"We see, in many a land, the proudest dynasties and tyrannies still crushing, with their mountain weight, every free motion of the Consciences and hearts of men. We see, on the other hand, the truest heroism for the right and the greatest devotion to the Truth in hearts that God has touched. We have a work to do, as great as our forefathers and, perhaps, far greater. The enemies of Truth are more numerous and subtle than ever and the needs of the Church are greater than at any preceding time. If we are not debtors to the present, then men were never debtors to their age and their time. Brethren, we are debtors to the hour in which we live. Oh, that we might stamp it with Truth and that God might help us to impress upon its wings some proof that it has not flown by neglected and unheeded." -- C.H. Spurgeon . . . "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:31, 32

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Friday, April 23, 2010

ARE YOU A “FIDEI DEFENSOR” FOR TRUTH? – Commentary on The TRUTH War by John MacArthur


~~article and commentary
by James Fire

It is my distinct pleasure and honor to bring to you today, my own personal commentary for a book that has so blessed and encouraged me, that upon reading its mere introduction, I knew that I would have to publish an article on TTUF about it!

Just to whet your appetite for this work that is “wholly valiant for the truth” check out these quotes (and these are just from the introduction!):

“The church’s duty has always been to confront such skepticism and answer it by clearly proclaiming the truth God has revealed in His Word. We have been given a clear message for the purpose of confronting the world’s unbelief. That is what we are called, commanded, and commissioned to do (1 Cor. 1:17-31). Faithfulness to Christ demands it. The honor of God requires it. We cannot sit by and do nothing while worldly, revisionist, and skeptical attitudes about truth are infiltrating the church. We must not embrace such confusion in the name of charity, collegiality or unity. We have to stand and fight for the truth – and be prepared to die for it – as faithful Christians always have.” Pg. xvii

“But in every generation the battle for the truth has proven ultimately unavoidable, because the enemies of truth are relentless. Truth is always under assault. And it is actually a sin not to fight when vital truths are under attack. That is true even though fighting sometimes results in conflict within the visible community of professing Christians. In fact, whenever the enemies of gospel truth succeed in infiltrating the church, faithful believers are obliged to take the battle to them even there. That is certainly the case today, as it has been in apostolic times.” Pg. xxiv

“. . . I find myself compelled to echo the inspired words of Jude and exhort my readers who truly love Christ: you need to contend earnestly for the faith. Truth is under heavy attack, and there are too few courageous warriors who are willing to fight. When we stand before the judgment seat of Christ, believers from this generation will not be able to justify their apathy by complaining that the strife of conflict over truth just seemed ‘too negative’ for the kind of culture we lived in – or that the issues were ‘merely doctrinal’ and therefore not worth the effort.” Pg. xxvi

So are you ready to leap out of your house and run to your nearest Christian book store to buy your own copy of this book yet? You might find that this book isn’t there; apparently this book is too ‘hard core’ for most peoples taste. For me, this book tastes like a spiritual gourmet meal! Every page, every sentence I’ve relished with a shared conviction of our brother John MacArthur’s heart. In fact, this book, in a nut shell sums up the very heart of The TRUTH Under FIRE’s web site!

In some ways, on a spiritual spectrum as it were, John MacArthur and his statements in this book are on the extreme opposite end of some of the things other pastors, like Rick Warren, Bill Hybels, and others are saying.

Whoever is resolutely determined to teach and divide the Word correctly is the one that I want to stand with! What about you? If you can say “AMEN” then come with me as we examine what this pastor has to say. MacArthur, in the book, stated that he wants to start a “revolution in the church”, a revolution for the TRUTH that will no longer tolerate compromise, false teachings, seductive dogma that tickles the ear, and gratifies the flesh rather than the spirit. We must be valiant for the Truth in opposition to the assaults that the church today is plagued with!

So let’s start by taking a look at the opening chapter:

A BIBLICAL DEFINITION of The Truth –

“So what is truth? Here is a simple definition drawn from what the Bible teaches: truth is that which is consistent with the mind, will, character, glory and being of God. Even more to the point: truth is the [S]elf-expression of God.”

“Truth is also ontological – which is a fancy way of saying it is the way things really are. Reality is what it is because God declared it so and made it so. Therefore God is the author, source, determiner, governor, arbiter, ultimate standard, and final judge of all truth.”

MacArthur states that God in the Old Testament is a “God of TRUTH” and so named in such passages as Deuteronomy 32:4; Psalm 31:5; Isaiah 65:16). Jesus of course declared that He is the Truth (John 14:6) and thereby made a profound claim about His own deity. He made it clear that all truth must ultimately be defined in terms of God and His eternal glory. Jesus is according to scripture “the brightness of [God’s] glory and the express image of His person” (Hebrews 1:3). “He is truth incarnate – the perfect expression of God and therefore the absolute embodiment of all that is true.” Pg. 2

And according to Jesus, the written Word, the Holy Scriptures are also an embodiment of the Truth which cannot be broken and abides forever. (John 17:17; 10:35; 1 Peter 1:23). There is no discord between the expressions of Truth, MacArthur says, between the Word Incarnate, that is, the LORD Jesus Christ (John 1:1-3), and the Word inscribed (the Holy Bible). The scriptures, he states, are referred to in Colossians 3:16 as “the word of Christ”. “It is His message, His Self-expression. In other words, the truth of Christ and the truth of the Bible are of the very same character. They are in perfect agreement in every respect. Both are equally true. God has revealed Himself to humanity through Scripture and through His Son. Both perfectly embody the essence of what truth is.” Pg. 3


THE GREAT “PARADIGM SHIFT” –

“Lately, many unbelieving intellectuals have admitted the chain [the philosophic search for truth from generation to generation and its associative philosophers who have endeavored to uncover it] is broken and have decided the culprit is the absurdity of any quest for truth. In effect, they have given up that pursuit as something wholly futile. The world of human ideas is therefore currently in a serious state of flux. On almost every level of society, we are witnessing a profoundly radical paradigm shift – a wholesale overhaul in the way people think about truth itself.

MacArthur then comments on the 20th century trends in philosophy, academia and world religions (and I might add big business, industrial-military complex and various secret orders) is being “totally revamped and the vocabulary of human knowledge redefined”.

MacArthur defines the term “Modernity” as “the belief that truth exists and that the scientific method is the only reliable way to determine that truth. In the so-called modern era, most academic disciplines (philosophy, science, literature and education) were driven primarily by rationalistic presuppositions (human reason as the final arbiter of what is true). These presuppositions brought forth Darwinism, and as a result of this, came various humanistic ideas and worldviews (atheism, rationalism, utopian philosophies like Marxism, fascism, socialism, communism and theological liberalism).

Yet as the author points out, Modernism failed to come up with some universal truth that would apply to every one at all times, while leaving the ‘truth of God’ out of the picture. Indeed in today’s prevailing worldview Modernism is outdated and discredited in intellectual and academic circles which has led to the Post-Modern Movement.

Post-modernism is a term used since the 1980s but it’s hard to define as its proponents perceive it to be to one degree or another, indefinable! Primarily Post-Modernists tend to “dismiss the possibility of nay sure and settled knowledge of the truth. If objective truth exists, it can’t be known objectively or with any degree of certainty, due to the subjective nature of the human mind which makes knowledge of objective truth impossible. Objectivity is an illusion, nothing is certain, the thoughtful person will never speak with too much conviction about anything, strong convictions about any point of truth are judged supremely arrogant and hopelessly naïve. Everyone is entitled to [their] own truth.”

MacArthur boils Post-Modernism down to this: “The rejection of every expression of certainty” which is “inherently arrogant, elitist, intolerant, oppressive – and therefore always wrong.” It rejects truth and exalts skepticism, thus absolutes are spurned and truth, if it exists at all, is made “infinitely pliable and ultimately unknowable in any objective sense.” Pg. 13

On a personal observation, may I interject by saying that the above view of Post-Modernism is self-contradictory because while on the one hand, any expression that claims certitude is, in the mind of the Post-Modernist, “always wrong” and yet on the other hand rejects any notion of absolute truth. How can one claim anything as “always wrong” unless there was some absolute truth by which it’s been measured and then determined to be ‘always wrong’?

Thus relativism reigns supreme on the landscape today. This obviously will have, and already has had, a profound influence in the church, and on how the world perceives the church, that is, that facet of the church that still esteems the Bible as the inerrant Word of God.

GETTING PROPOSITIONS OFF THE PREMISES –

“Post-Modernists are generally suspicious of rational and logical forms. They especially don’t like to discuss truth in plain propositional (‘an idea framed as a logical statement that affirms or denies something, and it is expressed in such a way that it must be either true or false’ or put another way, ‘the simplest expressions of truth value used to express the substance of what we believe’) terms.”

“Rationality (the right use of sanctified reason through sound logic) is never condemned in scripture. Faith is not irrational. Authentic biblical truth demands that we employ logic and clear, sensible thinking.”

As the book points out: “Truth is never self-contradictory or nonsensical . . . it is not rationalism to insist that coherence is a necessary quality of all truth. Christ is truth incarnate, and He cannot deny Himself (2 Tim. 2:13). Self-denying truth is an absolute contradiction in terms. “No lie is of the truth” (1 John 2:21).”

Post-Modernists reject propositional forms and even argue how such a thing is impossible in expressing truth, yet in order to make such an argument, propositions would have to be made (emphasis mine)!Arguing against propositional truth is self-defeating!

Authentic faith employs more than mere propositional truth however, it must have a personal element as well, for, as MacArthur states, “[Jesus] declared Himself Truth incarnate. Scripture also teaches that faith means receiving Christ for all that He is – knowing him in a real and personal sense and being indwelt by Him – not merely assenting to a short list of disembodied truths about Him (Matthew 7:21-23) . . . it is quite true that faith cannot be reduced to a mere assent to a finite set of propositions (James 2:19). Saving faith is more than a mere intellectual nod of approval to the bare facts of a minimalist gospel outline. Authentic faith in Christ involves love for His Person and willingness to surrender to His authority. The human heart, will, and intellect all consent in the act of faith. In that sense, it is certainly correct, even necessary, to acknowledge that mere propositions can’t do full justice to all the dimensions of truth.

Post-Modernists are uncomfortable with propositions for an obvious reason: they don’t like clarity and inflexibility that’s required to deal with truth in propositional form (case in point, pastor of Mars Hill, Rob Bell refers to biblical Christianity in derogatory manner as “brickianity” because of its inflexibility). They have a contempt for all truth claims, and the ‘fuzzy logic’ of ideas told in story form sounds so much more elastic, even though its really not.

Uncertainty is THE NEW TRUTH [In Post-Modernism and the Emergent Church] –

“Postmodernity is a major theme in the literature of the Emerging Church movement. Several leading voices in the movement have suggested that post-modernism is something the church should embrace and adopt. Others might be more tentative about endorsing post-modernism dialect if we want to reach a postmodern generation. That, they say, will require a retooling of the message we bring to the world, not to mention a revamping of the means by which we deliver it. Some in the movement have openly questioned whether there is even any legitimate role for preaching in a postmodern culture. “Dialogue” is the preferred method of communication. Accordingly, some Emerging-style congregations have done away with pastors altogether and replaced them with ‘narrators’. Others have replaced the sermon with a free-ranging dialogue in which no one takes any leading role. For obvious reasons, an authoritative ‘thus saith the Lord’ is not welcome in such a setting.” Pg. 17

This sentiment is entirely in line with the idea that truth is either unknowable or so subjective that it’s splintered into meaninglessness. The Bible speaks about such confusion and uncertainty in the pages of scripture:

James 3:10-18 Out of the same mouth proceeds blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.
Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?
Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? Either a vine, figs? So can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.
Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? Let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.
But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth.
This wisdom descends not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish.
For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.
But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.
And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.


This text reveals that there can be a duality of influences, but that the essential influence that governs any particular individual will determine who and what sort of person they are. Just as you can’t get olive berries from a fig tree or figs from a grape vine, neither can you get both salt water and fresh from the same source… nor is it appropriate that two different forms of wisdom come from the same source.

Either the wisdom we exemplify is from above and is holy and righteous, pure and peaceable, without hypocrisy or it’s the earthly, sensual, devilish (that is adversarial to the divine) sort of wisdom. The envying and strife could easily be referenced to the rivalry of God’s wisdom as opposed to the devilish. In such a case, this strife and confusion leads to every evil work.

Such is the sensual wisdom of post-modernists, emergents, and globalist religious advocates, and these promote and endorse confusion and every evil work, quite frankly because they are opposed to God’s most Holy Word as conveyed in the scriptures.

MacArthur continues: “Of course, the first casualty of that way of thinking is every kind of certainty. The central propositions and bedrock convictions of Biblical Christianity – such as firm belief in the inspiration and authority of Scripture, a sound understanding of the true gospel, full assurance of salvation, settled confidence in the lordship of Christ, and the narrow exclusivity of Christ as the only way of salvation – do not reconcile well with postmodernism’s contempt for clear, authoritative truth claims. The medium of post- modern dialogue thereby instantly and automatically changes the message. And the rhetoric of the Emerging Church movement itself reflects that.

“Listen for example, to how Brian McLaren sums up his views on orthodoxy, certainty, and the question of whether the truths of Christianity are sound and reliable in the first place:

‘How ironic that I am writing about orthodoxy, which implies to many a final capturing of the truth about God, which is the glory of God. Sit down here next to me in this little restaurant and ask me if Christianity (my version, yours, the Popes, whoever’s) is orthodox, meaning true, and here is my honest answer: a little, but not yet. Assuming by Christianity you mean the Christian understanding of the world and God, Christian opinions on soul, text and culture . . . I’d have to say that we probably have a couple of things right, but a lot of things wrong.’

“McLaren suggests that clarity itself is of dubious value. He clearly prefers ambiguity and equivocation, and his books are therefore full of deliberate double-speak. In his introduction to A Generous Orthodoxy, he admits, ‘I have gone out of my way to be provocative, mischievous and unclear, reflecting my belief that clarity is sometimes overrated, and that shock, obscurity, playfulness, and intrigue (carefully articulated) often stimulate more thought than clarity.’ A common theme that runs throughout most of McLaren’s writings is the idea that ‘there is great danger in the quest to be right.’

Grenz and Franke, authors of the book Beyond Foundationalism: Shaping Theology in a Post-Modern Context, published 2001, made a significant impact in the evangelical academic community, and stated: “Christian theology therefore needs to be rethought, revised, and adapted in order to keep in step and remain relevant in these changing times.” These authors argue that the Spirit of God speaks through scripture, tradition, and culture and theologians must hear the voice of the Spirit in each one. Moreover, since culture is constantly in flux, they say, it’s right and fitting for Christian theology to be in a perpetual state of transition and ferment too. No issue should ever be regarded as finally settled.

However, God and Truth in scripture are often portrayed as a rock, something solid, immoveable and unalterable; something that can’t be revised or adapted . . .

Deut 32:4
He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.

Mal 3:6
For I am the LORD, I change not . . .

Hebrews 13:8
Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

Exodus 34:6
And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,



God is also eternal, knowing the end from the beginning as Someone who stands outside of the confines of temporal existence:

Rom 16:26
But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:


Isa 46:9-10
Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me,
Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure:



Grenz and Franke made the assertion that theology must be “rethought, revised and adapted in order to keep in step and remain relevant in these changing times.”

Yet the Word states that God is everlasting, He is one who knows all things, who declares the end from the beginning. He knows the entire history of our world and could recite it like we would recite the events that took place on a serial episode on television; even better in fact, not missing a single detail and noting every point of relevance that would require address. Since He is a God of omniscience (knowing all things) and also a God of omnipotence (possessing all power) and a God of all love and truth, could He not include in the entirety of scripture those provisions of truth which would be needed in any culture throughout time or in an environment of paradigm shifts, having perfect knowledge of ‘changing times’? Obviously! So, did He? Of course! The Word declares that God made such provisions for all things that pertain to life and godliness:

2 Pet 1:3
According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:


“. . . through the knowledge of Him” that is Christ Jesus, and we receive such knowledge of the Word Incarnate by the Word Inspired, the scriptures. Not through tradition, as Grenz and Franke suggest, nor through culture! There is no precedence in scripture to indicate Divine revelation through tradition and, or culture!

And since when was it the responsibility of theologians ONLY to ‘hear the Spirit’ and not the entirety of the body of Christ, men, women and children who understand the Word of God and hear the voice of the Blessed Shepherd? To suggest that theologians alone are able to ‘hear the Spirit’ resembles the dogma of Roman Catholicism and a priesthood that stands between God and the church!

‘Rethinking, and revising and adapting’ Christian theology (if its truly based on the pure doctrine of the Word) is as unnecessary as it would be to re-invent Jesus Christ; to do so is to claim that God is insufficient in His provision of Truth and doctrine necessary in order to answer any and all questions and concerns in all ages of humanity. Further, for fallible man to raise his corrupt hand in order to chisel off chunks of the LORD our ROCK in order to make Him and His Word more appealing to a world that finds Truth and Authority objectionable or even offensive is tantamount to puny man demanding that God change Himself in order to suit mankind’s own whims, even lusts.

THERE IS NOTHING TO RE-THINK, REVISE or ADAPT! God is GOD, and one doesn’t arbitrarily decide to throw parts of God’s Truth into the garbage heap simply because it’s politically incorrect, or can’t coexist with contemporary heresies or corrupt humanism (glorification of the human spirit)!!!

If anything needs to be re-thought or revised, it’s the revisionist mentality of those who would seek to altar the Word of God, and the doctrines, beliefs and conduct of any church of biblical integrity! IF a revision is necessary, it’s in the passive, careless attitude in the church that allows such blasphemous statements as those of McLaren’s, Grenz’, and Frankes’ to go unchallenged!

As Macarthur stated on pages 22 & 23:

”By such means, the ages-old war against the truth has moved right into the Christian community and the church itself has already become a battleground – and ominously, precious few in the church today are prepared for the fight.”

WAR in the CHURCH –

As MacArthur points out, “Battles over truth were raging inside the Christian community even in apostolic times, when the church was just beginning. In fact, the record of Scripture indicates that false teachers in the church immediately became a significant and wide spread problem wherever the gospel went. Virtually all the major epistles in the New Testament address the problem in one way or another. The apostle Paul was constantly engaged in battle against the lies of “false apostles [and] deceitful workers [who transformed] themselves into apostles of Christ” (2 Cor. 11:13). Paul said that was to be expected. It is, after all, one of the favorite strategies of the eivl one: “No wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministries also transform themselves into the ministers of righteousness” (vv. 14-15).” Pg. 23

This masquerade is taking place today as well, but as MacArthur says, “on a massive scale”. Now, the need is even greater for Christians to be on guard, alert and sober minded, heralding the truth of God’s Word and pass it on to the next generation, for them to likewise cherish and keep the faith (1 Tim. 6:20-21). This Truth war is nothing new; every generation has had to contend with the lies of this world, as promoted by the father of lies, Satan. What’s different in today’s world is that the preponderance of the church at large is ratifying rather than rejecting these dogmas of deceit!

MacArthur validly points out: “In one narrow respect, the driving idea behind the Emerging Church movement is correct: the current climate of postmodernism does represent a wonderful window of opportunity for the church of Jesus Christ. The arrogant rationalism that dominated the modern era is already in its death throes. Most of the world is caught up in disillusionment and confusion. People are unsure about virtually everything and do not know where to turn for the truth.

“However the absolute worst strategy for ministering the gospel in a climate like this is for Christians to imitate the uncertainty or echo the cynicism of the postmodern perspective – and in effect drag the Bible and the gospel into it. Instead, we need to affirm against the spirit of the age that God has spoken with the utmost clarity, authority, and finality through His Son (Hebrews 1:1-2). And we have the infallible record of that message in Scripture (2 Peter 1:19-21).”

Postmodernism, says MacArthur, is simply unbelief dressed in robes of feigned humility and virtue, but in fact, its body is that of proud rebellion against God’s Word. Whereas the Postmodernists weigh the scriptures with no small amount of skepticism, we the church can have absolute confidence and boldness in the inerrant Word; therefore let’s not be timid to proclaim the definitive and distinct message that’s been delivered to us! We are ambassadors who seek for the lost and have them reconcile with their God and Maker, yet we are also soldiers charged with the pulling down of strongholds and casting down the lies and deception spawned by the forces of evil (2 Cor. 10:3-5; 2 Tim. 2:3-4). Pg. 25

Here ends chapter One of John MacArthur’s The TRUTH War; I pray that this has been an encouragement to you as it has been for me. I would like to continue this article for another chapter (2 - Spiritual Warfare: Duty, Danger, and Guaranteed Triumph) of this book for our mutual edification.

I thought it would be a good idea to post two video clips where John MacArthur explains the heart of his book, and the issues at hand regarding The TRUTH War:

The TRUTH War Part One

The TRUTH War Part Two



Until then, it’s my sincerest prayer that the LORD keep all of us in His love, grace, peace and truth!
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Thursday, April 22, 2010

How Can We Not Know?

by A.M. Kisly

How man strives to build his own kingdom instead of God’s Kingdom. How man seeks to be exalted instead of exalting the Creator of all things. How man desires to fulfill his own will rather than the will of God. There are so many examples throughout the ages that have shown the error of willful disobedience…From Adam to the present age, man’s hearts have proven to be desperately wicked, filled with pride and arrogance…..easily enticed and deceived by Satan.

There is no excuse for the sins that have been committed within the Church when the Church has been given the written word of God. There is no reason for a true believer to fall prey into the hands of a false prophet when we have the very word of God in our own hands! It is the word of TRUTH!

It is not enough to own a Bible and keep it on a shelf…it is not enough to casually read it when and if we get around to it. It is not enough to accept just portions of the scripture and not the whole. We must read it as the life sustaining substance that it is. It is the very air that we breathe; the living water that we drink; and the bread of life which sustains us! We must believe it as the infallible instruction manual that guides our hearts and lives…We must obey it if we ever hope to please God, receive the full benefit of His blessings, and keep ourselves from being led astray from every wind of doctrine!

It is not about selfish man…it’s about HIM.

He who was described in Isaiah 53 who was despised and rejected of men, a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief: and we hid our faces from him…we esteemed him not…..He who was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities….and we who have strayed like sheep….turning away EVERY ONE to his own way….and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all….He who was oppressed, afflicted…..brought as a lamb to the slaughter…imprisoned, judged and put to death…it is about the Savior of us all, JESUS!

How can we not know Him? How can we not know His words? How can we not know the TRUTH?

It is time to ask ourselves who words are more believable….the words of our Lord and Savior……or the words of a false prophet?
Read more!

Friday, April 16, 2010

AWARE OF THE TIMES - News Updates


This just in from'The Hal Lindsey Report'

On this week's edition of "The Hal Lindsey Report": This week, President Obama hosted the largest gathering of heads of state in the US since the founding of the UN in San Francisco in 1945. He convened the "Nuclear Security Summit." Ostensibly, the goal of the summit was to encourage nations to secure their stockpiles of nuclear materials and weapons to keep them out of the hands of terrorists and rogue states.



However, word leaked out that Egypt, Turkey, Jordan, and Pakistan were planning to ambush Israel to demand that it declare its nuclear weapons arsenal. Some suspect the US was even in on the plan. So Israeli PM Netanyahu decided to skip the summit and foil the plot. Since the media was mostly banned from covering the summit sessions, we'll never know for certain if that was indeed the plan or what the summit actually accomplished.

It should be obvious to everyone by now that President Obama isn't exactly going to be Israel's best friend. In fact, he seems to consistently sympathize with the Arab/Muslim/Palestinian cause. I've wondered, "Why is the White House more outraged at an Israeli plan to build apartment buildings in Jerusalem that it is over the Iranian plan to build nuclear weapons?" I believe the reason is that Mr. Obama views Israel as the CAUSE of the Arab-Israeli conflict. That should come as no surprise, though. Anti-Semitism was a theme of his pastor for 20 years. He must have heard something he liked or agreed with else why would he have stayed in the church for two decades?

Evidence is leaking out that the US may be trying to freeze out Israel's nuclear establishment. Israeli scientists say they are now having difficulty obtaining visas to come to America to study at our universities and attend conferences and symposiums. Further, some of those scientists believe the US has imposed an unofficial embargo on parts and supplies for Israel's aging, French-built nuclear reactor at Dimona. One of the major factors contributing to Israel's survival for the last 60 years in a very tough neighborhood is its policy of "nuclear ambiguity." Do they or do they not have nuclear weapons? That doubt (and the Israelis' infamous "Samson Option") is precisely why the surrounding quarter of a billion Arab Muslims have not tried another invasion for the past 35 years. It now appears, though, that the US is taking steps to force Israel into signing the Nuclear Non- Proliferation Treaty and revealing its strengths... or weaknesses.

The White House has devised a new plan for peace in Israel -- one that it intends to IMPOSE on the tiny nation. I'll cover the details on the show, but suffice it to say that portions of the plan reveal the President's shallow understanding of the dynamics at work. Or, it may imply that he does understand and it simply fits into a more sinister plan for the region.

The Prime Minister of Malaysia recently castigated the Muslim world for not having a plan for "final victory" in Palestine. That's ominous. Anytime I hear the word "final" used in connection with Israel's future, certain images spring to mind. And trust me, those images are not far off the mark this time, either.

All of this has a familiar ring, doesn't it? It sounds exactly like the solution the prophet Daniel predicted for Israel in the days just before the true Messiah returns. And though I don't believe the stars of the final act are onstage yet, I think the present actors are moving things in the prophesied direction.

Finally, I want to share a couple of thoughts on the occasion of the tragic death of Poland's president, along with his wife and many leaders from that great country. Lech Kaczynski was a valued ally of America. And, as you know, we don't have many of those left.

The Hal Lindsey Report
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AWARE OF THE TIMES – News Updates

by A.M. Kisly

This week’s news has brought a new level of awareness of the times that we are living in.

What takes my breath away is the speed in which the events are happening; that they are happening before our very eyes; and that they are in fact leading us to a one world system of government; where the Anti-Christ will set himself up before the whole world to be worshipped.


More and more we see a full out war on Biblical Christianity. Just as early as this morning I read that a Federal District Court Judge ruled that the National Day of Prayer is UNCONSTITUTIONAL.

Read Article: National Day of Prayer ruled unconstitutional

Some of you may be thinking that it’s no big deal, that we have been here before, that it will be overturned….maybe so, but I would repeat the words of Jesus when he says….be not deceived...We are now living in a day where good is evil and evil is now good. The Biblical standards on which the Constitution and the Bill of Rights were written are quickly being shredded before our eyes. It is just a matter of time before the entire national landscape is completely changed, and not for the better.

Last year we were all infuriated by the Homeland Security report that suggested that Christians could be classified as a domestic terrorist threat.

Well, if that took the wind out of your sails, wait until you hear this:

Exclusive: World’s ‘Most Dangerous Islamist’ Alive, Well, and Living in Pennsylvania

This report is unbelievable! The fact that we have terrorists living in this country at all is shocking, but to have our government remain silent on the issue, and allow it, well that's more than insane, it's highly suspicious!

Excerpts taken from the article:

“Meet the most dangerous Islamist in the world. According to the report, his name is Fethullah Gulen. He is neither Afghani nor Arab. He comes from neither Sudan nor Somalia. And he resides in neither the mountains of Pakistan nor the deserts of the Palestinian territories.

This individual has toppled the secular government of Turkey and established madrassahs throughout the world.

His schools indoctrinate children in the tenets of radical Islam and prepare adolescents for the Islamization of the world.

More than 90 of these madrassahs have been established as charter schools throughout the United States. They are funded by American taxpayers.

One of these charter schools – Tarek ibn Zayed Academy (TiZA) in Minnesota – is so radically Islamic and subversive in nature that the Minnesota Department of Education issued two citations against it and the American Civil Liberties Union is suing it.

Dozens of his universities, including the Faith University in Istanbul, train young men to become lawyers, accountants, and political leaders so that they can take an active part in the restoration of the Ottoman Empire and the Islamization of the Western World.

He also allegedly operates compounds to train jihadists in the tactics of guerilla warfare.

This individual has amassed a fortune – over $30 billion – for the creation of a universal caliphate.

His name is Fethullah Gulen and he resides not in the wilds of southern Turkey – but the mountains of Northeastern Pennsylvania.”

Read Article: World’s ‘Most Dangerous Islamist’ Alive, Well, and Living in Pennsylvania

“Why has the federal government opted to turn a blind eye to Gulen and his mountain fortress?

Why have Gulen’s madrassahs been kept under the radar screen of Hoimeland Security?

Why have the CIA and FBI allowed Gulen to wreak havoc and topple secular governments without interruption or intervention?

The questions beg answers.”


Food for thought: It is inconceivable to me how a man like this is not only allowed in the United States, but actually lives in the U.S……this just goes to show how trustworthy our government officials are, NOT….in my opinion this war on terrorism is a joke….to me it’s all about creating chaos in order to gain control over the people of this nation and the world…..all the laws passed post 9/11 (that we so naively thought were created for our safety) are nothing more than a smokescreen to bring us to where we are today….a country losing its rights, its freedoms, its sovereignty and any future we might have as a nation, provided the Lord tarries – God forbid!

This brings me to the next article I read this week….

ARMY REPORT SAYS CHRISTIANS THREATEN US FOREIGN POLICY

While our government is busy trying to destroy the foundations of our country: our Constitution; our freedoms; our economy; our right to live; our right to pray….there is something more sinister brewing...a march to stomp out Christianity.

Reports and policies are being written suggesting that Christians are a National threat.....that we are a threat to foreign policy....to the military... they are declaring Bible believing Christians to be not only domestic terrorists, but international terrorists as well..... This report actually takes us to the next dangerous level.

While known terrorists are allowed to live and prosper in the United States without any government interference, ….we Bible believing Christians, who believe in the literal translation of the Bible, and who believe in the rapture of the Church are now the very targets of the U.S. Government….we are the “threats” and the “terrorists”!?!

The 61 page report was written by military official, a Major Stuckert who states that Christians who believe in the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ are “problematic” for military leaders…we create “potential vulnerabilities” and “interfere with U.S. government policy objectives.” He also goes on to say, "Military leaders and planners may take action now to mitigate the effects"? Does he propose that we Christians be rounded up and put in all these FEMA camps (that supposedly don't exist)? Just how does he plan for the US military to "mitigate" the effects of us Christians? This statement is downright chilling!

How they can fault the followers of Him who said, “LOVE your enemy, do good to those who hate you, and persecute you and say all manner of evil against you FALSELY for my Name’s sake. Verily I say unto you, great is your reward in heaven!”

ARMY REPORT SAYS CHRISTIANS THREATEN US FOREIGN POLICY .....Read Article

Major Stuckert states in this report that, "Military leaders and planners may take action now to mitigate the effects?" What does that mean? What do they plan on doing with us?????

In this latest report, Major Stuckert specifically targets the holiness and Pentecostal churches; as well as the Assemblies of God; non-denominational churches; and Independent and Southern Baptists....anyone who believes in the Second Coming of Christ is targeted in this report.

This is nothing more than a continuation of old brainwashing techniques...only now (whether knowingly or unknowingly) they are imposing the satanic philosophy of good is evil and evil is good.

Satan is clever and the masses are biting into the same apple of deceit that brought sin into this world.

If they can sway public opinion by creating lies, they can also change public policy by creating laws that just might make Christianity illegal in the future.

Is it starting to feel like you live under Communism?

Actually, it’s much worse than that….I believe that we are very near to the end, what is known as Daniels 70th week…when this world will go through a 7 year tribulation period as God pours out His wrath on the sons of iniquity. We are not there yet...but we are surely coming closer with each passing day.

That said, there is also good news for the Church!

I believe in a pre-tribulation rapture of the Church! I don’t believe that God’s children, the bride of Christ, will endure God’s wrath which will be poured out upon the face of the earth to those who have rejected Jesus Christ and have worshipped the Anti-Christ.

However, I do believe that it is vitally important for us to be aware of what is going on around us and to be ready for what is coming next.

Jesus is coming! The Bride, which is the Church, is to be preparing herself for the Bridegroom, Jesus. Yet while he tarries, there is more work to be done.

Believers in Christ need to be fully equipped to share the gospel no matter what persecution may come. I pray that we will remain faithful to the end…never compromising the truth that is within us, and serving out these last days to build KINGDOM OF GOD for HIS GLORY!

Draw near to Him…stay in the word…walk in the Spirit….don’t compromise...resist the devil...put on the armor of God - the Lord Jesus Christ, be faithful, be steadfast, be sober and vigilant, stand in the evil day….

…and LOOK UP! Your redemption is drawing nigh!
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Friday, April 2, 2010

RAPTURE: The WHO and WHEN Of It All - PART 5


~~ By James Fire

In this fifth (and also a final sixth) article in this series, I will examine the book of Revelation and see if I can spot the church in any duration of time contained within Daniel's 70th week, and further take a look at passages in the New Testament that would seem to encourage the church to expect Christ's return (for His bride) at ANY MOMENT! And why, if the rapture is biblical, hasn't the church taught it for the majority of its existence?

I have provided in this article, a couple of links that I have found useful in understanding various aspects of the rapture of the church, one of these from Dave Hunt and Tom McMahon, the other from Chuck Missler.


There are some that make the allegation that the rapture of the church is a dangerously false doctrine that was concocted by Margaret MacDonald and John Darby in the late 1800's; that there were no teachings on this subject from any church fathers or teachers of the church in earlier centuries.
While this isn't relevant in itself, due primarily because the Bible is the basis of our authority for spiritual truth, and not the teachings of any church fathers, elders, teachers from any century, and its what the scriptures themselves have to say about any teachings, be they practical, devotional, correctional, exhortational, or prophetical, that is ultimately important and valid.



Even so, there is substantiation to believe that the rapture, as well as the pre-tribulational view was held by early church fathers, and devoted Christians. To elaborate on this, I present to you, the reader, this article by Chuck Missler:

Ephraim the Syrian Speaks of the Rapture
(read footnote #2 in this article regarding Ephraim of Nisibis (306-373 a.d.) )



These other articles found at www.khouse.org may also prove useful:

Studies Helps on the Rapture

Its sometimes pointed out by a few mid- and post-tribulationists that the church had previously taught the rapture, but it was a teaching that faded over time, until later scholars deemed it unbiblical.



This 'fading' began after the third century and continued well into the Dark Ages; even through the time of the Reformation, and it wasn't until (so these who hold such mid- and post- views, say) Darby and MacDonald, that this 'dream' was taught as Truth.



We must bear in mind church history; over a period of time the Roman church began dominating the other cities that were centers of Christian teaching, such as Antioch, Ephesus, and others; note that I delete Alexandrius as a center for Christian teaching, even though its acknowledged by many Bible scholars. The reason I do this is plainly because these so-called Christians in Alexandrius were predominantly Gnostics, and didn't believe in the fundamentals of the Christian faith, but favored Greek philosophy such as Gnosticism, Docetism, and others (But that's another article! We covered much of Gnostic beliefs in other articles here on TTUF. To view these simply type "Gnostics" in the search engine).


Central to the Roman church (and particularly the formative stage of this center of dogmatism that later became the Roman Catholic church), at the behest of Constantine whose primary interest was in uniting his kingdom, was the notion that "Christ reigns in our hearts, and that the kingdom of God is within" (both true) and that "any reign of Christ on the Earth, usurping the evil leaders of the world of their position and power" was not literal, but allegorical (this however is not true).


Origen, one of the early church fathers (and a Gnostic himself by the way!), was the one who first suggested this idea of allegorization of the scriptures. Since at that time it was a law that everyone in the Empire was to be a Christian, many that sat in the pews were unconverted pagan leaders!


Certainly these would be offended by such teachings that Christ would one day come, and replace their rulership with His own, and reign in righteousness and truth, releasing the oppressed and trodding down the oppressors! Thus was amillennialism born, that is, the belief that no actual millennial reign of Christ would be manifested in the last days, nor would it be preceded by a time of tribulation, which itself would not be commenced after a 'rapture' of believers in Christ. This became standard dogma later in the Roman Catholic church.



Another reason a 'rapture' doesn't fit into Roman Catholic theology is the idea of purgatory; it's their belief that the sufferings of Christ was not entirely sufficient for the believer, but that they must suffer for a time in purgatory before entering heaven. If that were the case, then their entrance into heaven would be a singular, rather than a collective event; that is, each saint would arrive one at a time once their suffering was complete, rather than the church in its entirety being transported into heaven at the coming of the LORD.



Unfortunately this amillennial view held Europe and all lands dominated by the Roman Catholic church in its grip for centuries, and when the Reformation was at its apex, the focus then was "sola fide" that is, salvation by grace alone in faith alone, apart from works; as well as "sola scriptura" which means that the singular and exclusive authority for the church was the holy scriptures and not dogma, tradition, edicts from any church authority, be they pope, bishop, priest, etc.



What the Reformers didn't address, much to the tragedy of the church, was eschatology, that is the prophetic study of the last days. They more or less 'borrowed' the Roman Catholic views of amillenialism without revision, amendment, or valid correction of ANY KIND (They even propagated the view that the church was 'the new Israel' and this of course led to much persecution of the Jews at the hands of both Catholics and Protestants)!


Thus its understandable why those who deny a pre-tribulational view would assume that any idea of a rapture, which occurs BEFORE Daniel's 70th week, was a concoction of 19th century aberrant theology.



Again, the ultimate authority of scripture is, and must be, the standard by which all doctrine is based; don't adhere to the words of your favorite Bible teacher, or your local pastor, or what you personally believe doctrinally. Every saint born of God is responsible to adhere to what the scriptures say, and understand the Truth by the Divine revelation which inspired the scriptures; and as long as pastors, teachers, etc. remain faithful to the Word, we owe them their due respect as leaders of the church.


Most of us know this verse any way, but I feel its important enough to post it here now:


Acts 17:11
These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.


Here I would like to insert a link to several video clips by Dave Hunt and Tom McMahon, and their views of the rapture. In light of what I just stated previously, we must examine the statements these brothers make in the light of scripture to determine if what they are saying is true.



While I have looked into these videos, and am quite familiar with Dave Hunt's position on the Bible, I confess that I don't agree entirely on all the views of The Berean Call, but for the most part, I believe what they teach is fundamentally correct, and I submit these for your perusal:

Why hasn't the Rapture Happened Yet?

There is over an hour and a half worth of clips to view and please feel free to review them at your leisure.

UPDATE (as of 6-23-09): Here is a link that provides an excellent treatment of the Rapture, from Southwest Radio Ministry (see the link to this site on TTUF):


Premillennialism vs. Other Views

THE DOCTRINE OF IMMINENCE is something revealed in scripture through various inspired writers who spoke of the LORD's return for His church, the body of Christ at ANY MOMENT.


Here are some verses that speak on this issue, take particular note of those sections that are highlighted:

Matt 24:36-44
But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.


Remember that the coming of the LORD will be on a day when we think not; as the days of Noah were. The people of that time didn't expect the calamity to strike, which was foretold them, but when it occurred, they were surprised. So shall the coming of the Son of man: IF there were any precedent event that must take place before the rapture, then the time of the rapture wouldn't surprise us, and it would occur at a time when we "think so" not "think not".


The same with the following reference below in Mark: observe the statement, "you know not when the time is". For this same reason this couldn't be a reference to the Second Coming, for that won't occur until all the signs of the Revelation are complete, and the Beast reigns supreme on Earth, with his one world government; the myriad judgments declared by broken seals, blaring trumpets, and dreadful bowls will have already been accomplished prior to the Second Coming. How could at that point, any one think: 'The LORD won't be coming back any time soon. I think it's not for a long time yet'??


Mark 13:32-37
But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is. For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.


Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch. (see also: Luk 12:34-40)


"watch" here means "to keep awake, vigilant, as opposed to being lax and indifferent."


Phil 3:20
For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.



Of course this reference is parallel with the verses found in 1 Thess. 4, and 1 Cor. 15, as these both speak of our translation from this world, into heaven; the latter reference also speaks of the transformation of our corruptible flesh putting on immortality.


Phil 4:5
Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.


1 Thess 1:9-10
For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.



1 Thess 5:4-6
But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.



For those who keep watch, and are ever vigilant in our expectation of our LORD, we will certainly know the times and the seasons (and those of us who are watching, can we not say, we are living in that very time and season?), thus we won't be "overtake[n]" (katalambano- to suddenly come upon and to seize, as in the Day of the LORD), but when that actual day occurs, we will not experience stunned delight?



1 Tim 6:13-15
I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; That thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukeable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ: Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords;




There are six references to this word "appearing" in the N.T., and of these, five have the same Greek word, and among these, is this verse above. The other references are as follows:


2 Tim 1:10; 2 Tim 4:1 and 2 Tim 4:8; Titus 2:13; the sixth reference uses a different Greek word, and this is found in 1 Pet 1:7.


In the first five references the Greek word used is epiphaneia, and it means "a manifestation, a shining forth", and is related to all the various appearances of Christ, at His first Advent, and His Second, and also when He appears to His church at the rapture as mentioned here in 1 Tim. 6:14.



In the 1 Peter 1:7 reference the Greek word apokalupsis is used, and this is a "disclosure, revelation, manifestation" and its more comprehensive than epiphaneia and depicts the progressive and immediate unveiling of the otherwise unknown and unknowable God to His church.


Titus 2:11-13
For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;

Hebrews 9:27-28
And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

Hebrews 10:36-38
For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry. Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.

James 5:7-8
Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain. Be ye also patient; stablish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.

Rev 22:20-21
He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

There are those skeptics and cynics, humanists and atheists alike, that like to criticize and mock Jesus Christ and His Word for this scripture, for they say, He said He was coming 'quickly' and yet He's been away for 2,000 years! Did He lose track of time? Did He get a flat?

The Greek word used here is tachu, which means, "shortly, without delay, soon, or by surprise, suddenly, readily, quickly, swift". It refers more to the manner of one's coming rather than a time duration. We know that the LORD is longsuffering and not willing that any should perish, and so He waits for those last of the Gentiles, who in His wisdom, are all accounted for, and awaits the time when they will receive salvation, and then, He will come "suddenly" without warning.

Speaking of suddenly, we have come to the end of this fifth article; there will be one more installment, and then I will write an update, an addendum with some final thoughts and materials.

Unti then, as I've said before: Keep your eyes on the skies, and DON'T BELIEVE THE LIES! The LORD JESUS REIGNS ON HIGH!!!

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