About Marsha West

Marsha West is the general editor of Christian Research Network.

False Prophet Claims Panthers Win in Super Bowl Will Usher in Third Spiritual “Great Awakening”

Christian News Network (CNN) quoted Chris Rosebrough of Fighting for the Faith. who said jokingly: “You better not be rooting for those Denver Broncos, folks! That’s to be rooting against the Holy Spirit and His plans for the ‘greatest in-gathering’ harvest of all time.”

Don’t hold your breath waiting for the Third Spiritual “Great Awakening” for the reason that if wolves in sheep’s clothing were rated on a scale of 1-10, the highest being a 10, Rick Joyner would receive a 9.9.

CNN has the full story:

Wolf pack 5A false prophet from South Carolina is predicting that if the Carolina Panthers win the Super Bowl on Sunday, it will user in the third spiritual Great Awakening in America and possibly “the greatest in-gathering of all time.” Rick Joyner of MorningStar Ministries in Fort Mill, South Carolina explained his position on his broadcast “Prophetic Perspectives” on Tuesday, which was also posted online. He said that the first person to make the prediction was the late Bob Jones, who he also billed as a prophet.

“[Jones predicted that] when our Carolina Panthers won the Super Bowl, major revival, awakening, moves of God are going to break out in America,” Joyner said.

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Mark Driscoll rises from the ashes in Phoenix

Mark DriscollLaura Turner, columnist for Religion News Service, reveals what’s going on with disgraced “pastor” Mark Driscoll. As previously reported, in July Driscoll confirmed his move to Phoenix, AZ but said he had no plans to start a church. Shortly thereafter he was listed as a director of The Trinity Church. In this piece, Turner reports the details of Driscoll’s new church and then she drops this bombshell:

Driscoll has left a wake of destruction so severe that the entire network of churches he founded had to shutter its doors. He has never taken full responsibility for his abusive tactics, never apologized to many of the individuals who he wronged, and doesn’t appear to have absorbed much of a lesson at all from his failings. But he’s back again, like a whack-a-mole. This is what happens when church leaders don’t take responsibility for their actions, and don’t engage in the kind of counseling they need: They simply pop up somewhere new to wreak the same havoc in a different place.

Although we don’t always agree with Laura Turner, we do agree with her that Mark Driscoll has not taken responsibility for his actions. Thus, “he should find a new job for a while; one that doesn’t involve leading anyone or taking a paycheck from a church. His family needs to heal.”

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Rob Bell, Aaron Rodgers and “How To Be Here”

Amy Spreeman of Berean Research shares the latest on life coach Rob Bell — another book!

Rob Bell’s new book, How to Be Here: A Guide to Creating a Life Worth Living, is going to hit the bookstores soon. And Rob will start a multi-city tour. And do the Oprah thing.

The doctrine-denying author’s latest book promises yet another round of worldly, self-focused fulfillment. Not in Christ, but in, you know, you.

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Christian clichés: The Hedge of Protection

“The popular cliché has managed to develop a mystical quality of cosmic proportions,” says Cameron Buettel of Grace to You. According to Buettel, God may put up a “hedge of protection” but He may also remove it, as he did in Job’s case in order to put his faith to the test. “When He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold” (Job 23:10). Jesus told the apostles to expect trials: “But you will be betrayed even by parents and brothers and relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death, and you will be hated by all because of My name. Yet not a hair of your head will perish. By your endurance you will gain your lives. (Luke 21:16–19)

So, with this in mind is it biblical to pray for a hedge of protection?

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Deepak Chopra Helps M.B.A.s Get in Touch With Their Spiritual Side

Students are paying big bucks to find out “who am I”? New Age guru Deepak Chopra, spiritual guide to Oprah and Lady Gaga, ask students to “slip into their inner being” to find the truth within and let it out. The Wall Street Journal has the story:

Hindu goddessIn a classroom at Columbia Business School on a recent afternoon, roughly 65 students sat in silent meditation, eyes closed, their smartphones and laptops stashed out of sight.

At the front of the class, Deepak Chopra encouraged them to direct their analytical skills inward.

“Bring your awareness into your heart,” he instructed. “Ask, ‘who am I?’ ”

Intro to Accounting, it was not. Mr. Chopra’s course, Just Capital & Cause-Driven Marketing, invokes Hindu goddesses, features a band of urban yogis and asks students to diagram their “soul profile.” With guest lectures from chief executives and storytelling exercises, the three-day seminar aims to teach M.B.A.s how to design and market ventures that both make money and do good somehow.

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Ed Young Jr. spearheads effort to get “Christian” messages on Netflix

The messages on Netflix people are going to hear will come from false teachers such as Ed Young Jr., Steven Furtick and Joyce Meyer, so this is really really bad news. People who are seeking truth will not hear it from those mentioned here. Christian Examiner has the report:

Netflix viewers can now get more than entertainment from their monthly subscriptions. They can find Christian teaching from the on-demand video service.

Ed Young Jr., Steven Furtick, Joyce Meyer and Andy Stanley now all have teaching series available on the entertainment venue. According to a Religious News Service article, Young spearheaded the effort.

“I believe if Jesus were on planet Earth today in the flesh he’d be on Netflix,” Young, pastor [wolf in sheep’s clothing] of Fellowship Church in Grapevine, Texas, told RNS.

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Obama Calls Upon Muslims, Christians to “Build Bridges”: “We’re All Descendants of Abraham”

Christian News Network reports:

During his first trip to an Islamic mosque during his presidency, Barack Obama called upon Christians to “build bridges” with Muslims and vice versa, urging greater tolerance for the Islamic religion, which he contended “has always been a part of America.”

As previously reported, Obama’s visit to the Islamic Society of Baltimore on Wednesday was to serve as a gesture to “celebrate the contributions Muslim Americans make to our nation and reaffirm the importance of religious freedom to our way of life.” His 40-minute speech sought to portray Muslims as being an integral part of the fabric of the nation, and to call upon Americans to speak more positively of the Islamic religion.

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Let’s stop snuggling the wolves

“No matter how much love and humility Bereans have, they tend to take a lot of arrows from their own when contending,” says Amy Spreeman of Berean Research. Amy feels that well-meaning scolders are venting at the wrong people. So she provides the brethren with some food for thought:

Many times when those who stand firm in God’s Word as truth are told they have a critical spirit, it is because we have stepped on the tender toes of a teacher that is teaching the opposite of what biblical Christianity teaches. We are told that they are humble people with good hearts, and we need to stop bashing them.

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Top generals recommend women for military draft

Christian Examiner reports:

Women may soon have to register with the Selective Service System – the military draft – if Congress alters regulations about who is eligible for call up during a time of war.

On Tuesday, the Army and Marine Corps’ highest ranking officers both said during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the integration of women in the military that they favored the change, especially since the restriction on women serving in forward combat units was lifted in 2013. The military has also announced it will soon open all combat roles to women – even, presumably, special operations.

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Meet the “Harbinger Man”?

According to Amy Spreeman of Berean Research, the popular blog WND (World Net Daily) is only for those with spiritual discernment. Over the years WND has promoted false teachers such as Jonathan Cahn and sold his books. Likewise they’ve offered “The Blood Moons Prophecy” penned by word-faith teacher John Hagee and controversial Christian historian David Barton’s book on Thomas Jefferson that noted history scholars say is full of misinterpretations and errors. In fact, Barton’s scholarship was so shoddy that publisher Thomas Nelson had the books pulled from bookstores and stopped distribution for what it deemed factual issues with the text. But that hasn’t stopped WND from selling it — and now they’re offering “Harbingr Man.” Amy has the full story:

Harbinger Man“There are few books that change the course of a nation. Rabbi Jonathan Cahn’s book, The Harbinger, is such a book.” – WND

Seriously?

WND, a ministry that promotes everything from blood moons to mystical soaking prayers, is the go-to news site for millions of Christians. It also heavily promotes author Jonathan Cahn. WND is now peddling a film titled, The Harbinger Man: The Jonathan Cahn Story, released a few months ago.

I’m just going to let the promotional copy speak for itself, with a couple of external research links from recent events:

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War Room: Buyer beware! Needs some discernment to watch

From Berean Research:

In his commentary, Glenn E. Chatfield touches on some of War Room’s theological problems and also discusses what he feels are the movie’s positive aspects. All in all what he has to say is fair and balanced.

In my view, the Kendrick brothers certainly have good intentions in making “Christian” films. But what I find troubling is that much of their teaching on prayer is decidedly unbiblical. This presents a problem in that many who see the film lack the discernment to know that what they’re learning about prayer doesn’t line up with Scripture. This is why the movie’s critics say that those who were involved in it (producers/writers/directors/cast, etc.) have led the sheep down a very rocky path.

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British researchers get green light to genetically modify human embryos

According to The Guardian:

Britain’s first genetically modified human embryos could be created within months, after scientists were granted permission by the fertility regulator to carry out the procedure.

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) regulator approved a licence application by Kathy Niakan, a stem cell scientist at the Francis Crick Institute in London, to perform so-called genome editing on human embryos.

The decision permits Niakan to study the embryos for 14 days for research purposes only. It does not permit them to be implanted into women. Niakan’s research is aimed at finding the genes at play in the early days of human fertilisation.

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“I’ve Changed My Mind”: Homosexual Rights Activist Now Supports Fined Christian Bakers

Christian News Network reports:

A homosexual rights activist states that he has changed his mind and now supports the rights of a Christian bakery that was fined last year for declining to print the phrase “support gay marriage” on a cake. He says that while discrimination against people is wrong, rejecting ideas is indeed lawful.

As previously reported, in May 2014, Ashers Baking Company in Newtonabbey—named after Genesis 49:20—was approached by a same-sex “marriage” supporter to bake a cake that was to feature the phrase, as well as the logo for the homosexual advocacy group QueerSpace. According to the Belfast Telegraph, the cake was for an event in observance of the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.

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The Beck Lies: Mormon Leads Prayer to False God at Ted Cruz Campaign Office

Over at Pulpit & Pen, Seth Dunn informs us that Ted Cruz is surrounded by cultists, knows it, and it doesn’t seem to bother him. To be fair, to get elected, political candidates need financial support and people’s votes. To that end, Marco Rubio, a Roman Catholic, has stated that he “fully understands Catholic doctrine” yet he would have people believe he’s an evangelical. And Donald Trump states that he’s a “Presbyterian Protestant,” that he believes in God but has never asked for forgiveness. Since the sincere Christian understands sin, repentance and forgiveness, Dunn wonders if The Donald is a true a Christian.

But this is not about Rubio and Trump; it’s about Southern Baptist presidential candidate Ted Cruz praying with a cultist. Seth Dunn begins with the following quote:

“I have prayed for the next George Washington. I believe I have found him (in Ted Cruz).” Glenn Beck

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Read our Research Paper on Mormonism

A Headache for Evolutionists? Scientists Discover “Unimaginable Complexity” in DNA

Christian News Network reports:

DNAIn what appears to be a serious setback for evolutionists, a team of researchers from Cambridge University discovered that DNA and the way it is affected by modifications are much more complex than previously thought.

A group of scientists with the University of Cambridge recently published a report in the journal “Nature Structural and Molecular Biology,” in which they describe their findings on epigenetic modifications. Epigenetics is the study of how genes in organisms are switched on and off.

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Selfie Righteousness

Blogger and Bible teacher Erin Benziger observes that many professing Christians are ignorantly utilizing social media for the celebration of “self.” Erin points out that while Christians may wish to appear spiritual and humble, we ultimately end up exclaiming, “Hey! Look at me! Look at how amazing I am! Look at how much more spiritual I am than you! Look at how much cuter my children are than yours; I must be more blessed! Look at how much more precious my ‘quiet time’ is!”

Erin begins her piece…

Selfies Christians truly are a unique bunch. We are in the world, but not of it. We strive to serve our Lord Jesus Christ well in the midst of a world that is hostile to Him and to His message. We know we have been called out of this world because, in reality, we are citizens of a heavenly kingdom.

And yet, we do not hide our faith. We do not silence our message. We desire that the world know we are Christians so that it may hear the message of repentance and forgiveness of sins found in Jesus Christ alone. So at times we must utilize the tools of the world in order to aid us in our mission. And this is okay, so long as the execution of the task does not subsequently result in sin or tarnish the name of Christ.

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Mass rally against gay civil unions in Italy capital

Yahoo News reports:

Tens of thousands of people gathered in Rome’s Circus Maximus arena Saturday to protest against a civil unions bill for same-sex couples, a hot-potato issue for Prime Minister Matteo Renzi’s government.

But while organisers had been hoping to attract one million people and authorities had prepared for 500,000, journalists at the scene estimated the numbers to be in the tens of thousands. Official numbers were not immediately available.

“Without limits, our society will go mad!” organiser Massimo Gandolfini told the “Family Day” rally, as grandparents, parents and children held up banners reading “Wrong is wrong” in the capital’s ancient Roman chariot racing stadium.

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California Joins the Effort to Persecute, Suppress Scientific Dissent on Climate Change

According to The Daily Signal:

Polar bearCalifornia Attorney General Kamala Harris has joined New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman in trying to prosecute ExxonMobil for supposedly lying to its shareholders and the public about climate change, according to the Los Angeles Times. The Times reported that Harris is investigating what ExxonMobil “knew about global warming and what the company told investors.”

Neither Harris nor Schneiderman recognizes the outrageousness of what they are doing—which amounts censoring or restricting speech and debate on what is a contentious scientific theory. In fact, they want not just to stop anyone who questions the global warming theory from being able to speak; they want to punish them with possible civil sanctions or even criminal penalties. As I said before about Schneiderman, Harris needs a remedial lesson in the First Amendment.

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The Gaystapo Crackdown on Christianity

Bill Muehlenbeg of Culture Watch fills us in on what’s going on in Australia, where he makes his home. He has included a must read newspaper report that gives us a glimpse of the far left’s direct assault on Christians, as well as on all religious and cultural groups “which may have any unease about the homosexual lifestyle.” No one had better defy the LGBT police! Muehlenberg warns: “The totalitarian implications of all this should be lost on none of us.”

What you’re about to read is chilling.

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World Interface Harmony Week: A spiritual blending

Berean Examiner reports:

Whatever happened to that 2007 “A Common Word Between Us” initiative, signed by pastors like Rick Warren Bill Hybels and Leith Anderson of the National Association of Evangelicals? Remember when hundreds of Christian pastors and Catholic priests signed on to call for interfaith dialogue that would build relations and reshape the Christian and Islam communities? Remember how these Christian leaders also asked for forgiveness of sins committed against Muslims in the Crusades? Remember?

A Common WordThat Muslim/Christian interfaith agreement is not only alive and well these days, it has blossomed into an international United Nations effort to blend all religions. And this week we’re going to see the fruit of that effort in the U.N.’s annual World Interfaith Harmony Week, February 1 – 7. It’s website states: The World Interfaith Harmony Week is based on the pioneering work of The Common Word Initiative:

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Does the ERLC Represent the SBC?

Will Hall of Baptist Message believes that many Southern Baptists are asking whether the ERLC, under the leadership of Russell Moore, truly represents them. Has Moore shown contempt for Christians who think differently than him, as Hall suggests? He asserts that “Moore’s scale for assessing one’s biblical bona fides appears politically calculated to raise his own stock at the expense of other evangelical conservatives.”

See if you agree:

When an unnamed staffer “boasted” to the online media outlet Think Progress in October 2014 that Russell Moore had “completely rebranded” the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, few could have imagined what this meant.

However, Moore’s all-in campaign against presidential candidate Donald Trump, highlighted by his most recent attacks on Liberty University for hosting Trump at a student convocation, reveals something quite unexpected about Moore when he was elected to lead the ERLC in 2013—a penchant for disdain for Christians who think differently than him.

Moore rightly points out Trump’s moral flaws—and character should count—and he has a right and responsibility to comment on Trump’s policies and to share his view of what these might mean in terms of Christian values.

But Moore’s dislike for Trump goes beyond the pale, translating into disrespect and even contempt for any Christian who might weigh these considerations differently than Moore when comparing the range of personal beliefs and behaviors as well as public records of ability and achievement within such a large field of candidates for the White House.

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Trump Says His Presidency Would Affirm Abortion Exceptions of Rape, Incest, Life of Mother

Christian News Network has the story:

As have the last several Republicans to hold the office of the presidency, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has announced that he supports abortion exceptions in the instances of rape, incest and the life of the mother

“Let me be clear — I am pro-life,” Trump wrote in an op-ed published in the Washington Examiner on Saturday. “I support that position with exceptions allowed for rape, incest or the life of the mother being at risk.”

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Discernment as Free Speech

The following is an article from fellow online apologetics and discernment ministry Herescope contributor Sarah Leslie. Sarah brings to light an attempt to censor free speech by some in the Christian community. For instance, Laura Turner of the “Her.meneutics” blog over at Christianity Today has labeled spiritual discernment “theology policing.” In a piece she wrote, Turner went after two Christian writers that she deems theology police, Tim Challies and Warren B. Smith, for criticizing Sarah Young’s best-selling book, Jesus Calling. Challies and Smith share the view that Jesus Calling is decidedly unbiblical and have given numerous reasons for saying that it’s not a book Christian should be reading. So they’re under attack for telling the truth.

With all this in mind, we hope you’ll listen to Sarah Leslie express her concerns over some of the frightening things that are going on in the Christian community:

Peggy Noonan wrote in her weekly Wall Street Journal column this past December 4th her concerns that

The censorship movement is radical. It is starting to make everyone in the country feel harassed and anxious. It is odd to see candidates miss a rising issue that is giving pause to so many Americans.

I pray someone will address it. Literally, I just did.

This Herescope post is an answer to her prayers. It may be an unexpected answer and a politically incorrect answer, but nevertheless it is a response. It represents an exercise in the right of free speech and freedom of religion.

Noonan, a former speechwriter to President Reagan with conservative credentials, titled her article “The First Amendment Needs Your Prayers.” She was upset about social media reactions during the San Bernardino massacre, “even while it is happening,” especially from a U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (CT) who sent out a message stating, “Your ‘thoughts’ should be about steps to take to stop this carnage. Your ‘prayers’ should be for forgiveness if you do nothing—again.” According to Noonan this heavy-handed ridiculing of people who were praying during the massacre “immediately won a name: ‘prayer shaming.’” Noonan then expressed more concerns:

…Americans are growing weary of being told what they can and cannot publicly say, proclaim and think. We all know what’s going on at the colleges, with the mad little Marats and Robespierres who are telling students and administrators what they are and are not allowed to say or do. This is not just kids acting up at this point, it’s a real censorship movement backed by an ideology that is hostile to the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It is led by students who, though they managed to get into the greatest universities in the country, seem never to have been taught to love the little amendment that guarantees free speech and free religious observance, the two pillars without which America collapses. And too bad, because when you don’t love something you lose it.

It is my impression that what is happening on the campuses is starting to break through as a real threat to what used to be called normal Americans.

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AiG wins court battle for Ky. tax incentive

Baptist Press reports:

Answers in Genesis has won a court battle to benefit from a Kentucky sales tax rebate incentive program that could save the apologetics ministry up to $18 million on its Ark Encounter museum being built in northern Kentucky.

The Commonwealth of Kentucky had withheld the incentive program from AiG by claiming that the ministry would use religion to discriminate in hiring its employees, and that the use of tax incentives to advance religion violated state law. In its lawsuit, AiG argued that the tax incentive was “facially neutral” and thereby applicable to religious organizations just as any other business that meets program criteria.

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NY Court: Farmers to Be Re-Educated, Pay Fines for Not Hosting Homosexual Wedding

Well this is an outrage. The couple who declined to host a lesbian wedding on their property will not only have to pay a fine, they’ll have to attend “re-training” classes or have a “trainer” come to them. So now our government thinks they have the authority to brainwash people? CNSNews has the story:

A couple who hosts occasional wedding ceremonies on their New York farm have lost an appeal to overturn the $13,000 in fines levied against them by the state’s human rights agency, which ruled that their refusal to host a wedding for two women was discriminatory.

On Jan. 14, the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Department, upheld the agency’s order and the fines, a decision the Alliance Defending Freedom – which represented Robert and Cynthia Gifford – said amounted to confirming, “that the government can punish the Giffords for declining to coordinate a ceremony that conflicts with their conscience.”

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