Archive for the ‘Christianity in America’ Category

Public schools in America allow Planned Parenthood access to the youngest of children in order to push their hyper-sexual, destructive agenda. They justify perversion and deceptively use terms like health, science, and “age appropriate;” and with the help of your tax dollars, they’re exposing kids to pornography, homosexuality, sexual experimentation and of course, abortion as they normalize unrestrained sex.

It’s no surprise public school children are getting hooked on sex.

Following the same business model as a drug dealer, Planned Parenthood’s goal is to make sex addicts. With the help of Hollywood, pop-culture, music, and the education system, this godless worldview has already led to tragically high numbers of abortions among teenage girls and young women. And what happens when sex between boys and girls doesn’t lead to pregnancies? Planned Parenthood also makes money offering testing services for STD’s.

First, they introduce obscene sex-ed materials encouraging risky sexual behavior in young people through our schools. They may even pass out condoms and talk about “safe sex,” but never abstinence or purity. Planned Parenthood purposely and maliciously exposes children to things they are not mature enough to comprehend; things in generations past that were only discussed at home with parents.

Do you really know what Planned Parenthood is selling as normal, natural, and healthy? Sexual content depicting people in various sexual positions – along with images of male and female body parts, masturbation, and anal sex.

Producer of a 2012 American Life League report, Michael Hichborn stated:

“If a dirty old man in a park showed ten-year-old children the graphic images Planned Parenthood pedals as education, he would be arrested.  Planned Parenthood shows this smut to children and is awarded with more taxpayer money…

It’s hard to believe American parents are on board with this so I have to conclude that they don’t know about it. A book already promoted in many schools by Planned Parenthood discusses sexual intercourse, experimentation, homosexuality, and pornography. Guess what the book is called? “It’s Perfectly Normal.”

The controversy came up again recently, this time on the House floor in Minnesota as Representative Eric Lucero flipped through the book describing some of the content including naked caricatures of young boys and girls looking at their bodies in the mirror. Parents should not have to ‘opt out’ their children of content that ought not to be taught in the first place.

Like many of us, Lucero was also concerned not only about the graphic nature of the content, but the reckless idea that pornography is normal and healthy. The truth is porn degrades women, destroys families, relationships, and can lead to sexual abuse.

Parents and grandparents, our culture has been hijacked by radicals and open war is upon us. Tragically, children are the target as well as the victims here.

With the transgender revolution, we’re already seeing some of the consequences of removing God, moral absolutes, prayer, and the subject of intelligent design from schools.

…Only God can heal this land, but it’s clear over half the country has abandoned Him and rejected biblical morality. The gospel must be preached and the truth must be told! So what’s it going to be?

FULL POST HERE

Video courtesy of Freedom Project Media

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The new mantra these days that you have your truth and I have mine is simply an extension of the 1960s, “If it feels good, do it.” So, should sin be redefined based on ever-changing times and pop-culture? What about the Law of Nature and nature’s God? Is there a moral standard? And now, we may soon find out if America is ready for an open-homosexual to be president – who, by the way, claims to be a Christian!

But feelings don’t change the truth. So the debate continues: Can we make up our own individual morality? Should the Bible be rewritten? The fact is God never changes, the human heart is wicked, man is sinful, and we all need a Savior.

John Stonestreet at Breakpoint is right, saying there’s an epidemic of self-centered faith in our culture as well as our churches.

If there were an Americanized translation of the Apostle’s Creed for today, it would be something like this: “I believe in God the Father, Almighty, who always supports my feelings.”

Enter openly gay mayor of South Bend, Indiana, Pete Buttigieg, now a 2020 presidential candidate, who claims his homosexual lifestyle and marriage to a man has brought him closer to God. He also thinks God made him gay, so he obviously concludes homosexuality can’t be a sin.

The mayor may be most well-known for attacking the faith and character of Vice President, Mike Pence who responded with grace. Pete says he’s a Christian, but he doesn’t get to invent another doctrine or his own version of Christianity. That’s called idolatry. Either way, the media sure loves him.

They’re on board, promoting this new progressive 2020 candidate with glee. Senior editor of CNN, Kyle Blaine even sent an eye-opening tweet, saying:

This Buttigieg/Pence episode illustrates a core question many LGBT people have to confront at some point in their life: Can you be “friends” with someone who believes that something at the very core of who you are is wicked and should be changed?

First, there’s no “episode.” Buttigieg is good at insulting Mike Pence and others who disagree with his twisted theology, but Pence has not retaliated. He compliments the Indiana mayor as a “dedicated public servant.” The victim card may not work as Buttigieg intends.

CNN’s Kyle Blaine is actually suggesting every LGBT individual must question whether or not they can even be a friend of someone who is a truly converted Christian. What I mean by using descriptors is there are millions of pretend or “professing” Christians who do not believe the whole Bible nor do they live by its teachings.

What we’re talking about here are authentic, born-again Christ followers who trust Jesus, God’s Word, and understand holiness and sanctification. CNN and others continually provide a platform for people like Blaine who indirectly suggest a Christian is not worth befriending.

The truth is by nature, we are rebellious toward God. Scripture reminds us “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” and “our righteousness is as filthy rags.”

Author Peter Heck points out the fact teaching about the sickness of the human heart goes back before the early church to the Prophets. We all need redemption.

That’s not just “the gays.” It’s everybody. And since every human being is wicked at our core, we Christians believe that the heart of every human being must be changed; We recognize it for all mankind, including ourselves.

But many progressives cannot allow themselves to believe man is inherently evil. Even Jesus said no one is good except God alone. Man at his best falls short; we need a Savior, but this doesn’t bode too well with those who have redefined sin.

We are made in God’s image, but we each have a conscience and moral awareness. I don’t have a problem with who Buttigieg is; I simply disagree with what him doing whatever he feels like doing and calling it “Christian.” There are too many hypocrites and posers in American churches trying the same thing, the difference being their sin of choice is something other than homosexuality.

Human identity is much more than the sum total of someone’s sexual inclinations. Everett Piper of the Washington Times responded to Buttigieg this way:

[T]he “creator” whom you so boldly reference makes this pretty clear. There is no place in His entire biblical narrative where He defines us by our desires. All of us, however, are known by our choices. …You see, Mr. Mayor, this is a matter of your proclivities, not your personhood; If you want us to stay out of your bedroom, please shut the door. Stop opening it up and forcing us to applaud and celebrate.

When feelings trump truth, we’re in serious trouble. It has become trendy to ignore biological, natural roles our bodies have in procreation, as well as the historically accepted meaning of marriage between one man and one woman. But sadly, feelings have practically become the new authority or at least the measure of personal identity.

What may be most concerning however, is the biblical illiteracy in our churches as well as the radical shift in public opinion when it comes to God, government, and being gay. In all three, evil is being called good and good, evil. Our great grandparents and founding fathers would be extremely confused by today’s America; and perhaps indignant. One thing is certain: they would not remain silent.

Freedom Project Media video

When one of the most popular Christian leaders in America focuses more on personal growth, self-improvement, and positive thinking than on the essential doctrines of the faith such as repentance from sin, sanctification, and the atoning work of Jesus Christ, there’s a problem. The prosperity gospel preached by men such as Joel Osteen has been described as biblically anemic theology. And millions have fallen for it.

It’s like a caffeine or sugar high with the nutritional value of cotton candy, but make no mistake: it can be quite lucrative for those preaching it. A friend of mine visited his church and said there are no crosses and there was no mention of Jesus.

Lakewood Church in Houston church rakes in about $70 million a year. For his latest book, Joel Osteen received a $13 million-dollar advance. One book. He and his wife have a fortune estimated at $60 million. His 17,000 square-foot mansion is listed at $10.7 million and has six bathrooms, five fireplaces, three elevators, a swimming pool, guest house, and parking for 20 cars – including his $230,000 Ferrari.

…People who practice Joel Osteen’s formula for success and then get cancer or fail to get the expected results end up disillusioned or worse; they blame God! It might feel good short term, but many people get angry at God if things don’t work out the way they want them to and they fall away from Him.

Rather than catering to self, the Bible teaches us to surrender our lives to Christ. The Gospel of Luke 9:23-24 quotes Jesus as saying:

“If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.”

The true Christian faith is honest right up front because the road to eternal life is narrow and hard. The Bible promises persecution, trials, and that people will hate you. Jesus said we will have trouble in this world.

President of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Dr. Albert Mohler offered some insightful comments on a recent an article in The Financial Times in which the writer destroys Joel Osteen’s brand of Christianity and contrasts prosperity theology with teachings in Scripture. The author is not even a believer.

Editor of The Financial Times, progressive writer Edward Luce, visited Lakewood Church in Houston and interviewed Osteen. Luce writes about what he sees as a contradiction between Joel Osteen’s preaching and the historic, orthodox Christian faith. He calls Lakewood, “the most significant temple to the prosperity gospel in America.”

…Only God knows the hearts of those who preach watered-down doctrines such as word-faith and the prosperity gospel, but those who are teachers will be held to a much higher standard (James 3:1) by the Lord who exalts His precious Word. To embrace and follow Christ, we must hold the things of this life loosely and set our hearts on things above (Col. 3:1-3)…

Read the full post here:

The Left may be godless, but they’re not stupid. Their deceptive and shrewd use of strategic words has helped them change public opinion, gain political power, and frame nearly every controversial argument or debate. They weaponize words such as choice, freedom, do no harm, inclusive, justice, fairness, affordable, tolerance, and nondiscrimination.

Liberal Democrats are now pushing the so-called ‘Equality Act’ which would give LGBTQ individuals – not equal rights, but special rights. There’s a difference. This bill would silence Christians in America. Don’t be deceived: there’s nothing equal about the equality Act.

Words matter, and the left knows exactly how to manipulate language and use positive-sounding terminology to sell their agenda. Semantics is part of the game for LGBTQ activists looking to steamroll citizens for their beliefs in the Bible, including marriage and biological sex.

The Equality Act – H.R. 5 and S. 788 – would actually amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by adding “sex, sexual orientation, gender identity’ as protected classes throughout the federal code.” This modified amendment would apply to employment, housing, rental, public accommodation and much more.

The bill would essentially state that religious beliefs cannot be defended in a dispute between gay rights and constitutionally protected religious rights. If you believe the Bible is true and agree with God-ordained, natural marriage, too bad. You lose.

The Heritage Foundation’s Monica Burke wrote an excellent piece for the Daily Signal in which she thoroughly explained seven reasons why the Equality Act is anything but. If the bill passes it would:

  1. Impose sexual ideology
  2. Compel speech
  3. Shut down charities
  4. Allow more biological males to defeat girls in sports
  5. Coerce medical professionals
  6. Lead to more parents losing custody of their children
  7. Enable sexual assault

The logical aim of their ideology is to eradicate God, His word, and biblical morality from our culture and country. Why? Because Christianity is one of the only obstacles in the way of the radical Left gaining complete power and control of practically every aspect of America.

Due to decades of leftist progress, activists have been emboldened and we’re now seeing open hostility toward Christians – in a nation founded on biblical principles.

We didn’t get here overnight, and this effort did not start with the LGBTQ movement. It goes back to the 1950s, when the unconstitutional Lyndon Johnson Amendment was used to silence Christians, nonprofits, and conservatives. Today’s liberals are simply taking another step.

The freedom of religious expression is one of our most basic and valued freedoms in our society.

Let’s go back a bit further – to America’s founding. The First Amendment states:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

The First Amendment guarantees freedoms concerning religion, expression, assembly, and the right to petition.  It forbids Congress from both promoting one religion over others as well as restricting an individual’s religious practices. The key word here is ‘practice.’ Your faith is not something you do only behind church walls.

Don’t be so naive to think the Pelosi Democrats merely want to level the playing field. They’d snuff out Christianity if they could. They refuse to allow open discussion of biblical creation, human life in the womb, and of God’s design for marriage and gender roles.

Breakpoint’s John Stonestreet stated:

“The supporters of the Equality Act don’t want debate or discussion. The Equality Act is designed to effectively shut down debate about human sexuality, about gender, about same-sex attraction. That’s a national debate that we’ve actually never had.”

To clarify, discrimination is wrong, but disagreement is not hate. We should have the right to disagree with policies, ideologies, and behaviors that oppose biblical teachings. The Equality Act would elevate sexual orientation and gender identity to protected classes, impose a nationwide bathroom policy, and it would defeat the purpose of having anti-discrimination laws.

Don’t fall for the lies of the left, and don’t buy into the so-called ‘Equality Act’ no matter how virtuous it may sound. We know what their end game is. What can we do? Fight for the truth, pray, speak, and vote. Then trust God regardless of the outcome, knowing judgment is coming soon.

Originally published by Freedom Project Media

Is God-ordained marriage being deconstructed  in America? In order to eliminate natural marriage in society, it must first be rendered meaningless. How could that happen? You might say ‘gays and lesbians pushing same-sex marriage for several decades’, and you’d only be partially right. Many factors lead to marriage being redefined.

Recent surveys done by Barna Research concluded that adultery, premarital sex and cohabitation have basically become the new normal in America. In addition, according to the National Center for Health Statistics, seventy-five percent of Americans say it’s okay to have and raise children when the parents are living together but not married. So how did we get here? 

Fifty years ago, a Gallup poll was done showing only 21% of Americans said premarital sex was acceptable; 68% said it was wrong. That was 1969. So what happened to change the attitudes of people about marriage over five decades?

Skyrocketing divorce rates among heterosexuals have added to the problem, as well as the increasing divorce rate among Christians. Did you know that since around the early 1960s, the divorce rate in America has increased over 100% to where now more than one out of every two marriages ends in divorce?

Bisexual, pedophile, and sexologist, Alfred Kinsey did much damage to people’s healthy views of sex and marriage in the 1950s. Dig up the truth about Kinsey sometime, not the whitewashed Hollywood version. He used children in his sex experiments as well as prostitutes. 

Planned Parenthood’s founding feminist, adulterer, eugenicist, racist, and atheist, Margaret Sanger promoted sexual freedom at a time when the word abortion was spoken about in hushes and whispers. She was among the first to promote monogamous marriage as a ball and chain! We’ve now reached the point where killing a baby in the womb is just another form of birth control.

The Feminist movement and cry for women’s liberation and equality sounded good in its early stages, but it is no longer about equal pay or equal rights. It has become a liberal, anti-family, socialist movement detrimental to God-ordained, natural marriage and healthy families. 

Then, a major cultural event happened fifty years ago, billed as “3 Days of Peace and Music” in White Lake, New York. Woodstock drew nearly 500,000 people in 1969. There were drugs, nudity, sex, rock and roll, and a lot of mud from the rain.

It is widely regarded as a pivotal moment in pop music history and the peak of the hippie counterculture. Ideas of rebellion against authority, peace, love, sex, tolerance, and unity resonated throughout the country – bringing us to today’s godless culture in which two thirds of adults (65%) say it’s a good idea to live with one’s significant other before getting married.

But one of the saddest findings to me is that in a survey of professing Christians, almost half of them (48%) live with or have previously lived with their boyfriend or girlfriend. This makes me wonder if we’re all reading the same Holy Bible.

We didn’t see all the causes decades ago, but we’re sure seeing the effects today…

(Read the full post at DavidFiorazo.com)

Government education in America kicked God, prayer, the Bible, and the Ten Commandments out of public schools over fifty years ago leaving a massive spiritual void. The doors were then flung open to Atheism, evolution, Humanism, witchcraft, Islam, Liberalism, sexual promiscuity, the LGBTQ agenda, and recently, Buddhism. 

Our tax dollars now support the teaching of an ABC curriculum: Anything But Christ. All the religions in the world cannot possibly be true, but in a secular culture influenced by postmodernism, people don’t want to hear there is only one way to God. But if you’re sincerely seeking truth, I suggest you take a look at Jesus before trying everything else. 

The coexist slogan was actually created to oppose Christianity, and demand that we keep our beliefs to ourselves. Public schools follow this philosophy and insist we conform and tolerate all behavior as well as other religious claims.

Just last year, middle school students were asked to write the Islamic declaration of faith known as the “shahada,” which pledges allegiance to the prophet Muhammad and the Muslim god, Allah. 

And now, the American Center for Law and Justice has received complaints from parents in eleven states so far about the growing practice of teachers incorporating Buddhism-based mindfulness practices into everyday curriculum of elementary school age children.

“Some students are required to participate in as many as three meditation or mindfulness sessions each school day. Most of the programs include audio recordings encouraging children to empty their minds or watch their thoughts float away on a cloud. Others encourage children to be one with the universe; …several teachers, upon learning of the undisputable religious connection between mindfulness and Buddhism, have ceased using the curriculum and practicing mindfulness in their classrooms.”

Christian-based teachings however, have been expelled from public schools. But wait. Isn’t it intolerant to give a pass to every other religion except Christianity? All religions make exclusive claims, but people hate Jesus because He is the only one to claim He is God. And yet, He predicted and accomplished His own death and resurrection!

It is disingenuous to just ignore these historical facts. C.S. Lewis once stated:

“A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse.”

The inescapable question is who do you say Jesus is? Neutrality is not an option. Jesus said He is “the way, the truth and the life,” and that no one comes to God the Father except through Him (John 14:6).

Most people think their way is right. But when Christians say Jesus is the right way and the Bible is true, we’re often mocked and called hateful, intolerant, or judgmental. Hold on. Isn’t it hateful to mock and disrespect someone’s religious beliefs? And aren’t you judging by accusing Christians of being judgmental for saying we’re all sinners and only God forgives sins?

Christianity is the only religion founded on historical events that can be evaluated; events that were witnessed by thousands of people – most of whom were still alive when many New Testament books were written! Compelling evidence is available supporting the Bible as being reliable, accurate, and true.

But there’s a problem: recent Barna Group research shows nearly 60% of Americans agree with the philosophy:

“Many religions can lead to eternal life; there is no ‘one true religion.’

One reason might be we think we can be good without God. Ask a person if they’re going to heaven when they die and most will say yes, but it’s not because they believe in Jesus. They think they’re a good person and can be saved by working hard and doing more good than bad in this life.

To claim all religions are the same is either denial or ignorance. Similarities, perhaps; sameness, absolutely not. Every religion at its core is exclusive. Apologist and author, Ravi Zacharias said:

“All religions are not the same. All religions do not point to God; …At the heart of every religion is an uncompromising commitment to a particular way of defining who God is or is not, and accordingly, of defining life’s purpose.

Like it or not, it all comes down to what we believe about Jesus. And what about other belief systems? Who do other religions say Jesus is? 

  • Bahai teaches that Jesus was a messenger, a manifestation of God; that heaven and hell are not real, there is no Trinity, and all the different religions are part of one single plan by God. 
  • Buddhists say Jesus was just an enlightened man, that we will be reincarnated, and we can work our way to salvation or higher consciousness. There is an eight-fold plan to enlightenment, and a few goals of Buddhism include avoiding the extremes of pain and pleasure, and to eradicate worldly desires.
  • Christian Science rejects Jesus’ sacrifice and teaches that sin doesn’t exist so there’s no need for a savior. God is referred to as “the Father-Mother,” known as the Divine Mind, having no personhood or personality.
  • Free Masons believe in a “Supreme Being” also referred to as GAOTU, the “Great Architect Of The Universe, but the name of Jesus is prohibited in formal lodge ceremonies. 
  • Hinduism teaches reincarnation, karma, and that Jesus was a holy man and wise teacher, but one of millions of gods. There are many paths to God; Brahman is the source of all things and we all have divine nature.
  • Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Jesus was Michael the Archangel, a created being, and that the cross is a pagan symbol. They deny Christ as God, deny the resurrection, and the Trinity. (Their own version of the Bible is the NWT)
  • Judaism teaches that Jesus was a false prophet and a liar. While many confirm Jesus did miracles, they claim that His power was from the Devil. (By the way, Jewish records affirm the execution of Jesus.)
  • Latter Day Saints Mormons believe that God was once a man, Jesus was created as the spirit brother of Lucifer; and that we can all become gods. The Book of Mormon is subtitled, “Another Testament of Jesus Christ” but it is clearly another Jesus.
  • Muslims think Jesus was just a prophet and healer. Islam also teaches that Jesus wasn’t crucified and did not really die on the cross (Judas took His place), that good works are needed for salvation; man is not made in the image of God, and the Qur’an and Hadith are authoritative in a Muslim’s life.
  • Roman Catholics believe salvation includes a process ranging from faith in Jesus – to faith plus good deeds and adherence to Church sacraments including confirmation, and the authority of the pope as well as Roman Catholic Church tradition and Catechism. (Catholic friends, please see below!) Your Church called me “anathema.”
  • Seventh Day Adventists teach that Jesus is Michael the Archangel, and SDA founder and prophetess Ellen G. White was a messenger of God, Satan will bear our sins, and when we die we will not exist anymore.
  • Unitarians think Jesus was no more divine than you or me but was a great teacher and a faith healer, they hold to the universal redemption of all mankind, deny the Trinity, and profess to have no real dogma. Unitarian Universalists use many biblical concepts and terms, but with non-biblical meanings. They are not Christian. 

Jesus is either a liar, a lunatic, or Lord and God. No one measures up to God’s standard of righteousness.

Every one of these contradict essential teachings in the Bible. So who is Jesus? When He asked the Apostle Peter that question, he answered Him,

“You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” (Matt. 16:16)

Just months after seeing Jesus resurrected, Peter stated:

And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)

No man or religion measures up to God’s perfect standard of righteousness. Psalm 18:30 states:

As for God, His way is perfect; the word of the LORD is flawless.

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Colossians saying that by Christ, “all things were created,” and that, “He is before all things;” (Col. 1:16)

Jesus is the Creator and He pre-existed with the Father and the Spirit. The Apostle John stated:

God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. (1 John 5:11-12)

Only Jesus can free you from the power and penalty of sin. He alone can transform you, restore you, and give your life eternal purpose. Stop striving and come back to God, repent and believe in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. 

Though Paul wrote that Christians are God’s masterpieces and we were created to do good works (Eph. 2:10), we clearly understand, “the just shall live by faith (Romans 1:17),” and: 

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. Ephesians 2:8-9 

Other religions teach you to work, work, work, and do, do, do. Christianity teaches it’s done! Jesus’ last words on the cross were “It is finished.” He completed the work, the mission for which God sent Him to secure the eternal salvation for those who believe in Him.

There are many paths, but one way and Truth: Jesus. This is important to understand because we’re being bombarded with ideologies and false teachings today in schools, media, academia, Hollywood, and throughout our culture. Discern, test the spirits, and watch.

More blogs, videos, and resources at DavidFiorazo.com

Lovers of the Grinch and Ebenezer Scrooge want to snuff out Christmas for the majority of Americans. Sure, you’re allowed to sing about Rudolf and Frosty, you can make it all about Santa and presents, jingle some bells or roast chestnuts by an open fire, but don’t you dare mention Jesus Christ and the real meaning of Christmas! 

It should be the most wonderful time of the year, but it’s also the season that atheists and activists feverishly push the agenda to blot out God. 

Their hearts are so hardened, they not only refuse to believe in Jesus and Christmas, but since misery loves company, they don’t want anyone else to believe it either! They don’t mind the commercialism and greed around the holiday; they just insist you to say ‘happy holidays’ instead of Merry Christmas.

This joyful season began because God so loved the world, but they want to censor the celebration and eradicate Christ from Christmas. But is that even possible?

You cannot divorce the true, historical event of the Child born in Bethlehem from the God of creation and the reason we celebrate Christmas. But that doesn’t mean the atheists and God-haters won’t try.

After all, they were successful removing Christianity from public schools so they figure, why not ban Christmas as well?

More news stories are on the way, I’m sure. But here are a few to consider.

  • A middle school in Virginia recently decided not to allow any holiday songs that mention the name of Jesus.
  • In Newaygo, Michigan, secularists demand the elementary school remove three wise men displayed on the top of the school building.
  • A principal at a Nebraska school has banned Christmas carols, the colors red and green, candy canes, and Jesus.

This next one may be hard to believe,

  • Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer is being called “seriously problematic” for bullying, racism, sexism, and homophobia. 
  • Just one more: the Huffington Post and other far-left outlets are telling people that saying “Merry Christmas” excludes people, so teach children to say “Happy Holidays” instead. I agree with Paul Bois at the Daily Wire who says it’s hypocritical for business owners and managers to decorate their stores or websites in red, green and all the rest, play Christmas music and then say “Happy Holidays.” He adds:

Christmas is the national holiday; the reason for the season. The ornaments, the lights, the music, the food, the shopping even, all reflect that; …If it looks like Christmas, smells like Christmas, sounds like Christmas, then just say Christmas.

But the annual war on Christmas is here, like it or not, and we need to decide how to respond.

First, remember that these people are lost and are far from God. They hate Christmas and often Christians as well, and need our patience and prayers because they have no real hope or peace. They’ve not yet experienced the love God has for them if they’d just turn to Him and confess their sins. That’s why Jesus was born – “the Word became flesh…(John 1:14)” and preached, “Repent! The kingdom of God is at hand (Matthew 3:2).”

Second, make no mistake: this is a war on Jesus Christ. Those who are trying to blot out reminders of God by removing Christmas traditions like manger scenes and joy filled greetings simply don’t want to answer to the One who Scripture refers to as “Mighty God.”

The prophet Isaiah wrote about Jesus nearly 700 years before He was born:

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6

Apart from Jesus Christ, there is no lasting peace in this world. Know Jesus, know peace. What did Isaiah mean by referring to Him as Everlasting Father? Jesus is Lord and eternal, along with God the Father and the Holy Spirit. There was never a time when Jesus did not exist. He continues from generation to generation, and His kingdom will never end.

The meaning of Christmas is based on true, actual events including angels appearing to shepherds (Luke 2) and a baby born at just the right time in history in order to redeem mankind (Galatians 4:4). Wishing someone a Merry Christmas is saying we desire for them to know the love, joy, and forgiveness of God as we do.

President of the Family Research Council, Tony Perkins said:

Why is something as simple as saying “Merry Christmas” so important? It reminds a hurting world of the greatest gift we can receive in Jesus Christ, and it symbolizes the freedom to celebrate that gift.

Don’t just remember the reason for the season; that Christ was born to save mankind by His sacrifice on the cross. Share the good news of salvation and let your light shine by loving others and wishing them a heartfelt, “Merry Christmas!” And make sure to have one yourself!

This Thanksgiving season, there’s good news and there’s bad news and it may depend on your perspective. As you know, most of our founders came to this bountiful land to live in freedom from religious persecution, and their standards were based on the principles in the Holy Bible. And yet, here we are in 2018 – hanging on by a thread to the religious freedoms this nation has enjoyed – and has taken for granted. 

Though we’re seeing a toxic increase of hatred, we can be still thankful for our history – and especially for hope.

The very first Thanksgiving took place almost 400 years ago—long before the nation was even born. But prior to arriving on these shores, William Bradford, the founder of Plymouth colony settlement wrote:

“…Having undertaken, for the Glory of God and advancement of the Christian Faith and Honor of our King and Country, a Voyage to plant the First Colony.”

God is a big part of our history and always has been. The United States Congress once issued an official Proclamation of Thanksgiving and Prayer on October 18, 1780, calling on Americans “to cause the knowledge of Christianity to spread all over the Earth.”

Sadly, true American history has been edited or even deleted from public school text books. We have forgotten that the good news of Jesus Christ was once foundational to our liberties as well as our lives and as a result of our forgetting, the nation has gone from spiritual to secular. Proverbs 14:34 states:

“We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of Heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God.

We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own.

Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!

Lincoln was right. He implored the people to confess their sins, and to pray for forgiveness and God’s mercy on America.

Today, we are plagued by political correctness and moral relativism, lawlessness, people calling good evil and evil good, a loss of values, and the breakdown of social order. Moreover, Hollywood and the culture have a far greater influence on the church than the church has in and on our culture.

Signs of the times indicate this nation is in rapid decline, but how long do we really have? This is up for debate and speculation. But let’s consider some of the cultural, social, and spiritual symptoms common to nations that have fallen or have been destroyed:

  • Increasing rebellion against God
  • A loss of economic discipline
  • Greed; increased materialism
  • Rising government bureaucracy and taxes
  • Declining education in quality, morality, and in measurable results
  • Lack of respect for authority
  • Policies based on feelings over facts
  • The acceptance of foreign gods and empty religious practices
  • The promotion of sin and perversion
  • A decline in value of human life leading to abortion and euthanasia

Perhaps instead of asking God to bless America we should be asking Him to save us! Repentance must come first, and Christians must lead by example. If your heart is heavy reading some of this, know there is a God who loves you and wants you to turn back to Him.

If you tend to be on social media or look at the news a little too much, at government, public schools, the corporate world, the entertainment industry or culture in general, it can be quite discouraging. But if we look at all the things we each have personally and at this country in which we’re blessed to live, we can be thankful and we can take heart.

First, there’s always hope in the promises of God which the Bible describes as an anchor to our souls during storms in life. Second, if Jesus Christ is the cornerstone of your faith, your foundation won’t be shaken as it is built upon the Rock and you know all this is temporary.

Third, as imperfect as it is, we still live in one of the most amazing countries on earth. We have countless blessings, conveniences, and advantages as citizens of this beacon of freedom. Why do you think millions of less fortunate people dream about living in America? Many still risk their lives to come here.

And fourth, if you woke up today, opened your eyes and got out of bed; if you generally have your health, family in Christ, food on the table or in a refrigerator; if you have clean, running water, electricity, a house to live in, a car to drive, a job to go to and even some bills that are paid, you are abundantly blessed more than 75% of people in countries around the world.

I am particularly grateful for each day because by the grace of God, I had a successful heart operation in April of this year.

Every day we have so much to be thankful for, so let’s –

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, and His mercy endures forever.Psalm 136:1

O God, restore us and cause Your face to shine upon us, and we will be saved. Psalm 80:3

In Texas of all places, a few public school students sat down at an empty table in the lunchroom to quietly pray for a classmate who was in an accident. The school principal, Lee Frost, immediately walked over to them and warned them: “Don’t do that again.” It’s as if they just dropped f-bombs, looked at porn, vandalized something, or bullied another student.

But sadly, at plenty of schools – funded by our tax dollars – the environment isn’t exactly supportive or friendly to expressions of the Christian faith, the Bible, or the name of Jesus. Students shouldn’t be forced to go outside or pray in secret, especially when they’re on their own time. 

Jesus taught Christians to let their light shine before others so people might be drawn to Him. But the postmodern, progressive education system and liberal teachers today (not all, but most) have been on a collision course with the Bible and the Constitution.

The school principal went so far as to tell these eighth-grade students to hide behind the curtain on the school cafeteria stage if they prayed again during lunch. In other words, Christians should stay out of sight.

Lawyers with First Liberty Institute, representing Hannah Allen, one of the students, stated:

“By mandating that Hannah and the other students hide when they pray, Principal Frost sends a message to Hannah and all the other students in the school that prayer is illegitimate, disfavored, and should not occur in public; By quarantining the praying students as if to shield the other students form an infectious disease, Frost acts with religious hostility impermissible under the Constitution and demeans the religious beliefs of Hannah and her friends.”

It’s worse with each passing decade; there is less and less tolerance of the light of Christianity within the increasing darkness of the public school system. 

What would happen if a few Muslim students gathered in the same way and prayed? I think you know the answer to that. In fact, more schools across the country have openly allowed religious instruction on Islam while practically banning the Christian faith. 

In this Texas case, the offending prayer took place during lunch, not during class instruction time. Students are allowed to talk and move around the cafeteria. The problem is many children and parents don’t know their rights.

The Constitution hasn’t changed, even though some would love to rewrite it – just like today’s history text books have been rewritten. Fortunately in this nation, our speech is still protected by the First Amendment. 

This is perhaps a double-edged sword: on one hand, going back to the 1960s there has been an agenda to remove God from public schools and the culture. On the other hand, too many Christian leaders and parents have quietly backed out of culture, avoiding any controversial issue and choosing not to take a stand for the faith, the gospel, and for truth. 

When will we learn that if we do not use our precious religious freedoms, we’re in danger of losing them?

The Bible hasn’t changed and Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). Let’s follow the example of the early church: after being threatened and told not to speak the name of Jesus, His disciples said, “We must obey God rather than man (Acts 5:29).”

Bold faith is contagious, and it stiffens the spines of other believers. Pray for these kids and young Christian students across the U.S. in government schools who are dealing with discrimination and intolerance. And let’s remember to be good examples of Christ (shine) and speak up ourselves.

*originally published at Freedom Project Media

If Jesus rebuked many of the early churches for straying, leaving their first love, putting up with false doctrine, or for being lukewarm, how could we, American Christians, think He wouldn’t harshly rebuke many of our seeker-sensitive, shallow, lukewarm churches today?

Some might claim the Church is thriving here in the United States of Entertainment. I would ask them why then doesn’t it translate out into society. Who is driving culture today, Christians or atheists and secular progressives? Biblical morality or godlessness?

The truth is too many professing believers have generally conformed to the world and have failed to defend and preserve culture through Judeo-Christian values. We are to be salt in society: to not only flavor and enhance culture but to influence it as well. Salt is a preservative, but it can also irritate, especially if it touches an exposed wound. Paul told believers at Ephesus to walk as children of light and,

Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; (Eph. 5:11)

Too many in American churches do just the opposite! We accommodate popular sins (abortion and homosexuality). Why? Because the Supreme Court ruled they are legal, of course. But just because something is legal does not make it moral. Has the Supreme Ruler and Judge changed His mind on certain sins? Not at all!

We have watered down the Word of God and have lost our saltiness and power to transform society for good. Some larger churches have a reputation for being alive, but their discipleship and doctrine is rather ineffective. I attended a megachurch for several years and kept running into unregenerate and unconverted people, many of whom thought they were saved. 

God woke me up at 3 AM recently and this message is the result. My heart was heavy; we were wrapping up our Bible study on the book of Colossians – a church Paul commended for their faith and love, by the way – and we were examining the geography of Asia Minor (modern day Turkey) and many cities that had Christian churches in the first several centuries.

*The following is a partial transcript to the sermon from video:

In Revelation chapter two and three, Jesus harshly rebuked five out the seven churches within the same area. I couldn’t help but wonder what He would think of churches in America today. It’s a sobering thought.

Would Jesus rebuke us, Christians in the United States of Entertainment, the way He did several churches in Asia Minor? 

Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God. 3 So remember what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. Therefore if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you. Revelation 3:2-3

This quote has been attributed to several people, one of whom is Dwight L. Moody:

“Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at something that doesn’t really matter.”

We will all stand before the Lord one day and be judged for how we spent our time. Your husband or wife won’t be there, neither will your children, coworkers, or friends on social media. It will be you alone before Jesus. And that should sober up every one of us in this room.

Here are some important QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER:

  1. Is your life bearing fruit for the Lord Jesus Christ? JN 15:8
  2. Are we passionate about eternal and spiritual things? COL 3:2
  3. Who or what is our first love? What’s our main focus? 6:33
  4. Have you conformed to our culture – or to Christ? ROM 12:2
  5. Do we love this world more than we love God, His Word? 1 JN 2:15-17
  6. Are you prepared for persecution when it comes? 5:11-12

Are we, individual believers in Jesus who make up the church in America, succeeding at what’s most important? Are we loving the Lord God, loving our neighbors, preaching the good news of salvation in Jesus Christ alone, making disciples, raising godly children, impacting culture, and encouraging the faith of other believers?

Or are we just giving God lip service?

American churches, especially many of the larger, higher profile mega-churches, often have a good reputation simply due to their popularity, numbers or size (quantity). But this is often a very inaccurate picture of the overall health, discipleship, and maturity (quality) of a church. Is the body of Christ being built up in faith and equipped for ministry? (Eph. 4:11-12)

According to Barna research and several other studies and surveys, it appears American Christianity is producing the most biblically illiterate church members in history, confused about what the Bible teaches, unable to fully understand let alone explain and defend the essentials of the faith. What ever happened to discipleship? We can learn from the earliest Christian churches that it doesn’t take long to stray from truth.

Revelation 3:1  “To the angel of the church in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars, says this: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.

Wake-up! Repent! Notice what Jesus also says to the church in Sardis:

5 He who overcomes will thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. 6 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’

*We all have ears – but – are we listening? What is Jesus saying to the churches in America who have grown comfortable and complacent? What is He saying to individual believers? Do YOU have ears to hear from God?

Is your life bearing fruit for the Lord Jesus Christ?

We just finished the book of Colossians in our weekly Bible study and looking at the geography at that time, we talked about the many early Christian churches in Asia Minor which is modern day Turkey.

…The Colossian church was just 12 miles from the church of Laodicea and about 95 miles from Ephesus, a booming city at the time. Laodicea was also prospering and growing, located next to a new trade route, they had it made.

But that’s what lots of people would say about America, which is why we’re making this comparison today. We are prosperous, proud, and self-sufficient. Look at our big and many churches!

May we take to heart the warnings to the early churches:

“To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: The Amen, the faithful and true Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God, says this:

15 ‘I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. 16 So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. 17 Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked; …19 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent.

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