Jul 2, 2018

The Political Landscape Is Getting Very Nasty and Very Dangerous

After several high-profile harassment incidents, it is quickly becoming clear that America faces a future where political violence may become the norm. There is such a fine line between verbal and physical abuse, an appeal for civility needs to be given top priority. Those who try to toss gasoline onto the dumpster fire need to be called out and punished.

A new poll by Rasmussenreports.com shows that most voters fear that political violence is coming. Thirty-one percent (31%) of Likely U.S. Voters say it’s likely that the United States will experience a second civil war sometime in the next five years. But 59% of all voters are concerned that those opposed to President Trump’s policies will resort to violence, with 33% who are Very Concerned.

Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters is in my view the worst person currently serving in Congress. In 1992, she cheered as racist mobs burned Los Angeles. There is hardly a day that goes by where she is not blaming others for racism. Waters has drawn fire from across the political spectrum for telling an audience that they should hunt down anyone linked to the Trump administration and harass them in public.

“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,” Waters said.

This woman is promoting the game plan of Hitler’s Brownshirts. Before they had the power to just grab someone off the street and take them on a one-way trip to a death camp, they followed their foes from place to place, shouting Nazi slogans.

We’re quickly approaching the point of no return. Once both sides become radicalized, it will become almost impossible to put the hate genie back in the bottle.

The owner of the Red Hen in Lexington, Virginia who refused to serve Sarah Sanders and her family has a legal right to her decision. The public also has a right to put this restaurant out of business by boycotting it. The district voted for Trump by a 2 to 1 margin, so the lack of conservative customers would doom this eatery.

It is very hard to rationalize leftist logic as it relates to this incident. Why is it okay to tell Sarah Sanders to leave a restaurant, but not okay to refuse someone a gay wedding cake? Under their thinking, Sanders should be able to go into a Vegan restaurant and demand to be served a T-bone Steak.

There should be a lesson learned from the attack on Rep. Steve Scalise, who was seriously wounded a year ago in a politically motivated mass shooting at a Congressional baseball team practice. Since he was a Republican and was shot by a Bernie Sanders supporter, the left quickly forgot about that event.

The liberal media thinks it still has room to reason with the American people, but almost everyone knows about their agenda. I think the CNN propaganda machine does more harm than good to the leftist cause. Former CBS News anchor Dan Rather tried to attack President Donald Trump last week and ended up giving him a possible campaign slogan to use, calling him “mean as a wolverine.” Here is what a couple people posted on Twitter:

Nick Short:

“I think @realDonaldTrump would endorse the slogan. ‘As mean as a wolverine!’ Has a nice ring to it actually. We should thank Rather for the terrific campaign slogan.”

Kambree Kawahine Koa:

“Dan Rather said President Trump is ‘Mean as a Wolverine.’ Yes sir, he is. We didn’t vote to put another sissy in the White House who doesn’t have a spine to stand up for America. We voted for an America First President that is tough, fights back and plays the media like a fiddle!”

President Trump does have a character flaw by mocking people for no reason. His shortfall can never be an excuse for people on the left using terms that call for violence.

The possibility of conflict was bad enough with Congress. A new Battle line has suddenly emerged at the U.S. Supreme Court. Justice Anthony Kennedy informed the White House of his intention to step down from the high court, effective July 31. The war over Trump’s next nominee will be brutal; it’s been nearly 30 years since an actual swing vote retired.

I can already hear Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer saying, “Trump’s nominee is too radical to be a member of the Supreme Court.”

My understanding of Bible prophecy forces me to be very pessimistic about the future. The only way for us to buy time and delay political chaos is by being mindful of the Golden rule that Jesus used to summarize the Torah:

“So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets” (Matthew 7:12 ESV).

–Todd


God’s Case for Eternal Security Part I

Jesus Christ, Creator of all that is, once asked and asks the question still:

 “Who do you say that I am?”

Nothing any person does in life is more important, more crucial, than answering this question. One’s response determines an individual’s ultimate destiny, where that person will spend eternity after this short life on Earth is over. And it is indeed a short life lived in our physical bodies. God’s Word, the Bible, speaks truth about the matter:

“The days of our years [are] threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength [they be] fourscore years, yet [is] their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away” (Psa. 90:10).

Again, God’s Word says:

“Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away” (James 4:14).

Jesus asked that most profound question to ever confront mankind. He asked His disciples directly: “…whom say ye that I am?” (Matt. 16:15). When Peter answered,

“Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matt. 16:16), the Lord said, “Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven” (Matt. 16:17).

Jesus went on to declare that He would build His church upon that very foundation. All who truly believe and confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God will become children of the heavenly Father. This truth is confirmed by the inspired words of Paul the apostle following Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection:

“That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Rom. 10:9).

The question posed by Jesus when He asked, “Whom say ye that I am?” is the one every individual has to answer. It is not an option. One must either accept that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God, or reject Jesus Christ, thus declaring that Jesus was not and is not who He claimed to be. Believing upon Jesus Christ and His redemptive sacrifice on the cross at Calvary for the sins of mankind (Jn. 3:16) means a person will be saved from sin, which separates the souls of men and women, boys and girls, from God, Christ’s Father. Not believing upon Christ means eternal separation from God in a place of torment called the Lake of Fire (Rev. 20:11-15).

To accept Christ’s sacrifice is to recognize and admit you are a sinner who needs salvation. You must totally believe Christ died for you. You must ask that Jesus come into your soul and become Lord of your life. By inviting Him to come into your life, you agree that you desire to turn from your sinful life and depend upon the Lord to direct your life as He deems best. Jesus instantly comes to dwell within your soul through God the Holy Spirit. This is called being “born again” (Jn. 3:3). You are then a child of God, saved once and for all – for all of eternity. The Holy Spirit dwelling within you begins helping you grow under new management – King Jesus, the Lord of Lords!

Future Secure Forever

Your future is secure because God holds onto you forever, not because you are holding onto Him! This is most important to recognize and remember. Christ does the saving of your soul. Your part is to simply and genuinely accept the grace gift, the sacrifice for redemption God offers through His beloved Son, the “Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Jn. 1:29; Rev. 13:8).

We know with absolute certainty you are once and forever in God’s family because of the words of the One who created all that exists. The Lord Jesus Christ said, “My Father, which gave [them] me, is greater than all; and no [man] is able to pluck [them] out of my Father’s hand” (Jn. 10:29). Jesus was speaking about all people who have lived on Planet Earth who have or will in the future accept Him as God’s once-and-for-all sacrifice for the sins of the world.

He was telling us, through the Mighty Word of the God of Heaven, that it is impossible for the heavenly Father to ever let a single born-again child of His slip from His omnipotent grip.

The Apostle Paul, under direct inspiration of God the Holy Spirit, nailed down eternal security of the born-again believer in the Lord Jesus Christ. He wrote:

“For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:38-39).

Paul said further, “…for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day” (2 Tim. 1:12).

Insecurity of Believers

Many who are true Christians today hold that the Bible teaches that people saved by the matchless, unfathomable grace of God can lose salvation if they backslide to the point that sin rules their lives. They reject the Bible truth “once saved always saved.” Many of these who believe, preach, and teach insecurity of the believer (that one can lose salvation) declare at the same time that a Christian called “carnal” can be re-redeemed, restored to the family of God upon repentance. They accept part of the truth found in Hebrews 6:4-6 but deny the truth of the other part. That Scripture says:

 “For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.”

We will examine this terribly flawed interpretation of this Truth next week.

–Terry

 

Jun 25, 2018

Kilauea’s Greatest Danger 

A strange thing about humans and natural disasters is that we tend to fear the ones that are the least likely to happen. For decades the media have warned about the possibility of a large meteor striking the earth and creating a massive loss of life. If NASA suddenly discovered that a 5-mile-wide meteor was projected to come very near to the earth in 15 years, the talk would suddenly be about how the vastness of space and our faulty projection would likely mean that the meteor would miss earth.

I’ve written before about the danger from the Yellowstone caldera. Scientists have learned that this super volcano has exploded several times with massive force. An eruption today would kill tens of millions of people. There has been an endless series of earthquakes in the area.

Over the past few months, the Steamboat geyser has sprung to life and now seems to be erupting somewhat on a predictable schedule, at least for the moment. On Jun 15, it sent boiling water hundreds of feet into the air for the 10th time this year. Before this recent string of eruptions, Steamboat had been dormant since 2014. This is the most amount of eruptions since 1965.

Scientists continue to tell the public not to worry. Yellowstone has a 600,000-year eruption cycle, and oddly enough, the last one occurred 600,000 years ago. We really don’t know what to make of these warning signs. The going assumption is that we are safe from danger by the chance of an actual eruption being thousands of years down the road.

I’ve looked at several young-earth creationist sites on the timing of Yellowstone’s eruptions. They say its last one occurred possibly in 2,000 BC, but they are strangely silent on any future events. If our safety margin is actually 150 times smaller, they need to boldly speak up on this issue.

There is another danger to the world that has a much shorter cycle—a massive landslide in the Hawaiian Islands. About every 30,000 years, a large section of an Island will break off into the ocean.

The southern section of the Big Island of Hawaii has had a spectacular occurrence of lava flows. The USGS notes that an estimated 7 billion cubic feet of lava has poured out in a massive eruption which began on May 3. The lava is “enough to cover Manhattan 8 feet deep” and fill 15 million average dump trucks, it said. The fresh lava has added 11 square miles to the Island.

The buildup of this new material on the ocean’s edge will eventually result in a landslide. The average slope of the northern side of the Big Island is three degrees. The pitch at the southern end is six degrees. A return to stability would require a 100 cubic mile section to slide into the ocean.

The collapse of the south flank would cause an earthquake in excess of a 9 in magnitude, and generate a mega-tsunami. A previous mega-tsunami in Hawaii may have created waves 1,400 feet tall on the nearby islands. One evidence of the power of this type of event is the discovery of large sections of coral the size of houses that were ripped from the ocean floor and carried several miles inland. Geologists have discovered huge blocks of land up to 10 miles wide on the sea floor that fanned out over 150 miles from the coast.

A Hawaiian mega-tsunami would hit the western coast of the US with a wave at least 200 feet tall. It would take about 5 hours for it to reach the coast, but there is no way to move 20 million Californians from the danger zone. The cities of Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Francisco would be absolutely devastated by the giant wave.

The activity of the last couple of months has added to the danger. When a magnitude 6.9 earthquake occurred on May 4th, the south flank moved about two feet toward the sea. The opening of over 20 vents was the result of a giant ripping of the eastern rift zone of Kilauea. The addition of billions of tons of weight to the south flank increases the chance of a major collapse.

Another indication that the danger may be all too real is the removal of information related to Kilauea and tsunamis. Wikipedia maintains a history of its article edits. I ran across a page that had gone from saying mega-tsunamis are a “natural” event to “Geologists are confident no such failure is likely” and “…supposed threats of mega-tsunamis are exaggerated.”

I don’t think there will be a mega-tsunami in the Pacific Ocean any time before the Kings of the East invasion. China would be shattered by such a wave, and I don’t see how it could launch a 200-million- man army invasion of the Middle East after being hit by a mega-tsunami.

When Jesus returns to earth and generates some type of pulse that will cause every mountain and island to move, the south flank will certainly collapse. In fact, dozens of sections of Hawaii will likely go crashing into the ocean. His return will be very glorious, but it will also be very terrifying to the lost.

“The sky receded like a scroll being rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved from its place” (Revelation 6:14).

–Todd


Commiserating with Lot

The story of Sodom and Gomorrah is the story of a man–but it is much more. It is a story of mankind.

The man is Abraham’s nephew, Lot, who chose to take the greener pasture when his uncle gave him the choice. That greener pasture was, of course, the land of Sodom and Gomorrah. It was much more appealing in lushness and the entertainment and other attractions it apparently offered.

The story of Lot, of Sodom and Gomorrah, is also a dramatic picture of all of mankind in its fallen state. The story foreshadows how the human race always chooses the ways of the world that take people farther and farther from their Creator.

Lot, despite being among the lost, debauched thousands of Sodom, was nonetheless considered righteous in the eyes of that Creator -the God of Heaven. There is one thing more we know about this nephew of the great progenitor of the people that would become Israel. Lot was sorely vexed. The story of the sorely vexed Lot can be found in the 19th chapter of the Book of Moses–Genesis.

There, we remember, God sent two angels, first to Uncle Abraham, then to Lot in the debauched city of Sodom.

Here is what the Apostle Peter wrote in regard to our vexed protagonist, Lot. The context is God dealing with egregiously rebellious mankind in righteous judgment.

But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly; And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly; And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished: But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government. Presumptuous are they, self-willed, they are not afraid to speak evil of dignities. (2 Peter 2:1-10)

Now, Peter points out–under divine inspiration and without any doubt–that ol’ Lot was indeed vexed. The definition of vexed in one instance is the state of being extremely irritated or frustrated to the point of a sense of being oppressed.

I use the word sorely, because it has always been a KJV term that amuses me. Some in biblical stories, for example, have been described as “sore afraid.”

I have no doubt that Lot, living among these ravenously homosexual men who threatened the angels who came into Sodom, was not only vexed, but sorely vexed.

Now, I want to say here that while watching things going on all around us in today’s society and culture I am sorely vexed.  It seems that fully half of the American people are immersed in activity that can be construed as anti-God. Government, media–both news and entertainment–seem bent on tearing down most every moral pillar to which our national life used to be tethered. And, we who oppose that tearing down are called the irrational, ignorant morons that are holding up progress.

We who think boys, not girls, should be Boy Scouts, who believe males should not be allowed in restrooms that are designated for females, who hold that God knows best when saying that marriage should be between a man and a woman, not a man and a man or a woman and a woman, are hated and vilified. Those doing the vilification and hating see themselves as the supreme moralists. And, their side has the public airwaves for the most part. They have Satan’s propaganda machinery that, without ceasing, preaches their Sodom and Gomorrah-like comportment as being the way life is meant to be lived.

This being the case, all of my vexation instantly turns to a shudder of realization when thinking on the future for those in such rebellion. The words issued by Peter above are yet–perhaps very soon–to once again come to fulfillment.

The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished: But chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise government.

–Terry