing deficit and failure of the Democratic health care overhaul proposal…

D.C. Archdiocese Ends Foster Care Program Over Same-Sex Marriage Bill, Which Allows Homosexual Couples to Adopt Children
(CNSNews.com) –
The Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. has ended its 80-year tenure as a public foster care provider because of a same-sex marriage bill in the nation’s capital that allows children to be adopted by homosexual couples…

Former Justice Dept Official Launches Site Exploring Harmful Effects of Pornography
(CNSNews.com)
– Patrick Trueman, a former Justice Department (DOJ) official during the Reagan and Bush 41 administrations, launched a Web site on Thursday aimed at illuminating the damage pornography can do to society…

‘Both Parties Are Guilty,’ Boehner Says at CPAC
(CNSNews.com) –
At the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) pledged that Americans can count on him to change the way Congress works if Republicans take the House in the coming elections. He also stressed that he is “serious” about listening to “those who are really in charge of this country: the American people.”…

Revolutionary Guard Meddling in Iranian Politics Began Decades Ago
(CNSNews.com)
– The Obama administration is painting Tehran’s failure to respond to its overtures as the result of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) having “supplanted” political and clerical leaders who would otherwise likely have been more open to engaging the U.S…

Cheney Passes Political Torch to His Daughter and ‘The Younger Generation’ at Surprise CPAC Appearance
(CNSNews.com) –
Former Vice President Dick Cheney made a surprise visit to the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) on Thursday, joining his daughter Liz Cheney on the stage, in front of a standing and cheering crowd…

Crist, McCain challengers woo conservatives
Marco Rubio and J.D. Hayworth have different styles and different backgrounds and they’re from opposite sides of the country. But both are hoping to win Senate seats by tapping into the energy of conservatives to defeat big-name, establishment-backed Republicans.

Perspective: It’s all the Tea Party’s fault
From the attack on the IRS office in Austin to the shooting at Alabama-Huntsville, the Tea Party movement is the juvenile left’s all-purpose scapegoat for every crime and disaster.

Consequences of proposed ‘LBGT law’ for military
A coalition of conservative pro-family and national defense organizations is advising Congress to pursue answers to a specific question: How would repealing the ban on homosexual military service improve military readiness?

Are Ezekiel prophecies on the horizon?
Messianic Jewish ministry leader Jan Markell believes a couple of biblical prophecies dealing with wars in the Middle East could come to fruition within the next five years.

Benny Hinn’s wife files for divorce
Suzanne Hinn filed the papers in Orange County on February 1, citing irreconcilable differences after more than 30 years of marriage to the televangelist.

Lutherans Unveil Name, Plan for Rival Body
Lutherans who have left or are pondering their exit from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America have put a name to the alternate church body they plan to form – North American Lutheran Church.

Attorney: Haiti Volunteer to Set Facts Straight

Christian Educators Barred from Arguing Against Anti-Religious Court Order

Faith-Based Office Not Just about Money, Says Director

Kentucky Committee OKs Bible Classes for Public Schools

Ethiopian Authorities Concoct New Charge against Christian

Stung’ abortionist retains license
A controversial California abortionist will keep his medical license in spite of pleas from the California Medical Board.

‘W’ to speak at pregnancy center banquet
A Southern Baptist church in Dallas has booked a special guest speaker for a weekend fundraiser for its pregnancy center.

DC citizens blocked again on marriage vote
On Friday, another court hearing was held in the District of Columbia on whether citizens will have a chance to vote on the homosexual “marriage” issue.

Florida library sued over access issue
A Florida library slammed the door on a Christian organization and now faces a federal court lawsuit.

Perspective: America’s real foundational problem
The greatest problem in America is a spiritual one…and even the church, by and large, doesn’t know what to do to restore the biblical foundations.


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