Archive for the ‘David’s Blog’ Category

There are some bizarre, outrageous, and flat-out unbiblical things going on in lots of churches. One so-called church sells beer, another worships Mother Earth, others use secular music during worship, others ordain gay leaders, and still others offer yoga. People are free to do whatever they want to try and make God fit their ideas and to offer services that cater to the desires of their congregations, but is this what church is supposed to be? 

What happened to the emphasis on teaching God’s word of truth including sin and repentance, justification, God’s wrath, prophecy, future judgment, and sanctification?

Last week I reported on one of the most heart-wrenching stories I’ve tackled in quite some time. The Roman Catholic Church is reeling from the massive scandal involving homosexuality among priests and the rampant cover-up of sexual abuse that has continued for many decades.

But many Evangelical and Protestant churches have leadership problems of their own. This includes the progressive, seeker-sensitive Willow Creek Church in Chicago whose lead pastors and elders resigned in light of the Bill Hybels allegations of sexual harassment.

Countless churches seem to have lost focus and have gotten off track. We have lost our reverence for a holy God, and practically abandoned the once-solid foundation of the teaching of Scripture which is the primary purpose of the church.

Many conferences and church services today barely resemble the early church and what the Bible teaches, let alone point to Jesus Christ. Some people create gods and church services to suit their own interests while others rewrite Scriptures to justify their lifestyles.

Last month in St. Louis, a controversial conference took place calledRevoice,” apparently aiming to normalize homosexuality and affirm those claiming to be “LGBTQ Christians.” Can you say, oxymoron?

Christian talk show host, Janet Mefferd called for the unbiblical movement to be repudiated, saying:

“Revoice is incremental gay activism, designed to eventually lure conservative evangelicals into accepting ‘gay Christianity,’” 

Next, there’s a progressive church in Santa Cruz, California that not only sells beer, but plans to donate proceeds to big abortion business, Planned Parenthood. Maybe the consumption of alcohol helps the pastor’s sermons sound better. This is a guy who preaches that Jesus was a Palestinian “killed by white supremacy.”

And who can forget our expose back in May on the San Francisco church that hosted what they called aBeyoncé Mass?” It was quite an interesting take on worshiping, “Our Mother who is in heaven,” and endorsing Beyonce as a role model for young girls.

Then there’s a church in Atlanta that put a new twist in their Sunday morning worship show by adding scantily-clad aerialists as a regular part of their services. ‘Why in the world?’ you may ask. Self-appointed “Apostle” Bryan Meadows actually said:

“Because they shouldn’t have to go to the circus to use the gifts that God gave them!”

Just one more or we’d be here all day. Serita Jakes, wife of controversial, megachurch minister, T.D. Jakes, gleefully posted photos on social media of women doing yoga at the church during a women’s event on wellness.

Never mind the practice of yoga is a rooted in Hinduism, a 5,000-year old polytheistic religious system. Its purpose is to bypass the mind and yoke or “unite” a person’s spirit with the Hindu god, Brahman.

Heather Clark at Christian News Network reminds us:

 “… Even the traditional Hindu greeting, Namasté, that is said at the end of yoga classes, is spiritual. When translated, it means, ‘The god in me bows down to (or salutes) the god in you.’”

The Spirit of Christ bows down to no one; He alone is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the only true, living God who is worthy of our true worship.

Romans 8:9 states:

However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.

And Exodus 20:3 states:

You shall have no other gods before Me.

Prior to building one of America’s first mega-churches, author, pastor, and motivational speaker, Robert Scheuller literally went door to door in the 1970s in Orange County, California, and asked people what they wanted in a church. Not what lost, hurting sinners need, but what they ‘want.’ This of course, has led to the “mega-church” and emergent church movement.

Men focused on church growth took a cue from Schueller and the rest is history. This has been a recipe for disaster in the American church, and it has led to well-deserved comparisons with the lukewarm church of Laodicea in Revelation chapter 3, and a better understanding of why Paul wrote a second letter to Timothy. In the last days, men would be:

“treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power…” (2 Timothy 4:4-5)

Rather than be active participants in learning and sharing God’s Word, too many church members have been conditioned to sit back and listen to a program or presentation, and perhaps to a bunch of funny stories or analogies instead of being challenged by sound doctrine and the harder teachings of the Bible. Then there’s the music. Lots of talented praise teams are themselves being praised for performing entertaining, although often heartfelt music rather than leading the people to the Throne in the worship of a holy God.

A.W. Tozer once said:

“The church that can’t worship must be entertained. And men who can’t lead a church to worship must provide the entertainment. That is why we have the great evangelical heresy here today–the heresy of religious entertainment.”

We need to get back to the basics.

True disciples of Jesus Christ in the early church focused on four primary things: teaching the word of God with a focus on Jesus’ sacrificial death and resurrection, prayer, communion, and fellowship with other Christians (Acts 2:42). They made disciples and they went out and shared the good news. They didn’t care about the approval of people – they sought to obey God. Their faith in Christ cost most of them their lives.

Today, too many churches use entertaining concepts and gimmicks to attract people, but then a new problem arises: in order to keep them in the comfy seats (and giving their tithes), you need to avoid controversial issues and often dilute the gospel so they won’t be offended.

What happens when you give people what they want instead of what they need which is Christ and His truth? Rather than being fed and equipped, countless hungry souls are walking out of many American churches feeling empty and unprepared to do God’s work. This must change.

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If you claim to represent God, but refuse to live by His moral laws, please leave the church and stop lying to everyone! Enough. This story is both heartbreaking and disturbing, but darkness must be exposed, and wicked men must finally be held accountable. Those who commit or condone evil have again given Jesus a black eye.

Tragically, the Roman Catholic Church has known all about it: decades of sexual abuse and yet, they covered-up extensive abuse by its leaders – abuse that has robbed children of their innocence, further tarnished the church’s image, and destroyed countless thousands of lives. This is a gut-wrenching and sickening story.

First, some headlines:

  • A History of Cover-ups in Boston Archdiocese
  • Church Allowed Abuse by Priests for Years
  • Gay Sex, Booze Scandal, Shakes Boston Seminary
  • Scores of Priests Involved in Sex Abuse Scandals
  • Report details sexual abuse by over 300 priests in PA’s Catholic Church
  • ‘Predator Priests’ Named In PA Grand Jury Sex Abuse Report
  • Priests molested 1,000 children in Pennsylvania, report says

Our purpose as Christians is to know and obey God, to make disciples and make Him known by preaching the gospel, and to be light in the world – essentially to transform culture. The Catholic Church however, has again cast a thick, dark veil over the cross of Christ and the truth of His resurrection.

In a report 900 pages long, a grand jury in Pennsylvania alleges over 300 priests abused more than one thousand children. Predators guilty of criminal conduct were never brought to justice even in some cases going back seventy years. Many priests have died, others retired, but none will escape the justice of a holy God whom they have mocked.

…Sixteen years ago after one of many Roman Catholic Church scandals, Pope John Paul II said:

“The abuse of the young is a grave symptom of a crisis affecting not only the church but society as a whole.”

Where is the accountability? You may remember the 2015 movie “Spotlight” took home the best picture Oscar for its drama about the Boston Globe investigation of the Roman Catholic Church covering up sexual abuse by multiple clergy.

To be sure, abuse occurs worldwide by all kinds of people because the heart of man is sick (Jeremiah 17:9). But evil is even more horrific when committed by those in positions of authority who should know better.

…There is a righteous God that will judge the living and the dead. Yes, He is loving, forgiving, and patient, but He is also holding back His wrath. And one day God will unleash His justice and vengeance. 

Are you seeking the approval of God or man? Yes, it does matter. Stop conforming to this world!

The Apostle Peter wrote:

“…it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?  1 Peter 4:17

READ FULL ARTICLE HERE (resource links included):

This just in! Once again, researchers are thrilled about the possibility of life on Mars! Maybe. A recent report of water a mile underneath a slab of ice seemed to boost the odds of life on the red planet. One scientist from the University of Arizona stated if they did find life, it would be microbial, somewhere in the Martian crust.

My question is this: why don’t we use this same determined, scientific, optimistic approach to find human life on earth? We’re often told a heartbeat in a human mother’s womb is not a sign of life. Come on.

NASA’s John Grunsfeld commented on the report at a news conference:

“It suggests it would be possible for there to be life today on Mars,”

Researchers said in the journal, Nature Geoscience, that further exploration is warranted to determine whether microscopic life exists there. One of the lead scientists says the only way to know is to keep collecting rocks from Mars and doing soil analysis on the specimens. It is astounding and bewildering to me that scientists, university departments, NASA, and independent researchers have been studying for decades hoping to find evidence indicating any sign of a living organism on Mars.

What about human beings, and why all the confusion about a living, developing fetus in a mother’s womb? We know it’s certainly not just a clump of cells because dead things don’t grow!

Twenty-three chromosomes from the mother and twenty-three from the father are joined together at the time of fertilization. At this early point, the unique, genetic makeup of the individual is determined, and the terms “conception” and “fertilization” are interchangeable.

Please consider sharing some eye-opening information about a newly conceived baby:

  • Its DNA, everything she will grow into, was fully present at the moment of conception.
  • Her heart began to beat eighteen days after conception.
  • Her brainwaves were detectable forty days (six weeks) after conception.
  • Your baby could move and she could suck her thumb (and hiccup!) between six and seven weeks.
  • Eight weeks after conception, all of her major organs are developed.
  • A baby’s respiratory system begins to function, and she begins to breathe amniotic fluid at nine weeks
  • She can smile, suck her thumb, and clap at eighteen weeks.
  • A baby can feel pain at approximately twenty weeks gestation.

This last medical finding has led to what is called the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, a U.S. Congress bill to ban abortions after twenty weeks, and especially late-term abortions.

A baby can feel pain, and a baby can feel joy. You may recall from the Gospel of Luke (1:43-44) when Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist said “the baby in my womb leaped for joy” when Mary visited her and was pregnant with Jesus. Since a fetus is in fact human, then destroying it is murder.

You may have heard the heartbreaking story earlier this year of 23 year-old Shelby Taylor who was recently sentenced to 25 years in prison for throwing her newborn baby girl into a dumpster – umbilical chord still attached. Someone heard the baby crying and called police, and fortunately the baby is alive today.

But wait a minute! Millions of young women simply pay Planned Parenthood to remove their babies and it’s completely legal. Please understand that when God’s law makes something immoral, man cannot make it moral.

I appreciate what author and teacher, Peter Heck said about this:

“But it is also impossible to read this story and not acknowledge a mind-bending and confounding reality: had Shelby Taylor entered a Planned Parenthood facility that very day and had her baby girl decapitated and dismembered for a price, our society would justify that as a moral right of empowerment and liberty. But since she waited a couple hours and, with as horrible as her act of callous abandonment was, still gave her child a fighting chance at survival, she is going to prison for 25 years. This is not just morally incongruent, it is the height of absurdity…”

You do know what they do with all the baby body parts after ripping them out of a mother’s womb, don’t you? If they’re not sold for research they end up in dumpsters outside abortion clinics. Or perhaps you’re in denial like so many people whose consciences have been seared by a hot iron.

What does Scripture teach? See Jeremiah 1:4-5, Exodus 21:22-24, Psalm 51:5, Psalm 139:13-16, Luke 1:39-44.

The Bible treats babies in the womb as real persons. Verse after verse relating to pregnancy always refers to a living human being already in existence. It is crystal clear that God considers the unborn to be human beings who have value and should be protected.

As far as life on Mars goes – no confirmation yet. It’s pretty foggy and we may be waiting for a while.

Just for a few minutes, let’s set aside debates and arguments about things like politics, gender, abortion, evolution, same-sex marriage, and religious freedom – to name a few. What really matters? Everything in life hinges on whether or not Jesus is God. Think about it. We know He existed historically – but what’s the final verdict? Is He a liar, a lunatic, or Lord and God?

Questions are good! But don’t deny the answers if they can be backed up with facts and evidence. Did Jesus tell the truth? Is there one living God or can we make up as many gods as we want.

Maybe you’re someone who thinks Jesus was just a good teacher. Is the Bible wrong about Him? What if the men He spent three years of His life with were all telling the truth? What about all the miracles they witnessed and the claims Jesus made? They believed Him enough to die for their faith.

Why didn’t the Jews and Romans who killed Jesus refute the testimonies of hundreds of eye-witnesses that saw the risen Christ? The burial tomb is still empty. Why couldn’t the authorities find the supposed dead body of Jesus and stop the spread of Christianity?

The events surrounding the life of Jesus, especially His virgin birth, crucifixion, death, and resurrection either happened or they didn’t. We’re talking about actual history and the fact that if these events documented in detail throughout Scripture really took place, it changes everything – and should affect how we live today.

C.S. Lewis stated:

“You must make your choice: either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us…”

So – is Jesus a Liar? Was Jesus wrong about anything He taught? Many call Jesus a good person, Rabbi, or a prophet, but if He didn’t tell the truth, can He really be good?

While the Old Testament prophets usually said, “This is what the Lord says,” Jesus said, “I tell you the truth.” In addition, prophets spoke for God, but Jesus consistently spoke as God. The Jews knew exactly what He meant because on several occasions, they tried to kill Him for claiming equality with God.

Was He a Lunatic? Have you read what Jesus actually taught? He was pretty bold and controversial! For one thing, He declared to the Pharisees that He existed before Abraham (John 8:58)! Jesus made twenty-three “I Am” claims and used seven major metaphors such as, “I am the light of the world… the bread of life… the good shepherd… the resurrection and the life.”

Is Jesus Lord then? No one in all history has successfully proven Him wrong. If Jesus spoke the truth, then there are tremendous consequences for not believing in Him! For one thing, He promised to return one Day to judge the living and the dead. He also talked about heaven and hell as actual places, and the need for people to confess our sins and be saved.

Truths about Jesus Christ revealing He is GOD

  • Jesus was with God in the beginning, (John 1:1)
  • Jesus is equal with God, (Phil. 2:5-11)
  • He was born of a virgin; became a man, (Matt. 1:18, Jn. 1:14)
  • He forgives sins, (Mark 2:10)
  • He performed miracles, (John 10:32)
  • He is one with the Father, (John 10:30)
  • Jesus came from the Father, (John 16:28)
  • He is the Christ, (Mark 14:61-62)
  • He is the Messiah, (John 4:25-26)
  • Jesus came to give spiritual life, (John 10:10)
  • He gives the right to become God’s children, (John 1:12)
  • Jesus bestows eternal life, (John 10:28)
  • Jesus became man, (Philippians 2:5-11)
  • Jesus is fully God, (Philippians 2:5-11)
  • His death was a ransom for our sins (Matthew 20:28)
  • Jesus died for us while we were still sinners (Romans 5:8)
  • Jesus rose from the dead, (Luke 24:46, Acts 2:24)
  • He ascended to Heaven and is at God’s right hand, (Mark 16:19)

Colossians 1:13-17 states:

For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.

And in Col. 2:9-10,

…In Christ, all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority.

Those of us who believe need to turn from the world’s ways back to God, stop playing church, and submit to the authority of Christ. If Jesus was in fact the predicted Messiah, then the Bible is true and all other gods must be false.

Every other way of salvation won’t work out in the end. Jesus overcame death and the grave, and His resurrection proves Jesus is the only way to the Father. If you’ve been following a different god or another path, don’t put off this decision. Please trust in Him while there’s still time!

Between its progressive history, Canada’s Supreme Court, and far left leader, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, our northern neighbors are gradually forcing Christians into the closet. But before you say ‘that could never happen in America’ or, ‘as long as it doesn’t affect me,’ let’s look at three disturbing news stories. 

Just across the U.S./Canadian border, a Christian bus driver was arrested and charged with a hate crime for evangelizing. Bill Whatcott gave out gospel pamphlets at a Pride parade saying homosexuality can lead to diseases, (which it can) and Jesus can save gay people if they repent of their sins (which He can).

Toronto Police said in a statement that Whatcott “distributed anti-gay material which promoted hatred toward the gay community.” The 51-year-old Christian man was charged with “willful promotion of hatred against an identifiable group, namely the gay community.”

Apparently, they’ve reinterpreted John 3:16 to suggest God so loved the world – except for the LGBTQ – that He sent His Son, Jesus Christ to give His life as a ransom for the sins of whoever believes – unless you’re LGBTQ. This must be the New Liberal Translation.

But the Bible is true and every word can be trusted. So if you and I love our neighbors, whether they live down the street or across the Canadian border, the love of Christ compels us to tell them the good news that they can be forgiven and saved. It’s not up to us to convict or force them to receive the truth. We’re the messengers.

Bill Whatcott was not only fired from his job, but faces two years in prison as well. And Justin Trudeau became the world’s first national leader to march in a gay pride parade two years ago in Toronto. It was a proud first for his Liberal Party – a Party that also introduced a bill that would punish perceived “discrimination” of transgender individuals – with up to two years in prison.

And if you missed it earlier this year, Ontario Province now allows people born there to remove “male” or “female” from their birth certificates and opt for a “nonbinary” or unknown gender designation.

Next, according to Canadian elites and the LGBTQ mob, “diversity” now means all views and beliefs are welcome – except the Christian worldview.

Canada’s Supreme Court recently ruled 7-2 against a Christian college, Trinity Western University’s (TWU) Law School, essentially forcing them to choose between biblical standards or accreditation, basically suggesting Christianity and academia are incompatible.

Since 1962, Trinity Western in British Columbia, has required its students and faculty to agree to live by a moral code. The audacity! Thousands of Christian schools across North America have similar requirements. TWU refers to theirs as a “Community Covenant.”

Trinity requires students and faculty to pursue a holy life ‘characterized by humility, self-sacrifice, mercy and justice, and mutual submission for the good of others.’ It requires members to abstain from using vulgar language, lying or cheating, stealing, pornography, and further adds:

“according to the Bible, sexual intimacy is reserved for marriage between one man and one woman, and within that marriage bond it is God’s intention that it be enjoyed as a means for marital intimacy and procreation.”

Some liberals in North America now think these Christian values are harmful to society. Remember: Truth is hate to those who hate the truth.

But don’t be too quick to bash Canadians. Americans have gradually allowed discrimination against Christians in our own education system. So it would be foolish and naive to think religious intolerance won’t increase in the U.S.

And finally, a judge in Canada has officially declared two men and a woman parents of one child, on the child’s birth certificate. The unmarried threesome are in a relationship together known as polyamory meaning “many loves.”

The judge’s reasoning? Times change. He explains:

“Society is continuously changing and family structures are changing along with it; …This must be recognized as a reality and not as a detriment to the best interests of the child.”

Psalm 119:160 states:

The sum of Your word is truth,
And every one of Your righteous ordinances is everlasting.

God doesn’t change, and fixed moral absolutes exist by which we govern ourselves and our culture. But to those wanting no accountability, relativism rules, man is god, and anything goes.

Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis calls it social Darwinism. He explained:

You see, if naturalistic evolution is your starting point, there is no ultimate authority; The result is …a society clearly in rebellion against God. God created the institutions of marriage and family with one man and one woman (Genesis 1:27, 2:24), so he gets to define them.

Truth is eternal (PS. 117:2), and free speech should be protected, but this debate over what is in the best interest of children will continue; a debate that will soon find itself in the courts of America.

Their emotions are overriding their sanity and self-restraint, and they are pouring gas on the political fire. They hate President Trump and want him impeached, but the vitriol and unraveling of the Left may in fact backfire, leading to the very thing they don’t want: the reelection of Republicans in November and support for Trump. Many of us have warned this caustic culture will likely lead to violence – and there will be consequences.

The general willingness of most Democrats to push their progressive agenda at any cost is clear. Let’s start with unhinged California congresswoman, Maxine Waters. She recently called for increased public harassment of those working in the Trump White House.

Maxine was thrilled that women and their families in the administration were recently targeted by activists at restaurants and even harassed outside their private homes.

Calling for Trumps impeachment, she stirred up the California crowd:

“History will record while he tried to step on all of us, we kicked him in his rear and stepped on him; If you think we’re rallying now, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.”

She accused Trump of sacrificing America’s children while she supports infanticide and abortion on demand. She even called AG Jeff Sessions a racist. This is what they do.

And remember, Waters’ rant came soon after three separate incidents where Republican women were harassed and threatened at dinner, on the street, and at a movie theater!

One example is Kristjen Nielson, Dept. of Homeland Security Secretary, who was harassed and heckled not only at a restaurant but outside her home as well by members of the Democratic Socialists of America led by Allison Hrabar.

Liberals and progressives say they want women and children to be protected, but their actions prove their hypocrisy and godlessness. Their ideology matters more than civil discourse and respectful debate of ideas.

The current environment is what led to the mass shooting and attempted assassination of Republicans last year. (Ask Steve Scalise what he thinks about the current political environment.)

Maxine Waters continued her rant:

“We’re going to win this battle because while you try and quote the Bible, Jeff Sessions and others, you really don’t know the Bible. God is on OUR side!”

Wait just a minute. Remember how they voted on whether or not to reject God back in 2012 at the Democrat Party Convention? The majority actually booed and decided to kick God out of their party. 

So on one hand, they claim righteousness and pretend to want civility while on the other hand they stoke a political civil war and divide citizens. It’s a step toward mob rule.

Perhaps the most concerning thing Maxine Waters said was her endorsement of open threats and public harassment of Trump officials.

“And so, let’s stay the course. Let’s make sure we show up wherever we have to show up and if you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd and you push back on them, and you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere,” she yelled.

Not welcome anywhere in public? Can they leave their homes? This is irresponsible and should raise red flags.

According to the Washington Times, Judicial Watch filed an ethics complaint against Waters for “inciting violence and assaults on the Trump Cabinet.” A hand-delivered letter was given to the House Office of Congressional Ethics calling for an investigation of Maxine Waters behavior.

We must not react in kind, but be bigger than the bullies even though the left is no longer willing to disagree respectfully. Their hatred for Trump and disdain for his supporters seems to have reached a boiling point.

Need a few reminders?

We’ve seen many references to Hitler by the Trump-hating media, Robert De Niro’s f-bombs and desire to punch the president in the face, Peter Fonda called for kidnapping Barron Trump and putting him in a cage with pedophiles, Kathy Griffin posing with a mock severed Trump head and called Melania Trump a piece of s—t, Wanda Sykes tweets an f-bomb at Ivanka Trump and Samantha Bee called her a “feckless c—t, meathead Rob Reiner suggesting Trump voters are racist, Madonna thought about blowing up the White House, and this is a partial list!

It has reached the point where some are advising Trump aides to get guns and carry permits in order to be prepared for coming physical attacks.

Imagine if today’s language toward a president was used when Barack Obama was in office. I think the reaction from the biased media would be quite different.

I couldn’t agree more with this take by USA Today contributor, James Robbins:

Democrats should also understand these public tantrums and other slights are simply bad politics. Voters don’t respond well to angry chanting losers harassing people, or to vulgar celebrities, or to threats verging on intimidation and violence. There is nothing inspirational about it, and it makes the targets of the anger look that much more reasonable. If Democrats think this crazed behavior will generate a “blue wave” in November, they are mistaken. 

Agreed. And for the rest of us, even though we have First Amendment rights under the Constitution, we should not stoop to their level of behavior. Pray for them – they need God! And respond by speaking the truth in love, knowing the ultimate battle is a spiritual one, and our real fight is not with people; it is with the enemy of our souls.

For those of us who are Christians, let’s live in such a way that others will hear the gospel and see the fruit of the Holy Spirit in us – both in our words and our lives as we point to our hope and salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ.

*Also published at Freedom Project Media

Celebrated by most media, by Hollywood, the National Education Association, People Magazine, and a vast number of other publications, transgender TV star and teen role model, Jazz Jennings is preparing to undergo what is being called, “gender confirmation surgery” next week on June 26. Jazz is a seventeen year-old male – and surgeons are creating female parts for him.

This is the wacky world kids are growing up in today, and activists are pushing to make it the new normal. In fact, things are quite upside down. For instance, I do believe that too many kids are obsessed with video games, but the World Health Organization now says being transgender is no longer a mental disorder – but playing video games is! Wow.

So with full support from his parents, Jazz Jennings started using hormone blockers at age 11 so he never went through puberty. The blocker was an implant in his arm preventing testosterone in order to avoid further development of male characteristics such as facial hair and a deep voice.

They used to call it a sex change. Then, in blatant rebellion against God, the Creator it was sexual reassignment surgery. But the latest is being touted as “gender confirmation surgery.” The procedures are said to help transgender people have an outward appearance that matches how they feel inside.

To most of us, this is tragic and heartbreaking! Jazz said, “This is something I’ve wanted my entire life…” Jennings explained he’ll be undergoing a new experimental procedure where doctors will take tissue from his stomach to form the inside of a vagina.

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), this surgery gives “transgender individuals the physical appearance and functional abilities of the gender they know themselves to be;”

For a male-to-female transition, that may include facial surgery, top surgery (for breasts) and/or bottom surgery, to reconstruct male genitalia to female genitalia. In 2016, 3,200 gender reassignment surgeries were performed in the US, an increase of 20% from the previous year.

I hope you’re not shocked we’re talking about this. Children as young as six years-old are now hearing about it at school. Just like homosexuality, gender identity and transgender individuals are being normalized. In a recent interview, Jazz proudly exclaimed, “I’m going to have a vagina!”

But wait a minute. Let’s set aside biology, chromosomes, DNA, science and of course, the Bible for a minute. They’re now blaming those who disagree with this twisted ideology for increasing suicide attempt rates.

Adults who undergo sex reassignment—even in Sweden, which is among the most LGBT-affirming countries—have a suicide rate nearly 20 times greater than that of the general population. Clearly, sex reassignment is not the solution to gender dysphoria.

The promoters of this agenda have people referring to males such as Jazz Jennings as “she.” Surgery is going to remove part of his male anatomy in order to construct a part of the female anatomy. If she is already a she, why would there need to be such a serious cosmetic procedure to make her into who she already insists she is?

Often left out of this discussion are parents. Some impose this dangerous ideology on their children while others allow their child to choose whatever he or she wants to be. These are life-changing, destructive decisions so what is the parent’s role in this? Professionals including the American College of Pediatricians have strongly warned that “transition-affirming protocol is child abuse.”

Its president, Michelle Cretella, M.D. stated:

I have witnessed an upending of the medical consensus on the nature of gender identity. What doctors once treated as a mental illness, the medical community now largely affirms and even promotes as normal.

A person’s sex is an objective biological fact determined genetically at conception in the womb by the allocation of X and Y chromosomes. This is permanent – throughout a person’s lifetime – and not a social construct.

Next, the Christian Medical and Dental Association states:

“Among those who identify as transgender, use cross-sex hormones, and undergo sex reassignment surgery, there is well-documented increased incidence of depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation, substance abuse, and risky sexual behaviors.”

Confused? So are those who have forgotten what the Bible teaches about how God designed us, about marriage, procreation, and the distinctions between male and female.

Is there any hope? Always; but it depends on what you place your hope in!

Former transgender, Walt Heyer talks about his painful past including a lost childhood, failed marriage, a family ripped apart, and a ruined career not to mention health and physical issues due to cosmetic surgeries.

Take not that TV shows, magazines, and media fail to interview any of the scores of people who left the homosexual or transgender lifestyles. Truth is not good for LGBTQ business. Heyer said decades of gender confusion persisted even after his sex transition. We rarely hear about those suffering long-term consequences of transgenderism.

Fortunately, Walt Heyer found freedom and peace in Jesus.

“I turned to Christ and away from transgenderism. …I had to stop living in defiance of God and stop demanding that the church, God, and everyone else make accommodations for my delusions. Demanding that people use my preferred female pronoun name was childish.”

The transgender “T” in LGBTQ was custom built into the agenda decades ago, patiently waiting for the right time to be rolled out. That time is now; a time in which truth is being redefined.

We need to respond with compassion to those who are struggling with gender dysphoria and anyone immersed in sinful lifestyles, but know the facts, and be prepared to offer the hope of Jesus Christ to those who are lost.

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Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Is. 40:31 

Two famous people took their own lives last week, and the same week, 850 others committed suicide in the U.S. alone. Every human being is equally valuable and created by God for a purpose, so how many more deaths will it take for us to admit we have an epidemic of hopelessness? Maybe it’s time we address it in a different way.

In less than twenty years, suicide rates in America have increased more than thirty percent in half the country; it’s on the rise in almost every state. Nearly 45,000 Americans died by suicide in 2016, and unlike the rich and famous, you will never know their names. 

TV personality Anthony Bourdain and designer Kate Spade took their own lives, and both were famous and wealthy. Why are we surprised when things of this world fail to satisfy?

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S. – and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it’s one of only three causes of death (Alzheimer’s, drug overdoses) that are increasing. Worldwide, someone dies by suicide every forty seconds! This is beyond tragic.

A recent CDC study suggests more than half of those who commit suicide did nothave a mental health condition. Over half. Some had problems involving relationships, finances, health, or substance abuse while others didn’t have any of these. But the end result was the same.

Books and articles have been written, studies done, articles published. I don’t mean to over simplify a very serious and complicated issue here, but as important as it is to diagnose and treat (counseling, meds, etc.) mental illness, it’s even more important to acknowledge the often ignored spiritual aspect.

There’s a reason we can be in a room full of people and still feel lonely. We’re just passing through this life, and our true citizenship is in Heaven (Philippians 3:20).

C.S. Lewis once stated:

“If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.”

…In a culture that has embraced narcissism and moral relativism in which there are no fixed absolutes, we end up seeking our own happiness and meaning. Most of us end up living by a morality of shallow self-fulfillment and temporary pleasure.

From the unborn, the disabled, and the elderly to the addict, the jobless, homeless, or hopeless, every human being is worthy of dignity and respect. It’s time we address the problem God’s way…

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You’ve probably heard the U.S. Supreme Court decided in favor of Colorado baker, Jack Phillips; that the State violated his religious freedom when they punished him for operating his business according to his Christian faith.

Even though the Court ruled 7-2 Monday in favor of Phillips who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple, we must not relax. This is good, yes, but it is an incremental victory in the religious freedom battle. Expect LGBTQ activists to regroup and react with force.

Unbelievably, Colorado Civil Rights Commissioner, Diann Rice once compared Phillips to a Nazi because he believes in natural marriage. Ironically, Phillip’s father was a WWII veteran who helped storm the beaches of Normandy and liberate Buchenwald concentration camp in Germany.

Regarding the decision, Justice Kennedy wrote:

“The Commission’s hostility was inconsistent with the First Amendment’s guarantee that our laws be applied in a manner that is neutral toward religion,”

Unfortunately, the court said the broader issue of whether a business can deny service of gays and lesbians “must await further elaboration.”

But for now, as Justice Clarence Thomas added:

“Because the Court’s decision vindicates Phillips’ right to free exercise, it seems that religious liberty has lived to fight another day.”

Good for Jack Phillips, but it seems the Court lacked courage to tackle the First Amendment question which is why some are calling the 7-2 ruling “narrow.”

This battle is spiritual and Satan is a defeated foe, but at the same time, expect the bullying of Christian business owners to increase. Preachers of tolerance have no problem forcing others to live in a way that goes against deeply held beliefs.

For example, an Oregon business filed a lawsuit last week against a church that turned down hosting an LGBT event in a building owned by the church due to its “morals clause.”

This just months after a Christian couple, also in Oregon, lost their bakery over their refusal to bake a cake for a gay wedding and were forced to pay activists $135,000 by court ruling. Former owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, Aaron and Melissa Klein, had their freedoms trampled when they lost their appeal last December. 

In this new case, Holy Rosary Church of Portland, is being sued by Ambridge Event Center, who claims their business was damaged by the decision. Ambridge once rented out a space for various events but the church rejected a request from an African-American LGBT support group.

But churches in America can no longer freely abide by the moral teachings of the Bible. And if you fail to comply, look out! They are seeking – get this – $2.3 million in damages!

Christians seem to have two options: go along with and celebrate sinful behavior that is against biblical teachings, or pay the penalty – whatever price they see fit to enforce. So what now?

The late theologian, John Stott summed it up well when he said:

“We should not ask, ‘What is wrong with the world?’ for that diagnosis has already been given. Rather we should ask, “What has happened to the salt and light?”

How did we reach this present darkness where the foundations of not only culture but the church in America are crumbling? I’ve written a few books on the topic, but these things are certain: leftists will not relent on their agendas, and though God is still on His throne, Christians clearly do not have the influence we used to have on the nation. If we did, things such as the definition and meaning of marriage would not be debated.

We sure could use more watchmen on the wall willing to speak the truth in love and stand against evil at the same time. It is possible and necessary to do both.

Vice President Mike Pence made a surprise appearance at the Watchmen on the Wall conference in our nation’s capital last week and implored pastors to share the good news of Jesus Christ. God bless him. But it’s what he said about the Johnson Amendment that we should peak our curiosity.

I don’t remember any president or vice president talking so openly and frequently about the Christian faith. Mike Pence boldly implored the people:

“Keep preaching the good news. Keep preaching in season and out of season as the Bible says. Always be prepared to give a reason for the hope that you have,” (2 Tim. 4:1-2, 1 Peter 3:15)

Pence also received a standing ovation when he emphasized the fact President Trump is the most pro-life president in American history.

Because the Trump administration is strong on religious liberty, it makes sense he mentioned the unconstitutional Johnson Amendment, which restricts religious leaders when it comes to talking about politics.

Mike Pence stated:

“We are going to fight until we fully repeal the Johnson Amendment from the Internal Revenue Code, but it will no longer be enforced under this administration,”

No longer enforced. What a statement! So, what exactly is the Johnson Amendment and is there really an agenda to silence Christians?

The Johnson Amendment was passed in 1954 by Congress as an amendment to section 501(c)(3) of the federal tax code… stating that entities that are exempt from federal income tax (such as non-profit groups) cannot “participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distributing of statements) any political campaign on behalf of – or in opposition to – any candidate for public office.”

This flawed law paved the way for the growing censorship of conservatives, particularly when it comes to restrictions on what can be said during church services.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Then Texas Democrat, Lyndon B. Johnson, was a powerful liberal running for reelection as Senator, but two [conservative] tax-exempt groups were opposing him and passing out literature during the campaigns. He complained to the IRS but found what they were doing was perfectly legal, so he sought other options to fight them.

Johnson shrewdly appeared on the Senate floor on July 2, 1954, and offered his amendment to a pending, massive, tax code overhaul bill. Records indicate an absence of committee hearings on the bill. No legislative analysis took place to examine the effect the bill would have, particularly on churches and religious organizations.

The amendment was simply created to protect Johnson. Why this horrendous law has not been repealed yet is mind-boggling.

Sadly, due to confusion, hype, and misinformation about the Johnson Amendment, religious leaders in America have been unnecessarily self-censoring for decades! The Left uses it to bully Christian pastors and groups with threats of losing their nonprofit status, and they wrongly insist religious leaders must not speak about the Bible as it relates to political and social issues – which are moral issues!

As a result, freedom of speech and the free exercise of religion have been trampled on. A huge amount of people now think the Bible (church) has nothing to say about politics (state) and that it’s illegal for pastors to address candidates and where they stand in light of Scripture or church doctrines.

We need to understand something here: the IRS has never fined a pastor or church. In fact, every year thousands of Christian leaders across the country purposely talk about politics during church services on what is called Pulpit Freedom Sunday.

This of course won’t stop those bent on removing Christian influence from society. President Ronald Reagan once said:

“The Constitution was never meant to prevent people from praying. Its declared purpose was to protect their freedom to pray.”

The truth is every time a law is passed, someone’s morality is legislated. Government affects every one of us. Man’s greatest problem is sin and our greatest need is forgiveness, and have every right to speak the truth in love.

The annual Watchman on the Wall conference hosted by the Family Research Council operates under the belief that problems facing America and this world ultimately require a spiritual solution. This could not be truer because the good news of Jesus Christ is the power of God to salvation.

If our hope is in people, politics, or possessions, we will eventually wind up empty. If however, we place our trust in the only One who can forgive and save us, we will have an unshakable hope and a secure future inheritance.

Are we willing to speak the truth to this generation including what the Bible teaches about sin, repentance, and salvation through faith in Jesus?

The IRS is not a true threat nor is government the ultimate authority! Quite frankly, if a pastor is worried about his non-profit status or being fined, then who is he serving, Caesar or Christ?

For the rest of us, real Christianity cannot be confined behind the walls of any church.

Originally published at Freedom Project Media!

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