Debunking Anti-Christ Rhetoric Part B

tanti christ pic 2 FB

 

“But as for these enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, bring them here and slaughter them before me.”

(Luke 19:27 ESV)

Just another Anti-Christ propaganda found on Facebook!

There are those who now want to target the Body of Christ with vengeance…targeting those who love Jesus….and also those who do not yet know Him.

They will deceive and twist… under the complete control of the deceiver….

Only hoping to break down those who have placed their trust in Christ.

And also mislead those who are yet wandering and lost.

The verse is part of a parable (story) that Jesus taught….This story that Jesus taught teaches about the judgement of God at this point….It does not suggest or imply that human governance should even follow this example.  Christ uses what could and often did happen to illustrate a point of Gods supreme governance!

His disciples were not a military group…in fact the overwhelming majority (excluding John) were slaughtered for their faith in Christ…. They were not equipped to fight or make war.

Jesus did NOT command His disciples to kill anyone….

“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgement”….. (Matthew 5: 21.22)

“But love your enemies, and do good and lend, hoping for nothing again, and your reward shall be great”… (Matthew 22: 37-40)

“A new commandment I give unto you, that you love one another as I have loved you that you also love one another”… (John 13:34)

This verse has nothing to do with an individual turning the other check!

Jesus is teaching that mankind will one day face the judgement of God….

Those such as these people who post on Facebook and elsewhere… and who only intently want to discourage those who have placed their trust in Christ….

Those such as these…

Who hate and have rejected The Christ…..the One and Only One…..

God will punish…..

GOD WILL PUNISH

Yet there is still time……time also for you.

Time for all those who do not believe………

Time for those who continue to mock and denounce….

Time awaits for those who still deny and reject…..

Our One and Only Lord and Savior.

“In blazing fire, He will inflict vengeance on those who do not know God and do not obey the Gospel of our Lord Jesus.”

(2 Thessalonians 1:8)

 

Tear Bottle

A tear bottle…also known as a lachrymatory…is an ornamental vase piece…with a fixture at the opening that is formed to affix to the human eye… Tear bottles were fairly common in Christ’s time…the reference found in Psalms 56 actually predates Christ by over 1,000 years.

pic-of-tear-bottle

“You have kept count of my tossing’s; put my tears in your bottle.  Are they not in your book?”

(Psalm 56:8 ESV)

Where are you Jesus?

 Please come quickly.

I call out your Name….…

 And I have waited patiently for the sound of your voice within my own soul.

This somber waiting drips into deep crevices unknown and ricochets my whole inner being with unrest….

 Leaving me with temporary doubt and confusion. 

But still I will wait here for the quiet and somber sound of your affirming Voice….

My own tears are shedding continuously and are mounting mightily within your book. 

Yet I am waiting…

 We all are waiting…

Along the long and narrow way,

 Back home to you. 

 

Where are you Jesus?

Please come quickly. 

Rescue us from this impending doom…this utter darkness is swallowing us from inside out. 

The whole world is sinking into a lower ground…

Previously unknown to us

Yet is it really unknown to you?

 This hollow depth of unrest and complete anarchy…

Your people mocked, ridiculed, and slain. 

Your Holy Name mocked, ridiculed, and slain….

….with the utmost of arrogance and pride. 

 

Yet I am waiting…

 We all are waiting…

Along the long and narrow way,

 Back home to you. 

 

Where are you Jesus?

Please come quickly. 

You promise your children miraculous things…

Of an eternal paradise incomprehensible…where our tears will no longer flow. 

Death will cease and this present and continuous evil eradicated.  

But for now…

Our tears are shedding and mounting mightily within your book. 

Your tear bottle is overflowing with the tears of your children!

Yet we all are currently waiting…

We are patiently and desperately  waiting…

Along the long and narrow way,

Back home to you!

Debunking Anti-Christ Rhetoric Part I-A

anti-christ-1

This anti-Christ image was found recently on social media…it is disturbing…it is offensive…it is damaging… but it may also be very persuasive.  The only purpose of these posts entitled, Debunking Anti-Christ Rhetoric is to expose the truth…and while I was prepared to research extensively these claims and then sharing all the references I use in order to debunk this type of rhetoric, I have now decided to conduct brief and informal online searches from reputable websites to replicate (and hopefully encourage) what the vast majority of people coming across these types of images can and should do.  As always, I strive to keep my blog truthful…honest…transparent… with no disrespect to anyone or anything…I will never personally attack those among us who (still) do not believe…

For I am a Sinner….

And I am always face down at His cross….begging for His mercy!!

Let’s first quickly examine the author……

Dr. Bart D. Ehrman….

pic-of-bart-ehrman

“I wonder if the fact that I left the faith is somehow seen as threatening, at least among people who have a gnawing suspicion.”

–Dr. Bart Ehrman

An American Professor, Author, and Scholar

Received his PhD, and M. Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary

Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Has written more than 30 books, including college textbooks

Became a Christian as a teenager and considered himself a Christian for more than 15 years

After struggling with the philosophical problems with evil and more specifically suffering…He then became an agnostic atheist…

“This was my view for many years, and I still consider it a powerful theological view. It would be a view that I would still hold on to, if I were still a Christian. But I’m not.

About nine or ten years ago I came to realize that I simply no longer believed the Christian message. A large part of my movement away from the faith was driven by my concern for suffering. I simply no longer could hold to the view—which I took to be essential to Christian faith—that God was active in the world, that he answered prayer, that he intervened on behalf of his faithful, that he brought salvation in the past and that in the future, eventually in the coming eschaton, he would set to rights all that was wrong, that he would vindicate his name and his people and bring in a good kingdom (either at our deaths or here on earth in a future utopian existence).

We live in a world in which a child dies every five seconds of starvation. Every five seconds. Every minute there are twenty-five people who die because they do not have clean water to drink. Every hour 700 people die of malaria. Where is God in all this? We live in a world in which earthquakes in the Himalayas kill 50,000 people and leave 3 million without shelter in the face of oncoming winter. We live in a world where a hurricane destroys New Orleans. Where a tsunami kills 300,000 people in one fell swoop. Where millions of children are born with horrible birth defects. And where is God? To say that he eventually will make right all that is wrong seems to me, now, to be pure wishful thinking.”

Read more at http://www.beliefnet.com/columnists/blogalogue/2008/04/why-suffering-is-gods-problem.html#yAl4ESA5FrhGS7SB.99

 

 

…my heart goes out to Dr. Ehrman and I sincerely hope he can answer one day this question of why pain and suffering exists which has tested and destroyed his faith in God….I hope one day he is able to view the world through an “eternal” perspective and realize exactly what Christ promised His followers…..

My personal perspective so far…..

The claims made in this anti-Christ image by a self-professed atheist is nothing new

Having a M.Div. or PhD does not insure one believes in the Christian worldview

What we read/see/hear can be very deceiving…

To be continued….

 

The Great City of Nineveh

Dear Readers, 

I would like to share with you something I posted (a reply) on another Christians’ blog back in August.  I have always hoped my blog would be transparent and truthful, (that is why I am sharing this response) written mostly for the lost and hopeless among us!  A blog that intentionally does not mention denomination or religious creed! A blog I have shared my very personal life experiences with and shame!    A blog only to honor Christ… very little pics of me or my family….Christ only…Christ centered… and Christs’ love for all people… always!     The debate regarding homosexuality continues…never ending, sometimes (mostly) loveless and hateful toward each other.  This summer has been quite long and filled with utter hopelessness! I find myself now lost for words..unable to write anymore.  I have been the victim of attack from a Christian who I thought I was helping…I was also evaluated by a fellow Christian as to why I want to help people “spiritually”…and I lost!   God helps us all for thinking His Word…and His Gospel is only for a select group of people!  

I want to thank all of you for taking the time to read my blog!  It means more to me than you will ever know!  I have prayed for all of you and I love you all! I hope I have touched one soul… only one soul with my words…that truly was my only prayer!!  That was my intended purpose!!

The world we now live in is a very scary place…Christ did not promise this road..this life would be easy…but He does promise a glorious ending!  

again, I thank you and I love you all!! 

“And the Lord said, “You pity the plant, for which you did not labor, nor did you make it grow, which came into being in a night and perished in a night.  And should not I pity Nineveh, that great city, in which there are more than 120,000 persons who do not know their right hand for their left…”

(Jonah 4: 10-11 ESV)

wilted-plant-2

I was doing a Google search on heaven and came across this post and truly, I wish I hadn’t stumbled upon it!  This is so sad to read…to digest. To realize the length of time this post has survived…to read the hatred and bickering between Christians….the hatred from Christians to those who are still lost and in darkness…and in great need of our Savior….and to those few who were/ are struggling with same-sex attraction/ homosexual lifestyle….and decided to share their thoughts through their painfully honest and transparent testimony…..It is in times such as this….I must remind myself to keep my eyes focused on Christ alone….and not on a fallen humanity! 

We are all sinners, and we must remember that at our very best, we all have nothing but filthy rags to offer.  We all spat on Him and beat Him beyond recognition!   We ALL nailed Him to the cross!   We must love without compromising Truth.  We must be Christ- like in how we approach everyone!  God humbled himself and became one of us in a darkened and fallen world to save us all.  Jesus was approachable to the lowest members of society in His time…prostitutes and tax collectors….they felt very comfortable approaching Him….He never compromised truth yet He was able to serve those who were in greatest need. 

Please remember the story of Jonah…Jonah had an extraordinary calling to deal with a group of people he did not want to deal with…but he reluctantly went to this group of people and preached the worst evangelical sermon ever…..Destruction is coming!  Destruction is coming!  Then, Jonah went and purchased a front row seat to watch them burn….but Nineveh repented! Jonah wanted more than ever to see those people burn as He cared more for their destruction then for their repentance!  Let’s not become like Jonah….wanting complete destruction of an entire group of people instead of hoping for eventual repentance….no matter how long that repentance may take…..we are all currently under the state of grace….

The issue is…where do people stand?  Are they dead in sin or alive in Christ?  If they are dead in sin, it hardly matters what sin it is….the Gospel must be the priority of the homosexual just as it is for the heterosexual!  The church is the place to hear the gospel!  The church is a place for sinners! Jesus can and will transform lives! Transformation may take time!   Christians need to serve in truth!  Christians need to serve also…. in love.  We will all stand before the judgement seat of Christ!  We will all be asked about our lives while here on earth…..and how we all responded to the cultural issues and difficulties of our day…. Christ is not surprised by these issues….and He placed us as Christians in this exact moment in His creation for such a time as this!!  When I stand before Him, I pray I hear my Lord and Savior tell me…. “Well done good and faithful servant.”  As fellow Christians, I hope you all do too! 

 

 

 

 

Preface…Debunking Anti-Christ Rhetoric

antichrist pic 1

 

It’s everywhere…growing and flourishing in the very landscape of a growing post Christian Americana. If I am haphazardly becoming victim to its sinister message, surely others are too.  And what about our children?  It is upsetting, disheartening, it is filled with pure evil and ill intent.  I have wrestled with this for many months.  Should I attempt to debunk this anti-Christ rhetoric that seems to be prospering everywhere?  I am not a theologian or scholar.  So where are they?…  The modern day theologians, scholars, and apologists?… The great astute and intellectual minds who can easily give explanation to this new and growing mystery? Or can they?  Perhaps their silence on this subject should be of great concern. It is certainly difficult to view. What is really fueling this growing hatred of Christ? 

 

Coupled with the rise of anti-Christ rhetoric is the ever growing effort to shame, belittle, and label those for what they believe.  And for who they believe in! They silence their voices by bullying them into submission of their own disbelief.  There are now no debates in this new secular world of no truth. Absolutely no agreeing to disagree.  They demand tolerance yet have none..  The faithful have become the new minority…but without protective provisions afforded everyone else.  These millions of the majority have succumbed to their tactics….  They degrade them, they deface them…one by one. They slowly silence their beliefs….. Quite easily bullied into submission it appears….frightened and terrified of reprisal.

 

 

The ranks of martyrs are growing….in the East…and in the West, it is only a matter of time.  The quiet and discreet mention of genocide and then heard of no more.  The real and brutal enemies of religious freedom constantly planning calculated attacks and growing larger in number…Their weaponry of force are the written words of a deranged one who slaughtered many others.. And even some faithful fall victim to this incredible deceit.  And Americana is busy and distracted opening old wounds!  Fighting old wars of past generations.  Demanding payment… seeking lawlessness and disorder Casting away moral values and absolute truth. They make heroes out of villains…Their young so easily offended by mere words…Their old are withdrawn and discouraged by the new.  A perfect storm for the enemy to invade. A nation already in turmoil… a lost and struggling generation fighting from within…..

 

There seems to be a perfect storm brewing on the horizon…

 

On this diminishing Western Americana…..

Death Grip

tears1

 

“Jesus wept.”

(John 11:35 ESV)

There is probably nothing more tearfully heart wrenching than losing a loved one.  The grief endured when someone you love dies is excruciating and debilitating. You seem to exist in a surreal world temporarily suspended in time and space and hopeless to the stark reality you’re trying so desperately to avoid….your loved one is never coming back….

Not here….

Not now….

Not back here…

Not ever…

One distant memory of a most unfortunate death happened many, many years ago when I was still a young and inexperienced nurse working the midnight shift at a local hospital.  I stood quite fearful and reluctantly, beside an open incubator one cold and wintery night and gently caressed the very frail arm of a 14 ounce baby born way too soon…trying desperately to provide some sort of comfort to this beautifully perfect baby whose earthly life would ultimately be measured in mere hours….

The grief stricken mother was just outside our unit door and down the pastel pink and blue wall-papered hallway.  Her life so completely different just hours before.…But now, two earthly lives forever altered in a matter of minutes…of one soon to be taken and of one left behind… unbearable grief and excruciating sorrow…of dreams shattered and plans thwarted. This tragic loss so severe for it’s victim…it rendered her emotionally unable to speak a “temporary” goodbye…

Death

 So final is your grip…..

There was an unexpected death in the town of Bethany.  As this unfortunate news spread quickly, mourners came and gathered close to the grieving family.  Many who gathered there were visibly sobbing for this man who once was.  The sisters had sent word to the only One who could save him from his acute onset, but death had visited him quickly and he lay entombed for four days prior to His arrival. As The One approached, one sister fell to His feet in anguish and sorrow…the mourners also followed her there… standing behind and beside her as she mourned loudly at the Feet of our God…but all expressing the sorrow and grief that only death can bring….

When He looked upon the grief and anguish of the one sister who lay at His feet, and of those who believed, and of all those who would eventually believe, and also for those who would remain lost, He was deeply moved and greatly troubled…..as He filled with love and compassion for all who gathered there to openly grieve ….

And He gently began to weep….

Tears…slowing and quietly streaming from the Sovereign eyes of the only One who can bring us back to life….a deeply human expression from this Man of Sorrows…who is well acquainted with grief… who came to serve…who came to save….grief and sorrow He experienced as He mourned for a dying humanity…..and motivated by pure unconditional love for us….He willingly came and stepped into this darkness just to taste this bitter vial of death for one and all…..

Grief stricken tears actually touched the Almighty face of our God…

Death

Where is your grip now?

tears 2

“Often we say That Christ will meet us on the other side.  That is true of course, but misleading.  Let us never forget that He walks with us on this side of the curtain and then guides us through the opening.  We will meet Him there, because we have met Him here.”

–Erwin Lutzer

 

 

Broken Promise

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.”

(Romans 1:16 ESV)

evangelism pic 2

“In conversation, the disciple who is truly poor in spirit always leaves the other person feeling, my life has been enriched by talking with you.  This is neither false modesty nor phony humility… The poor in spirit are the most non-judgmental of peoples; they get along well with sinners.”

–Brennan Manning

The above quote from Brennan Manning was the initial spark which lit the flame of my now persistent and burning desire to serve Christ and become His evangelistic servant bathed in His everlasting mercy and grace.  It would be untrue to lead anyone to believe this did not come without great struggle and outright debate with my Savior by trying to rationalize every reason in my finite mind to explain to Him why I am not the best and most qualified candidate for this sacred position but the flame persists and He fuels my flame with daily doses of increasingly greater intention.

Servant Evangelism, in my personal opinion is the only effective way to evangelize the lost and hurting among us.  It was refreshing to learn there has been a shift from the fire and brimstone type of evangelizing to a new relational, authentic, and transparent approach.  I desire to serve Christ as an authentic and transparent servant as I begin to embrace the brokenness of my own shattered past.  For it was in my broken past where I learned to become dependent on Him and His words of promise for a brighter tomorrow.  My great dependency on Christ grew more intense from the struggles and challenges of my own personal life and now I am willing to share my past to brighten someone’s tomorrow with hope in a Savior and eternal life. 

“Jesus was transparent. True, He did not have any bad to reveal, but He grieved, and expressed it; He sorrowed, and He wept.”

–Jerry Pipes

My only desire is to simply be His transparent servant.  In spite of our weaknesses and imperfections, God still chooses to use people to communicate His message.   The knowledge of my past weakness and imperfections forces me to be a humble and non-judgmental servant to others. It allows me greater understanding into the lives of people who struggle with sin and despair. I have no Christian subculture to temporarily exit from for I have never known the boundaries of “perfect” Christian living void of challenges, hardships, and struggle.  Perhaps this is the very reason He is calling me to join Him in His mission, His prodigal with enduring wounds and intense regret.  I only have to recall the price He paid to reconcile my rebellion and I’m left kneeling at the foot of His cross begging for His mercy.   There is no greater reward this side of heaven then to join with Christ in sharing the gift He gives so freely to those who only have to receive.  How can I possibly keep this gift a secret? 

I will still wrestle with Christ regarding the requirements of this sacred position.  The responsibility of representing Him to a fallen world is significant and causes me to panic.  My greatest fear is misrepresenting His love and grace.  How could I possibly take on this type of responsibility?  The testimony we have around other people is of utmost importance.  People are watching how we react in the normal ebb and flow of life.   And I love Him so much and only desire to please Him so how can I continue to say no to a Savior who gave His life to allow an unworthy, unlovable, and unclean soul like me to have one?   There is a world just outside my door that is hurting and lost and I know without doubt Jesus loves them as much as He loves me.

 “It is not the prostitutes and tax-collectors who find it most difficult to repent; it is the devout who feel they have no need to repent, secure in not having broken rules on the Sabbath.”

–Brennan Manning 

How can I remain silent and not share with them the good news?   …What began simply as a spark and turned into a flame, which has now become a persistent and burning desire is beginning to slowly engulf my panic and fears…. 

personal-evangelism 1

It has been well over a year since my promise was made to You…and yes!  I now feel and now realize Your strict discipline to my broken promise….

Jesus…Please help me believe I can do this!

“Fear not, for I am with you; for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

 (Isa 41: 10 ESV)