Critical Thinking: Biblical History, Moral Compass, Why the Bible Matters

Critical Thinking:

Biblical History, Moral Compass, Why the Bible Matters

Why the Bible Matters: Defining Right and Wrong

keyThere is a right and wrong to every question—Paying attention to your conscience is what helps you develop good character.

Do what is right; be faithful and fearless.

right-wrongsignOnward, press onward, the goal is in sight.

Eyes that are wet now, ere long will be tearless.

Blessings await you in doing what’s right!

Do what is right; let the consequence follow.

Battle for freedom in spirit and might;

and with stout hearts look ye forth till tomorrow.

God will protect you; then do what is right!

~Anonymous; The Psalms of Life, Boston, 1857

 

See More Defining Moments

 

 Birthright Covenant Series

Birthright Covenant Series-Young Adult Christian Books

Culture War GamesExcerpt from Book 2, coming in October

picnicwyouthIn this excerpt from the historical  Birthright Covenant series , book 2,  college history professor Jacob Nobles uses discovery teaching and ancient ruins at a historic site to lead his students in a discussion of truth, and discerning right from wrong.

      “Okay—” Preston spoke with caution. “I’ll give you that the Bible is actually a history. But why does it matter?

                “That is the million-dollar question …” Jacob smiled. “And you can find the answer here—for free!

                Jacob held up the Bible. “Now, Preston, you have asked why the Bible matters. Would you agree that the Bible is a history of God’s dealings with man?”

creationhands                “I guess you could say that. Apparently, somehow God’s version of the creation was given to Moses, and Moses wrote it down,” Preston commented carefully.

                “It makes sense to take God’s word for it,” Allison remarked with her usual bluntness. “After all, He was there when it happened—a distinction the rest of us cannot claim.”

                Preston shook his head. “Still, none of us were there for the creation process—not even Moses.”

                “That’s true.” Jacob chewed thoughtfully on his ham sandwich and inclined his head. “Hmm. So we have here two explanations for the Creation process—to keep it simple, we’ll call them two different stories. Since we were not present for the event, we’re forced to accept either one story or the other—on faith.”

                Puzzled, Preston tilted his head.

“What is faith, anyway?”

  “Well now, faith is to hope for things which are not seen but which are true,”[1] Josiah Bianco said.

 shepherdboy               Folding his arms across his chest, Preston surveyed the surrounding hills and glimpsed a boy leading a few sheep. “Are you saying that everybody just blindly follows …” He paused. “I’m sorry. I don’t mean to offend.”

                “No offense taken.”

                “Don’t worry,” Ben said. “We all have done the same thing.”

                “Really?”

                “Of course. It’s called academic freedom.”

  “Sure. Bring it on!” Allison took a sip out of her can of grape juice. “Only frauds and liars are afraid to answer questions.”

                “Why is Dr. Marlow so afraid of other points of view?” Nola asked.

                “He doesn’t want to lose the debate!” Allison interjected.

“Yes. Debate is an important part of academic freedom, but anyone can win an argument without teaching truth. A friendly discussion with free exchange of ideas is more effective in discovering truth.” Jacob chuckled. “However, when you prefer to control what others say and think, truth can get in your way.

   “Now that we are away from the university, we can actually look at more than one point of view! We will look at two stories of the Creation—one, in the Bible, and the other, Dr. Marlow’s version.”

                “The Bible version seems too simple,” Preston said.

                “Well, what is Dr. Marlow’s version called?” Nola inquired.

                “Dr. Marlow believes in a theory called Natural Selection which, simply put, proposes that everything somehow creates itself by chance,” Jacob replied.

                “That doesn’t make sense.” Nola frowned in disagreement. “The human body—and mind—are complicated. Something can’t be produced by nothing.[2] My experience has shown me that nothing worthwhile happens by chance. Everything takes work, and effort, and planning.

                “Yes, Nola. That’s why some scientists say that the Bible history discloses an intelligent design, a purpose, or an orderly plan.”

                “Aren’t Bible stories for children?” Preston wondered.

                “Men struggle to explain their philosophy. The Bible explains the Creation so a child can understand—so that parents can teach their children through the ages. Who is more intelligent?” Jacob shrugged. “Anyway, the important thing is, who is telling the truth—Man, or God?”

                “Can you just assume there is a God?”

Preston asked.

Jacob laughed. “We can look at some evidence. Where is evidence of chance?”

            No one answered for a moment.

            Josiah Bianco chortled. “Shall the work say of him that made it, He made me not?” he quipped, quoting Isaiah.[1]

[1] Isaiah 29:16

“What about evidence of design?”

                “The ability to think, for one thing,” Allison said, “ …one of many.”

                “As I said, the human body,” Nola added, “and life itself. I know many very intelligent scientists and doctors, but no one can earimageduplicate an eye or an ear.”               

  Preston’s gaze rested momentarily upon Nola’s face—round blue eyes, delicate sculpted features like a work of art. “All right,” he said. “Let’s say God is the intelligent Creator. Couldn’t He have made man out of apes?”

“Of course, He could, but would He? He is a God of order. As Creator of earth and all living things, He set up the rules for justice and science. Why would He violate His own laws?”[3]

         “What do you mean?”

                “Okay, if the Bible is really a history, and if it is true that we humans are created in the image of God, how are we different from animals?”

                “We can reason, while animals use instinct,” Preston said. “You’ve already established that.”

teotihuacanserpent               “Humans can draw, read, and write,” Allison said. “I have yet to see an animal who could carve something like this creature.” She poked her finger into the big teeth of the dragon carving, but withdrew her hand quickly. “Yikes! I don’t think an animal would make something this weird, even if it could!”

Free Will

  Jacob grinned. “True. Also, you chose to come here today, others did not. Ruben left early; the rest of you stayed. What does that mean?”

                “People have the power to choose,” Ben said.

                “Yes, that’s called Free Will. We have no empirical evidence of such a thing, but let’s suppose we have here a creature who is half man and half ape—by whose laws would this creature live—by the laws of man or nature? You’re the law student here, Preston. What do you think?”

   “Uh …”

                “If the creature is half man, would it be fair to make him live like an animal? Or if he is half animal, and cannot reason fully as a man, would it be just to impose upon him the laws of men?”

                “This is really getting confusing!”

   “Yes, Preston, it is confusing. But when He had completed the creation, God blessed human beings and all living things to multiply, each after their own kind.[4] There is nothing confusing about that.”

                A flutter of wings announced the arrival of a dove which lit next to his mate upon a limb of the tall tree.

How Do You Know What Is True and Right?

“The human soul can never die. So you see, it is created, not evolved, because God is not the author of confusion.[5] Therefore, to avoid confusion, would you agree we need some kind of law to bring order and justice to our lives?”

                “Absolutely,” Preston said. “We must have justice.”

 KJV Bible              “Let’s think for a moment about the two kinds of laws—which law provides true justice? Dr. Marlow makes no distinction between humans and animals. His law is simple: those who are strong rule and prevail over everything and everyone else.” Jacob placed his right hand firmly upon the rock and continued. “The law of Nature requires animals to kill other animals for food. In the law of the Bible, on the other hand, God tells us not to kill or eat other people. Why not?”

“It’s wrong!” The students exclaimed indignantly, in vigorous unison.

                “How do you know it’s wrong?”

                Jacob waited.

                “Well,” Preston began slowly. “There simply is no justice in murder and cannibalism. I don’t know why … Somehow I just know that.”

compass liahona   “Men often create laws to try to change God’s commandments,” Jacob continued, “but God’s laws never change. When He created our eternal souls, He planted those unchangeable moral laws in our minds and hearts. It’s called—”

                “Our conscience.” Preston nodded. “Of course! I see that now.”

                “Yes. The Bible contains our true moral compass in writing. And that, Preston, is why the Bible matters.”

More About Birthright Covenant series

[1] Isaiah 29:16

[2] John Locke, Essay Concerning Human Understanding; Great Books of the Western World, vol.35

[3] These are the eternal, immutable laws of good and evil, to which the Creator Himself in all His dispensations conforms. William Blackstone, Commentaries on the Laws of England, 1:59-60

[4] Genesis 1:22,24

[5] 1 Corinthians 14:33

Biblical Worldview, Brexit EU and Biblical History Repeating Itself

Biblical Worldview, Brexit EU and Biblical History Repeating Itself

A major reason several nations, including Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia are rebelling against the European Union is because of its globalist policies that are inimical to the Judeo-Christian policy. See Judeo-Christian Culture Pushing Back against Globalization in European Union ~C.D.

3 Spiritual Reasons It Was Good for Britain to Withdraw from the European Union

Mike Shreve

What does the European Union have to do with the Tower of Babel in Genesis 11, the Whorish Woman Riding the Beast in Revelation 17, a false Greek deity named Zeus and a satanic dedication ceremony of a new tunnel through the Alps? You might be completely stunned by the answer.

I don’t claim to understand the political, economic and sociological fallout of Britain being—or not being—a member of the European Union. I have my opinions, but I am not versed enough in the details to write about those aspects.

However, I do believe that the favor and blessing of God could very well follow the Brexit decision. Why would I make such a claim?

God warns against evil alliances. 2 Corinthians 6:14 cautions, “Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?” Any nation partnering with the European Union is yoked with lawlessness. Why would I make such an assertion? Dare to read on.

THE TOWER OF BABEL REVIVED

Look closely at this picture of the headquarters of the European Union in Strasbourg, France, in contrast to the famous 1563 picture of the Tower of Babel by the Flemish Northern Renaissance Painter, Pieter Brueghel the Elder. Apparently, the designers of the EU headquarters intentionally tried to mirror the appearance of scaffolding and an unfinished top to make this modern building look like the infamous and partially constructed tower that suffered the judgment of God thousands of years ago.

God told Noah’s offspring to fill the earth and replenish it, but instead, Nimrod forged a seven-city kingdom and pulled the people to a central location. They also came up with a grandiose plan, saying, “Let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth” (Gen. 11:4). God brought a swift end to their agenda, dividing their languages and scattering them abroad.
Erecting a building in the shape of the Tower of Babel is an audacious way of saying to the Creator, “We don’t care whether You disapproved of the original Tower of Babel or not. We intend to build it again and unite all nations under our control.” In other words, “We will undo what You did and return to the original plan.” What leaders in their right mind would choose to be associated with such a vile insult being hurled toward King of heaven?

A WHORISH WOMAN RIDES A BEAST

If the reintroduction of the Tower of Babel is not enough to trouble your spirit, look at the main emblem of the European Union that is boldly displayed in front of an EU headquarters building in Brussels, Belgium. This piece of metal artwork is in the shape of Europa, a Greek goddess, riding a bull (a beast) that represented the false Greek deity Zeus. Do some research on the original myth and you will find out that Zeus, attracted to Europa’s beauty, morphed into the form of a white bull, then laid down at Europa’s feet. After she climbed on him, he plunged into the sea and raped her. It is all an occult picture, with deep spiritual implications, of what the EU leaders have planned to do. By the way, the name Europa is where the word Europe came from.

Yes, politically, financially and sociologically, Europe has been ‘raped’ by the unelected elite of this organization that apparently, from the beginning, have purposed that the EU be a major step toward the goal of world domination and global unity. The fact that they used the symbol of a whorish woman riding a beast, plainly drawn from Revelation 17, as their symbolic emblem is a blatant, in-your-face admission of their evil and satanically-driven intent.

As I was researching these things, I came across a website called “Signs of the Last Days” with a lot of useful information. The writer tied the EU together with the beast of Revelation 17 with the following words:

That beast in the book of Revelation represents the world government led by the Antichrist. By so prominently using the symbol of a woman riding the beast, the global elite are very clearly communicating that they are connected with this coming Beast system. They know what the Bible says when they use symbols like this. It seems like they are almost bragging about it.

You see, the elitists at the very top of the pyramid are hardcore Luciferians. They also know that Antichrist is coming, and they plan to serve him. They believe that they are actually going to win in the end. They have confidence in their “god” just as we have confidence in our God.
Satan has deceived himself into believing that he can win this thing in the end and he has deceived his followers into believing the same thing. Such a thing seems inconceivable to Christians – but this is what hardcore Luciferians actually believe.

In fact, one thing that is common among the Luciferian global elite is a compulsion to tell us exactly what they are about to do. In this case, they are very open about the fact that not only do they intend to deceive and subjugate Europe, but they intend to do the same to all of humanity.

A Euro coin released in Greece depicts the ancient myth of Europa (from which we get the word “Europe”) riding the bull (“the beast”).

A phone card depicting the European Union as a whorish woman riding a beast.

 

A poster advertising the EU uses the inverted pentagram for stars, a known symbol of Satan. Notice the people are depicted with square-shaped heads, symbolizing robotic-like control of the masses.

 

THE SATANIC DEDICATION OF A TUNNEL

Last year (June 1, 2016), the Gotthard Tunnel in Switzerland was dedicated with a full-blown satanic celebration, filled with occult symbolism and explicit sexual perversion. Just do a search on the internet for this event and you can watch the mind-blowing and blatant demonstration of evil imagery. But what does this have to do with the EU? The goal behind this 17-year project, opening up a 35-mile long tunnel in the Swiss Alps, is apparently a bigger purpose than providing a seamless high speed rail trip from the Dutch city of Rotterdam to the city of Genoa on Italy’s seacoast.

The dedication of the first stage of this project was attended by many political, business and financial leaders from across Europe, including Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, Switzerland’s President Johann Schneider-Ammann, Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel and France’s previous President Francois Hollande. This is an indication of a bigger picture, a New World Order agenda, a unifying goal in mind that will affect key nation-members of the EU.

YES, IT IS A GOOD THING

So the conclusion is, yes, it is a good thing that Britain exited the European Union (even though their reasons were probably not spiritual). Hopefully, they will abide by this decision, but more importantly, may there be national repentance and a turn back to biblical principles that have so permeated the British culture in decades and centuries past. Pray that this will happen. If Britain maintains its anti-EU position, it could be a serious stalling deterrent to the progress of the New World Order and may buy more time for the advance of the Gospel of the kingdom in this world before Jesus returns.

*Note: some of the information in this article was obtained from:

 

3 Spiritual Reasons It Was Good for Britain to Withdraw from the European Union

Biblical History and United States Seal

Dinner Topics for Wednesday

keyRebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.

Glenn Beck:

U.S. identified in Bible

‘Our entire history is directly tied to this moment’

KJV BibleRadio and television host Glenn Beck is now going public with his belief the United States is among the famous “Lost 10 Tribes of Israel,” and America today is suffering calamities just as ancient Israel did due to its disobedience to the laws of God.

Echoing the conclusions of some experts who have delved deeply into what’s known as the theory of “Anglo-Israelism” or “British-Israelism,” Beck took viewers of his TV show into a biblical history lesson dating back to the time after King David of the Old Testament, when the once united Kingdom of Israel became divided.

“Israel was split into two kingdoms, the Northern Kingdom and the Southern Kingdom,” Beck explained.

Many people don’t realize that ancient Israel (the Northern Kingdom) actually went to war against the Jews (the Southern Kingdom of Judah) over many years. Four Books of the Bible, 1 and 2 Kings as well as 1 and 2 Chronicles, document the separate national histories of the kingdoms of Israel and Judah.

Beck explained that eventually, God warned the rebellious northern kingdom to stop its sinning, or else face disaster.

“They’re warned, ‘You’re going to be taken by the Assyrians, and you’re gonna be taken into captivity,’” said Beck.

“Well, that’s exactly what happened. Judah remained, but the tribes in the north, they were taken and they went throughout the Assyrian empire. The Kingdom of Judah was not scattered. This is where the term ‘Jew’ comes from – Judah.”

Beck went on to note that when the Assyrians were finally defeated by other powers, they and the Israelite captives fled northward.

“And they fled out of captivity through the Caucuses Mountains,” he said. “The Caucusus Mountains are where you hear the word ‘Caucasian.’”

“What’s interesting is the Assyrians, who were very good, meticulous record-keepers, and who were just brutal [people], they settled in Italy and in the Germany area and the Russia area where facsism comes from. But the Israelites, the Lost 10 Tribes, they went north and they started to scatter [in another] direction, and they went to the coastlines, generally in the area where the Pilgrims came from. …

“All of Western Civilization is based on the laws of Israel. And our entire history is directly tied to this moment. Our Pilgrims thought they were completing the journey out of captivity.”

seal-of-the-president-of-the-united-statesimage: seal of the president]Beck believes the Statue of Liberty holding tablets is a more modern representation of Moses holding the Ten Commandments, and he focused attention on the symbols on the both the presidential seal and the Great Seal of the United States.

On the presidential seal, he connected the artwork of sun rays, the moon and stars to one of the sons of Israel who had a famous dream in the Book of Genesis.

“When Joseph from the Bible is with his brothers, he tells his brothers that he had a dream. And he said, ‘I had a dream where the sun, the moon and the stars all bowed down to me,’” Beck explained.

He then noted the prominent theme of the number 13 on the seal.

“There’s strong symbolism with the number 13 being represented everywhere: 13 arrows, 13 stripes, 13 stars, 13 olives,” he said.

But is that figure merely a reflection of the 13 original American colonies?

“That’s what everyone will tell you, and that is one answer. But there is another one that many people believe,” Beck said.

“What else is 13? Twelve disciples surrounding Jesus, but more importantly, I think, the 12 tribes of Israel.”

As far as why 12 tribes of Israel would be represented by the number 13 and not 12, Beck stated, “The tribe of Joseph split into Manassah and Ephraim, and those were in northern Israel. That’s the northern kingdom of Israel. That’s the thirteen tribes.”

seal-of-the-united-states[image: United States Seal]As he examined the Great Seal of the U.S., Beck noted that above the eagle representing America, there are “13 stars in the shape of the Star of David.”

Surrounding the grouping of stars, he pointed out the artwork of clouds and light from “fire.”

“When Moses led his people out of Egypt, what did they follow during the day? A cloud by day, and a pillar of fire by night. That’s what this means,” he said.

He even unearthed the original proposed seal for the nation, which was promoted by Founding Fathers Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin.

seal-of-the-united-states-original[image: original seal]Featuring the motto “Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God,” the scene depicts the nation of Israel during its Exodus out of Egyptian slavery.

“Moses leading the Israelites across the Red Sea by a pillar of fire. Hello?” voiced Beck. “Look at the clouds around the fire in the center in exactly the same position as the eagle [seal].”

Beck noted it didn’t bother him if people didn’t believe the history lesson.

“I didn’t care a few years ago, but after 9/11, I promised I would find out what was going on,” he said.

“So what is it? We are nation that is based on Judeo-Christian values and the Bible. Period. You might not buy into the olives and the branches and everything else. It’s fact! It’s fact! But there’s no way to deny that the majority of our laws come directly from the Scriptures, right directly from Deuteronomy.”

Historian Steven M. Collins of Sioux Falls, S.D., has written several books on the subject, including “The ‘Lost’ Ten Tribes of Israel … Found” and “Israel’s Tribes Today.”

“It is such heartening news to me that Glenn Beck has seen this fundamental truth about which so many Christians are unaware,” Collins said after viewing Beck’s program.

“If the modern nations of the ten tribes of Israel came to widely recognize their true heritage as the biblical ‘house of Israel,’ it would revolutionize the self-perceptions of not only individuals but of nations as well. It would also verify the Holy Bible powerfully as the prophecies about the Israelites’ future after their exile from the Promised Land in the 8th century B.C. would be seen to be completely accurate and fulfilled. This would prove that the Bible is the Word of a Creator God as only an immortal Creator God could control the destinies of nations to make sure that biblical prophecies made millennia ago are being precisely fulfilled today.”

Collins says there is “overwhelming evidence” proving the modern nations of the 10 tribes of Israel are the Anglo-American, Scandinavian and many mainland European nations.

“It is gratifying to see that a well-known American media personality now has many of these important truths as well. Perhaps we are reaching the time when it is God’s will for this truth to become widely known in the modern nations. Such an awareness would revolutionize global geopolitics, to say the least.”

There are many who disagree with the theory.

Among them is Dr. Claude Mariottini, a professor of Old Testament at Northern Baptist Theological Seminary in Lombard, Ill.

Mariottini states, “The fact is that British-Israelism is based on a biased interpretation of the text, eisegesis, wishful thinking, and a lack of reliable historical evidence. The view that Great Britain and the United States of America are the lost tribes of Ephraim and Manasseh is just a myth.”

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/08/glenn-beck-u-s-is-lost-tribe-of-israel/#TEZQf4m56Fc6YLRi.99

History Facts: Biblical Timeline, Current Events, and Moral Solutions

History Facts:

Biblical Timeline, Current Events, and Moral Solutions

keyoldAsk for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. ~Jeremiah 6:16

 

Nehemiah is sent to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. Isaiah and Jeremiah warn against evil and call the people to repentance. Look for parallels in today’s society. Find good advice that will ensure safety and blessings.

 

Nehemiah

Many Jews were in bondage to their brethren. At Nehemiah’s direction they are freed, their lands are restored. Nehemiah is sent to rebuild the walls and gates of Jerusalem. Their enemies seek to prevent Jews from rebuilding walls of Jerusalem. Nehemiah arms the laborers and keeps the work going forward. Sanballat engages in intrigue against Nehemiah and the building of the wall. Jews finish construction of the wall.

isaiah3Isaiah

Isaiah warns people who reject God as their maker and do works of darkness.

Isaiah 29:15,16, 21

15 Woe unto them that seek deep to hide their counsel from the Lord, and their works are in the dark, and they say, Who seeth us? and who knoweth us?

isaiah-good-called-evil 16 Surely your turning of things upside down shall be esteemed as the potter’s clay: for shall the work say of him that made it, He made me not? or shall the thing framed say of him that framed it, He had no understanding?

21 That make a man an offender for a word, and lay a snare for him that reproveth in the gate, and turn aside the just for a thing of nought.

 

Prophet Jeremiah as depicted by Michelangelo on Sistine chapel ceiling

Prophet Jeremiah as depicted by Michelangelo
on Sistine chapel ceiling

Jeremiah

The following chapter headings give an outline of Judah and Israel history. What parallels do you see today?

The sins of Israel and Judah

2

The people of Judah forsook the Lord, the fountain of living waters—They worshipped idols and rejected the prophets.

3

Israel and Judah defiled and polluted the land through wickedness—In the last days, the Lord will gather the people of Israel, one from a city and two from a family, and bring them to Zion.

5

Judgments will be poured out upon the people of Judah because of their sins—Their iniquities cause blessings to be withheld from them.

6

Jerusalem will be destroyed because of her iniquity—She will be overrun by a great and cruel nation.

15

The people of Judah will suffer death, the sword, famine, and captivity—They will be scattered into all the kingdoms of the earth—Jerusalem will be destroyed.

17

The captivity of Judah comes because of sin and forsaking the Lord—Hallow the Sabbath day; doing so will save the people; otherwise they will be destroyed.

Moral Solutions: A Call to Repentance

7

If the people of Judah repent, they will be preserved—

The temple has become a den of robbers—The Lord rejects that generation of the people of Judah for their idolatries—They offer their children as sacrifices.

18

Israel is as potter’s clay in the hands of the Lord—If nations repent, the Lord withholds the evil decreed against them.

1 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,

potter-clay-wheel-stand-center_2 2 Arise, and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words.

3 Then I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels.

4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.

5 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.

7 At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it;

8 If that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them.

change-of-heart1 9 And at what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it;

10 If it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them.

11 ¶Now therefore go to, speak to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the Lord; Behold, I frame evil against you, and devise a device against you: return ye now every one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good.

 

Gospel Teachings: Jesus Christ, Cornerstone

Gospel Teachings: Jesus Christ, Cornerstone

Defining Moment

keyold“Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; “And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;“In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:“In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”

Ephesians 2:19–22

christ-cornerstoneFacts about the Cornerstone

L. Tom Perry (1922–2015)

What it is.

A cornerstone is the first stone placed upon a building’s foundation, in a corner of the structure.

What it does.

A cornerstone bears much of the weight of a building’s outer structure, and it connects and unites two of the walls. After it is placed, all other stones and their angles are measured out from it.

What its characteristics are.

Anciently, a cornerstone would normally be one of the largest, most solid stones a builder had to work with. The builder would examine his stones carefully and select the best one as a cornerstone, rejecting any stones that didn’t appear suitable.

What We Can Learn

A cornerstone:

Is the first. Jesus Christ is the Firstborn of all the Father’s children (see Colossians 1:15–17; Hebrews 1:6; D&C 93:21), the first to be resurrected (see 1 Corinthians 15:20), the one who was to “go to prepare a place for [us]” in His Father’s house (John 14:2), the “Beloved and Chosen from the beginning” (Moses 4:2), and “the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2).

Unites. Jesus Christ “inviteth … all to come unto him” (2 Nephi 26:33). The Atonement of Jesus Christ allows us to repent, become sanctified through the Holy Ghost, and be reunited with Heavenly Father. The Apostle Paul showed that Jesus Christ, as the cornerstone, was the connecting point for the two “walls” of the Church in that day: the Apostles of the New Testament and the prophets of the Old Testament, perhaps illustrating the mix of Gentile and Jewish converts (see Ephesians 2:20). The prophets and apostles of today, along with those of old, help unite us in Christ—in His doctrine, His service, and His Church.

Aligns. Jesus Christ “marked the path and led the way, and ev’ry point defines” (“How Great the Wisdom and the Love,” Hymns, no. 195). He is our guide and our lawgiver, the one whose commandments we obey and whose words we heed.

Strengthens. Jesus Christ has taken upon Himself our sins so that we can be forgiven if we will repent. In this way, He strengthens us by removing the ill effects of sin. In addition, “the enabling power of the Atonement strengthens us to do and be good and to serve beyond our own individual desire and natural capacity” (David A. Bednar, “The Atonement and the Journey of Mortality,” Ensign, Apr. 2012, 42–43).

Open to All

“Our community of Saints is not one of exclusion but one of inclusion, built upon a foundation of apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone. It is open to all of us who love, appreciate, and have compassion for our Father in Heaven’s children.”

Bible Facts

Psalm 118:22 refers to the Messiah, saying, “The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner.” Jesus quoted this scripture in reference to Himself (see Matthew 21:42; Mark 12:10; Luke 20:17), suggesting that although He would be “despised and rejected of men” in His day (Isaiah 53:3), He was in fact the Messiah and would bring salvation.

After the Savior’s Resurrection, Peter quoted this psalm when testifying of Jesus Christ to the people of Jerusalem (see Acts 4:11–12). He quoted it again in his first epistle, where he also mentioned another Old Testament verse that compares the Messiah to a cornerstone (see 1 Peter 2:6–7; Isaiah 28:16).

Church Leadership, Supreme Court Ruling, and Biblical History

Church Leadership Response to Supreme Court Ruling—

1. I fear judgment befalling America

keyoldPride goeth before a fall. ~Proverbs 16:18

We will fully and ungrudgingly render to Caesar what is Caesar’s. But under no circumstances will we render to Caesar what is God’s.”

No one cares about the Children!

culture-war4-court

Exclusive: James Dobson sees child maltreatment as primary consequence of Supreme Court ruling

James Dobson

Even though Friday’s re-definition of marriage by the U. S. Supreme Court was anticipated, I have found myself grieving over its implications for my country and for Western civilization itself. This radical decree will have a devastating affect on every dimension of culture.

 

Supreme Court Ruling implications: Child Maltreatment

schoolindoctrination2I grieve most for what it will do to our children, our grandchildren and future generations. They will be taught that right is wrong and wrong is right, and that the teachings of Scripture are unreliable and inaccurate. How outrageous it is that boys and girls barely out of babyhood are already being introduced in some schools to perverse adult behavior.

Soon, public school textbooks throughout the country will be re-written and re-illustrated to conform to today’s ruling. It matters not that these revisions will contradict the beliefs and convictions of their parents. It will soon become the law of the land.

Many more vulnerable kids will grow up in homes with same-sex parents, obviously lacking either masculine or feminine role models. They are the real victims of the Court’s ruling.

Adults will suffer, too. I believe a barrage of court cases has already been planned against those who hold to politically incorrect views of marriage. Many of us will be dragged into court to be prosecuted or subjected to civil judgments. Some will lose their jobs, while others forfeit their businesses. Some will be persecuted and ridiculed and fined. Some may go to prison as the years unfold. Since same-sex marriage has now been determined to be a universal human right by the highest court in the land, it will trump religious liberty, churches, seminaries, Christian schools, businesses and a host of individual liberties. I also fear that judgment will befall this once great nation.

The U.S. Supreme Court does not have the authority to redefine something it did not create. Marriage was created long before the United States and our constitution came into existence. Our constitution says nothing about marriage. The majority who issued today’s ruling have simply made it up out of thin air with no constitutional authority.
I’ll end my comments by quoting the final words from the Manhattan Declaration, written by the late Charles Colson, professor Robby George and Dr. Timothy George. They wrote:

“… Because we honor justice and the common good, we will not comply with any edict that purports to compel our institutions to participate in abortions, embryo-destructive research, assisted suicide and euthanasia, or any other anti-life act; nor will we bend to any rule purporting to force us to bless immoral sexual partnerships, treat them as marriages or the equivalent, or refrain from proclaiming the truth, as we know it, about morality and immorality and marriage and the family. We will fully and ungrudgingly render to Caesar what is Caesar’s. But under no circumstances will we render to Caesar what is God’s.”

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/06/i-fear-judgment-befalling-america/#D8oxGUtA41EyffQC.99

 

2. Franklin Graham: ‘Gay’ rainbow ends badly

‘May it remind all of us of God’s judgment to come’

capitol-strike-lightningBecause of the nation’s adoption, through its Supreme Court, of mandatory recognition of same-sex marriage across the states.

“Our nation will not like what’s at the end of this rainbow,” he wrote this week.

“‘Pride goeth before a fall.’ Supreme Court Justice [Antonin] Scalia used Proverbs 16:18 in his comments regarding the court’s disappointing and dangerous ruling about same-sex marriage,” Graham wrote. “He rightly called the decision ‘a threat to the American democracy.’ This is so true. Arrogantly disregarding God’s authority always has serious consequences.”

“God is the one who gave the rainbow, and it was associated with His judgment. God sent a flood to wipe out the entire world because mankind had become so wicked and violent,” he wrote.
He said: “With all due respect to the court, it did not define marriage, and therefore is not entitled to re-define it. Long before our government came into existence, marriage was created by the One who created man and woman – Almighty God – and His decisions are not subject to review or revisions by any manmade court. God is clear about the definition of marriage in His Holy Word: ‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Genesis 2:24).

“I pray God will spare America from His judgment, though, by our actions as a nation, we give Him less and less reason to do so.”
Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/07/franklin-graham-gay-rainbow-ends-badly/#4iptyFosV1E3IB7Z.99

 

3. Rabbi Jonathan Cahn on Biblical History: This is what happens when a nation rejects God

No man can overrule the laws of God. No judgment of man can stand against the judgment of God’.

At a prayer event in Washington, he said: “The justices of the Supreme Court took up their seats [in a hearing] on whether they should strike down the biblical and historic definition of marriage. That the event should even take place is a sign this is America of [George] Washington’s warning … a nation at war against its own foundation.”

George WashingtonWashington warned the smiles of heaven can never be expected on a nation “that disregards the eternal rules of order and right which heaven itself hath ordained.”

“Justices, can you judge the ways of God? There is another court and there another judge, where all men and all judges will give account,” he warned.

“If a nation’s high court should pass judgment on the Almighty, should you then be surprised God will pass judgment on the court and that nation? We are doing that which Israel did on the altars of Baal,” he said.

“We are exchanging our light for darkness.”

Cahn said America’s biblical foundation was affirmed throughout history, and the nation came into existence “solely for the glory and purposes of God.”

“No historian can rewrite that. No president can expunge that,” he warned. “If a thousand angels swore on a thousand Bibles that this was not the case, it would in no way alter the fact. … America was brought into existence for the will and purposes of God.”

He explained ancient Israel turned away from God.

“They drove God out of the government. They worshiped idols and served other gods. They celebrated immorality and they persecuted righteousness. The blessings of God were removed and replaced with judgments,” he said.

Now, he said, “America has made the same mistakes.”

He cited the deaths of 55 million through abortion.

“What we were warned never to do we now have done,” he thundered.

moses-supreme-court1

(Isn’t it interesting, how figures of Moses, and the Ten Commandments, permeate the supposedly secular Supreme Court Building?)

Moving to directly confront President Obama, whose pro-abortion and pro-homosexual agenda has been unparalleled in American history, he questioned what happens when a leader places his left hand on the Bible to assume to highest office in the land but with his right hand “enacts laws that violate the laws of God.”

“Mr. President, when you address the House, look up above the senators and the representatives, above the Supreme Court justices, you’ll see a face, the only full visage in that wall. It is the face of Moses. … It would say this, ‘No man can overrule the laws of God. No judgment of man can stand against the judgment of God’.”
Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/07/franklin-graham-gay-rainbow-ends-badly/#4iptyFosV1E3IB7Z.99

 

Church and State: Church Leaders stand for Traditional Marriage vs. Supreme Court Judges

Church and State: 

Church Leaders Dobson, Graham to Supreme Court Judges: We’ll choose Bible, Traditional Marriage

key“We affirm that marriage, as existing solely between one man and one woman, precedes civil government. Though affirmed, fulfilled and elevated by faith, the truth that marriage can exist only between one man and one woman is not based solely on religion but on the Natural Law, written on the human heart.” ~Christian Leaders

‘We will not honor any decision’ that violates 1-man, 1-woman design
Bob Unruh

ChristianMarriageadProminent Christian and Jewish leaders are warning the U.S. Supreme Court justices in a full-page ad in major newspapers that they will not honor any decision that violates the “biblical understanding of marriage as solely the union of one man and one woman.”

The statement by the leaders — who include Franklin Graham, James Dobson, Frank Pavone, Don Wildmon, Jerry Boykin, Alveda King and Alan Keyes — appears in a full-page ad in the Washington Post, USA Today and other papers.

“We affirm that marriage, as existing solely between one man and one woman, precedes civil government. Though affirmed, fulfilled and elevated by faith, the truth that marriage can exist only between one man and one woman is not based solely on religion but on the Natural Law, written on the human heart,” the leaders say in the ad.

culture-war7-truth“We implore this court to not step outside of its legitimate authority and unleash religious persecution and discrimination against people of faith. We will be forced to choose between the state and our conscience, which is informed by clear biblical and church doctrine and the natural created order.”

Their conclusion?

“We will not honor any decision by the Supreme Court which will force us to violate a clear biblical understanding of marriage as solely the union of one man and one woman.”

The statement is signed by dozens of leaders whose organizations represent tens of millions. It comes as a U.S. Supreme Court decision on a marriage dispute in the 6th Circuit is expected imminently.

Unethical Judges

judicialtyrannyTwo justices, Elena Kagan and Ruth Ginsburg, already have publicly advocated for same-sex “marriage” by performing ceremonies but have refused to recuse themselves from the case.

Many analysts expect the Supreme Court, by a narrow margin, to find a constitutional right to same-sex “marriage.”

It already is recognized in about three dozen states, most of which have been ordered by federal judges to take that step.

In only one state, Alabama, has there been significant resistance. The state Supreme Court there ordered officials who issue marriage licenses to follow the state constitution and issue them only to male-female couples.

The ad states, “We the undersigned have joined together to present our unified message and plea to the justices of the United States Supreme Court regarding the matter of marriage.

“We are Protestant, Catholic and Orthodox Christian pastors, clergy, lay leaders and Jewish leaders, who collectively represent millions of people in our specific churches, parishes, denominations, synagogues and media ministry outreaches.”

They described anything other than biblical marriage as “an unjust law, as Martin Luther King Jr. described such laws in his letter from the Birmingham jail.”

They said they will choose the Bible.

“On this choice, we must pledge obedience to our Creator. While there are many things we can endure, any attempt to redefine marriage is a line we cannot and will not cross.”

Marriage Pledge

They refer to DefendMarriage.org, where tens of thousands of Americans already have signed a related pledge.
familydefendmarriage1The “Marriage Pledge” being signed by Americans states: “We will view any decision by the Supreme Court or any court the same way history views the Dred Scott and Buck v. Bell decisions. Our highest respect for the rule of law requires that we not respect an unjust law that directly conflicts with higher law. A decision purporting to redefine marriage flies in the face of the Constitution and is contrary to the natural created order.”

It continues: “Experience and history have shown us that if the government redefines marriage to grant a legal equivalency to same-sex couples, that same government will then enforce such an action with the police power of the state. This will bring about an inevitable collision with religious freedom and conscience rights. The precedent established will leave no room for any limitation on what can constitute such a redefined notion of marriage or human sexuality. We cannot and will not allow this to occur on our watch.”
Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/06/dobson-graham-to-supremes-well-choose-bible/#PCvEB6cIL3O1jcrY.99

Supreme Court Justices, Obama Administration defy God, Biblical History

Supreme Court Justices, Obama Administration defy God, Biblical History

Christian leaders: Supremes just doubled down on defying God

capitol-strike-lightningWith the climax of the Shemitah year now just three months away on Sept. 13, America continues to saunter down the path of defiance to the will of God, say Christian leaders, inviting judgment on the land.

The latest affront to biblical sensibilities came this week when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Americans born in Jerusalem must not have “Israel” listed on their passports as their place of birth, saying the city remains part of disputed territory, WND reported. Such a move could provoke Muslims to violence, President Obama’s U.S. State Department argued, so the passport should say “Jerusalem” not “Israel.” Congress took the opposite stand, and the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the executive branch.

The Palestinian Authority hailed the decision. Saeb Erekat, chief PA negotiator, said it “sends a clear message to Israel that its policies of colonization are null and void.”

American evangelical Christian leaders were disappointed, saying the decision is just one more nail in a coffin that is getting darker by the day.

obama-hates-israel“Not allowing to declare that Jerusalem is in Israel is a final straw of judgment for America and I’ll tell you why,” said Mark Biltz, pastor of El Shaddai Ministries
“There are three Jews on the Supreme Court (Elana Kagan, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer) that voted against saying Jerusalem was a part of Israel because they were afraid of the ‘giants’ in the political arena around the world,” Biltz told WND.

Biltz finds that particularly prescient in light of the fact that this weekend’s Torah reading that will be read in synagogues all over the world just so happens to be “Shelach.”

“This is a very short story about the spies that brought the bad report, making a false judgment call, because they feared the giants in the land,” Biltz said. “God told them Israel was theirs for the taking, and it was a horrible disaster resulting in having to wander for 40 years in the desert.”

“I agree with Chief Justice (John) Roberts’ dissenting opinion. He stated that ‘Never before has this Court accepted a President’s direct defiance of an Act of Congress in the field of foreign affairs.’”
Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/06/u-s-remains-on-perilous-shemitah-course/#18eHY7poL146DoYw.99