Last October a group called “Feminists Against Trump” organized a “witch-in” to “cast magical spells of love and feminism to destroy the Great Orange One and his alleged racism, xenophobia and sexism. Now there’s a new spell caster in town who plans to do a mass spell binding against the president. LifeZette has the story:
President Trump can count on many plagues in the six months he’s been in the office, such as the leaks, endless obstructionism, and a mainstream media determined to cast him from the White House. But pop artist Lana Del Rey would like to add to his troubles and has already begun to do so—by casting a spell on him.
“Yeah, I did it, why not?” Del Rey told NME. “Look, I do a lot of [stuff].”
Among the 13 types are breast, ovarian, lung, stomach, colorectal, pancreatic and liver. Japan News has the story:
A research team led by the Tokyo-based National Cancer Center Japan has developed a new test to diagnose 13 kinds of cancers from a single drop of blood, with a clinical study set to start from next month.
The center’s research and ethics screening committee gave the green light to the study in mid-July. The research team will apply to the central government to put the new test into practical use within three years, at the earliest.
According to LifeZette, one fan of the new “Harry Potter and the Sacred Test” podcast declared “I feel like I’m born again.”
Works of fiction can never replace sacred scripture, but a group of avid fans is apparently finding deep meaning in the spellbinding series.
It seems silly — yet a Harry Potter podcast is aimed at readers and listeners who view the popular book series as sacred text, a recent Washington Post story noted. Clearly, fantasy books about wizards, witches and magic should never serve as a replacement for faith in God or be compared to religion, but that hasn’t prevented it from happening.
The “Harry Potter and the Sacred Text” podcast for Potter fanatics has become a faith substitute for many millennials who fall into a religious “nones” category. As exhibit one, hundreds of people in Washington, D.C., this week attended a live taping of the podcast.
According to Barry Bowen of The Christian Sentinel:
Pastor Mike Bickle and International House of Prayer (IHOP) have inspired numerous charismatic Christians with their ambitious goal to worship God around-the-clock. One worship band follows the next, 24/7 at the Kansas City megachurch.
Bickle has a long history of engaging in controversial church movements. In the 1980s and ’90s Bickle played an important role in the Kansas City Prophets. This group of pastors popularized the idea that God was raising up a new generation of apostles that would bring in a huge, global spiritual harvest.
Many discernment ministries have already written about the bad doctrines espoused by Bickle. Now it is time to examine his ministries’ finances. Are they transparent? Are there red flags (besides bad doctrine) that Christians should closely examine?
Where to begin? With an address. IHOP meets at 3535 E Red Bridge Road in Kansas City, MO.
A search for this address in the DuckDuckGo search engine reveals a Bizapedia webpagereporting, “There are 54 companies that have an address matching 3535 E Red Bridge Road Kansas City, MO 64137.”
As previously reported here and here, a huge hullabaloo erupted after retired pastor and author Eugene Peterson, best known for “The Message,” commented during an interview that he would be willing to officiate a same-sex ceremony for “Christians of good faith” if he were pastoring today. According to Heather Clark of Christian News, Peterson “acknowledged that he did respond yes (that he would officiate a same-sex ceremony) during the interview, but said he only did so “in the moment” and felt the need to retract his answer upon praying about the matter.” Clark now reports that if Peterson keeps his true feelings on homosexuality to himself, his books could have a long shelf life:
LifeWay Christian Stores, which is owned by the Southern Baptist Convention, says that it will not pull the “Message Bible” or any of Eugene Peterson’s other writings now that the author has retracted his initial statements about same-sex “marriage.”
“Based upon Eugene Peterson’s retraction, we will continue to sell his resources,” Carol Pipes, the director of corporate communications for LifeWay Christian Resources, told Christian News Network in a statement.
The company had said last week that if Peterson indeeds supports homosexual “marriage,” as he seemingly indicated in his recent interview with Religion News Service, it would pull his products.
According to The Christian Institute:
Giving out hormone blockers to ‘pause’ puberty ‘endangers’ young children, medical experts have warned.
In an article published in the New Atlantis science journal, experts warned against using hormone-suppressing drugs to encourage gender-confused children to “transition.”
The authors concluded that there is little scientific evidence to support the use of hormone blockers and they should not be considered a prudent option.
Barry Bowen of The Christian Sentinel has the story:
In 1987, Congress held hearings to examine government oversight or the lack thereof for religious institutions. The hearing was spurred on by allegations of fraud involving televangelist Jim Bakker and PTL.
Pastor D. James Kennedy meekly told Congress, “I would think that if a person is going to give money to something, that they have … a responsibility to learn where it is going.”
Donor Responsibility. It is an important concept. Christians should check out televangelists before sending them checks or making donations by phone. Besides examining a preacher’s theology, donors should determine if giving to them is good stewardship.
Trinity Broadcasting Network, America’s largest religious TV network, is amassing huge legal expenses. The network has spent more than $20 million on attorneys’ fees since 2012.
Technocracy News has this comment on genetically engineered insects:
And away we go… Moths with a genetically modified kill switch to be released into the wild. The words ‘likely’ and ‘unlikely’ are used repeatedly to justify the release: ‘unlikely to impact the environment or humans’ and ‘likely killed off my pesticides’. The USDA has again fallen under the spell of Technocrats who elevate science to a state of godhood and themselves as the high priests.
Gizmoto has the story:
Diamondback moths may be a mere half-inch in length, but their voracious appetite for Brussels sprouts, kale and cauliflower make them a major pain for farmers. This week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture approved a potential solution: moths genetically engineered to contain a special gene that makes them gradually die off. A field trial slated to take place in a small area of upstate New York will become the first wild release of an insect modified using genetic engineering in the US.
According to Leah Jessen of LifeZette, “many intelligent and educated people don’t know fundamental truths about human life, such as when life begins.” She writes:
“When does a human life begin?”
This question should not be hard to answer — but in today’s culture, the topic is more contentious than ever.
“This is not about opinions, politics, or religion — nor should it be. It is about modern, objective, relevant science,” Brooke Stanton, founder and CEO of the nonprofit Contend Projects, wrote on her organization’s website. Based in Washington, D.C., and founded two years ago, the secular and nonpartisan Contend Projects is working to inform people, based on science, about when life begins.
Chicago Tribune ran the Associated Press report:
Muslim groups in Malaysia and Indonesia have called for a boycott of Starbucks because of the coffee chain’s support for LGBT rights.
Malaysian group Perkasa, which supports a hard-line form of Islam and nationalism, this week called on its more than 500,000 members to stay away from Starbucks coffee shops. This week and last, leaders of Indonesia’s second largest mainstream Muslim group, Muhammadiyah, with an estimated 29 million members, denounced the chain.
The groups were apparently reacting to comments made several years ago by former CEO Howard Schultz in support of gay rights that drew renewed attention amid an increasingly anti-LGBT climate in both of the predominantly Muslim countries.
According to The Telegraph, the exorcism industry is in part “driven by immigrant communities and Pentecostal churches which are very open about their exorcism services.” Exorcisms are being performed despite the fact that the writers of the New Testament never admonish believers to cast demons out of people. What we are told to do is to put on the armor of God and stand firm against demonic activity (Ephesians 6:10-20). James tells us to resist the devil (James 4:7) and Peter says that when it comes to the spiritual forces of wickedness we are to be alert and of sober mind (1 Peter 5:8). We must not give the devil a foothold in our lives. (Ephesians 4:27). Never are we told to address demons or to attempt to perform an exorcism. Again, we are told to keep our spiritual armor on and to “resist the devil and he will flee from you.”
An “astonishing” rise in harmful Christian exorcisms is being partly driven by migrant communities, a think tank has warned.
A report by Theos, a think tank focusing on religion, found that experts were concerned that the “booming industry” in exorcisms was putting Christians’ mental health at risk.
The report, which examines the relationship between Christianity and mental health, said: “Exorcisms are now a booming industry in the UK, with a number of interviewees noting the astonishing increase in demand – often, as one noted, in defiance of any actual rules or procedures put in place by any church.”
The reporter accused of coercing an apology from the creator of the Donald Trump wresting meme threatened the man with punishment unless his remorse is genuine and his “ugly behavior on social media” stops. LifeZette has the story:
CNN found itself ensnared in yet another ethical quagmire on Wednesday after a young reporter apparently tracked down the creator of a mock video tweeted by President Donald Trump and extracted an apology from him.
The Reddit user created the controversial animated GIF that showed Trump bodyslamming a man at a WWE match. The man in the original video was Vince McMahon, the former president of WWE and a personal friend to Trump. In the mock video the CNN logo was placed over McMahon’s head.
According to The Orange County Register:
Harvest Christian Fellowship will be joining the Southern Baptist Convention, the nation’s largest Protestant body with about 15 million members. The Rev. Greg Laurie, pastor and founder of the 15,000-member Harvest and its Harvest Crusades, announced the move in June.
Some theologians see this as Laurie’s official shift toward mainstream evangelicalism and worry that Riverside-based Harvest could be overshadowed by the denomination. Laurie has been seen as one of the biggest crusaders of Calvary Chapel, an association of evangelical Christian churches to which Harvest belongs. Calvary was born as a movement away from religious denominations.
Christian News has the story:
The Texas Supreme Court has ruled that the 2015 Supreme Court same-sex “marriage” decision did not clearly state whether the “spouses” of homosexual government workers are entitled to benefits. “The Supreme Court held in Obergefell that the Constitution requires states to license and recognize same-sex marriages to the same extent that they license and recognize opposite-sex marriages, but it did not hold that states must provide the same publicly funded benefits to all married persons,” Justice Jeffrey Boyd wrote on behalf of the panel. “Of course, that does not mean … that the city may constitutionally deny benefits to its employees’ same-sex spouses,” he added. “Those are the issues that this case now presents.”