Where Do We Go When We Die?

In this piece over at The Watchman’s Bagpipes, Glenn Chatfield examines what the scriptures teach about the soul after death.  He writes:

Many teachings about where we go when dead can be totally unbiblical, including the ideas of “soul sleep” and annihilation, as promoted by cults such as the Seventh-day Adventists and Jehovah’s Witnesses, as well as by many individual false teachers.  Along with these teachings is usually the claim that there is no hell (as the place of eternal torment and separation from God).
If the scripture tells us the abode of the soul after death, that it is still conscious and aware, then the idea of the soul sleeping until resurrection is proven wrong, as is the idea that the souls of unbelievers are annihilated.  One could actually write a whole book on the topic in order to cover what the Bible says about the grave, the afterlife before and after Christ, etc, but here I can only highlight the most important and concise arguments against the “anti-Hell”, “soul sleep” and “annihilation” teachings.

The Biggest New Cheat in Professional Women’s Sports

LifeZette reports:

Photo credit: Theorieleren Online

The East German women’s Olympic teams were known for doping their way to victory. Their cheating, long suspected, took longer to be discovered. But today there is a new cheat happening in the world of women’s sports, only this time it’s perfectly legal. It is transgender women — biological men, in other words — who are dominating in women’s sports.

While still rare, a growing number of sports organizations are allowing men who identify as women to compete against women in sports such as weightlifting, mixed martial arts, and basketball. To no one’s surprise, these individuals are winning.

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Laughing Planned Parenthood Abortionist: It ‘Takes More Force’ to Dismember Some Babies

According to Christian News:

Newly-released undercover footage from the Center for Medical Progress captures a Planned Parenthood abortionist laughing about how much force is required to dismember babies when chemical agents aren’t used, and joking that she first thought she needed to go to the gym just to get in shape to perform a dilation and evacuation procedure.

“Research shows that Dig (short for Digoxin) doesn’t make the procedure easier in someone who is well trained, but I have to tell you anecdotally my biceps appreciate when the Dig works [to kill the baby],” DeShawn Taylor of Planned Parenthood Los Angeles stated, flexing her arm and giggling.

“It does not take me any longer to complete the procedure, but it takes more force,” she explained. “I remember when I was a fellow and I was training, I was like, ‘Oh, I have to hit the gym for this. I need to hit the gym.’”

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Spiritual Darkness

5 This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; 7 but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His word is not in us. 1 John 1:5-10 (NASB) 

God is sovereign. He is Holy, Righteous, and Just. As John states in 1 John 1:5 (above), He is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.

Here is v5 from the NA28: Καὶ ἔστιν αὕτη ἡ ἀγγελία ἣν ἀκηκόαμεν ἀπʼ αὐτοῦ καὶ ἀναγγέλλομεν ὑμῖν, ὅτι ὁ θεὸς φῶς ἐστιν καὶ σκοτία ἐν αὐτῷ οὐκ ἔστιν οὐδεμία.

Here is my personal translation: “And this is the message which we have heard from Him and we declare to you, that God is light and in Him there is no darkness at all.

The word “light” translates the Greek word φῶς, which we looked at in last night’s post, Light and Life vs Darkness and Death, while the word “darkness” translates σκοτία or skotia, which means “darkness,” however except for John 6:17; 20:1, in the New Testament, where this word refers to the actual darkness of night or early morning, σκοτία is always used metaphorically. Jesus uses it to describe the actual time of private teaching with the Twelve, away from the crowds (Matthew 10:27). He also warns against the hypocrisy of the Pharisees, saying that everything spoken in “darkness” will be revealed (Luke 12:3). Jesus is light (John 12:35), and He invites people to walk in His light instead of their darkness (John 8:12; 12:46). Those who have hatred in their hearts may think they are in the light, but they are deceived and even blinded (1 John 2:9, 11). This lost sinful world, characterized by σκοτία, cannot understand the light that has come to illuminate it (John 1:5). Darkness is not a power that is equal to God, for God dispels it. Light and darkness are used to contrast the purity and holiness of God and the wickedness and sinfulness of this world (1 John 1:5). View article →

Heaven, Hillsong, and Heresy

Costi Hinn has a warning for parents: Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be…..targets.  Targets? Yes.  Young people are being targeted by “Christian” bands like Hillsong and Jesus Culture.  Jesus Culture is known for their “prophetic worship.” Their aim is to “ignite revival in the nations of the earth” through global events. But how will this come about when their message obscures the true Gospel of Jesus Christ?

What are groups like Hillsong and Jesus Culture actually accomplishing through their music?  Multitudes are being drawn into counterfeit Christianity!

As the nephew of Word of Faith televangelist Benny Hinn, Costi knows first hand what it is like to be lured into a heretical movement at an early age. But the Lord in His mercy delivered Costi Hinn out of Satan’s clutches and now Costi’s on a mission to prevent others from being manipulated the way he was.  “Christians who are clueless to enemy strategies are sitting ducks,” he warns, “and churches who can’t confidently explain to their young people why they must avoid these types of conferences are unable to effectively keep watch over the souls of their sheep (Hebrews 13:17).”

In his piece over at Pulpit & Pen, Costi Hinn lists five ways pastors and parents can protect young people, and the rest of the church, from being enticed by the enemy of God.

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Related: Jesus Culture’s Kim Walker Smith’s Alleged Encounter With Jesus Christ And God the Father by Ken Silva

Canada Reportedly Harvesting Organs of Euthanasia Patients

According to Christian News:

A recent push in Canada to encourage euthanasia patients to donate their organs appears to be working.

In Ontario, the first province to report data, 26 people who died by lethal injection decided to donate tissue or organs since the Medical Aid in Dying Act (MAID) came into effect last June, according to the National Post. A total of 388 people have chosen to die by lethal injection in Ontario, over half of the 744 total Canadians who have been euthanized.

Proponents of linking organ harvesting to euthanasia point to the shortage of organ transplants readily available and the lower cost associated with euthanasia than with end-of-life care.

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Quadriplegic man’s arm and hand brought back to life by thought-control tech

Sky News reports:

Bill Kochevar, 56, was paralysed below his shoulders in a cycling accident eight years ago but can now grasp and lift objects after having two pill-sized electrodes implanted in his brain.

The electrodes record the activity of brain neurons to generate signals that tell another device to stimulate muscles in the paralysed limb.

During trials held at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, Mr Kochevar raised a mug of water to his lips and drank from a straw.

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Light and Life vs Darkness and Death

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. 6 There came a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the Light, but he came to testify about the Light. (Finish reading the passage here.)

The New Testament book of John is profound. The thirty-four opening verses (above) set the stage for us by making sure we understand whom Jesus Christ really is. Who is He? He is God! He is the Word, the Logos, who preexisted creation. Notice also, “In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.” This is an analogy. “Life” translates ζωὴ or zōē, which is speaking of spiritual life or eternal life (John 3:15; John 17:3; Ephesians 2:5) and John calls it what? It is “the Light of men…” which translates the Greek phrase, “τὸ φῶς τῶν ἀνθρώπων.” “Light” translates the word φῶς or phōs and it refers to biblical truth, therefore, what do we have? In Christ, we have eternal life that also bears the fruit within us of God’s truth, which is Biblical truth. Of course, the opposite is true as well. Outside of Christ is spiritual death and those outside of Him are in darkness, which means they are in error or falsehood. Morally, this light refers to holiness and purity (1 John 1:5) while darkness refers to sin or wrongdoing (John 3:19; John 12:35, 46; Romans 13:11-14; 1 Thessalonians 5:4-7; 1 John 1:6; 1 John 2:8-11). View article →

Want to Risk It? Butter That Biscuit

Finally, some good news to report. As it turns out, butter may actually be a more healthy choice than the “white bread or potato on which it is commonly spread,” even though we’ve been led to believe that “a pat of butter a week will lead to heart disease, diabetes, the Bubonic plague and the burning in hell for all eternity.” Lisa Fogarty of LifeZette has the story:

You thought you were doing the right thing all of these years. You’ve been saying “no” to butter and watching in horror (and envy) as your co-workers slather their corn muffins with the delectable saturated fat — all the while attempting to convince yourself that hummus or worse, Vegemite, is a superior spread substitute.

You’ve been led to believe even a pat of butter a week will lead to heart disease, diabetes, the Bubonic plague and the burning in hell for all eternity. You’re not at fault for thinking butter is the culinary Lucifer.

But it’s all been a lie. Lies!

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Marriage Doctrine Alone Disqualifies Pro-Gay Theology

Alan Shlemon of Stand to Reason reminds us that, “There have been different understandings of the Lord’s supper, baptism, eschatology, etc. When it comes to marriage, however, there is universal agreement on its definition as a heterosexual union. That’s amazing and significant.” He writes:

I really appreciate a point that Preston Sprinkle made when I interviewed him on the Stand to Reason broadcast recently. Even if you set aside the (at least) five biblical texts that prohibit same-sex relations, you can still make a solid case against pro-gay theology by simply looking at Scripture’s teaching on marriage.

It turns out that 3,500 years of Judaic teaching and nearly 2,000 years of Christian teaching have unequivocally upheld that marriage is only between a man and a woman. The Genesis account of creation, where God establishes marriage as a heterosexual union (Gen. 1:27–28, 2:22–24), alone rules out the possibility of man-man or woman-woman marriage. Jesus even cited the Genesis definition and upheld this view during the New Testament era (Matt. 19:4–6). Since the closing of the canon, the Church uniformly taught that marriage was between a man and a woman.

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Virginia Governor Vetoes Bill Prohibiting Punishment of Those Who Believe in Biblical Marriage

Christian News reports:

The Democratic governor of Virginia has vetoed a religious freedom bill which would have prohibited the government from punishing those who believe in biblical marriage and conduct their public lives in accordance with that conviction.

“Although couched as a ‘religious freedom’ bill, this legislation is nothing more than an attempt to stigmatize,” Gov. Terry McAuliffe asserted in a statement on Thursday in rejecting S.B. 2314 and H.B. 2025.

“No person shall be required to participate in the solemnization of any marriage, or subject to any penalty by the Commonwealth, or its political subdivisions or representatives or agents, notwithstanding any other provision of law, solely on account of such person’s belief, speech, or action in accordance with a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman,” the vetoed legislation read.

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‘Sanctuary’ mayors have American blood on their hands

Those are strong words.  Todd Starnes, host of Fox News and Commentary, feels justified in saying them.  Here’s why:

In 2015 Kate Steinle was gunned down by an illegal alien in San Francisco – a sanctuary city. The man charged with her murder was a seven-time felon who had been deported five times.

Five times.

There was an immigration hold on the suspect, meaning the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement wanted to come get him and ship him out of the country. But San Francisco authorities set the man free. Just a few months later, Steinle was dead.

Steinle’s blood is not only on the hands of her killer, it’s also on the hands of San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee.

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The true nature of unbelief

17 So this I say, and affirm together with the Lord, that you walk no longer just as the Gentiles also walk, in the futility of their mind, 18 being darkened in their understanding, excluded from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart; Ephesians 4:17-18 (NASB) 

Genuine Christianity is that which is within the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Christians are commanded to work out their salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12) within that Lordship. We are to obey our Lord as branches abiding in the True Vine (John 15). How do we practically do this? We must work out our own salvation with fear and trembling presuppositionally, that is, with every thought, intent, and action taken captive to the will of God. We do this by approaching and living life with God at the center of all things instead of ourselves. In the passage above, (Ephesians 4:17-18) we see the opposite way to walk and the outcome of that. Unfortunately, that is how most professing believers approach this life, that is, in functional unbelief. View article →

Hillsong’s Brian Houston faces sex abuse cover-up inquiry

Amy Spreeman of Berean Research has the latest on the sex abuse cover-up inquiry involving Hillsong Church’s celebrity pastor Brian Houston.  According to Spreeman, Houston once blamed a victim of Frank Houston’s sexual assault saying, “It’s your fault this happened, you tempted my father.”  She writes:

Brian Houston’s hearings before the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse are underway, as Houston faces questions about the safety of his Hillsong empire after the original charge: that Houston failed to tell police his father was a child sex abuser.

“Frank Houston had abused up to nine boys in Australia and New Zealand, and in its final report on the case released on Monday, the commission found multiple failings within the church executive – at the time led by Frank Houston’s son Brian – in responding.   Source

Many of you remember this from 2014:

“After the allegations became public within the church during 1999, Frank Houston met his victim offering him $10,000 and saying: “I want your forgiveness for this. I don’t want to die and have to face God with this on my head,” the commission heard.

Months later, when the money had not arrived, his victim called Frank Houston’s son Brian, who was then the national president of the Assemblies of God in Australia Pentecostal movement.

The victim said Brian told him: “You know, it’s your fault all this happened. You tempted my father”.

“Brian got very angry after that. He slammed the phone down after saying words to the effect of ‘You’ll be getting your money’,” the victim told the commission. He received a cheque for $10,000 about two weeks later. 

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7 False Teachers in the Church Today

From Berean Research:

Satan’s greatest ambassadors are not pimps, politicians, or power-brokers, but pastors,” warns Tim Challies. “His priests do not peddle a different religion, but a deadly perversion of the true one. His troops do not make a full-out frontal assault, but work as agents, sneaking into the opposing army. Satan’s tactics are studied, clever, predictable, effective.”

Who are the heretics, charlatans, abusers, etc.? Hint: Popes, Pentecostals, prominent scholars and prophets who prophesy falsely.

The following is from Tim Challies’ Deadly Doctrines series:

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Judge OK’s Petition for America’s First ‘Genderless’ Person

According to Heatstreet:

A Portland student has become the first American to gain legal designation as “genderless”, following a ruling by a Multnomah County judge.

The March 10 decision, reported for the first time on Thursday, involved a 27-year-old who was born male but claimed to identify with no gender whatsoever. Judge Amy Holmes, who approved the petition, also last year approved a “non-binary” gender designation for another Portland resident.

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Stunning Benefits of Moderate Drinking

LifeZette has a new study on the benefits of moderate drinking — better heart health!:

Looks like indulging in your favorite pint of beer might be not be so bad for you after all. That’s right: A new study published in the British Medical Journal has found that consuming within the recommended limits of around 1 1/2 bottles of wine or seven pints of beer per week could actually lower your risk of getting certain heart diseases.

So, what exactly did this study determine about the effects of alcohol on your heart? Researchers at the University of Cambridge and University College London analyzed data from almost 2 million people in the U.K. — and found that those who do not drink at all, or who drink heavy doses, are more likely to be affected by certain heart conditions, including stroke and heart attack, than moderate drinkers.

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Post tenbras lux

The Doctrine of Justification by Faith alone, or sola fide, was the key of the Protestant Reformation. Its recovery was from the darkness created by the dominance of man-made religiosity, which held that justification was accomplished through faith plus good works and/or religiosity. This grew into people being required to do religious acts in order to be considered righteous. The driving force of the Reformation was captured by the Latin phrase Post tenbras lux (After darkness, light). View article →

The Real Jesus

32 Therefore, when Mary came where Jesus was, she saw Him, and fell at His feet, saying to Him, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.” 33 When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, He was deeply moved in spirit and was troubled, 34 and said, “Where have you laid him?” They *said to Him, “Lord, come and see.” 35 Jesus wept. John 11:32-35 (NASB) 

As we stand firm against the onslaught of false teachers and heretics attacking the modern church, we can wear ourselves out at times seeking every nuance of what they are saying and doing. Sometimes it can be overwhelming. However, most of the time, the very best way to stand against what is false is to teach God’s Truth clearly to all who will hear. When Rob Bell attacks the veracity of the Gospel from every angle or Rick Warren, dummies it down so that it is no longer recognizable, they do these things from a point of motivation. There is a reason or goal in mind. Mostly, it is to simply appear to be non-offensive to people, to be man-pleasers, to attract as many people as possible to come under their Big Tent where all forms of theology are welcome, that is, all forms except the one we hold to here. No Exclusivity is allowed. No Five Solas are allowed. No Sovereignty of God! No Justification ALONE! No, there can be none of that for then others would be offended and there would go their artificial unity. Of course, in the make-believe-Christendom they have created, they have a made-up Jesus. He is not Jesus Christ of the Bible, the Son of God. No, because He is the one who said that No One comes to the Father except through Him, and that would be offensive so they have their own Jesus who just loves everyone and died on the Cross either to save everyone or just to show everyone a better way. View article →

Canadian Parliament Passes Controversial Islamophobia Motion

According to Breitbart:

The Canadian House of Commons has passed motion M103 which singles out the criticism of Islam as a form of “Islamophobia”. Critics condemn it as an attack on free speech.

Motion M103 was tabled by Iqra Khalid, a Muslim member of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party. It states the government must “condemn Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination”, was taken to vote on Thursday evening where a total of 201 MPs voted for it and only 91 voted against, Canadian broadcaster Global News reports.

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Preemptive Discernment Alert! New Heretic-Authored Book Forthcoming

In a piece over at Pulpit & Pen, Bud Ahlheim gives us a glimpse of “rock star icon of the Emerging Church” Rob Bell’s latest attempt to rewrite the Bible. In his new book, the former pastor of Mars Hill Bible Church in Grandville, MI looks at the Bible in a “fresh, new way.”

One of Rob Bell’s annoying traits is to ask questions in order to “drive his hearer to a pre-determined position,” says Ahlheim. “And, most often with Bell, that position has been known in the annals of orthodox Christian history as HERESY.”  So with this in mind, would it surprise you to learn that in 2011 Rick Warren’s Saddleback Church used Bell’s heretical teaching?

But this is not about Rick Warren corrupting the minds of his congregants; it’s about what Bud Alheim refers to as “Bell-eneutics.” He writes:

Check the batteries in your heresy detectors!

Sound the Berean warning bells!

Let the discernment warning tocsins be sounded!

Signal all to take Caution! Caution! Caution!

There’s a new Rob Bell book soon to be released.

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Learn more about Rob Bell over at Apprising Ministries

North Carolina School District Pulls First Grade Book About Dress-Wearing Boy Following Complaints

Christian News reports:

Photo credit Amazon.com

A school district in North Carolina has pulled a book that was set to be a part of First Grade curriculum after teachers and lawmakers complained about its content regarding a little boy who liked to wear dresses.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools had originally planned to make the book “Jacob’s New Dress” a part of the anti-bullying reading plan for Child Abuse Prevention Month. The 2014 book, written by Sarah and Ian Hoffman, is meant to teach children about those who are “gender non-conforming.”

“Jacob’s New Dress” is a story about a boy who likes to wear a princess dress for playtime at school, but is teased by his peers.

“Not very long ago little girls couldn’t wear pants. Can you imagine that?” the teacher tells the class in urging them to be accepting of the child’s dress-wearing.

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Shepherds’ Conference 2017

“We preach Christ” was the theme of this year’s Shepherds’ Conference.  Over 4500 men from 67 countries gathered for four days of preaching, fellowship, and singing at Grace Community Church in Los Angeles. Speakers included John MacArthur, Albert Mohler, Ligon Duncan, Steve Lawson, Mark Dever, Stephen Nichols, Paul Washer, Tom Pennington, Phil Johnson and many others. The messages they delivered were related to who Christ is and why He must be the focus of pastoral preaching. The podcasts are now available on GTY’s website.   View article →

Health-Care Reform Won’t Fix What Really Hurts American Health

According to David French of National Review “deaths of despair” are “surging” in the United States among middle-aged white non-hispanics.  French includes some stunning statistics:

In 2016, two truths were revealed at once. First, the percentage of uninsured Americans hit a record low — a mere 8.6 percent. In 2010, almost 50 million Americans lacked health insurance. By the beginning of 2016 that number had plunged to 27.3 million. This is, truth be told, the fruit of Obamacare and indeed is the very reason why the GOP is having so much difficulty in its struggle to repeal and replace it. People like having health insurance, and health insurance makes us healthier, right?

But that brings us to the second truth that was revealed in 2016. Even though Americans allegedly enjoyed unprecedented access to insured health care, the nation’s death rate in 2015 actually increased. More Americans were insured, but more Americans died. Why?

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Republicans Yank Obamacare Repeal Bill

Politico reports:

Facing a growing rebellion within his own ranks, House Speaker Paul Ryan pulled the Republican Obamacare replacement plan from the House floor on Friday just before a scheduled vote.

The decision is a staggering defeat for Ryan and President Donald Trump in their first attempt to partner on major legislation and fulfill a seven-year Republican promise to repeal Obamacare. It comes a day after Trump issued an ultimatum to House Republicans to vote for the bill or live with Obamacare.

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