Trump Announces Reinstatement of Ban on Transgenders Serving in U.S. Military

Christian News reports:

President Trump announced on Wednesday that the U.S. government has decided to reinstate the country’s ban on open transgenders serving in the military, advising that the issue is a distraction and would place a burden on the finances of the Armed Forces.

“After consultation with my generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military,” he tweeted this morning. “Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgenders in the military would entail. Thank you.”

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This Pop Singer and American Witches Want to Hex the President

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].”

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California Imam Prays for Allah to ‘Annihilate’ Jews in Public Sermon

Breitbart reports:

 

Imam Ammar Shahin of the Islamic Center of Davis in California delivered a sermon on Friday in which he quoted an antisemitic hadith and prayed for Allah to “annihilate” Jews “down to the very last one.”

The video of Shahin’s sermon was posted to the Islamic Center of Davis’s YouTube channel on Friday (Update: the video has since been removed), and translated and excerpted by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), though portions of the sermon were delivered in English.

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New blood test can check for 13 types of cancers

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.

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Trump Taps New Communications Director Who Advocated for ‘Gay Rights Movement,’ ‘Pro-Choice’ Cause

Christian News reports:

President Donald Trump has appointed Anthony Scaramucci to be the new White House Communications Director—a man who has publicly stated his support for same-sex “marriage” and abortion rights.

“Republicans should support gay marriage,” he tweeted in 2012, again writing later that year in response to a follower, “I am not a partisan. For gay marriage, against the death penalty, and pro-choice. I am for social inclusion, fiscal responsibility.”

Just in November, Scaramucci wrote, “I support the gay rights movement and I am an active proponent of equality.”

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Pro-Life Leaders Meet with Pence to Urge Planned Parenthood Defunding

According to Breitbart:

National pro-life activists were among the conservative leaders who met with Vice President Mike Pence on Friday to emphasize the importance of debating an Obamacare repeal bill and the elimination of Planned Parenthood’s taxpayer funding. The pro-life leaders have an ardent advocate in Pence, who became the first sitting vice president to address the annual March for Life in January:

WATCH LIVE! I’m meeting w/ grassroots orgs calling on the Senate to act to rescue the American people from Obamacare https://www.whitehouse.gov/live/vice-president-pence-hosts-roudtable-discussion  pic.twitter.com/HvIjqwqkUe

As @POTUS Trump said, inaction is not an option. Obamacare is collapsing all across the country. It’s time for Congress to act. pic.twitter.com/fnEkJcsBwo

The leaders gathered with Pence Friday as Republicans’ proposals to repeal Obamacare have failed thus far, largely because of a desire on the part of liberal GOP members to keep much of the onerous healthcare reform intact.

Millennials’ Scary Faith in Harry Potter

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.

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Military General: Delay of ‘Transgender’ Enlistment ‘Largely Based’ on Disagreement Over Science of Solving Medical Issues

Christian News reports:

A top military general says that one of the main reasons that the U.S. Department of Defense has decided to delay implementation of the Obama-era policy allowing “transgenders” to serve in the military is disagreement over the science of how the medical treatments for those struggling with gender dysphoria alleviate the problem.

Air Force Gen. Paul Selva was asked about the matter by Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-NY, on Tuesday during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing.

“I am concerned that the recent six-month delay the Department has approved before letting transgender people enlist in the services will have some unintended consequences,” Gillibrand stated. “What have you learned so far in your review of this issue, and how is the implementation going so far?”

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Investigation: Millions of Dollars in Assets Not Reported by IHOP Megachurch

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.”

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Research Team Slams Global Warming Data In New Report: ‘Not Reality… Totally Inconsistent With Credible Temperature Data’

According to Zero Hedge:

As world leaders, namely in the European Union, attack President Trump for pulling out of the Paris Climate Agreement which would have saddled Americans with billions upon billions of dollars in debt and economic losses, a new bombshell report that analyzed Global Average Surface Temperature (GAST) data produced by NASA, the NOAA and HADLEY proves the President was right on target with his refusal to be a part of the new initiative.

According to the report, which has been peer reviewed by administrators, scientists and researchers from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.), and several of America’s leading universities, the data is completely bunk:

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Mexican folk religion involving human sacrifice gaining status among criminals

Fox News reports:

A Mexican folk religion involving human sacrifice and devoted to “Holy Death” is growing in popularity among drug traffickers and violent criminals, prompting Texas officials and the Catholic Church to warn about honoring the so-called “Saint Death.”

Authorities are speaking out about the religion devoted to La Santa Muerte, which translates to “Holy Death” and “Saint Death,” that has gained popularity steadily since the late 1980s among Mexican-American Catholics.

“She’s not a saint. There is nothing good that can come out of praying to her,” Sante Fe Archbiship John Wester said in February. “We have a lot of saints who represent the teaching of Jesus Christ. This is an aberration.”

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Southern Baptist-Owned LifeWay Stores Won’t Pull ‘Message Bible’ After Author’s ‘Gay Marriage’ Retraction

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.

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Mental Illness Gets New Attention from Police

LifeZette reports:

A new South Carolina law requires all police officers to be trained on how to de-escalate situations involving people with mental illnesses.

The Criminal Justice Academy in Columbia has a 4 1/2-hour class dedicated to covering the topic of mental health. The cadets are taught how to pick up on cues from a person who may be mentally ill, de-escalate the situation, and get that person to communicate with them.

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‘Kids endangered by puberty blockers’, academics warn

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.

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Church of England Overwhelmingly Votes to ‘Welcome and Affirm’ Transgenders

Christian News reports:

Photo credit: Hans Musil3

According to the denomination’s website, the General Synod voted on Sunday to approve a motion that “recognizing the need for transgender people to be welcomed and affirmed in their parish church, call[s] on the House of Bishops to consider whether some nationally commended liturgical materials might be prepared to mark a person’s gender transition.”

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TBN Spends $20 Million on Attorneys’ Fees in Four Years

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.

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America’s First Free-Roaming Genetically Engineered Insects Are Coming to New York

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.

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‘When Does a Human Life Begin?’ Answered by Science

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.

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Megachurch Leader Says Critics of Choir’s ‘Make America Great Again’ Trump Slogan Ode Are ‘Evangelical Gnats’

Christian News reports:

Pastor Robert Jeffress. Photo credit Gage Skidmore

A well-known megachurch leader and Trump supporter says that those who have been critical of last Saturday’s choir performance of a song based on Trump’s “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan are “evangelical gnats” who are just upset that Trump won the election.

“They are absolutely nothing but evangelical gnats who are looking for any excuse to nibble at the president,” Robert Jeffress of the First Baptist Church of Dallas told the Christian Post this week. “If you take these critics’ argument to their logical end, then Christians need to quit saying the Pledge of Allegiance.”

As previously reported, the song, which had been written by the church’s former music minister, Gary Moore, was performed by the Southern Baptist choir during Saturday’s “Celebrate Freedom” rally in the nation’s capital. The event was co-sponsored by Jeffress’ congregation and featured a message from the president.

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Malaysia, Indonesia Muslim groups call for Starbucks boycott

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.

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Hasbro Says It ‘Eliminated Old Delineation of Gender’ to Think of Toys More ‘Inclusively’

Christian News reports:

In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the CEO of Hasbro outlined that the company has changed its thinking regarding certain toys being geared toward particular genders. Brian Goldner told the outlet that Hasbro has found that a significant percentage of boys are interested in My Little Pony, and that girls might like some of the Star Wars products the company will soon be releasing. “You’ve pivoted Hasbro’s focus from mostly boys to girls as well, and the stock hit an all-time high in February. What does that say about the marketplace?” reporter Tatiana Siegel asked.

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‘Astonishing’ rise in demand for exorcisms putting mental health at risk, report finds

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.”

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CNN Blackmail: Massive Backlash After Network Threatens Reddit User

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.

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As Harvest Christian Fellowship joins Southern Baptist Convention, some question future of Greg Laurie’s church

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.

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Texas Supreme Court Rules ‘Spouses’ of Homosexual Govt Workers Not Clearly Entitled to Benefits

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.”

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