Sunday, December 20, 2015

Spiritual Gifts Means Gifts possessed by men, not miracles done by God

Keep running across charismatic/continuationist reactions to the Strange Fire Conference.  Besides the surprisingly common responses that seem not to have heard a word of the Conference at all but just go on and on elaborating their own familiar opinions, the main misunderstanding persists: they miss the point that it's supernatural gifts possessed by human beings that are said to have ceased, not God's doing of miracles Himself.

 This was said at the Conference but nevertheless keeps being overlooked. Tom Pennington's talk showed that gifts to men had the specific purpose of identifying the possessor as God's messenger, and there was no need for such messengers after Jesus' ministry was shown to be from God. But God may still do miracles Himself, nobody is denying that.  Pennington answers this among other persisting misunderstandings of his arguments HERE.

It's a common confusion the Conference should have definitively resolved, but it persists. Even Martyn Lloyd-Jones seems to have misunderstood this, which you can see on a You Tube video of John Piper on Lloyd-Jones, Piper also having this misunderstanding.

When you then see that the gifts claimed for today aren't at all the same as those in the New Testament, the whole issue ought to be closed with finality.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Praying for Revival

It's surprising and exhilarating to be thinking again of revival.  It's still scary to think of all the counterfeits that are out there that would try to distort it, but I'm refusing to be intimidated.  We need revival desperately, there is absolutely no other hope.  Either God blesses us with revival or America goes down as Europe has pretty much already gone down.  We know it's the last days so watching and praying is our job but that can't preclude doing everything in our power to resist it.  "Oh God isn't going to give us a revival now."  Well maybe He isn't.  Or maybe He would if we approached Him as He wants us to.  Committing ourselves to the last-ditch attempt has to be the right thing to do. 

We're weak and flabby spiritually, at least I am and I know most of the Church is.  I hope those who are spiritually strong have been holding up us weak ones in prayer.  In any case we have to GET strong.  Anyone who even has a glimmer of an inkling of how much we need to do this should set aside more time than usual just to ask God to help us overcome our inertia, focus our thoughts, show us what we need to repent of, in ourselves first, then in the Church at large, learn His will, grow in fervor where now we can barely form an idea about what we should be doing.  I have no doubt He'll supply everything we need for such a task if we ask Him to do it. 

I've begun at least that much.  If just one other person would join me in the effort and pray for me too, and pass on the project to someone else, before long we could have a praying army.   Pray for the Church to be purified first of all, then pray for the nation, pray for Europe too, even they could be revived, why not?  Pray for all Christians on the planet.  With intensity, giving much more time than usual to prayer and seeking the Lord.  Determined to get all sin out of our lives.  Determined to reach God's ear.

For some inspiration, go listen to the sermons at Sermon Audio and Sermon Index on Revival.  I've listened to many at Sermon Audio.  Here's that page at Sermon Audio.

Who are we, Church?  "Terrible as an army with banners?" (Song of Solomon Ch 6) Isn't that what we SHOULD be? If we belong to God shouldn't we be about His business, especially now?  Throw out the TV if you have to, at least turn it off for 80% of the time you normally watch it.  Reorganize your schedule to throw out anything that isn't absolutely essential for the tasks of living.  Go into the prayer closet and prepare to wrestle with a blank mind, a distracted mind, the onslaughts of the devil, beg God to help you pray  ask and keep asking for God's help to overcome it all and give you fervor for revival.  Revival is what we need.  Don't pray for anything else in that prayer sitting, just revival, just God's power in blessing on His people.

Listen to some of those sermons, they really are inspiring.  Ian Paisley is a great preacher of the old fire-and-brimstone thundering style which may be hard to listen to but what he says is very inspiring.  Interestingly two other preachers who are also originally from Northern Ireland are also inspiring on revival:  Alan Cairns and Rev. Cranston in Ontario Canada, Port Hope, who has a series of sermons on revivals in the Bible.  And E. A. Johnston America, Revival or Ruin is also very inspiring.  And of course Leonard Ravenhill. 

Somebody, just one other person.  We can make a difference.  I'm sure others are praying too, but we need to give LOTS of time to it, not just sandwich a few words for revival into prayers for other things. If hundreds of us set ourselves to do this God might really hear from heaven and heal our land before He comes in judgment.

I can get a lot more specific but I'll save that for another post.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

How We Need a Visitation From God

In the last post I mentioned that I think supernatural touches from God can increase sanctification, which I know is likely to be a controversial idea.  I had quoted Brian Edwards saying that revival is an increase in the spiritual life of believers, and I jumped from that to sanctification, which I think can be defended.  He went on to say that a desire for holiness is increased, and strength in evangelism is increased.  I'd add that conviction of sin is greatly increased, in fact revivals often start with people being deeply convicted of sin, some saved and drawn to confession and repentance, some needing to be saved, which becomes a struggle they endure until the Lord gives them the grace for salvation. 

Spiritual truths are learned and put into effect through these experiences of God, which means that people are permanently changed.  Normal sanctification is a process of growth by learning the same truths and acting on them in normal time over your lifespan.  What happens when God comes in power as in a revival is that the learning is intense and dramatic, which seems to me can be called speeded-up sanctification.  Believers are conformed more to the character of Christ and unbelievers are saved.

The Holiness Movement has claimed that the experience of "baptism in the Holy Spirit" brings about complete holiness or complete sanctification.  I've never understood how that is possible, but I don't think it's the same thing as happens in revivals.  I don't doubt that they are talking about genuine experiences of the power of God in what they call the baptism of the Holy Spirit, I just can't see how total sanctification is possible all at once. So either they are misinterpreting their experience or they are not doing the best job of getting it across.

As I suggested in the previous post, personal experiences of the presence of God may come to those who are seeking God with particular intensity.  As Hebrews 11:6 says, He who would come to God "...must believe that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him."  This intense diligent seeking through prayer and discipline and obedience is what characterizes those who get called "mystics" -- but their mysticism is Biblical, unlike the mysticism of the Emerging Church's mindless mechanical repetitious prayer they oddly call "contemplative."  Or the "mysticism" of the unchristian "worship services" of the Word-Faith and Charismatic churches, with their repetitive music and strange manifestations. 

So we need revival.  Christians need revival to correct us and promote spiritual growth, and the world needs revival, REAL revival, to slow the downward slide to Perdition and allow some to get saved. And we need REAL "mysticism" which is God's gracious presence where He is rightly worshipped, whether in the assembly or in the private prayer closet.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Strange Fire Revisited Pt 2: True and False Doctrine, True and False Revival, True and False "Mysticism"

This is to pick up where I left off in the previous post.

There may also be Genuine God-sent "Mystical" Experiences


At the very least, the fact that some people believe this, whether or not it is true, could work against the Strange Fire Conference's apparent achievement of completely demolishing the Charismatic Stronghold.  I personally do believe there are genuine supernatural/spiritual experiences given directly by God, but I'm open to being persuaded out of this idea just as the Strange Fire Conference finally freed me from my lingering doubts about the authenticity of the Charismatic Movement.

So what I want to do here is make the best case I can for the authenticity of some "mystical" experiences.

There are two ways these come to us I think:  in revivals and in the personal exercise of obedience and prayer. 

Revival


Strictly speaking I don't think the Reformed movement is a revival as the term is usually used these days (though Jonathan Edwards' phrase "reviving of religion" fits it) but without it there would be no hope for a genuine Holy Spirit revival so I'm happy enough to consider it God's answer to the many prayers for revival that have gone up to Him for decades, from so many of His people who feel the miserable state of the Church and the world.  This may certainly include many Charismatics, but a major need of the Church before we should even desire revival is that a great number of Charismatics would come to see the errors they've embraced, and that the bogus charismatic phenomena be widely recognized as bogus and abandoned with contrition and repentance.   I started to write on this subject because of how I think the Conference, which because of its biblical thoroughness should by all rights have left the Charismatic Movement a smoking ruin, may have failed to finish it off because of some entrenched mistaken bias against "mysticism."

Genuine revivals are characterized by powerful supernatural effects of the Holy Spirit.  Here's how Brian Edwards defines it in his book Revival! (written in 1990):
A true Holy Spirit revival is a remarkable increase in the spiritual life of a large number of God's people, accomopanied by an awesome awareness of the presence of God, intensity of prayer and praise, a deep conviction of sin with a passionate longing for holiness and unusual effectiveness in evangelism, leading to the salvation of many unbelievers. [pp 28-29]
A genuine revival is completely a work of God.  It "effects an increase in the spiritual life" or sanctification of believers. 

It may also be attended by counterfeits (such as the bogus "gifts of the Spirit" or the strange physical manifestations mentioned in the previous post), which according to Jonathan Edwards in the Preface to his book about the Great Awakening, The Religious Affections, it is crucial to discern if a true revival is to be successful and lasting:
It is by the mixture of counterfeit religion with true, not discerned and distinguished, that the devil has had his greatest advantage against the cause and kingdom of Christ all along hitherto... And so it is ever likely to be in the church, whenever religion revives remarkably, till we have learned well to distinguish between true and false religion, between saving affections and experiences, and those manifold fair shows and glistering appearances by which they are counterfeited;  the consequences of which, when they are not distinguished, are often inexpressibly dreadful. By this means the devil ...[brings] it to pass that that should be offered to God by multitudes, under a notion of a pleasing acceptable service to him, that is indeed above all things abominable to him. By this means he deceives great multitudes about the state of their souls ... and so eternally undoes them; and not only so, but establishes many in a strong confidence of their eminent holiness, who are in God's sight some of the vilest of hypocrites... Thereforeit greatly concerns us to use our utmost endeavours clearly to discern, and have it well settled and established, wherein true religion does consist...[in order to know] clearly and distinctly what we ought to contend for.
Sounds a lot like today's Charismatic Movement, doesn't it?  And his advice describes what the Strange Fire Conference aimed to accomplish in exposing it as counterfeit.

So there he has described the counterfeit and the importance of discerning it from the genuine.

Back to Brian Edwards, who describes in the Introduction to his book revival as witnessed by Howel Harris who was visiting the revival under Daniel Rowland in March of 1743:
...Their singing and praying is indeed full of God! O! How did my soul burn with sacred love when I was among them! They fall almost as dead by the power of the Word, and continue weeping for joy, having found the Messiah, some mourning under a sense of their vileness, and some in the pangs of the new birth.!
Then he gives a report of revival in Scotland in 1905 after hearing a report of the Welsh revival:
It was at a late prayer meeting, held in the evening at 9:30, that the fire of God fell. There was nothing, humanly speaking, to account for what happened. Quite suddenly, upon one and another came an overwhelming sense of the reality and awfulness of His presence and of eternal things... Prayer and weeping began, and gained in intensity every moment...Friends who were gathered sang on their knees. Each sermed to sing, and each seemed to pray, oblivious of one another. Then the prayer broke out again, waves and waves of prayer...One who was present says, 'I cannot tell you what Christ was to me last night. My heart was full to overflowing. If ever my Lord was near to me, it was last night.
Burning with sacred love, falling under the power of the Word, (as opposed to the magic wave or shove of the charismatic leader's hand), mourning over their vileness, experiencing the pangs of the new birth. What does any of that have in common with a charismatic "revival?"

Howel Harris also comments that Rowland's preaching was unusually powerful: 
O! Such power as generally attends the labours of brother Rowland, in particular, is indeed uncommon and almost incredible until one sees it himself.
This would be where the idea of a special anointing on preaching comes from, that MacArthur said Lloyd-Jones was always hoping for, and Lloyd-Jones had steeped himself in descriptions of revivals.

Jonathan Edwards believes that Satan undid the great revival in his time by introducing destructive counterfeits, but he does regard the revival itself as an extraordinary move of the Holy Spirit:
So the same cunning serpent, that beguiled Eve through his subtilty, by perverting us from the simplicity that is in CHrist, hath sudfdenly prevailed to deprive us of that fair prospect we had a little while ago, of a kind of paradisaic state of the church of God in New England.
Surely John MacArthur knows all this already, but how can he then speak as if there is no such thing as a special anointing on preaching, or special experiences of the Holy Spirit beyond His normal work in ordinary times?

Both of the books I've been quoting from discuss both the extraordinary effects of the Holy Spirit on individuals in revival, and the counterfeits that spoil it, such as the bogus phenomena of the charismatic movement. You can't just ignore the genuine or reduce it to "an emotional buzz" if you are trying to pull down the counterfeit.

But is there also a personal "mysticism" or heightened spiritual experience some individuals experience apart from Revival?


I think so, and I began my recent blog posts at Things of the Spirit to try to argue for it.  There are too many doctrinal errors committed by some of those called "mystics" to recommend any of them unreservedly, especially the Catholic mystics, and I know that even the highly admired A.W. Tozer is sometimes suspect for his unabashed love of the mystics.  I think it's clear that Tozer loved them because they convey such a powerful sense of the love of God.  That's what drew me to them too, back before I had become a Christian, eventually a Protestant;  in fact it was some of the Catholic mystics who turned me away from the Eastern religions to Christianity, though at that stage I thought that meant becoming a Catholic myself.  Even coming to see that Catholicism is an antichrist system hasn't completely tarnished my memory of the mystics I read in that early period on my way to becoming a believer.  They had heart-melting experiences of the exalted and majestic God and their descriptions are capable of creating a similar state of mind in the reader.  Or they did then for me, I haven't read them since I got my own theology straightened out along Reformed Protestant lines.  Theresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Madame Guyon, Fenelon, Blaise Pascal, Brother Lawrence, are all Catholics who inspired me with their high views of God and Christ, and often left me like the deer panting after the water brooks in Psalm 42:
As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.  My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God.
In those days I could also say "My soul doth magnify the Lord."  

Those experiences of heightened worship are what got me into the charismatic movement, which at least seemed to appreciate personal spiritual experience.   I eventually got "the gift of tongues" but it never felt right, never felt at all like worship or prayer.  The experiences I valued and still value are those that fill me with an exalted view of God and how lovable He is, and convict me of sin.  I don't see any of that in the charismatic movement, except in a couple of rare individuals I met there, but such experiences are common in revivals and in some of the mystics.  I should have been driven out of the movement at least by the lack of what I most valued, but eventually the odd things I was encountering are what led me to pray for light on what was really going on.  One thing, for instance, was a teaching by one of the "prophets" in the women's group I belonged to, about the twelve steps you needed to learn to come to the "throne of grace," whereas scripture teaches us to "come boldly to the throne of grace", never mentioning steps.  Another was an account of a visit to "heaven" with the usual strange unbiblical imagery;  another was a woman's story of how Christ set her free from drug addiction, which included allowing the demons that had possessed her to physically abuse her by throwing her against walls, for instance, so she said;  another was a small taste of the "laughing revival" when one woman started laughing during a retreat and couldn't stop until the next morning.  It didn't affect anyone else though.  Where was my "mystical" exalting and magnifying and love of God in all that, which was where I had started out?

None of those experiences proves the validity of the "mystical experiences" I'm arguing for, but at least it should show that they have nothing in common.

I'm going to post links to my posts about mysticism on the other blog for now.    
 
Mysticisms False and True -- or are they all False?  The Emerging Church and Contemplative Prayer

Is There a True Christian Mysticism?

Is it "mysticism" or just deeply living the Christian life?

More could and probably should be said about all this so I may come back to it, but I want to close for now with some thoughts about how to experience these things.

First, our motives have to be right.  We can't be seeking experience for experience's sake./  Lloyd-Jones wrote an article about the right motives for praying for revival: The real reason for revival, which comes down to seeking the glory of God. Considering how vilified our God is these days that's a motive we should be able to pray with easily enough.

Deeper personal experiences are given by God, in my experience, when we are seeking Him with all our heart, with more than usual prayer, possibly fasting, repentant for sin and praying to be cleansed, desiring God's glory in the church and the world. No gimmicks whatever, no mantra-style repetitions, nothing like that, just praying what we know from His word that God wants of us. The better we obey Him the closer we draw to Him. Moments of unusual presence of the Lord have come to me when I've obeyed Him best, such as earnestly desiring that His will be done, denying myself when it's most difficult and that sort of thing.

I wish there might be another conference like Strange Fire to address these questions I've been raising, to finish off the Charismatic counterfeits for good. Or maybe just some talks by people who spend time studying these things more carefully, study revival, study the mystics, work to differentiate what may be truly from God from the counterfeit. I'm going to reread Jonathan Edwards' Religious Affections since he seems to think it's absolutely necessary for the success of revivals that we learn how to discern these things and how to keep the counterfeit from interfering with the genuine. He also seems to think it's possible. Because my hope for revival has been rekindled and I'm going to pray for it again.

This is all pretty sketchy, more of an outline than a discussion, but I'm going to leave it here for now.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Strange Fire Revisited: True and False Doctrine, True and False Spiritual Experience

Partly as an antidote to the discouragement and depressing effect of the End Times scenario that is looming over us, I've been immersing myself in good teaching, lately a lot of John MacArthur on You Tube videos, which got me back into the issues addressed by his Strange Fire Conference of a couple years ago.  I caught up with some of his answers to his critics among other things. 

MacArthur remains concerned that the moderates in the charismatic movement, as well as those outside who also believe that the gifts of the Spirit continue today, don't denounce the false teachers among them, because their silence gives tacit approval to what he considers to be the most serious threat to the Church in our time, and misleads individuals who get a false idea of salvation from the movement.

The Strange Fire Conference should have demolished the Charismatic Movement

As I've been reviewing some of the talks and follow-ups from the conference I conclude that the conference achieved its goal of showing that the Charismatic Movement is not Christian, even though there are Christians who are involved in it. The conference made their case, biblically, theologically and historically, that the "gifts of the Spirit" are not the gifts of the Spirit as described in the New Testament, they are something else, something false, misleading Christians into serious error.

I personally benefitted greatly from the Strange Fire Conference because although I'd come out of the charismatic movement years ago -- thanks to God's merciful answers to my prayers for truth about phenomena I'd encountered there -- I still had lingering doubts about the overall authenticity of the movement.  As MacArthur mentions in at least one of the videos I recently watched, one Reformed teacher said his eyes were opened by one particular revelation from MacArthur’s book based on the conference that completely exposed the errors of the movement and ended any doubts he had about it: the simple fact that all the practitioners of the movement recognize that the supernatural phenomena they are practicing are not the same as the gifts of the Spirit that were possessed by the New Testament Church.  The charismatics call the phenomena they experience "the gifts of the Spirit" nevertheless, while acknowledging this difference.  It seems to me that once this is acknowledged the whole charismatic movement is exposed as a deception and the hard thing to explain then is why some people aren't yet convinced.  The "prophecies" they promote, the "healings," the tongues-speaking, none of that is the same thing as the New Testament Church had experienced.

That revelation was one of seven Biblical arguments for the cessation of the spiritual gifts given in the talk by Pastor Tom Pennington, and was also crucial for setting me free from my lingering doubts, but that entire talk is what finished it off for me for good.  Those seven arguments he gave should be the end of the claim that scripture doesn't say that the gifts ended. What Pennington showed is that while it doesn't say that in so many words, there should be no doubt that the Bible makes clear that the gifts have ceased. He shows definitively, it seems to me, that the purpose of miraculous gifts throughout the Bible was always to authenticate the possessor of the gifts as God's chosen messenger. He then focuses on the gift of Apostleship to show that of all the gifts given to the New Testament church, that one has unquestionably ceased. He then shows that the New Testament Church was founded on the New Testament apostles and prophets, and once a foundation is laid it's laid and what follows in subsequent church history is building the temple on it. Then he makes the point mentioned above and elaborates it, that none of the phenomena practiced today in the charismatic movement that are claimed to be the continuation of the New Testament spiritual gifts bears any resemblance to the originals. Then he shows from scripture that the gifts had already declined during the time of the New Testament church, and then gives the testimony of church history that they had ceased. He argues then for the sufficiency of scripture, and goes on to point out that the rules given for the expression of the speaking gifts in the New Testament church are completely ignored by today's practitioners.

It seems to me that Pennington's talk alone should leave no charismatic claim still standing. All the talks contributed to that assessment, but another I found particularly illuminating was R.C. Sproul's talk on Undervaluing Pentecost, in which he demonstrated from the Book of Acts that the four major impartations of the gift of the Holy Spirit by the apostles were for the purpose of including separate groups of believers in the foundation of the Church, that is, the Jerusalem believers, the Samaritans, the "God-fearers" and the Gentiles. I'd never heard that before and it answers the major claim by the charismatics that those events argue for the continuation of the gifts today as if they represent the norm. If they were instead unique to the founding of the Church, as Sproul demonstrated, they argue against their continuation.

Those who continue to criticize MacArthur and the conference either can't have listened to it or understood it.  Judging by some of the criticisms I ran across, many just didn't hear it, because they are criticizing points that were clearly answered in the conference.

However,

There is some confusion between the charismatic phenomena and other forms of “mysticism” that could keep the Strange Fire Conference from completely demolishing the movement as it should


As MacArthur says in an interview by Phil Johnson [27:05], as well as in a talk he gave to his seminary students, What has happened since Strange Fire, he doesn't understand what “compulsions” make an otherwise strong Reformed preacher and thinker step outside that frame of reference in order to endorse the charismatic movement. 

Two continuationists that were mentioned were John Piper and Martyn Lloyd-Jones, and both of them have said that the scripture doesn't show the cessation of the gifts, which I say above Tom Pennington seems to me to have answered definitively forever. Lloyd-Jones also made it clear in some of his writing that he thought the cessationists are saying all miracles have ceased rather than just the specific gifting of individuals as described in the New Testament. Pennington answers that objection too, and I’m sure MacArthur does in his book as well.

Both Lloyd-Jones and Piper certainly have a strong influence on continuationists today. I'm not as familiar with Wayne Grudem, but apparently he is another Reformed teacher who has defended the gifts. There remains a question why he and Piper haven't changed their view of the movement based on the conference, and especially on Pennington's talk, if they in fact heard it.

Lloyd-Jones died in 1981 but those influenced by him should be able to correct his views from the information given at the conference. Other influential evangelical teachers who accepted the charismatic movement were A.W. Tozer and Leonard Ravenhill, both very inspiring preachers it would be hard for serious Christians to criticize. This is a great value of the Strange Fire Conference, that it gives us solid grounds for rejecting their views of the charismatics apart from their valid theology.

According to MacArthur in the talk to seminary students, Lloyd-Jones often spoke of seeking a special "anointing" or power of God on his preaching, saying he'd experienced it three times in his career. MacArthur answered very effectively based on 1 John 2 that the anointing is there when the truth is preached, which is of course true and needs to be affirmed as he did.

But he fails to recognize that sometimes there is such a thing as preaching with a felt power that affects the hearers in an unusual way. MacArthur's argument would be stronger if he allowed that there very well may be valid supernatural spiritual experiences, although they have nothing whatever to do with the Charismatic Movement and are wrongly appropriated to it. He quite rightly says in that talk to the seminary students that he thinks Lloyd-Jones’ mysticism about the anointing “lends itself to being open to the charismatic gifts.”

But since he has never experienced this sort of thing himself he denigrates that mysticism and risks being unable to persuade those who take it seriously. My point is that one of the reasons for Reformed teachers to hold on to the idea of a special anointing, which then wrongly becomes the basis for supporting the whole charismatic movement, is that they themselves have had such “mystical” experiences and assume they are the same kind of spiritual experiences the Charismatic movement is based on. Lloyd-Jones didn't experience the big revival in Wales in 1905 (though his wife did), but he was very interested in revivals and studied them. Genuine revivals are characterized by supernatural experiences that leave an indelible impression on those affected by them, including the experience of a special power to affect people by the preaching of the leaders.

Tozer received what he understood to be the “baptism in the Holy Spirit” as a new believer, and often mentions the “Christian mystics” in his books as examples of a deep level of worship and a high view of God. The fact that such examples of "mysticism" are so often criticized along with the Charismatic Movement can be misleading, and confuse the false teachings the Strange Fire conference did such a good job of exposing with legitimate experiences given by the Holy Spirit. Today we also have a fast-growing new form of mysticism in the churches, this one the “Contemplative Prayer” movement within the apostate Emerging Church movement that teaches a form of Transcendental Meditation (I wrote about this recently on my Things of the Spirit blog).

The differences between the bogus mysticisms and the mysticism Tozer extols really need a whole separate conference because the only thing they have in common is experience of the supernatural. Or at least that is my opinion; perhaps a good Biblical study could show me that I’m wrong about this. Some of the mystics Tozer admires can be shown to have had some false ideas too, but the one thing they have that the Charismatics and the Emerging Church don't have is a genuine sense of worship that truly exalts God, whereas the phony mysticisms are all caught up on the level of the experiences themselves, which do not glorify God at all even though they claim they do.

Leonard Ravenhill's passion was praying for revival. Revival of the supernatural sort he had in mind did not come in his lifetime as a result of his prayers and books exhorting Christians to pray for revival. In fact the only "revivals" we've had over the last few decades are the bogus charismatic and Word-Faith spectacles in which people exhibit bizarre behavior under the influence of the flesh or some alien spirit. The Strange Fire Conference did provide the categories of discernment necessary to differentiate a true revival from the charismatic movement and from the false revivals associated with the movement over the last few decades, but without a clear idea of what true revival would look like the point can get lost.

MacArthur says, however, on the two videos linked above, that we are right now in the midst of the greatest revival that has ever been, far greater than the Reformation, and that is the recovery of Reformed theology, of which his church and seminary are a part. He gave some very interesting history of the movement which he experienced from its beginnings. That’s a very important perspective, brand new to me, and it lifted my spirits quite a bit to hear him say that because I’ve become so resigned to how God is judging the west and isn’t going to give us a revival. I do think it’s fair to call this resurgence of Reformed doctrine a revival, but nevertheless it’s not a revival in the sense that Edwin Orr wrote about revivals, which are characterized by supernatural phenomena. That is clearly what Lloyd-Jones had in mind, and Leonard Ravenhill, although they made the error of accepting the phenomena of the Charismatic Movement as the same thing, which it is not, and not differentiating these things is an error perpetuated by the Strange Fire Conference, which needs to be corrected if the conference is to be the success it should be.

When I’ve hoped for a revival, something I wrote about fairly frequently early on in my blogging, the wish would be almost immediately squelched by the knowledge of the false revivals we’d been having, such as the “Toronto Blessing,” and the fact that there is so much doctrinal error in the churches we would need a Reformation before a genuine revival could be possible. So MacArthur’s saying the Reformed movement is in fact a great revival cheers me immensely, because I read that to mean we are actually having the doctrinal Reformation we need to have before any experiential revival could be safe. A genuine revival of that kind has the supernatural effects of deeply convicting Christians of sin en masse, and of spreading wide in the community even without human intervention to draw people to the revival where they can hear the gospel. If the church isn’t founded on true doctrine the result could only be a chaos of misguided experiences, misleading any new converts as they are even now being misled in the megachurches. It’s no doubt a great blessing from God that all the praying for revival that has been done over the last few decades has not gone further than it did in the bogus charismatic events, and may even have been answered by the Reformed movement. But we aren’t yet where we should be in order to rest easy in the idea of a big move of God either.

Tozer warned (a few decades ago already) that a revival in the current condition of the church would be a disaster, not a blessing, and his words proved prophetic. It would only confirm the churches in their horrific man-centeredness and false ideas of worship, which is what happened with the Toronto and Lakeland and Brownsville “revivals” and now Redding if that is considered to be a revival. Despite the hopeful growth of Reformed doctrine, the doctrinal dangers continue now even worse than ever in the “seeker-sensitive” megachurches which are packed with people hearing messages of comfort to their fleshly and worldly self-interests instead of the gospel message of dying to self.

The Strange Fire Conference did a remarkable job of answering all that, but someone like John Piper might resist even the best biblical evidence against the charismatic phenomena based on having experienced spiritual phenomena that raised his Christian life above the ordinary. I don’t know the causes in Piper’s case but he clearly highly values a certain kind of “mystical” experience that leads him to endorse the Charismatics. Strange Fire did not answer this sort of objection because it's not at all in the same category as the Charismatic Movement though often confused with it, and would need a whole different set of arguments to answer it.

Different Kinds of Supernatural Experiences


When MacArthur said he doesn't understand why some Reformed teachers would persist in seeking a special anointing or other special feeling, he reveals a gap in his own thinking that may undermine the arguments of the Strange Fire Conference in some people's minds. Even if it's clear that the conference is not arguing for the cessation of all supernatural work by the Holy Spirit, there is still the fact that some people HAVE experienced something supernatural that isn’t the spiritual gifts but which he doesn’t consider valid, which he lumps with the charismatic phenomena as the same sort of “mysticism” and dismisses as false in the same way. But you can't just dismiss all that as an illusion. Somehow you have to answer it if it can and should be answered, and it has to be answered on completely different grounds than the charismatic phenomena, because they are not the same thing.

This is certainly true of the kinds of experiences Lloyd-Jones would have remembered from the Welsh revival, but even with the bogus charismatic experiences you can't just dismiss them as produced by imagination or “impressions” or "the flesh" because they are not voluntary experiences. To characterize the sought-for “anointing” as “some kind of buzz” as MacArthur did, is to completely discredit his own opinion of these things.

There needs to be a differentiation between the false and the God-sent experiences such as Lloyd-Jones would have in mind.

The Charismatic Experiences are not Voluntary


Even the Charismatic experiences need to be understood as something different from ordinary modes of experience and knowing. While emotions can be heightened by repetitive music it would be a mistake to think all that is going on in those charismatic “worship services” is emotion (and you could ask in any case WHAT emotion it is that is being invoked since it’s clearly not worship). Repetitious music or drumbeats or bodily movements can bring about altered states of consciousness, but also are part of shamanistic rituals that invite demon possession in tribal settings. While some of it may be faked, there is a real power that is imparted with the laying on of hands you can see in those videos where people fall over, sometimes apparently unconscious. That sort of thing can’t be chalked up to anything the senses or emotions could bring about.

Clearly there is a supernatural or spiritual power that is exhibited in some charismatic gatherings and "revivals" --  you can find video after video of people suddenly losing control of their bodies and thrashing around wildly, jerking spasmodically, being thrown to the floor, or their heads whipping about alarmingly even while they are speaking, and there should be no doubt whatever that this is a real power outside their control.  The "prophecies" and the "tongues" also come involuntarily, which adds to the overall impression that the whole array of such phenomena including what they wrongly call the “gifts of the Spirit” are of God.  The logic is pretty simple:  Well, all this is outside our control and what other source for such phenomena is there but God, since we're Christians aren't we?

The Charismatic phenomena I just described has been shown to be the same as the “Kundalini” experiences had by Hindu practitioners. Ex-“prophet” Andrew Strom has posted videos to You Tube demonstrating this which I’ve linked in the margin of my blog. You can also find videos of the “Toronto Blessing” and Todd Bentley’s Lakeland “Revival” which demonstrate the same phenomena. There is nothing Christian about any of this and the fact that it is the same sort of thing as practiced in Hinduism ought to open people’s eyes to this fact.

You can’t just impute these things to normal experiences of “the flesh” because the people experiencing them obviously can’t control most of it. It’s either demonic or it belongs to what Watchman Nee identified as “soul power” in his book The Latent Powers of the Soul, in which he ascribes them to original powers possessed by Adam and Eve that were for the most part lost or at least distorted at the Fall. These would include psychic abilities of the sort that become the source of the “prophecies” claimed by Charismatics. Nee says he himself had the experience of knowing things in other people’s minds that he couldn’t have known through normal experience, and at first thought it was a gift from God until he came to understand that God is not pleased with that sort of thing, so he made an effort to do away with it as you would with sin. The involuntary tongues-speaking experienced by charismatics can come from this latent “soul power” as well, certainly not from God. Nee also mentions that fits of laughter affected congregations in China in his time just as they have in the “laughing revivals” in Toronto and other Charismatic and “Word-Faith” gatherings, and they sought these experiences because they believed they were from God, and Nee advised them against it. The thing is all these phenomena are involuntary, produced automatically without the person’s conscious involvement, and that is what convinces them that they must be of God.

All this can be stimulated by demonic forces or twisted to their own ends too, since it is all part of the fallen nature.

There may also be Genuine God-sent "Mystical" Experiences


Next post continues from the last heading. =============================================== (Note: I discovered after posting this that Martyn Lloyd-Jones did not exoerience the Welsh revival personally, don't know how I had that idea. Turns out from a biography I found on him that his wife had been there, so he may have received a lot of his interest in revivals from her accounts. That same biography said he did study revivals. I tried to change my comments but it wasn't easy so those sections are pretty awkward.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

The futility of trying to save the west if God is judging us.

I still try to get across how political correctness is a false morality that is going to destroy the west, very probably the world for that matter by the looks of how things are going, but it seems minds are shut so tight against it the effort is futile.  Perhaps there are some who can hear it still, I hope so, but it's only too clear that an awful lot of people just can't hear it at all.  Try to get across that Islam is a dangerous ideology and you even get accused of being as bad as the Islamists, equating your effort to warn with blowing people up. 

This just has to be the Great Delusion of the last of the last days.  A couple of decades ago you'd encounter some of this craziness but now it seems to have captured most of the world. 

We don't hear much through the mainstream media about the threats to Europe from Islamic refugees. You have to go to, say, Infowars, to find out about, say, the epidemic of rapes in Sweden:



Continuing to warn about Islam probably is a lost cause. But warning about God's judgment through these things is still necessary because that's the reason for it all. It may be just as futile but if it led anyone to repent and turn to the true God that the west has rejected, that would be a great blessing. Saving Europe, or the US, is probably out of the question, but saving some human beings may still be possible. The world is soon most likely going to come under the rule of the Antichrist anyway.

Friday, November 20, 2015

This is at least World War III but worse...

Thank you, Mark Levin, for telling the horrific truth:   This is World War III
“These people inside Washington – they don’t get it,” Levin said. “This is World War III. Could you imagine during World War II or World War I having these discussions? World War I, under a hideous president, Woodrow Wilson, World War II under an almost equally hideous president, FDR – did they worry about any of this stuff? Was this the national debate? The national debate was how to secure the nation and destroy the enemy and how to destroy the enemy as quickly as possible – victory, victory, victory. Do these guys even talk about victory? This entire debate is absurd.”
Syrian refugees and illegal aliens, both, spell death to America. Yes it IS war on America and nobody is trying to stop it. Except a few conservative voices who are scorned, called racist and so on. Those of us who know what's coming are helpless to do anything about it. Is the opposition brainwashed or something more sinister? I'd prefer to believe brainwashed at least in the majority of cases, but that doesn't make the threat any less dire. Their minds are destroyed by political correctness that hallucinates lambs where there are wolves and invites the wolves in to dine.

Franklin Graham is saying the same thing: Islam Has Declared War on the World. Well, they declared it a long time ago, hundreds of years ago, but fimally now they are getting their chance, and that's because of Political Correctness which is the suicide note of the west.

Supposedly, according to the politically correct revisionist history we hear everywhere now, America was founded on a kind of generosity of spirit that would in fact destroy the nation. They quote Christ against us as if He would invite Islam to the table of Christians. They quote the poem by Emma Lazarus about giving us your tired, poor huddled masses, as if all huddled masses are equal. We're supposedly treating people as guilty instead of innocent until proven so. As if this was about individuals and not about a murderous ideology. We're "haters" and "racists."

So far about eight radicals have been discovered among the refugees. But the refugees themselves are also a threat, this is what the twisted leftist mind won't recognize. They may right now be sincere seekers of asylum, not planning to attack us at the moment, but most of them are Muslims and Muslims will eventually attack us, because that's what their version of God tells them to do.  Convert or pay huge fines or die.   Even if right now there are no ISIS members among them, Islam is contrary to the whole spirit of America.  I ask again, do they "not get it" or are they motivated to do away with America? I've always thought that may be Obama's real aim.

Try to tell the PC-brainwashed that they are putting the nation in danger with their twisted version of compassion, and you get back the accusation that we're just racists who don't like brown-skinned people. This seems to me like worse than "not getting it" but perhaps the brainwashing has really been that successful.

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Trump and Carson get it. Islam is not just another religion to be protected by American rights. Islam is an ideology that wants the death of all other ideologies. Why do we have to listen to the likes of Hillary Clinton who either doesn't get it or wants to see America go down, or any of the rest of them who can't grasp that Islam is the current Hitler who aims to take over the entire world.
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As I usually do, I come back to the fact, something that Christians ought to recognize as fact even if nobody else does, that America, and the west in general, is under God's judgment and that is the reason we are being subjected to these dangers. The only solution, and it may be too late, is for a resurgence of the Protestant Christianity that built the west.  May God have mercy and hear this prayer.

Yes, Protestant. I'm sure there are patriotic Catholics too, but they are too misguided by their leaders to be trustworthy. There are American Catholic bishops who are determined to bring in these refugees no matter what other Americans think. There is a Catholic sanctuary in New Orleans that has already brought in Syrian refugees. For decades they have been providing sanctuary for the illegal aliens of the Catholic Hispanic nations. These are traitors and should be recognized as such. Patriotic Catholics should be denouncing them.

How many Christians are left in America? Mercifully God doesn't need large numbers. But we need to be praying constantly for a long time that He will protect the nation. We should also be sending missionaries to the refugees but first please Lord bring this nation back to You.

But this one is so bad, so many deluded people, so many who put evil for good and good for evil. so many enemies of Christ, this is more than just World War III, this must truly be the very last days, in which hearts will fail for seeing what is coming on the earth.
Luke 21:26-28 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.
Come soon, Lord.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Mysticism Posts on other blog

Just a note to point readers to my other blog, Things of the Spirit where I've done a few posts on the subject of Mysticism, true and false.

Monday, September 28, 2015

If another comes in his own name, him you will receive

John 5:43 I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.
The "another" is understood by some to be the antichrist, the False Christ or any false Christ for that matter. This statement by Jesus came to mind during the Pope's time here in America over the last few days, as so many, even many who should have known better, welcomed him even adoringly. He arrived three hours before the Jewish Holy Day of Yom Kippur and left on the day of the last moon of the Blood Moon Tetrad that began last year, the first day of the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles. Some were anticipating or at least hoping this dramatic event in the heavenlies portended the coming of the Lord Jesus.   Of course it still could mean that, the Feast of Tabernacles has only begun and has a week to go. But the False Christ has dominated the media up to this point, hard not to associate him with the portents.

A perfect example of being condemned to repeat history when we forget it. Up until the beginning of the last century there was general knowledge that the Pope was no friend to America, or any Protestant nation, that the Vatican and especially the Jesuits had been working tirelessly since the Reformation to destroy Protestantism. It was even general knowledge that it was the Jesuits who engineered the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Try telling people that now and they think you are a way-out fringey conspiracy theorist. But that used to be common knowledge.

A couple of posts back I said I wished I could drop fliers on the Pope's adoring crowds to inform them of the truth about the Vatican and its anti-Americanism. I had lost track of one of my email accounts where I belatedly found out yesterday that something even better had been done in anticipation of the Pope's visit, from Paul Serup :
In anticipation of the pope of Rome coming and speaking to the U. S. Congress ..., three works have been hand delivered to every member of Congress, including the Senate .... The books are: a reprint of General Thomas M. Harris’ book, Rome’s Responsibility for the Assassination of Abraham Lincoln, a Chick Tract comic entitled The Big Betrayal, (Charles Chiniquy’s story including Lincoln’s assassination), and [Paul Serup's] book, Who Killed Abraham Lincoln? (which Ford’s Theatre National Historic Site has favourably reviewed).

That means that any American can email, phone, mail any of their Representatives / Senators and ask them what they think of the pope coming to address Congress in light of the Vatican / Roman Catholic Church's hostility towards the United States and its democratic institutions, as shown in the books that they definitely have received at their congressional offices in Washington! They do have to give an answer to their constituents, do they not? This includes the Vatican’s recognition of the Confederacy, (the New York Times’ last word on the subject is an 1876 article entitled “How The Pope Recognized The Southern Confederacy – His Letter to Jeff Davis”), and in this sesquicentennial year of the Lincoln assassination, the evidence of Roman Catholic responsibility for Lincoln’s murder. There may be some very interesting answers coming back, which could be discussed on such a site as this.

As well, there is planned to be at least three full page ads taken out on consecutive Wednesdays in the Washington Times, the second largest newspaper in the nation’s capital, about the visit by this pope and disclosing that all elected federal representatives have received these books. The first ad has come out Wednesday. I will try to post a copy on my website, www.salmovapress.com, a copy could be posted on other sites too. I attach a copy to this email also. All this is being done and paid for mainly by Christians in the United States. The plan is to also send copies of these books to the President, Vice President and the members of the Supreme Court, which I believe has also been done!

I hope Americans will take the time to contact their members of Congress and ask why the leader of this organization / nation that has had such an anti-American history, is speaking to Congress, without ever addressing its anti-American history.
Hooray. Pray that these documents will be read and open some eyes to the truth.

Friday, September 18, 2015

America Sold Out to the Vatican Wolf

Had this news bit parked for a few days.  Maybe I'll get it up and running today.  The Pope is coming, the Pope is coming.  Wish SOMEBODY in high places knew what an offense this is to a free nation to allow this wolf, this antichrist, to speak in our Congress.  Oh but the Great Delusion is upon us.  We're just part of the Holy Roman Empire now aren't we?  He's got his men telling Obama what to do, and forming policy all over the nation.  Whatever happened to Separation of Church and State?  But we Protestants have been asleep to it all for at least a century. 

GOP Candidates to attend Pope's speech to Congress

WASHINGTON (AP) — To some Republican presidential candidates, it's better to be with the popular pope than against him.

Marco Rubio, Rand Paul and Ted Cruz have deep policy differences with Pope Francis, but the senators will break off campaign travel to attend his address to Congress later this month, a centerpiece of his eagerly anticipated visit to the United States.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, a devout Catholic, will attend Mass with Francis in Washington. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, another Catholic candidate, plans to attend one of the pope's East Coast events.

"Regardless of what the pope says or emphasizes, the simple fact of being associated with his visit is still significant for a candidate," said David Campbell, a professor at the University of Notre Dame who studies religion and politics. "The images are very powerful."


Yeah, well, Romanism has always been big on images ya know.  But of course we get a Catholic professor at Catholic Notre Dame ("Our Lady") quoted on this?  He's probably right of course, even a Protestant candidate isn't going to disassociate from the wannabe Holy Roman Emperor during an election season.  Should I say it again:  Church and State, Church and State, whatever happened to Separation of Church and State?

Francis has become one of the world's most popular figures since his 2013 election to the papacy, drawing praise for his humility and efforts to refocus the church on the poor and needy. He also has become involved in numerous hot-button political issues, often staking out positions that put him at odds with Republicans.

The guy is Left as Left can be.

(And by the way, there have been lots of Jesuits involved in socialist and Marxist events. Stealthily of course. Even Marx and Stalin had Jesuit teachers. More on this when I can get to it.)

The pope supports the Iran nuclear deal, which many GOP candidates pledge to tear up if they are elected president. As Republicans debate the place of immigrants in the U.S., the pope has urged countries to welcome those seeking refuge and has decried the "inhuman" conditions facing people crossing the U.S.-Mexico border.

BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE, NOTE HERE HOW THE MEDIA HAVE BEEN AIDING AND ABETTING OUR PROBLEM WITH THE MEXICAN BORDER:  THAT SHOULDN'T BE "IMMIGRANTS,"  THAT SHOULD BE "ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS."  AND NOTE THE WEASEL LANGUAGE THAT REFERS TO "THE PLACE OF" ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS.   THERE IS NO PLACE FOR ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS.   In a sane world that would be a no-brainer, but the world is being run by Jesuits these days who know how to manipulate things to get their way.  And what PATSIES we all are!

WHAT A HYPOCRITE.  He himself took a Syrian refugee family into the Vatican, awwwww, SUCH a nice guy.  These are Muslims who want to kill Europeans and Americans, but we can be sure Papa is safe while he sets such a compassionate example for all us sheep on inviting wolves in to dine with us. 

The RCC is the main mover behind our problem with illegal aliens from Mexico, and "compassion" is the emotional battering ram they use to accomplish their will, slandering those who object with terms designed to destroy our reputations, such as uncompassionate, racists, bigots and haters, all the PC "arguments" that have "Jesuit" written all over them.   All attempts to do anything meaningful about the border problem seem to be paralyzed, --well, who wants to be subjected to that sort of character assassination? --- and dare one suggest the whole situation goes back to all the CATHOLICS in the government, hey?  Why?  Because these are predominantly Catholics coming over the border.  Duh.  HEY CATHOLICS, think about it, do you really want to put this anti-American Pope above your American commitments?  I don't know, but I think many probably don't.  SO SPEAK UP ALREADY.

SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE? 

Francis was also instrumental in secret talks to restore diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba, a rapprochement the GOP views as a premature reward for the island's repressive government.

In a heated primary where any break from party orthodoxy is a political risk, Republican candidates have stepped gingerly around their differences with Francis.


What business does this foreign anti-American antichrist  have in "secret talks" about our political situation, hey?   SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE?  

Cuban Catholics are not happy with this manipulation by the Pope either:  I AM A CATHOLIC WITHOUT A POPE  --LOUDER, GUYS, LOUDER!

When Francis issued an encyclical this year calling for aggressive international action to combat climate change, most Republicans made clear they had no problem with pope taking a position on the matter. But they suggested his stance would have little influence on their own views.

"He is a moral authority and as a moral authority is reminding us of our obligation to be good caretakers of the planet," Rubio, a practicing Catholic, said at the time. "I'm a political leader and my job as a policymaker is to act in the common good."


Moral authority, ha! He's already trying to undo what's left of anything in the RCC that has anything to do with Christian truth, he's the head of an institution that tries to protect their own doctrine-created child molesters from legal action.   This is the "man of sin" scripture identifies.  This is no moral authority, and again what right does he have to say anything at all about political issues?  Yes, at least everybody is keeping their independence, and I get why it seems necessary to step gingerly around all this, but call it like it is, in the end it's COWARDICE.  Nonaction, nonprotest, just lets the wolf have his way. Meek as doves is a good thing, but crafty as serpents seems to be lacking here.

It goes on but this is no doubt more than enough.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Protestantism Derailed, America Betrayed: Why the Pope Should Feel Right at Home Here

The Pope is about to open his antichrist mouth in America, about to display his antichrist power in America, against our best interests, in favor of the new world order, in favor of policies that undermine true Christianity, that favor disintegration and chaos.  I've been finding it hard to keep my thoughts organized lately, succumbing to sleepiness, fogginess, difficulty concentrating, losing my train of thought.  Spiritual oppression?  I've wondered.  I've been trying to read up on the history of the Roman Catholic Church, wanting to muster evidence that might convince others that this is our enemy, nothing else, just this, just Romanism, the Vatican, the Pope, their Jesuit army.  All our battles, all evils, spring from this antichrist source.  Too much you say?  Far-fetched?  I would once have thought so too.  I mean, if you're going to go with conspiracies, there's Freemasonry, and the Illuminati, the Knights Templar, even the Skull and Bones Society, and all the other secretive organizations that always get named.  Is it possible they're all just arms of the RCC?

Where is the American Protestant voice?  Where's our Ian Paisley who would stand up in Congress and denounce the Pope as Antichrist?  Paisley objected that the European Parliament, of which he was a member, had invited the Pope to speak without putting it to a vote.  Did Congress get a vote on this upcoming visit by this Pope?  Was there even a ripple of objection to the invitation?  Those among the Republican candidates who are at least nominally Protestant aren't doing any protesting.  They are going to go hear the Pope, going to be polite, disagree of course but politely.  Trump has been sounding off about illegal immigration and so far drawn some Catholic reaction, from the archbishop of my last post, then from Catholic Joe Biden who called it "xenophobia."  Think about such terms that are used against people who care about the rule of law:  we're xenophobics, we're homophobics if the law is God's ordinance defining marriage as between a man and a woman.  The method of attack is truly Jesuitical, ad hominems designed to poison the well and discredit the opposition with character smears, promote emotional reactions and destroy reasoned argument.  See how far you get presenting your well-thought-out case against gay marriage or illegal immigration, when the opposition's whole argument is that you are a "hater" and a "bigot."   Saying anything against the Roman Church also gets those epithets thrown at you:  Catholic hater.  According to JA Wylie's History of Protestantism, slander, or calumny, is historically one of the tools of the Jesuits against Protestants.  It seems to have worked its way into Political Correctness and the left in general. 

The media too have been practicing their usual subliminal partisanship, portraying the Republican candidates in muted tones of ridicule. 

Who is running this country really?  Are you aware of the evidence that it is the Roman Catholic Church?  Are you aware of how many Catholics there are in American government and have been for decades, shaping policy?   The vast majority of Catholics probably have no clue that they are tools of the Vatican against a free America.  There are lots of conservative Catholics who object to some of the policies of this Pope for instance.  But Vatican II told all good Catholics to exert themselves for the promotion of the Church and how can that be a bad thing? 

I started trying to get some of this across with the post "Waking Up Among Wolves."  And I didn't know as much then as I know now about just how vast this wolf pack is.  There is no escape.  And those who should be protesting don't see the wolves for the sheep's clothing.

If I had the resources, wish wish wish, I'd print out as much evidenced information as I could muster to try to convince Protestants and Catholics both of these realities and air-drop them as fliers on the crowds that will be assembling for the Pope's visit.  Not sure where to drop them for the Protestants, maybe have to fly from church to church.  But I can't even muster an evidenced blog post on the subject, just this rambling that even sounds somewhat demented to me.

Some people who are into end times prophecies ask Where is America in the Biblical scenario about the Revived Roman Empire that is to rise up in the last days?   Blink.  Guess what, America has been an arm of the Revived Roman Empire since its founding.   But back up a bit:  where is the Revived Roman Empire at all?  Isn't it just getting some pieces together in the EU, still quite a ways from full development? 

Blink.  

Oh how we have lost our Protestant legacy, lost the voices who could have been keeping us awake and alert to the stealthy workings of evil in this world all along.  The Reformers knew it:  the Revived Roman Empire is the RCC itself and the Antichrist is the PAPACY.  They made the arguments from scripture, they proved it.  But a crafty Jesuit taught us to forget about the proofs that the Pope is Antichrist by interpreting the relevant scriptures as all in the future, and the Protestants have bought it.  (The Jesuits also invented Preterism by the way, for the same reason, to get the Pope off the hook). Even those who have done a lot to expose the errors of Rome have missed the big picture.  They subscribe to futurism while describing the doctrinal errors as if doctrine is our only problem with the RCC, as if it isn't a threat to the entire world with its ambition to put the Pope in the seat of power over the world.  Yeah yeah yeah, ridiculous, right? If anything the RCC has been losing power. Yeah yeah yeah. Well, if I can I'll try to bring out the reasons that's a delusion. So anyway, we've had our eyes forward and haven't been noticing that it's been around for centuries, gradually working out its antichrist mission.

It received a near-deadly wound from the Reformation.  Even John Dowling who wrote a very informative tome on the History of Romanism in 1845 thought the Roman Church could never recover.  But doesn't scripture tell us it recovers?  And if Dowling were living today he might see the recovery gathering steam behind the scenes. 

Romanism, the Roman Church:  I've been using the term for some time because it's necessary to counter its pretensions to being Christian.  It has some Christian stuff tacked on, even enough for some Catholics to have a genuinely Christian outlook, but it's staggering how the institution as a whole has taken over the trappings and thought of the Roman Empire. There's so much more to the term than just that the RCC grew from the Bishop of Rome in the early centuries.  Dowling's History of Romanism chronicles how the RCC early on took over one after another pagan practice into its rituals, such as lighted candles during the day, holy water, incense, and how the statues of roman gods got renamed for Christian saints and installed in their churches.   Awareness of their use of statues doesn't make you aware of their origin from the Roman gods and that derivation was rather startling to me, for one.  Such concepts as The Immaculate Conception as Romanism came to apply it to Mary the mother of Jesus, originated with a Roman goddess.

Why is that obelisk in the piazza of St. Peter's basilica in Rome the Roman Emperor Caligula's obelisk?   What does a Roman Caesar have to do with Christianity?   Then go on to ask why our Capitol building looks like St. Peter's basilica and why Washington's monument looks like the obelisk of Caligula? 

There's plenty more to say to show the essential Roman character of the Roman church, but might as well go on at this point to America.  Besides the architecture just mentioned, why is there a statue of the Roman goddess Persephone at the top of the Capitol dome, renamed "Freedom?"  And why does she look east toward Rome?    And why is there a painting in the interior of that same dome called The Apotheosis of Washington depicting him among the gods and goddesses of Rome?  And why are the portraits of two Popes in that building?  And by the way, the very concept of a "Capitol" originated as the temple of the Roman god Jupiter.   What does any of this have to do with America?

Francis should feel right at home addressing Congress.

Does anybody care?

More later, God willing.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Roman Catholic undermining of American Politics

Among the many reasons I would not vote for Jeb Bush is the fact that he bowed to the Pope. So did his brother, and so did Obama. Probably other misguided American politicians too. It ought to be a showstopper for any candidate in the minds of Protestants.


I also consider it a vote in Donald Trump's favor (though not necessarily a vote for him for President) that the Archbishop of Philadelphia criticized his stand on illegal immigration.


"Plays on our worst fears" he says. I'm sure they aren't HIS worst fears since the more Catholics they can get into the country by any means whatever, and illegal is just fine with them, the happier they are.  The whole illegal immigration problem has been engineered by the Catholic Church from the beginning.

There was never any birthright citizenship for illegal aliens, it's always been an opportunistic misinterpretation of the law. It's absurd to think people could come here illegally and their children automatically have citizenship. And who invented this travesty? Some Catholic leader, or leaders, no doubt, since the whole problem of illegal immigration has been created by Catholicism. Read the article. It's no doubt going to be a topic addressed by the Pope, whose presence is going to grace Congress this month. All playing on the lowest of emotional arguments. Sad to think it probably sways Catholics, but unfortunately Protestants aren't immune to it either, and certainly not atheists.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Gay Marriage impact according to John MacArthur

John MacArthur responds to the gay marriage ruling.  He starts out saying that the two greatest acts of terrorism in this country were by the Supreme Court. 

We Will Not Bow


Monday, August 10, 2015

The EU is now dictating what Americans may and may not do with their blogs?

I just found this notice on one of my Blogger information pages. I have no idea when it was posted as it is not dated and I haven't been keeping up with my blog much lately.

I CONSIDER THIS TO BE AN OUTRAGEOUS INTRUSION ON MY RIGHTS AS A CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES. I AM NOT A CITIZEN OF THE EUROPEAN UNION AND NOT SUBJECT TO THEIR LAWS.
European Union laws require you to give European Union visitors information about cookies used on your blog. In many cases, these laws also require you to obtain consent.

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A Calendar of Prophetic Possibilities for the Month of September

Two events are scheduled for the month of September that I regard as interestingly pregnant with prophetic possibilities: The visit of the Pope to Congress which happens to be on the Jewish Holy Day of Yom Kippur; and the occurrence of the fourth and final blood moon of the Tetrad that started last year, on the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles.

Prophecy watchers add many more events and potential events to these two. A writer at Rapture Ready has compiled a list of some of them to keep in mind, which I am going to post here in its entirety. His address is included at the bottom of the post, and the article is also available at the Rapture Ready link above.
September 2015

By Daymond Duck

There have been several good articles, pro and con, about upcoming events to watch for in Sept. 2015 (blood moons, Sabbatical year, Shemitah, etc.). To be honest, when these good articles came out I just skimmed over many of them. But I now realize that the list of things to watch for in Sept. 2015 has surpassed my ability to keep up with all of it.

So here is a list I made for myself. It is not my purpose to comment on the relevance of any of these things. But it is my purpose to have a calendar of events that I can refer to. Also, understand that because a Jewish day ends at sundown (not 12 p.m.) and because there are questions about the accuracy of the Jewish calendar some of what is being reported could be wrong.

Sept. 9: The date the Jewish Sanhedrin plans to put Pres. Obama on trial on Mt. Zion for promoting genocide of the Jewish people with the P5 +1 agreement with Iran over that nation’s nuclear weapons program. Will this trial be worthless or will it accomplish anything?

Sept. 13: The end of the Sabbatical year (at sundown on Sept. 13) and the date that a highly respected ultra-Orthodox Jewish Rabbi named Chaim Kanievsky says Israel’s Messiah will arrive. Is he right or a false prophet?

Sept. 13: Congress has 60 days to vote on the P5 + 1 agreement with Iran (signed on July 14, 2015). If Congress takes a full 60 days, this vote could be on Sept. 13. Controversy surrounds this date because there are secret deals between the IAEA and Iran that Congress has not seen.

Sept. 13: The Shemitah year (also called a Sabbath year, or a Sabbatical year, or the seventh year of the agricultural cycle) ends at sundown on Sept. 13. It is associated with financial issues; debt forgiveness; economic problems; recession; declines in the Stock Market, etc. Jonathan Cahn says the U.S. or the world could have economic problems about this time.

Sept.13-15: Rosh Hashanah (also called the Jewish New Year or the Feast of Trumpets) begins at sundown on Sept. 13 and ends at sundown on Sept. 15. Some (not all) prophecy teachers believe the Rapture could occur at the end of Rosh Hashanah this year or next year or some year.

Sept.15: The purported military drill called Joint Assistance for Development and Execution (JADE) Homeland Eradication of Local Militants (HELM) is supposed to end. Will it? Will there be a JADE HELM 2016, 2017, etc.?

Sept.15: The 70th UN General Assembly will begin meeting. During this session (not necessarily on the 15th), France is expected to present a resolution to the UN Security Council to divide the Promised Land (Two-State Solution) and to force a peace treaty on Israel and the PA. If the UN does this, their decision will lead to the beginning of the Tribulation period and the battle of Armageddon.

Sept. 20: The Jewish Sanhedrin plans to put Pope Francis on trial on Mt. Zion for officially recognizing the existence of a Palestinian State on land that God gave to Israel. Will the outcome be recognized by God?

Sept. 22-23: Yom Kippur (also called the Day of Atonement or the Feast of Atonement) begins at sundown on Sept. 22. This will mark the beginning of the next year of Jubilee (the 50th year) which involves focus on God, the cancellation of debts, restoration of land to the original owners, etc. Will God focus on economic issues, Israel’s restoration to the land, etc.?

Sept. 23: Pope Francis is scheduled to visit the White House for discussions with Pres. Obama about their shared values on caring for the poor (wealth redistribution), religious freedom, immigration (elimination of borders), environmental issues (global warming), etc.\ Sept. 24: Pope Francis is scheduled to address a joint session of Congress about world peace, religious values (probably a need for a world religion), caring for the poor, etc.

Sept. 25: Pope Francis is scheduled to address the UN. He wants to reduce the world’s population, regulate global climate change, establish a global constitution, establish a global court and establish a one-world government.

Sept. 25-27: The UN plans to hold a Sustainable Development Summit to expand the role of global governance (world government). They plan to discuss global economic issues, climate change, global education and gender equality. It is really a plan to control the life of everyone on earth.

Sept. 28: The Feast of Tabernacles and the fourth blood moon in the current Tetrad will take place on this date. Several major prophetic events have happened just before or just after other blood moon Tetrads. The Jewish Talmud (not the Bible) says blood moons are a sign of war in Israel. Several major end-of-the-age wars are mentioned in the Bible and some are prophecy teachers believe some or all of these could soon occur.

This convergence of events in Sept. 2015 is why many people think something big is about to happen. We shall soon know.

Prophecy Plus Ministries
Daymond & Rachel Duck
daymond.duck@yahoo.com

Friday, June 26, 2015

SCOTUS rules for anti-Christian law

We may have hoped against hope reason would prevail but really we knew it was coming and it came: the Supreme Court made gay marriage the law of the land today. This could be the watershed. From now on Christians are officially criminals.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

There's No Keeping Up With Papal Lies: latest on the Waldensians

So the Pope Asks Forgiveness for the persecution of "a small evangelical church in Italy:"
TURIN, Italy (AP) — Pope Francis asked forgiveness Monday for the Catholic Church's persecution of members of a small evangelical church in Italy whose leader was excommunicated and followers branded as heretics during the Middle Ages.
And of course, as Popes before him have done on such occasions, he blamed the persecution on unnamed "Christians" and implicitly denied the truth, that it was the Popes themselves who persecuted dissident Christians down the centuries,
During a speech to a few hundred people in the Waldensian temple of Turin, Francis decried how Christians over history committed atrocious acts of violence in the name of their faith.

"On the part of the Catholic Church, I ask your forgiveness, I ask it for the non-Christian and even inhuman attitudes and behavior that we have showed you," Francis said somberly from the altar. "In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, forgive us!"
The article includes a typical bogus history of the Waldensians:
The Waldensian church was founded in the 12th century by a wealthy merchant from Lyon, France, Pierre Valdo, who gave up his belongings to preach a Gospel of simplicity and poverty that condemned papal excesses. He was excommunicated and his followers persecuted as heretics by Rome.
 This is a misrepresentation of the history of the  Waldenses, who lived in the Valleys  of the  Alps  for centuries before Peter Valdo came along.  In fact he  probably took his name from the people,  which was originally just  a term for People of  the  Valleys.   They had a Protestant Christian theology that went back to at least the sixth century including  different groups under different names, all actively opposing the theology of the  Roman Church.  The various groups shared a basic Protestant theology though  they were not completely in agreement with one  another.

Three of the following links go to copies of the best source on this subject, History of the Ancient Christians Inhabiting the Valley of the Alps: Waldenses, Albigenses and Vaudois (1847) by Jean Paul Perrin.   The Recommendatory Letter near  the  front of the book sketches out the relevant history:

Perrin

Perrin

Downloadable from Puritan Downloads:
Perrin

article on Waldensians

Unfortunately, today's Waldensians are largely apostate from the true faith, which no doubt accounts for their applauding the Pope.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Oh The Blatant Hypocrisy of the Pope!

First he presents himself as a world authority with the right to tell nations what to do about climate change, of course proposing solutions that would punish the US in particular, that dastardly once-Protestant nation that the Antichrist papal system has been waiting forever to bring down. Well, he'll get to give his devil-wolf speech in Congress in September even and today's Americans haven't a clue.

Now he's telling us how the "great powers" did nothing to stop the Holocaust, conveniently forgetting that the Pope at the time actively encouraged it, that Hitler modeled the Final Solution on the Inquisition, and that the Pope was responsible for the "ratlines" that gave Nazi criminals a way to escape justice after the war. 

Sorry I've  been neglecting  my blogs recently,  I don't  know if  or  when I'll  get back to  them. There  is  some  source  material on this  subject at my Catholicism blog.  One book that covers it  all is Dave Hunt's A Woman Rides  the Beast

The Vatican RatLines are well known, see Wikipedia article.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Antichrist rising

Parts of the evangelical world (such as Rapture Ready) are anticipating the Antichrist soon, regarding him as an unknown who will emerge into public view as a political power when the time comes. Since I've been convinced for some time of the Protestant Reformers' understanding of the papacy as the Antichrist system, I figure he's always among us, and this latest Pope is incredibly popular, as well as a fine example of the "man of sin," considering the support he's given to ungodly and antiChristian causes.

Of course he may not be THE Antichrist of the final days, but the way things have been going the time is right and all that needs to happen is a move into a position of power.

As the Rapture Ready article I linked concludes, "Watch."

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Muslim attack on Charlie Hebdo God's judgment on the anti-Christian West

Feel I should offer at least a brief clarification of my post about the attack on the French magazine Charlie Hebdo, where I said that France and in fact all of Europe need to deport their Muslims and get back to Protestant Christianity. I thought I'd eventually have more to say but I don't really have MUCH more to say. I knew when I put up that title that I'd probably not think much of the magazine Charlie Hebdo if I knew more about it, and that calling for a revitalization of Protestantism would not be at all something that magazine would appreciate, so along with saying Muslims should be deported in a way I was also saying the magazine probably also needs to go.

Wikipedia gives enough of a description to support that view: 
Charlie Hebdo, French for Charlie Weekly, is a French satirical weekly magazine, featuring cartoons, reports, polemics, and jokes. Irreverent and stridently non-conformist in tone, the publication describes itself as strongly anti-religious, anti-racist[4] and left-wing, publishing articles on the extreme right, religion (Catholicism, Islam, Judaism), politics, culture, etc. According to its former editor St├ęphane Charbonnier ("Charb"), the magazine's editorial viewpoint reflects "all components of left wing pluralism, and even abstainers".
Interesting it doesn't mention Protestant Christianity in that list of religions it targets, but just from the general description Protestants wouldn't like the magazine either, only Christians wouldn't murder its staff in protest.

The upshot of all of this is that Muslim attacks in the West as the Muslim population grows in Europe, and is also growing in the US, should be thought of as God's judgment against the West for our abandonment of Christianity. If we don't get back to God there will be more Muslims, more murders, more mayhem in the West as they continue to grow their population to the point that they can claim the West for Allah and subjugate all other religions and cultural beliefs. The fact that this very program is denied by "liberals" is really itself evidence that God's judgment is in operation. Revival is the only thing that could turn back the tide, and I suppose we shouldn't give up on that no matter how unlikely it seems, though in debates online I keep discovering just how adamant the denial is, how entrenched the politically correct view that spells suicide for the West, while the only remedy, Christianity, is hated.

It's hard to face. Maybe harder to take, though, is the Christians who don't recognize it, who just go on as if it's not happening.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

"Boy Who Came Back From Heaven" says it isn't true after all

Alex Malarkey, now 16, has just come out and said he made up the story of going to heaven after the accident at age 6 that left him paralyzed. Here's the story from The Washington Post.

I've continued to get comments on my blogs about this and other heaven stories, particularly on this post.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Pray Always, and Do Not Faint

I learned this lesson recently and want to pass it on so maybe it would encourage others.   It's one of those things we may have to learn many times, but this time I think it got through to me in a new way.
Luke 18:1: And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint;
I faint easily in this sense.  I don't persist in prayer, especially when I'm praying for something that feels "impossible."  I can tell myself many times that God is the God of the impossible and still not act on it as if I believe it.

Recently I had to recognize four "impossible" prayers that God answered, which have certainly improved my prayer stamina and even got me praying for more impossible things than those four. 

I can't go into much detail about these incidents unfortunately because they concern other people, but maybe I can hint at the situations without giving them away.  A financially struggling relative, an out of control teenager, a fatherless child and a rocky marriage.   One of the prayers was the fervent desperate doing of another relative of mine though I added my own to it;  another was shared with this relative and two of them were mine.  Literally within a day of fervent prayer the financially struggling one was backed to start a business that is now starting to take off a few months later;  over a few months of prayer the unruly teenager decided he didn't like being in juvenile detention and found better things to do with his time;  the fatherless child was given a father within weeks of the prayer for him, the rocky marriage was nearly miraculously healed, also over weeks.  I could also mention some other answers but these stand out dramatically enough to be a real encouragement to me. 

I'm SO grateful for these answered prayers and SO encouraged to pray more and not faint.  Want to continue to pray for those same situations too, though, knowing how rapidly things can degenerate if we leave them to fallen human nature.    But now I have an even rockier marriage in mind I've never had the stamina to pray for consistently, and half a dozen other family type problems it would be a huge relief to see resolved.  I even feel encouraged enough to pray for big political issues with more fervency and hope.

This is a praise report, a statement of gratitude and I hope a message to encourage us all to pray and not faint.  God really is listening and really does answer prayer when we pray in His will and for things that further His Kingdom.