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

Rick Warren: Forget Sola Scriptura, But There is ‘Plus Scriptura’

Bud Ahlheim of Pulpit & Pen examines the teaching of Rick Warren, senior pastor of Saddleback megachurch which is one of the largest churches in the U.S.  He quotes Tim Challies as saying the following about the man who has been dubbed the “Purpose Driven Pope”:

One need only read Warren’s books or listen to a few of his messages to realize how often he explains and applies passages incorrectly. I assume this is because he has not taken the time to first humble himself before the Scripture and determine what the passages really mean. So do not be confused and presume that Warren is an expository preacher.

Ahlheim also includes something highly influential pastor Charles Spurgeon once said:

Whatever is to be revealed by the Spirit to any of us is in the Word of God already. He adds nothing to the Bible and never will.

Now listen as Bud Ahlheim shreads Warren’s post “The Four Ways God Speaks To You.”  He writes:

Photo courtesy Apprising Ministries

When the apostle Paul was writing his final letter to Timothy, he failed to include a number of things that are so frequently hurled about the Christian church today as utterly important, especially when it comes to hearing from God.

For example, the apostle did not instruct his young protégé on the importance of listening for God’s “still small voice” for personal and ministerial guidance. He didn’t remind Timothy about the importance of astutely discerning between God-sent, spiritual “impressions” for direction as opposed to those which might be of a distinctly more carnal nature.  The apostle of our Lord also forgot to advise the young minister about the importance of circumstances God may orchestrate in order to provide spiritual guardrails to guide him down the correct, providential path.

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Alarm as U.K. School Installs Gender-Neutral Toilets for Students Over Eight

The Christian Institute reports:

transgender-bathroom-2Parents are up in arms after being told their children will have to use gender-neutral toilets in a new school building.

A new building at Buxton School in Leytonstone, East London, has been fitted with the toilets, for use by children aged eight and above.

Headteacher Kath Wheeler says the facilities will create ‘safe spaces’ for pupils.

Sexualisation

There has been an outcry amongst parents, who fear the toilets will lead to children being sexualised at a young age.

Mother Shaila Hussain said: “This will initiate more sexualised behaviour. It would be better to keep it separated as it’s safer.”

Another parent said: “Why would you want girls and boys in the same bathroom? Privacy seems to be out of the window nowadays.

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‘The Shack’ to be the next blasphemous blockbuster film

Amy Spreeman of Berean Research warns: “If you’re looking for the God of the Bible in this book, or thinking that this is a great film to give your kids a ‘whole new perspective on God’ (we hear that one a lot), then I’m going to speak up and say that there are some things you ought to know about how and where this story veers off track into dangerous waters.”  She writes:

The Shack, Wm Paul YoungLet’s cut right to the chase:  Are there heresies in The Shack?  Yes. Scroll down. There are more than a dozen of them. Movies about God always make big bucks at the box office, and the film adaptation of The Shack will more than likely be a top ticket seller when it hits the big screen. Now the official trailer is out, and the emotional impact in just this two minute clip already seals the deal that this film will be a blockbuster.

The film hits Theaters March 3, 2017.

I can already imagine The Shack Bible studies, sermon series and of course the social media hype, not to mention busloads of small groups fellowshipping and praising “Papa” for another opportunity to share Jesus. But which Jesus? We know that the Jesus of the Bible is very different than the one author William P. Young wrote about in his mega-bestseller.

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Human Rights Group Asks Trump To Investigate Planned Parenthood’s Support of China’s Forced Abortion Policies

According to CNSNews:

Planned Parenthood 2Reggie Littlejohn, president of the human rights advocacy group Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, has written an open letter to President-elect Donald Trump urging him to investigate the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) for what she said is its complicity in Communist China’s coercive population control policies, including forced abortion.

“We at Women’s Rights Without Frontiers look forward to working with you to advance women’s rights all over the world,” Littlejohn said in the Dec. 1 letter.  “To that end, we respectfully request that you immediately investigate International Planned Parenthood.”

“If they are found to be complicit with coercive population control in China – as we believe they will be — we request that you defund them,” Littlejohn wrote.

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Hillsong & Worship: The Gospel According to Hillsong

Grace to You bloggers Cameron Buettel and Jeremiah Johnson tackle the music of Hillsong.  What they say is not a “fundamentalist rant.”  And it’s not “a screed against modern music infiltrating the church.”  They’re simply urging the brethren to be “wary when our ancient and exclusive faith is overrun with modern songs featuring a fluid and indistinct message.  In many instances, Hillsong lyrics are so vague they could be embraced by most religions.”

Buettel and Johnson begin with lyrics from “Only Wanna Sing”:

hillsong-churchThis is no performance Lord, I pray it’s worship Empty words I can’t afford I’m not chasing feelings That’s not why I’m singing You’re the reason for my song

And I only wanna sing If I sing with everything If I sing for you, my King

I can’t imagine why I would do this all for hype Cause it’s all to lift You high

At this point in the song—titled “Only Wanna Sing”—the music soars, the strobe lights fire up, and everyone on stage and in the crowd begins to dance with reckless abandon.

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Global Temperatures Plunge. Icy Silence from Climate Alarmists

Breitbart reports

cold-weatherGlobal land temperatures have plummeted by one degree Celsius since the middle of this year – the biggest and steepest fall on record.

But the news has been greeted with an eerie silence by the world’s alarmist community. You’d almost imagine that when temperatures shoot up it’s catastrophic climate change which requires dramatic headlines across the mainstream media and demands for urgent action. But that when they fall even more precipitously it’s just a case of “nothing to see here”.

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Fixer Upper Stars Under Fire for Attending Evangelical Church

 

From Berean Research:

Chip and Joanna GainesAccording to a report by Todd Starnes, host of Fox News and Commentary, the “LGBTQ mob” has their sites set on HGTV’s Chip and Joanna Gains.  If if turns out that they share their pastor’s beliefs on homosexuality, powerful LGBTQ activists will go to great lengths to destroy the couple.  Their pastor, Jimmy Seibert, holds to the biblical view of marriage — one man one woman for life.  He doesn’t happen to share the PC view that homosexuals are born that way; his opinion, which he’s entitled to, is that homosexuality is a “lifestyle.”  Moreover, he believes homosexuality is a sin against God.  Pastor Seibert’s beliefs come from the clear teaching of Scripture:

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.  And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. — 1 Cor 6:9-11

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Pope clashes with biblical teaching, Baptists say

Baptist Press reports:

pope-francis-4Pope Francis’ newly extended permission for all priests to forgive the sin of abortion demonstrates sharp disagreement between Roman Catholicism and evangelical Christianity over God’s forgiveness, Southern Baptist theologians say.

In an apostolic letter issued Nov. 21, Pope Francis said he was granting “all priests, in virtue of their ministry, the faculty to absolve those who have committed the sin of procured abortion.” In so doing, the pope expanded indefinitely an authorization he had given priests worldwide during the just-concluded Jubilee of Mercy.

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See our Research Paper on Roman Catholicism

See College Students’ Responses When Asked to Compare Castro to Trump

The Daily Signal has the MUST WATCH video:

fidel-castroCollege students in the nation’s capital thought it was a “tough question” whether former Cuban President Fidel Castro or American President-elect Donald Trump is more favorable.

Campus Reform, a project of the Leadership Institute, polled several students at American University in Washington, D.C., and captured the students’ responses in the video below.

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Celebrity Preacher Loses ‘License’ After Wooed Women Come Forward Citing Sex, Booze & Morning-After Pill

According to Christian News Network:

clayton-jenningsA self-described evangelist, author and poet who rose to celebrity status for his hip-hop-styled poetic messages, model-like photographs and numerous selfies has had his ministerial credentials revoked after confessing to sexual indiscretions. The admission occurred as a number of women have recently come forward citing that both promises of marriage and spiritual abuse played a role in them being lured into sexual sin. Clayton Jennings, who had been in the midst of promoting Tim Tebow’s new book “Shaken,” released a poetic confession online on Nov. 13, which as of press time has obtained over 190,000 views. “I never claimed to be perfect and I never said I was sinless. Presenting you with a fake facade of greatness is never why I got in this,” he says in the video. “I want you to know this: I’ve sinned—a lot.”

“I could tell you stories of my past sin, but I wouldn’t know when to stop. I had sex before marriage and I broke a lot of hearts. And that’s not even the worst part. Sometimes it was during seasons of ministry,” Jennings admits. “I led some girls on, and there were text messages of sex and sin.”

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‘Heartbroken’: Tenn. fires destroy homes, churches

Baptist Press reports:

fire-2Wildfires in and around the east Tennessee resort area of Gatlinburg have destroyed the facilities of at least one Southern Baptist church, claimed buildings at two other churches and prompted local believers to launch relief ministries.

The reported 14 blazes near Gatlinburg Nov. 29 were among a series of wildfires across the southeast this fall that have led Southern Baptist Disaster Relief units to deploy in Tennessee, North Carolina and Georgia.

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Perry Noble Says Churches are Businesses, Offers to Help Them Grow

Now that Perry Noble is fresh out of alcohol rehab, the Lord has something new and exciting in store for him.  It won’t be pastoring a church because, according to 1 Tim 3:1-7, he is no longer qualified.  So, what has God supposedly “shown him” regarding his future? Jeff Maples of Pulpit & Pen has the details:

perry-noble-2Disgraced former pastor of Newspring Church in Anderson, SC, says God is calling him back to the ministry–except this time, he’s in it for the business. After losing his job last year as senior pastor of the seeker-friendly megachurch for years of alcohol-related transgressions, he vowed to return to ministry after a 30-day rehab program and turning himself over to a therapist. He has kept his promise and is now offering what he calls a “consultation ministry,” dubbed The Growth Co., in which he will be offering to come alongside businesses and churches to help them grow.

“I am ready to take the next step in life and ministry…” the repeat alcoholic offender says,

After much thought, prayer and seeking godly and wise counsel I believe The Lord has clearly shown me I am supposed to step into church and business consulting.

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Calvary Chapel Association Announces Complete Separation from Brian and Cheryl Brodersen, CC Costa Mesa, and the CC ‘Global Network’

Berean Research reports:

Calvary ChapelThe following letter was sent worldwide today, Nov. 28, to  all 1,600 Calvary Chapel Pastors by the Calvary Chapel Association.

November 28, 2016

Calvary Chapel Pastors,

Pastor Chuck Smith chose a group of men to lead the Calvary Chapel movement after his passing. The Calvary Chapel Association Council was a plan he reiterated on numerous occasions. A Council provides checks and balances, and a collective wisdom to help steer us in the right direction.

The CCA Council consists of men from across the country who are committed to the core values that have made us Calvary Chapel. Like many of you, we have given our lives to build Calvary Chapel churches. What makes the 1700 churches “Calvary Chapel” are the values Pastor Chuck instilled in us – our doctrine and philosophy of ministry. The principles we were taught and the transformative power of God’s Spirit have proven to be more than sufficient. The CCA Council’s primary goal is to maintain what has been our Calvary Chapel identity for fifty years, while seeking the Holy Spirit for fresh power and wisdom to advance God’s Kingdom.

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35% of Babies Aborted in 2013 Were Black

According to CNSNews:

baby-8Although black Americans make up 13.3% of the U.S. population, they comprised 35% of the total abortions “reported” – 128,682 babies killed — in 2013, according to the latest Abortion Surveillance report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

That number, 128,682 black abortions, comes from only 29 reporting areas, according to the CDC. It does not include black abortions from the following states: Arizona, California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

Those states “did not report, did not report by race/ethnicity, or did not meet reporting standards,” said the CDC in Table 12 of its report. The header for Table 12 reads, “Reported abortions, by known race/ethnicity of women who obtained an abortion and reporting area of occurrence — selected reporting areas, United States, 2013.”

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Former SBC leader says ERLC out of touch with mainstream

According to William “Bill” Harrell, “Every institution or group was founded to meet a certain need and, for the useful life of that institution or organization, it focused on its purpose.  If and when that purpose was no longer a valid reason for its existence, it would cease to exist.” Harrell believes that “We have just such a situation in the Southern Baptist Convention today.”  Baptist News Global has the story:

russell-moore-2A former Southern Baptist Convention leader who made the motion to sever ties with the Baptist Joint Committee on Religious Liberty at the SBC annual meeting in 1990 now says it might be time for Southern Baptists to “call it a day” for the convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.

William “Bill” Harrell, chairman of the SBC Executive Committee subcommittee that recommended separating from the pan-Baptist religious liberty coalition and expanding work of the renamed Christian Life Commission by opening an office in Washington, said recent election results point to an ERLC out of touch with its constituency.

Harrell, retired pastor of Abilene Baptist Church in Martinez, Ga., said in a Nov. 17 blog linked by the Louisiana Baptist Message website that leaders of the agency entrusted with lobbying on behalf of issues important to Southern Baptists “must have egg all over their faces” after months of speaking out against President-elect Donald Trump.

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Progressive Christians to ‘Take Back Their Faith’ After Election

Derryck Green of Juicy Ecumenicism makes it clear that, when determining what is right and wrong, good and evil from a biblical perspective, those who call themselves “progressive Christians” (liberals) are in no position to take the moral high ground.  Green lays into those who pose as evangelicals but whose main goal is the redefinition of traditional Christianity, people such as popular author, blogger and speaker Rachel Held Evans and Jim Wallis of Sojourners, a far-left organization.   Green closes his piece with this challenge for wolves in sheep’s clothing: “If progressive Christians are really concerned about the future of their faith, they may want to consider what faith is really of concern – Leftism or Christianity.”

Now listen to what Derryck Green has to say about the snare of liberal “Christianity”:

Wolf - Little Red Riding HoodA week after the election, the Huffington Post published a blog entry in which Progressive Christians suggested what like-minded Christians should do in order to “take back their faith.”

Still reeling from the election in which Donald Trump was elected president, several progressive Christians pondered the necessary steps to draw a stronger contrast between their brand of kindhearted progressive Christianity, and the kind of conservative, evangelical Christianity that helped elect Donald Trump.

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Fidel Castro May Be Dead, but Tyranny Remains in Cuba

Ana Quintana is a policy analyst for Latin America and the Western Hemisphere in The Heritage Foundation.  Ana is a first-generation Cuban American who knows this story “all too well.” Her piece is posted over at The Daily Signal.  She writes:

CommunismLate Friday evening, Cuban state media reported the death of their former leader, Fidel Castro, at age 90. Some will mourn his passing or even glorify his life. But for many others, not even his death will fill the void caused by his life.

For over five decades, Cubans suffered under the tyranny of Fidel and then his brother Raul, now 85. They watched the regime destroy a country and export the same perverted model of social justice throughout the developing world.

My grandfather would often tell us of how he would hide indoors while Fidel’s firing squads would slaughter innocent people nearby.

Religion was criminalized, dissent was violently punished, and Cuban citizens became property of their communist state. Fidel’s rule brought the world to its closest point of nuclear war during those fateful 13 days in 1962. He indoctrinated hate and pushed millions out of their country.

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VR technology will help mums ‘bond’ with their unborn baby

The Christian Institute reports:

ultrasoundExpectant mothers may soon be able to view their unborn baby in virtual reality (VR), after the announcement of ground-breaking new scanning technology.

Scientists in Brazil have merged ultrasound images with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to build a 3D model of a baby in the womb, which can be brought to life by using a virtual reality headset.

Research has found that over half of “abortion-minded” women end up keeping their babies after seeing a scan.

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Thankful for liberty

freedomFrom a sermon by Charles Haddon Spurgeon entitled “The Peace Of God,” delivered January 6, 1878.

How grateful we ought to be that we can meet together to worship God after that form which best satisfies our consciences without any fear of being hunted down by the authorities of the land…. We put none at the front door of our conventicle to watch lest the constable should come to take off worshipper and minister, that they may suffer imprisonment or fine. We worship God in unlimited liberty, and we ought to be exceedingly glad of the privilege, and infinitely more grateful for it than we are. Do we not sit every man under his own vine and fig tree, none making us afraid? Blessed is the land in which we dwell, and blessed are the days in which we live, when in all peace and quietness we worship God in public and sing his high praises as loudly as we please. Great God of peace, thou hast given us this peace, and in remembrance of our hunted forefathers we bless thee with our whole hearts!

Clinton Recount Plan Draws Sore Loser Jibe From Team Trump

According to Bloomberg:

Hillary ClintonHillary Clinton’s campaign will participate in vote recounts of Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan if they take place, drawing a rebuke from Donald Trump’s team that the Democrat is being a “sore loser” and part of a “ridiculous” effort.

If Green Party candidate Jill Stein initiates recounts in those states as she intends, the Clinton campaign “will participate in order to ensure the process proceeds in a manner that is fair to all sides,” Clinton campaign lawyer Marc Elias said Saturday in a post on the blogging website Medium.com. He added that he doesn’t expect the action to overturn Trumps election.

Trump focused on Stein, not Clinton, in a response. “The people have spoken and the election is over, and as Hillary Clinton herself said on election night, in addition to her conceding by congratulating me, ‘We must accept this result and then look to the future,”’ he said in a statement.

Kellyanne Conway, who was Trump’s campaign manager and is now a senior adviser, was less conciliatory. “What a pack of sore losers,” she said in a statement. “After asking Mr. Trump and his team a million times on the trail, ‘Will HE accept the election results?’ it turns out Team Hillary and their new BFF Jill Stein can’t accept reality.”

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Robot revolution: rise of ‘thinking’ machines could exacerbate inequality

The Guardian has the story:

robot-2A “robot revolution” will transform the global economy over the next 20 years, cutting the costs of doing business but exacerbating social inequality, as machines take over everything from caring for the elderly to flipping burgers, according to a new study.

As well as robots performing manual jobs, such as hoovering the living room or assembling machine parts, the development of artificial intelligence means computers are increasingly able to “think”, performing analytical tasks once seen as requiring human judgment.

In a 300-page report, revealed exclusively to the Guardian, analysts from investment bank Bank of America Merrill Lynch draw on the latest research to outline the impact of what they regard as a fourth industrial revolution, after steam, mass production and electronics.

“We are facing a paradigm shift which will change the way we live and work,” the authors say. “The pace of disruptive technological innovation has gone from linear to parabolic in recent years. Penetration of robots and artificial intelligence has hit every industry sector, and has become an integral part of our daily lives.”

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What is ‘Bridal Mysticism’? And why is it so prevalent?

In this piece, Elizabeth Prata of The End Time answers these questions. Romantic eroticism is the term she uses to describe the way in which some professing Christian women describe an encounter they supposedly had with God.  Beth Moore claims she had an experience with God where she felt as if He was enfolding her; likewise, Sarah Young had a feeling of being enveloped by a warm mist and becoming aware of a lovely Presence.  In her writing, Ann Voskamp promotes pagan nature religion or mysticism. So it should come as no surprise that she expresses romantic feelings about Jesus and is looking for satisfaction.

Now listen as Elizabeth Prata sheds light on romantic eroticism:

brideIn 2005, Beth Moore was interviewed by Today’s Christian Woman magazine. They asked Moore:

Q. What led you to Jesus?

A. Beth Moore’s [2005] answer:

My Sunday-school teacher would hold up pictures of Jesus, and he looked so nice. I needed a hero, and Jesus seemed like one. I’d lie on the grass, stare up at the sky, and wonder what Jesus was like. Even as a child, I fell in love with him. After my freshman year in college, I was a camp counselor for sixth-grade girls. Early one morning, as the girls were sleeping, I sensed God’s presence enfold me. There were no audible words, no bright lights. But suddenly I knew, without a doubt, my future was entirely his. You are now mine, he told me. (source)

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Christian leaders see influence growing under Trump

According to left-leaning Politico:

Donald Trump PrayerSocial conservatives got Donald Trump into the White House. Now, they expect him to deliver.

In conversations on Capitol Hill, donor meetings in Texas and behind closed doors at the Ritz-Carlton in McLean, Virginia, socially conservative leaders are cheering Trump’s election and already moving to hold him accountable to the myriad campaign promises he made to Christian voters.

“Donald Trump is not the candidate pro-lifers would have chosen, and he understood that, and he did outreach,” said Tom McClusky, vice president of government affairs at the anti-abortion rights group March for Life. McClusky, who has been critical of Trump in the past, continued, “If he fulfills the promises he’s made, he could be the most pro-life president since Reagan.”

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The Dr. Michael Brown Checklist of Manipulation

Steven Kozar of Messed Up Church has compiled a list of things that Dr. Michael Brown often says and does in order to elicit support from friends of his who are caught up in the New Apostolic Reformation cult:

Michael BrownDr. Michael Brown is an enigma.  Sometimes he says some really good things that all Bible-believing Christians can agree with (and we gladly recognize that), but other times he goes out on a limb in support of the most extreme New Apostolic Reformation teachers, pastors and leaders. For some reason, he has become a very convincing apologist and “front man” for obvious false teachers like Bill Johnson, Heidi Baker, Rick Joyner, Lance Wallnau and even Benny Hinn.

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Hillsong & Beth Moore Unite: Using Weak Women To Capture Weak Women (and others)

Bud Ahlheim of Pulpit & Pen informs us that popular author, speaker and Bible teacher Beth Moore is scheduled to appear as a “Special Guest” at the Hillsong Conference 2017.  Moore and Hillsong’s Brian and Bobbie Houston are movers and shakers in the ravenous wolf camp, so discerning Christians will not be surprised by this; still, we need to be aware of what’s happening in the “Christian” community.  According to Ahlheim:

beth-moore-2-2When the imprisoned, soon-to-be-martyred Paul wrote his final letter to Timothy, effectively passing the mantle of ministry to his young protégé, he warned the young disciple about the imminent persecution that would come “in the last days.” The impetus for the coming “times of difficulty” was the increasing depravity of the pagan world.

At the end of the list (2 Timothy 3:2-5) of evidenced evil that Timothy ought to watch for, Paul included the following group in conclusion.

… those … having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth. Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men corrupted in mind and disqualified regarding the faith.”   2 Timothy 3:5-8

Well, guess what?

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