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Tuesday
Aug152017

When Everything Becomes Propaganda

Franklin Graham has it right!

"Really, this boils down to evil in people's hearts. Satan is behind it all. He wants division, he wants unrest, he wants violence and hatred," Graham, President and CEO of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) and Samaritan's Purse, declared in a Facebook post. "He's the enemy of peace and unity."

No matter where I look there is tension and disagreement about everything. It is a sign of the last days. The Apostle Paul also has it right here in the best description of what is happening in our world today.

Romans 1:22-25  “Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 

23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles. 

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 

25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.”

 So what we are facing is an all out assault on everything God has established and teaches in His Word by the “Propaganda Of The Devil.”

Just so we are clear on the concise definition of the word “Propaganda”:

Chiefly derogatory information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view.

It is misleading information that drives you to a wrong conclusion. That is the problem with our education, media, religion, and a host of other major influencers in society today. They mislead you to a wrong conclusion.

When I watch the news I see so much misleading information and certain people want this misleading to continue because it serves their purpose.

Let’s take the devil for example:

  1. He wants to mislead because it creates a parallel track to the truthHe wants to mislead because it creates confusion and causes people to question everything that has been in place for centuries.
     
  2. He wants to mislead because it serves his purpose to rob, steal and destroy the very nature of the God in the message of the gospel. 
     
  3. His misleading leads people away from God and to a conclusion that will usher them into hell.

That may be strong for some of you, but that is the conclusion of his misleading.  

Here is my conclusion as I view what I hear and see:

Most education has a propaganda element with views that do not support a godly worldview. The secular educational systems are definitely leading people away from any critical thinking that presents both sides of an issue. They want people to think only in one direction. To me this is not education it is propaganda! This includes Christian universities and colleges. Many of these so-called Christian educational institutions do not teach a Biblical worldview, they dabble in truth, but never nail it to the cross. Everything starts with how we are trained, educated, or associations we hang around. This educational component is extremely serious because many young Christian students entering a secular college are vulnerable to losing their faith within the first two years. This worldview shift will impact how they date, how they view their parents, and what they believe. I have seen this firsthand - loved ones who have make an about face in their lives based upon an education that focused on the wrong conclusion.

People all around me have a wrong conclusion. They just don’t think about how wrong their point of view is because it is supported every day in our media, in friendships, and in the workplace.

Let me be perfectly clear: “ANY CONCLUSION THAT DOES NOT MAKE JESUS CHRIST FIRST IN LIVING AND PURSUING LIFE IS THE WRONG CONCLUSION.”

Propaganda is the language of the last days. Its misleading people and giving them false hope in theories, politics, and religious teachings that are not based upon the God of the Bible.

Remember propaganda is the language of the devil and he is a master at spinning things in a direction that makes God look small and intolerant.

Just saying….

Keeping it honest and truthful…K

 

 

 

 

Monday
Aug142017

Why So Many Churches Are Dying

I ran into this article about why churches are dying and I felt it was worth sharing, at least in part.

They refuse to admit they are sick, very sick. I have worked with churches whose attendance has declined by over 80 percent. They have no gospel witness in the community. They have not seen a person come to Christ in two decades. But they say they are fine. They say nothing is wrong.

They are still waiting on the “magic bullet” pastor. They tell themselves, “If only we could find the right pastor, we would be fine”. But they bring in pastor after pastor. Each leaves after a short-term stint, frustrated that the congregation was so entrenched in its ways. So the church starts the search again for the magic bullet pastor.

They fail to accept responsibility. I recently met with the remaining members of a dying church. Their plight was the community’s fault. Those people should be coming to their church. It was the previous five pastors’ fault. Or it was the fault of culture. If everything returned to the Bible belt mentality of decades earlier, we would be fine.

They are not willing to change . . . at all. A friend asked me to meet with the remaining members of a dying church. These members were giddy with excitement. They viewed me as the great salvific hope for their congregation. But my blunt assessment was not pleasing to them, especially when I talked about change. Finally, one member asked if they would have to look at the words of a hymn on a screen instead of a hymnal if they made changes. I stood in stunned silence, and walked away from a church that would close its doors six months later.

Their “solutions” are all inwardly focused. They don’t want to talk about reaching the ethnically changing community. They want to know how they can make church more comfortable and palatable for the remnant of members.

They desire to return to 1985. Or 1972. Or 1965. Or 1959. Those were the good old days. If we could just do church like we did then, everything would be fine.

These churches are increasing in number. Culture indeed has little patience with a me-focused congregation, much less so than, say, 15 years ago.

Is there hope for these churches? Will these dying congregations indeed die?

I have seen God intervene a few times in such situations. But, in every case, the church has turned its face to Him, and forsaken all of their own preferences, desires, and human-centered traditions. But most dying churches will die.  –Thom S. Rainer

Thom S. Rainer is the president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources. Prior to LifeWay, he served at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary for twelve years where he was the founding dean of the Billy Graham School of Missions and Evangelism.

Churches die because they are unwilling to change. They have become personal Bible studies for the already convinced Christian who views the church as a filling station not as a transformational change agent in culture. Churches are not radical in their preaching, practice, or purpose, so naturally as in the nature of aging, they die. Communities will change every ten years and those changes are brought about by people retiring, moving to a different city, or the decline or rise of economics in the area.  Churches are no different; nothing remains the same over time. It is in this changing environment that the Church finds itself and if it doesn’t relate to how the trends are shifting they will be caught in losing people and not replacing them.

This to me is a sign of the times. The gospel is too narrow to keep up with how people want to live. I watch the dynamics of today’s families, and it is difficult to counter the trends of culture. All ages are consumed with themselves, and their pastimes are spent pursuing satisfaction in drinking, concerts, sports events, and recreational pursues. I suppose someone would say: “What’s wrong with some of those?” Nothing, except God is ever a part of the equation for their life’s pursuit. Someone challenged me recently about the seven mountains of societal influence.

These are the seven mountains:

Religion

Family

Education

Government

Media

Arts & Entertainment

Business

The civilization of our modern world rests upon these seven mountains and more and more of these mountains are replacing God with their technology and pagan rituals. Every religion has many gods, and many do not honor the God of the Bible.  Today’s culture is devoid of God so why do we need a church? Many marketplace ministries have advocated that as Christians we need to infiltrate these mountains and be the salt and light of the gospel, but we have to ask the question, “are we succeeding?” Couple this with dying churches and American could be a gospel-less society in a matter of years. 

Matthew 24:37-39 “When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah’s day. 38 In those days before the flood, the people were enjoying banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat. 39 People didn’t realize what was going to happen until the flood came and swept them all away. That is the way it will be when the Son of Man comes.”

Friends this blog is not designed to scare you, but to prepare you. We have entered a time in history like never before because we are nearing the return of Jesus Christ. The Bible predicted it, and we are now about to live it.

Keeping it honest and truthful…..K

Wednesday
Aug092017

Fake Christianity

I think Donald Trump was one of the first to popularize the term, “fake news,” and since then it has been used everywhere to identify things that are not true.

The last days are filled with fake news, fake people, fake truth, fake teachings, and fake Christianity. I do believe that God can use fake news as a reminder and a sign of the times that we are in. Remember, as Christians we are to test everything and hold to that which is good.

1 John 4:1 “Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.

1 Thessalonians 5:21 “but test everything that is said. Hold on to what is good.”

 As Christians, many are vulnerable to believe things that are not true. It may be just a small error, but it paves the way for greater deception. We never want to place God on our level of understanding - in other words God’s ways and methods far exceed our expectations, and we want to believe in miracles. When pastors and Christian leaders write and speak about how some of the gifts of God have ceased, it makes me test that teaching against scripture. I have tested the teaching of “Cessationism” (the ceasing of some gifts) and found it to be in error.

In Christianity, cessationism is the doctrine that spiritual gifts such as speaking in tongues, prophecy and healing ceased with the apostolic age. This is generally opposed to continuationism, which teaches that the Holy Spirit may bestow the spiritual gifts on persons other than the original twelve apostles at any time.

This is just one of many errors that people promote today. For instance, Prophets and Apostles are two of the gifts that are said to no longer function in the Church today.  This doctrine is much like the “Prosperity Gospel” where more is developed beyond what the scripture teaches. Prosperity is found in Christ but it has a different connotation that what is preached in many “faith” churches today. The same is true with “Cessationism”. They develop a whole doctrine on how certain gifts have ceased because they are no longer needed.

Paul tells us that God has given to the Church a five-fold ministry grid. My concern is that he never tells us that some on this grid will go away in time.

Ephesians 4:11-13

Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. 12 Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. 13 This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ.

When we start to believe in teachings that are not rooted in the scripture it can turn our concept of God into a human invention, making Him into our image.

I am weary of people telling us to stick to the Bible, and then they add their own spin to what they read. This spin, or speculation as I have called it, is where we get into trouble in adding information about God that shouldn’t be added. (As I described earlier) To some degree this is a dumbing down of spiritual growth. Christian leaders have become more influential than the scripture and yet many times they will say things that cannot be verified by the Bible.

1 John 2:27 But you have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you, so you don’t need anyone to teach you what is true. For the Spirit teaches you everything you need to know, and what he teaches is true—it is not a lie. So just as he has taught you, remain in fellowship with Christ.

I am not suggesting that teachers are not necessary - they are - but teachers must be people who are overly conscientious about rightfully dividing the Word of God.

2 Timothy 2:15 Work hard so you can present yourself to God and receive his approval. Be a good worker, one who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly explains the word of truth.

Fake Christianity is real and we need to raise the bar on what we hear and accept as Biblical teaching. Make sure that whatever you question you do so with respect, but be firm and relentless in pursuing the truth.

Keeping it honest and truthful….K

Monday
Aug072017

When Technology Keeps Up With The Bible

This came into the news last week.

A Wisconsin company is offering to implant tiny radio-frequency chips in its employees – and it says they are lining up for the technology.

The idea is a controversial one, confronting issues at the intersection of ethics and technology by essentially turning bodies into bar codes. Three Square Market, also called 32M, says it is the first U.S. Company to provide the technology to its employees.

I was listening to a local morning talk show in the Twin Cities yesterday and this was their topic.  The hosts had every reason not to be chipped, but none of their reasons were religious. Even when their audience called in they never mentioned a reference to this kind of activity in the in the Bible.

Revelation 13:16-17

And the second beast required all people small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hand or on their forehead, 17 so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark—the name of the beast or the number of its name.…

In a world that glorifies safety I would think that this kind of technology would be overwhelmingly accepted. You would know where your children are at all times, it would make air travel easy and fun again without the long lines at the TSA check points. You wouldn’t have to take identification with you nor any forms of cash or credit cards, everything would be scanned from your chip. The chip will also protect you against any identity thief that is so rampant today.

The Humane Society has been chipping animals for a decade or more as a means of identifying lost and abandoned pets. Chips will be as popular as cell phones and be sold as the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones.

Makes sense doesn’t it? Yet the Bible is correct when it says that you will not be able to buy or sell unless you have the chip. The chip in those days will somehow be tied into an evil system of control that the Anti-Christ will usher in. The chip, while convenient, will pose problems with privacy issues because there will be no longer a privacy value in society. The benefits will outweigh the negatives, and it will be accepted around the world.

Today we have medical health groups and the public school system demanding that children get vaccinated or not attend school. What will happen when they demand that a child be chipped for their personal safety and if they refuse they will no longer be admitted to school. As parents what do we do then? With more and more commerce being conducted on the Internet what will you do if retailers online will only accept the chip as a form of payment? You will not be able to buy or sell. Soldiers will be chipped so there will never be any missing in action personnel again. Chips are here today and this technology will continue to revolutionize the way we live.

So what’s the big deal? It sounds as if this technology is the best thing since sliced bread. The problem lies in how it will be used, and by who controls it. If you are the government that controls how these chips are used and to whom they are granted, you could control the masses overnight. A chipped person will have much more value than someone who refuses to be chipped. They may get preference in obtaining health care or getting a mortgage. The Bible says that unless you take the mark of the beast, you will not be able to buy or sell. This system will also be used to sell people on the idea of world peace. With a better tracking system of people we will be able to track the undesirable within seconds, and anyone without a chip will be the first to be suspected of conspiracy against the State.

Here is the danger in all of this: we are not telling people about the hazards of the last days and this chipped technology as it relates to the global dictator called the Anti-Christ. We are preaching lullabies to our congregations and we are not preparing them for the world that is developing. The world is being prepared to accept lies as truth, and we don’t know the difference. It is a very short step away from accepting a lie about a system designed to bring you protection and safety to a full-blown deception in living for the convenience of that protection safety controlled by an Anti-Christ person. 

Ask your pastor to preach about this and see if it happens.

Keeping it honest and truthful…K

Thursday
Aug032017

The All Out Assault Against God

The last days have been described in many ways as an era of deception, delusion, lawlessness, immorality and apostasy.  All of which are true, but at the end of the day, all of these descriptions could be seen as an all out assault against God.

It seems that everything that could be released into our society has now been released. There are few if any restraints anymore, and everything is accepted. The three big assaults against God today fall into these categories:

  • Immorality: the sin against ourselves
  • Idolatry: the sin against God
  • Lawlessness: the sin against society or others

These three seem to dominate the assault against God, and nothing is sacred. In fact, even the religious world has become twisted and has turned into something that is not supported by the scriptures. Perversion and twisted thinking rule our day, and it seems to grow darker every day. I spoke to a young man recently about his ideas of God and death. He said he was an atheist and when it came to death, he believed we turn back into energy to be used again to create life. Basically, life is a great big recycling plan. Now he is entitled to his beliefs, but this is how we have reduced life down to a flow of energy that gets recharged every time someone dies.

I would never trade a personal God for a recycling plan. Jesus came to reveal the heart and nature of God and to give us sinful creatures an opportunity to know God on a one-to-one basis. I would rather opt out for this rather than just flowing along in an energy mass.

Our enemy, the evil angel of light Satan, has a good strategy going. Confuse everyone so nothing is understood anymore. Release the worst possible philosophies and worldviews that could possibly be thought up and make them mainstreamed and normalized. Take everything that was foundational in thought, belief and practice and challenge it. Eliminate all common sense factors and insert the bizarre. In time the bizarre becomes the norm and common sense is no longer practiced.

Christians who sit week after week in churches that aren’t challenging believers in the matters I am writing today are doing themselves a disservice. This is another ploy of the evil one. Make Christianity more about being pleasant and non-threatening and you will make their message less about Christ and more about public relations. How do we get more people to like us?  Christianity has never been as mild mannered as we find it today. Now I am not talking about being coarse and crude, but I am talking about us acknowledging and discussing this great assault against God. This of course means that any assault against God means it is also an assault against you and what you believe.

The way we practice Christianity needs an overhaul. We see Black Lives Matter people willing to block freeways and other public transportation systems just to get their message heard, and yet we have a hard time getting people to pray.

We have people today calling for the assassination of our president and willing to go protest to the point of going to jail, yet the church is fairly silent on all of it. We don’t want to make anybody mad or upset with us because it would ruin our testimony for Christ. Yet all the while the assault against God continues and the church by and large is asleep.

Someone told me the other day I needed to tone it down in these blogs. Well I’ve got news for them - I just got started. Here’s one to criticize: The Church is backslidden away from the truth, and most pastors should resign because they haven’t got a clue as to what their role is, or how to fulfill it.

Pastors you need to realize you may not be liked in the way a politician will be liked and if that is what you want, go shake hands and run for office. You are called to be a prophet and most of them were not popular.  All believers are under assault today and most of our leaders say nothing. They don’t acknowledge it, they don’t give any help to stand against it, and God forbid they ask us to push back.

People tell me all time I need to get back and be active in a church. Are you kidding?  You read my blogs - what church would want me? 

I am not being mean nor am I just an angry old man. I am sounding an alarm. You and your God are under assault.  If nothing else, be aware of it and if we had the guts we could talk more about it and pray for God to lead us.

I have talked a lot recently about raising the bar in my life to be the best I possibly can be and this blog is just one of these measurements that I want to raise.

Just saying……..

Keeping it honest and truthful…K

 

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