About Marsha West

Marsha West is the general editor of Christian Research Network (CRN). She is also co-founder of Berean Research. For two decades Marsha was the owner and managing editor of Email Brigade website and EMB News Report, a bi-weekly report for conservative people of faith. Marsha is a regular contributor for several blogs including CRN, RenewAmerica, News With Views, and Web Commentary. Her articles have been translated into many languages and distributed worldwide. Visit Marsha's blog, On Solid Rock Resources. http://onsolidrockresources.com

How Jesus Called Out False Teachers and Deadly Doctrine

What did the Lord Jesus do to expose the deadly doctrine and unrighteous actions of the false teachers of His day? Well, for one thing, He exposed their error publicly and then taught them the truth!  What are God’s people to do about all the deadly doctrines the Church visible is awash in?  We’re to “contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain people have crept in unnoticed … ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. Jude 1:3

Blogger, author and book reviewer Tim Challies examines the way in which our Lord dealt with those He referred to as “ravenous wolves” in Matthew 7:15.  Challies reminds us that in Matthew 23, Jesus rebuked the scribes and Pharisees and called them “hypocrites,” “blind guides,” “blind fools” … even worse, “you brood of vipers.”  So, while God’s people are contending/defending with false teachers who are spreading their manure all over the globe, is it appropriate to call them out, rebuke them, and do some name calling ourselves?

Let’s listen to Tim Challies’ advice on how to handle a wolf.  He writes:

It’s a good time to be a false teacher and to espouse deadly doctrine. It seems that today’s most brazen heretic will be granted a hearing and, in all likelihood, a book deal. Novelty is appealing, orthodoxy boring. It’s the ones who sound the warning and issue the challenge that bear the risk—the risk of being labelled “haters.” There’s more patience for those who smilingly subvert the truth than for those who boldly defend it. Conviction is a sign of arrogance, while humility is expressed in uncertainty. Love, it seems, requires us to bear patiently with any amount of error. And this kind of love, we are told, is modeled after Jesus. Jesus did not judge, Jesus welcomed all opinions, Jesus would have accepted different kinds of teachings—so long as those teachings contained love and hints of truth.

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Judge Awards Tri-Custody of Child to Former Couple and Their ‘Polyamorous’ Lover

Christian News reports:

A New York judge has awarded tri-custody to a former couple and their neighbor, who they entered into a “polyamorous” relationship with over a decade ago.

“Tri-custody is the logical evolution of the Court of Appeals decision in Brooke S.B., and the passage of the Marriage Equality Act and DRL [Domestic Relations Law] §10-a which permits same-sex couples to marry in New York,” Suffolk County Supreme Court Judge Patrick Leis III wrote.

According to reports, in 2001, Michael and Dawn Marano began as friends to neighbor Audria Garcia, who was living with her boyfriend at the time. But when Garcia split with her significant other, she moved in with the Maranos, where she began to engage in “intimate relations” with both of them.

In 2006, Garcia became pregnant with Michael Marano’s child—an agreement made between the three since Dawn Marano was infertile—and they all raised the boy together. However, in 2008, Dawn Marano left her husband to solely be in a relationship with Garcia.

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Do Apes Deserve ‘Personhood’ Rights? Lawyer Heads to N.Y. Supreme Court to Make Case

NBC News reports:

When Steve Wise first started out as an animal rights lawyer, people used to bark at him when he entered a courtroom.

For more than 25 years, Wise has been arguing that animals who have cognitive complexities similar to humans should be legally endowed with basic rights of autonomy.

Now when he enters a courtroom, no one is barking.

On Thursday, Wise — who founded the Nonhuman Rights Project on behalf of the great apes, cetaceans and elephants — will go before the appellate division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York in Manhattan and argue that two of his clients, chimpanzees Kiko and Tommy, should be afforded the rights of “personhood.”

“‘Personhood’ is not synonymous with ‘humans.’ It is not now and never has been,” Wise told NBC News. “A ‘person’ is the law’s way of saying that entity has the capacity for rights. A ‘thing,’ which chimpanzees are now, don’t have capacity for any kind of rights.”

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Pope Francis open to allowing married priests in Catholic Church

According to USA Today:

Pope Francis said he is open to the possibility of permitting married men to become priests to address the serious shortage of Catholic priests in some countries.

The pope raised the idea in an interview with the German newspaper Die Zeit.

He ruled out the prospect of allowing single men who are already priests to marry but was open to the idea of allowing unmarried laymen or men already married to be ordained.

The pope raised the prospect in the context of allowing “viri probati,” Latin for “tested men,” to be ordained in places with a scarcity of priests.

He told the newspaper the lack of Catholic priests was an “enormous problem” for the church.

“We need to think about whether ‘viri probati’ could be a possibility,” he told the German weekly. “If so, we would need to determine what duties they could undertake, for example, in remote communities.”

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See our Research Paper on Roman Catholicism

Post-Shack Christianity: The Lesson We Must Learn About Vigilant Discernment

“For close to a decade, a few discerning Christians have been warning about The Shack,” says Gideon Knox.Unlike other books that are equally as bad, this one even attracted the ire of more prominent men like [Albert] Mohler and [Tim] Challies. And yet, few listened.” Dr. Mohler charged that the book contains “undiluted heresy.”  And he’s right. There are 13 heresies in the book.  Even so, a large number of professing Christians read the book and had no problem recommending it to friends and family.  Putting aside the controversy over the book, they rushed to theaters and filled their mouths with popcorn while enjoying Hollywood’s trashing of the Trinity on the silver screen.

Thanks largely to those who claim to follow Jesus, the movie’s a box office success.

In his piece over at Pulpit & Pen, Gideon Knox argues that discernment within the church is not vigilant and it must be. With this in mind, he has some excellent advice for pastors and church leaders. He writes:

While we should be thankful for the plethora of warnings about The Shack that have been published in recent weeks, there is still a cause for concern in Zion. Pastors and concerned laypeople have done an admirable job, by my estimation, of sharing articles on their social media pages, providing a polemical view of both the movie and the book. And even if the articles don’t include the word polemical, they nonetheless are, and they are obligatory warnings for our friends being carried away by the novelty and sensuality of a cinematic, modalistic, patripassian, whore-god who is an imaginary graven image of Yahweh, created and promoted by the money changers of the Christian book industry.

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Beauty and the Beast: Why Christians Can Calm Down

Sara Wallace of The Gospel-Centered Mom reminds Christians not to panic. “Yes, Hollywood has an agenda,” says Wallace “but so do we. If Hollywood is trying to indoctrinate our kids then we must indoctrinate them first. You must speak of God’s word to your children ‘when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road and when you lie down and when you rise up.’ (Deuteronomy 11:19)”

On March 1st my newsfeed exploded with angry moms. Our beloved Beauty and the Beast is GAY.
 
Well, not exactly. And perhaps that’s where we should start. Is this a “Gay” movie? Or is this just another worldly movie made by worldly people with worldly agendas? Believe me, I’m upset, too. But there is an important difference here worthy of a second look.
 
Al Mohler, at the recent Shepherd’s Conference, summarized this distinction well. He said there’s a difference between culture being infused into a movie and a movie glorifying a particular sin. Gay characters will be the norm in movies from now on. That’s the agenda. The question we should ask is: Does it glorify the sin, or does it discuss/portray an aspect of culture?
 
This is the culture God has appointed for us to raise our children in. We need to know how to live in it and interact with it. Our kids are watching us. Our response to this issue will shape how they live within this culture. As we respond to Beauty and the Beast there are two words that should not characterize us as Christian parents.

Canada spending $650-million on reproductive rights, including fighting global anti-abortion laws

The Globe And Mail reports that Canada plans to pay for advocacy groups to challenge laws in countries that severely restrict abortion such as Africa, Latin America, South Asia and the Middle East:

In a sharp reorientation of Canada’s foreign-aid strategy, the Trudeau government plans to spend $650-million on sexual and reproductive health and rights worldwide – a move that could see Canada paying for a battle against anti-abortion laws in dozens of countries.

The three-year plan, announced by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Wednesday as he marked International Women’s Day, would finance a range of global programs, including contraception, reproductive health, legal abortion, sexuality education and advocacy work.

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Which Jesus does your Roman Catholic friend believe in?

Roman Catholics say that they believe in Jesus.  But many do not believe it the correct Jesus, says Jordan Standridge of The Cripplegate.  Standridge suggests three questions to ask if you want to find out which Jesus your Catholic friend believes in:

As we celebrate the 500th year of the reformation this year, I’ve been very encouraged by the fact that there are so many in the church who understand that the reformation is not over.

Coming to America after growing up in Italy was very interesting. The world has a lot to learn from the American church, who, for so many years, has supplied the world with most of its Christian missionaries, and yet the American church has a lot to learn from the rest of the world when it comes to being able to condemn false religions.

This year is an opportunity for the American church to really explore what the Roman Catholic church actually is, and ask whether or not it teaches the truth. Secondly, each believer must ask himself whether, when speaking with the Catholic individual, they are asking the right questions.

Many Christians may accept the fact that the Roman Catholic church is a false church that teaches works-righteousness, but may have “the neighbor” who says he really loves Jesus, making it very difficult to figure out how to really know if they believe in grace or if they believe in works.

I understand the dilemma. I have had many conversations recently during which someone, either Mormon or Catholic, who had all the same words until we got to the heart of the Gospel, and then simply denied it. I think that, and perhaps this sentence will be controversial, when you are dealing with a Roman Catholic, you must begin from a skeptical position when it comes to whether they are saved or not.

The church, as we know, has made salvation very easy. Over the years, many evangelists and pastors have boiled it down to just saying a prayer; perhaps, out of a desire to see more decisions for Christ, they have lowered the bar. Over the years, this way of evangelism has trickled down to us. So many believers, out of a godly desire to be encouraging, have perhaps neglected questioning and embraced accepting people at face value.  View article →

See our Research Paper on Roman Catholicism

 

CNN Host Reza Aslan Sparks Outrage After Eating Part of Human Brain While Meeting With Cannibals

First a quote from “Reza Aslan Doesn’t Get Religion” by John Stonestreet for some background:

Reza Aslan’s “Believer,” a “spiritual adventure series” it’s called, which premiered Sunday on CNN, explores belief systems from around the world. But in a recent opinion piece at CNN, Aslan (who identifies himself as a Sufi Muslim) makes it clear that he doesn’t believe there are any essential differences between the world’s religions. As a matter of fact, he seems to think all religions are basically subjective nonsense.

“I know better than to take the truth claims of any religion (including my own) too seriously,” he writes. And considering the “conflict” and “bigotry” religion inspires and the way it clashes with reason, Aslan thinks it’s “understandable why so many people view religious faith as the hallmark of an irrational mind.”

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this is your tour guide to the religions of the world.

Now, according to Heather Clark over at Christian News:

Shiva, Hindu God of Destruction

CNN host Reza Aslan, a Muslim, is sparking outrage after eating part of a human brain during a televised meeting with a cannibalistic extreme Hindu sect called the Aghori.

The meeting was part of his television series “Believer,” which is said to feature the “world’s most fascinating faith-based groups.”

The Aghori, while identifying as worshipers of Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction, are condemned by mainstream Hindus for their practices, which includes drinking out of human skulls and eating the flesh of the dead. They also wear the ashes of cremated humans on their faces and consume their own urine and excrement.

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Basic Training: The Bible Is Sufficient

Today there is a growing lack of confidence in the sufficiency of Scripture among Christians. Bible study author, speaker and blogger Michelle Lesley tells us why extra-biblical revelation is both unbiblical and unnecessary and offers six reasons God’s word is sufficient for our every need.  For example: What makes you so sure it’s God who’s speaking to you?

Good question. Now listen to Michelle’s answer….

God said to me…/I heard God say…

Listen for God’s voice…

God spoke to me in a dream…

God gave me a vision of…

We hear things like this non-stop these days in pop-evangelicalism. And it’s not just in the whack job Word of Faith or New Apostolic Reformation movements, or in Charismatic churches, either. These words are coming out of the mouths of regular, every day Baptists and Methodists and Lutherans and Presbyterians, too. It’s largely due to the infiltration of Word of Faith and New Apostolic Reformation false doctrine into our churches via a) “Bible studies” from false teachers like Beth Moore, Joyce Meyer, Priscilla Shirer, Christine Caine, Lysa TerKeurst and others and b) individual church members who feed on a steady diet of “Christian” television such as TBN, CBN, Daystar, and GodTV. Christians are getting the false idea that they need to hear, or should be hearing, God speak to them instead of trusting in the sufficiency of God’s word.

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The Beth Moore Cornucopia of False Doctrine, Mysticism, and Impassioned Frenzy

Steven Kozar of Messed Up Church gives a whole host of reasons that author, speaker and Bible study teacher Beth Moore cannot be trusted.  Kozar has put much of her false teaching–yes, she’s a false teacher–into one place so that inquiring minds will have plenty of resources to explore what she teaches. Included are links to articles from Christians who have different theological perspectives, but according to Kozar “they all agree that Beth Moore’s teachings are not totally trustworthy and Biblical, and in some cases, she is teaching ideas that go directly against God’s Word.” Also included are sound clips so that we can hear unbiblical teaching coming from Mrs. Moore’s own lips, plus a video that shows her fawning over another false teacher, Word of Faith prosperity preacher Joyce Meyer.

Now to Steven Kozar’s exposé:

Beth Moore is a mainstream Evangelical superstar who speaks with an impassioned frenzy that inspires many women to become fanatical followers. She is not (officially) a pastor or theologian, but she serves both of those functions for millions and millions of people in the church. She first gained popularity in the 1990’s when her theology was viewed as middle-of-the-road, Bible-based, Baptist teaching, but her teaching has become more mystical and subjective over the years. Beth Moore sometimes refers to her own direct conversations with God in order to establish and validate her teachings, and she emphasizes unity in the church over sound teaching about important doctrinal matters. Moore has partnered with and endorsed Word of Faith false teachers like Joyce Meyer, Joel Osteen and Christine Cain, and she is featured prominently on TBN:

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Air Force says words like ‘boy’ and ‘girl’ could be offensive

Todd Starnes, host of Fox News and Commentary, has an exclusive on the United States Air Force’s attempt to ban words and phrases that might offend someone — phrases like “blonds have more fun.” He writes:

The Air Force fears that words like boy, girl, colonial and blacklist might offend people, according to an email sent to Airmen at Joint Base San Antonio.

An outraged Airman sent me a copy of the email – as evidence the military is still infected with Obama-era political correctness.

The email included an attachment that listed a number of words and phrases that might be construed as offensive.

Now, to be fair there were some legitimately offensive and racially charged words and phrases on the list. But also included on the list were the words boy and girl.

The email was written by a senior Air Force leader and was sent to an untold number of personnel at Lackland Air Force Base.

Airmen were advised to study a list of words and phrases that “may be construed offensive.”

Here’s a partial list of some of the dubious words and phrases deemed troublesome by the Air Force:

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Resolution Declaring Pornography a ‘Public Health Crisis’ Unanimously Passes Tennessee Senate

Christian News reports:

A resolution that declares pornography as being a public health crisis passed the Tennessee Senate unanimously on Monday and now moves to the desk of Gov. Bill Haslam for signing.

The resolution had been presented by Sen. Mae Beavers, R-Mt. Juliet, at the urging of Ricky Darr of Make America Porn Free, which works in conjunction with the organization Girls Against Porn and Human Trafficking to urge enforcement of obscenity laws and “to remove the easy accessibility of pornography from the reach of children.”

“My six-year-old came across pornography last year,” Darr told the Senate Health Committee last week, where the resolution likewise was approved without objection. “My son came up to me and said, ‘Dad I’ve seen a whole lot of illegals.’ He calls them illegals, and I knew what he was talking about.”

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Another temper tantrum on campus

Over at NewsOK, Bernard Goldberg reports that a group of “infantile college students refused to listen to ideas that make them feel uncomfortable” so the students raised such a ruckus that the conservative speaker was forced to leave.  Both he and the professor that was escorting him off campus were terrorized by the angry mob.  The professor, a woman, ended up in the ER and is now wearing a neck brace. So much for tolerance.

Bernard Goldberg has the story:

The cupcakes have struck again.

This time it was at Middlebury College, a small liberal arts school in rural Vermont, where hundreds of cupcakes (also known as snowflakes) disrupted a speech by the conservative scholar Charles Murray.

The cupcakes say he’s a bigot so they wouldn’t let him talk. They chanted, “Racist, sexist, anti-gay, Charles Murray, go away.” I think they threw in the “anti-gay” part because they needed something to rhyme with “go away.”

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See also How to Stay Safe When Everyone’s Protesting by F.T. Cage

 

School Teaches Zi & Zir Without Permission from Mom & Dad

Todd Starnes, host of Fox News and Commentary, informs us that, unbeknownst to parents, children are being indoctrinated in the radical homosexual agenda in some public schools:

Indiana parents are furious after eighth graders at Lincoln Junior High School were exposed to a classroom lesson on sexual orientation, gender expression and gender identity issues – without being notified in advance by the school district.

The 12-year-olds were required to watch a video titled, “LGBTQ: Understanding Sexual Orientation and Gender Identities.” They were also required to answer a questionnaire with all sorts of probing questions.

Among the questions….

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A Culture of Counterfeit Christians (Reprise)

Marsha West, General Editor CRN

Have you ever run over a dead skunk in the road?  I have, during a heat wave.  The smell got into my tires and permeated our garage for days!  I’ll go out on a limb and say that no one takes pleasure in the highly offensive smell of skunk spray, dead or alive.

My point in bringing this up is that to God the stench of sin is far worse than skunk.  For an example of just how much the Lord hates sin, grab a cup of coffee and read First and Second Kings.  But given our penchant for wanting everything now, here’s a snippet from 1 Kings 16 to illustrate how God dealt with one of Israel’s most ruthless kings:

Since I exalted you out of the dust and made you leader over my people Israel, and you have walked in the way of Jeroboam and have made my people Israel to sin, provoking me to anger with their sins, behold, I will utterly sweep away Baasha and his house, and I will make your house like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat. Anyone belonging to Baasha who dies in the city the dogs shall eat, and anyone of his who dies in the field the birds of the heavens shall eat.  (1 Kings 16:1-4)

God had already destroyed Jeroboam for his flagrant sins, yet Baasha repeated the same mistakes.  God rebuked the Israelites for their sinful ways and vowed to punish them.

Fast forward to 2017.  According to a recent Pew Research survey, seven in ten Americans identify as Christians.  If this is accurate then how is it that so many professing Christians behave pretty much the same way as the pagans did when Baasha was king?

Scripture teaches that Christians are to have a biblical foundation and that the Christian’s behavior should be Christlike.  Yet many who say they’re followers of Jesus wallow in sin!

Admittedly, when someone’s new to the faith it takes a while for the fruit to become ripe.  In other words, reaching maturity is a process. Sanctification, as the Bible calls it, doesn’t happen overnight.  There comes a time, though, when the vine brings forth fruit.  However, when a fruit tree remains barren year after year, one can’t help but wonder if the tree was pollinated.

One of my favorite pastimes is discussing (debating, dissecting) the Bible with brothers and sisters in Christ.  So it troubles me when I strike up a conversation with a long time believer who knows very little about the Bible.

Most Christians have heard the verse, “Sanctify [set apart for a holy use] them in the truth; your word is truth. John 17:17  Through reading and studying God’s Word, believers will learn about Christ, with their goal being to become more like Him. Moreover, they’ll grow in their faith and receive divine guidance on how to live their lives.

To have a close relationship with a person we must get to know them.  So the obvious course of action is to ask probing questions.  We’ve got to dig below the surface to uncover the intimate details of his/her life.  If we’re not interested in a meaningful relationship, we won’t probe!

Because our Father in heaven loves His children, His desire is to be in relationship with each one of us – to pull His beloved into a bear hug!  Those who sincerely wish to be in relationship with the Father must dig deep into the scriptures, because that’s the one and only place to learn about God and His ways. “What we believe about God,” said A. W. Tozier, “is the most important thing about us.”

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Planned Parenthood rejects Trump offer to keep federal funding, stop abortions

According to Jessica Chasmar of Washington Times: 

Planned Parenthood has firmly rejected a proposal by President Trump offering to preserve federal funding for the women’s health organization if it stopped providing abortion services.

Mr. Trump reportedly confirmed Monday to The New York Times that an informal proposal was made to Planned Parenthood offering to maintain federal funding — about $500 million each year — if the organization ended abortion procedures. Sources told the newspaper that White House officials even suggested there could be an increase in that funding if they accepted the deal.

Dawn Laguens, Planned Parenthood’s executive vice president and chief brand officer, told The Times that no federal funds are used to pay for abortions.

“Offering money to Planned Parenthood to abandon our patients and our values is not a deal that we will ever accept,” she said. “Providing critical health care services for millions of American women is nonnegotiable.”

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Vaccines: They’re ‘Morally Right’ for Kids’ Health

Dr. Meg Meeker of LifeZette, who is a pediatrician, shares her view of the child vaccination controversy:

Recently I shared an article I wrote addressing what parents need to know about vaccines. Understandably, it sparked quite the passionate discussion and excellent debate. Parents are always encouraged to have dialogue about and discuss important parenting issues; we must never shut one another down.

I would like to offer a bit of followup. My position as a pediatrician has always been to advocate for parents. You are in charge of your child’s health, and if parents in my practice choose not to vaccinate, I respect their opinions. However, in many pediatric practices across the country, this is not the case.

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The Den at the Epicenter of Hillsong for Youth?

According to Churchwatch Central (CWC), degrading imagery of Jesus is being promoted in Hillsong’s youth den that will leave you dumbfounded.  “The Jesus used, the symbols around Jesus, the upside down Jesus with wolf ears and the word ‘Judas’ above his head (and a wolf blowing fire on him), the Jesus with the words ‘Wolf Man Wolf Man’ and a wolf eating at his heart, the hand of man touching a hand of death…”

CWC’s piece contains disturbing images they collected from Instagram photos of the mural that were posted by Laura Toggs (Laura Houston) and Hillsong artist Dodgepangburn.

So what does it all mean?  CWC’s offers their perspective:

NBRS Architecture states that,

“The Hillsong Epicentre is the second stage of a two stage project. Stage one included the 300 seat Hillsong Chapel and carpark, which were completed in 2006. Stage two incorporates a 500 seat auditorium with foyer and back of house facilities including: a green room, guest room, storage, a loading bay, a professional TV studio & TV control room, 3 TV edit suites, a smaller college training TV studio, a professional sound studio with 8 professional sound edit suites, a smaller college training sound studio with 4 edit suites, 3 band rehearsal rooms, 9 music practice rooms, 20 classrooms, 2 large seminar / meeting rooms that will be used by the college during the week and children’s ministries on Sundays, a specialised preschool children’s playroom, a large youth area, carpark area providing spaces for 300 cars. The Hillsong Epicentre is currently under construction and is due to be completed in January 2017.” [Source]

It appears that Laura Toggs (Laura Houston) has already decided what she wanted for the “large youth area.” It appears she wanted a massive mural for the youth. So what kind of mural did she allow to go inside?

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WikiLeaks Claims CIA Lost Control of ‘Hacking Arsenal’

Breitbart reports:

In a press release for their most recent data dump, whistleblowing service WikiLeaks claims that the CIA has lost control of their “hacking arsenal.”

The press release states that WikiLeaks’ publication of CIA documents is the “largest ever publication of confidential documents on the agency.” The data dump consists of 8,761 files and documents taken from a high-security isolated network situated inside the CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

Explosively, WikiLeaks also claims that the CIA has lost control of their “hacking arsenal.”

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There’s A Wolf In the House: 18 Signs of Apostasy

Over at Pulpit & Pen Matt Sherro puts forward what he believes are the characteristics of apostates:

There is a danger that has come into the sheepfold; apostates have come in and they probably have always been here. However, with the prevalence of social media, their influence has spread and it is more important than ever before to recognize the marks of an apostate, a person who at one time knew and maybe even taught the truths of the Bible but walked away or a person who consistently teaches false doctrines to the Church. Jude, the Lord’s youngest human brother, points out several signs of an apostate and I want to draw your attention to them.

Book of Jude (HCSB),

Jude, a slave of Jesus Christ and a brother of James: To those who are the called, loved by God the Father and kept by Jesus Christ.

May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.

Dear friends, although I was eager to write you about the salvation we share, I found it necessary to write and exhort you to contend for the faith that was delivered to the saints once for all. For some men, who were designated for this judgment long ago, have come in by stealth; they are ungodly, turning the grace of our God into promiscuity and denying Jesus Christ, our only Master and Lord.

Right away we begin to see the characteristics of the Apostates that Jude warns about…

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The Shack Movie Bombs As ‘Evangelical Tool’

Chris Rosebrough of Pirate Christian has some disappointing news for the evangelical community:  “If you were thinking that The Shack would be a great discussion facilitator so that your pagan friends would be interested in becoming Christians, think again. You have a greater chance of annoying your pagan friends with The Shack than starting a meaningful conversation about Christ and Him Crucified for their sins.”

More from Chris…

Just a few weeks ago Cru gave an non-endorsement/endorsement of the movie The Shack and even put together some study questions in the hopes that The Shack would be a great evangelism tool to introduce unbelieving friends and neighbors to Christianity. Now that the movie has been released how has the pagan world received The Shack? Have they thoughtfully begun considering becoming Christians as a result of this movie?

It would appear that the answer is an emphatic NO!

Here are just some of the reviews of the movie offered by secular critics:

“It’s one of those movies where you’ll either decide to give in right away and sob for two hours straight or opt to fight it while your resentment slowly simmers to a rolling boil.” — Entertainment Weekly

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See also: The Shack — The Missing Art of Evangelical Discernment by Albert Mohler

They Hate Everything We Love

“Why do liberals hate God?” inquires Lee Duigon? “Because they’re after His job. They want to sit where He sits, and they insist that they can and will do all the things He should have done, but couldn’t do because He doesn’t exist.”  In his piece over at News With Views, Duigon considers the affect liberalism has had on society.  He writes:

Remember when they booed God at the Democrat National Convention, 2012? It should have told us what we were in for, but Mitt Romney found a way to lose the election in spite of that display.

Now, five years later, we have managed to win a national election—and Democrats are back to booing God. The latest example was at a Republican town hall meeting in Louisiana, hosted by Sen. Bill Cassidy, at which Democrat “protesters”—do they even know what they’re “protesting”?—loudly booed both the opening prayer and the Pledge of Allegiance.

The prayer got them really riled up. “Prayer? Prayer?” cried one incredulous progressive. “Pray on your own time!” bellowed another. And a woman, at the top of her lungs, invoked the name of Lucifer, who runs American leftism when George Soros is otherwise occupied. They got especially raucous at the mention of Jesus’ name; and then they heckled and booed the recitation of the Pledge. At this point we usually hear liberals deny they’re anti-Christian and angrily declare, “Don’t you dare question our patriotism!”

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Eye Black Christianity: Tim Tebow, Clayton Jennings, and the Power of Celebrity

Seth Dunn takes aim at “Christian” celebrities.  “Tim Tebow lives clean,” says Dunn.  “He visits prisons.  He helps out special needs kids.  He smiles.  He preaches about Jesus.  All of that stuff is good.  But exactly where is his influence leading?”  Dunn offers some answers in his piece over at Pulpit & Pen.  He writes:

“…He has no stately form or majesty That we should look upon Him, Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.”Isaiah 53:2

One of the worst nights of my life was December 6, 2008.  It was the night of the SEC Championship game in Atlanta, Georgia.  I had spent more money than this father of four ever again expects to have on the purchase of tickets to the game.  I had flown my brother in from Phoenix to attend the game with my wife and myself for his Christmas present.  We are die-hard Alabama fans, the real deal.  We are not the kind of bandwagoners you tend to find in SEC country these days wearing brand-new Alabama hats, purchased after the latest Iron Bowl.  Our Crimson Tide paraphernalia has age (what historians might call “verisimilitude”) – an unopened glass bottle coke with Bear Bryant on it, a blood-stained player wristband obtained outside of Neyland Stadium during the Stallings era, and a faded Dennis Riddle jersey.  In 2003, I cheered for Alabama in the student section of Sanford Stadium as a student at the University of Georgia.  At the dawn of the Fulmer era, my brother covered Volunteer football for the University of Tennessee student paper as an Alabama fan.  We are true believers.  By the time 2008 rolled around, we had impatiently waited through the folly of Dennis Franchione, Mike Price, Mike Shula and an NCAA probation for our beloved Crimson Tide to return to prominence.  They were undefeated.  All that stood between them, the SEC Championship, and a trip to the National Championship game was Urban Meyer’s Florida Gators.  Alabama controlled the game for three quarters.  In the fourth quarter, Florida’s Heisman-Trophy-winning quarterback led a comeback and the Gators defeated the Tide.  Our night was ruined.  You may have heard of that quarterback, his name is Tim Tebow.  He is famous for being one of the best college quarterbacks of all time and an outspoken Christian.

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