Category Archives: News and Info

News and Information Posts from Bro Bo

Plea for Help- Important – Please Read!

I am the Editor of the Daily Devotions, News and Information WEB site and I would like to please get your help saving our family home!

Vincent S. Bocchieri

First and Foremost Please Pray that the Court System and the Attorneys for the Mortgage company will listen to reason and dismiss the 15 year old Foreclosure case against our Home!

Our Front Porch during a previous Presidential Election 😉

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Vince B.

The School Choice Juggernaut Marches On

 

 

Incredible as it may seem, less than one year ago, not a single state offered universal school choice to its citizens. That was then, this is now. Today, four states (Arizona, Arkansas, Iowa, and Utah) have universal school choice laws on the books, with several more considering bills that would vastly expand education freedom.

Although there are many factors that have led to the school choice movement gaining more momentum than ever before, one should not discount the behavior of public school leaders and teacher union officials during the pandemic in moving public opinion decidedly in favor of school choice.

According to recent polling, school choice is more popular than ever before. And, more significantly, school choice is one of the rare issues that receives widespread support from Democrats, Republicans, and Independents as well as across racial, socioeconomic, and even generational lines.

This month marks the three-year anniversary of the widespread shutdown of public schools throughout the country, under the guise of the pandemic. Of course, as most Americans witnessed with bewilderment, while most public schools refused to offer in-person learning throughout the duration of the pandemic, the overwhelming majority of private and charter schools remained open for in-person learning over the same period.

On top of this, as government-run schools refused to offer in-person learning and opted for inferior remote learning, droves of parents were absolutely shocked at the radical curriculum that the public schools were pushing on their children. From critical race theory to explicit sexual content, parents finally got a first-hand account of what public schools are up to these days.

Moreover, as the months went by and the public schools kept moving the reopening goalposts, parents became infuriated that their children were falling behind academically as well as becoming increasingly isolated, depressed, and dysfunctional after months of being stuck at home in front of a screen for eight hours per day.

Needless to say, most parents were at their wits end with the education industrial complex, which exists to serve adults, specifically teacher unions and public education bureaucrats, not students.

So, as would be expected, a major exodus from public schools began. While parents were pulling their children from failing public schools, they chose to enroll their kids in private, parochial, and charter schools. This trend was exacerbated when public schools refused to drop mask mandates and required vaccinations, even though the evidence showed that both of these policies were misguided at best and downright harmful to most children.

Yet, even as the writing was on the wall, public school officials and their partners in crime ignored the pleas by parents to address, or at least consider, their valid concerns. In fact, for the most part, these unaccountable bureaucrats doubled down on their position, berating parents for having the audacity to question their omnipotence over the education system.

In one classic example, Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe said during a debate, “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.”

Glenn Youngkin, McAuliffe’s opponent, took the inverse position, saying, “What we’ve seen over the course of this last 20 months is our school systems refusing to engage with parents. In fact, in Fairfax County this past week, we watched parents so upset because there was such sexually explicit material in the library they had never seen, it was shocking. And in fact, you vetoed the bill that would have informed parents that they were there. You believe school systems should tell children what to do. I believe parents should be in charge of their kids’ education.”

In many ways, this was a tipping point. The eyes of the nation were cast on Virginia in 2021 because it became ground zero in the battle for parental rights and school choice, in general.

Fortunately, Youngkin defeated McAuliffe in a landslide. However, this race was a microcosm for the bitter battles that were to follow. After Youngkin’s unexpected victory, more and more Republican governors began to embrace school choice. On the other hand, more and more Democratic governors began to take the opposite stance and became full-fledged enemies of the increasingly popular school choice renaissance.

And so, this is where things stand today. Among the general population, school choice is a commonsense policy that places parents, not education bureaucrats, in charge of their children’s education. As we continue to see, education choice is being embraced in red states, which are offering parents education savings accounts so that they can choose whichever school their child should attend. Yet, most blue states remain obstinate, reluctant to heed the wishes of the parents who prodigiously advocate for more school choice.

Eventually, I expect that freedom will win the day. It will likely be a long, drawn-out fight, but if the current trend continues, the left’s monopoly on education could be on the verge of extinction sooner rather than later.

 

By The Heartland Institute

Source: The School Choice Juggernaut Marches On – RedState

Trump Is Leader of Republican Party… and America

Trump Is Leader of Republican Party… and America

 

As the next presidential election approaches, the leader of the Republican Party, and America, is Donald Trump.

In 2015, the Republican Party was dead.  There was no clear leader and little enthusiasm even as the end of Barack Obama’s presidency was on the horizon.  Republicans suffered convincing losses in the two previous presidential elections, and a Bush versus Clinton rematch reincarnate was plausible for a time.  The party’s 2014 midterm election gains were more of a referendum on Barack Obama than an endorsement of the Republican Party.  But the key reason those scenarios were short-lived was because of Donald Trump.

While the Democrats, media, and Republican establishment (now referred to as the Uniparty) were busy mocking Trump’s candidacy, he was energizing and awakening a previously dormant base of the electorate.  The base, which eventually became known as “the forgotten man,” was composed of right-leaning Americans who felt they did not have a champion who was truly fighting for them.  Trump was at first a breath of fresh air.  But when the shock of his candidacy transitioned into reality, it became clear he was the pro-America candidate Americans had been longing for since Ronald Reagan.

After all this time, the Uniparty is still hard at work.  It’s no secret that left-leaning networks such as CNN or MSNBC hold strong anti-Trump biases.  However, many exclude Fox News when they mention biased mainstream networks.  Fox has always wanted to keep hold of the Trump base while distancing themselves from Trump himself, so seeing them promote a potential Trump opponent is not surprising.  As Governor DeSantis cruised to reelection victory this past November, Fox quickly anointed him as the new king of the GOP and celebrated his victory with noticeable delight.  It felt coordinated, as though they could hardly wait to crown him in front of a national audience.  But there was a crucial element they did not mention: Ron DeSantis is in the position he is in because of Donald Trump.

In the 2018 Florida Governor Republican Primary, DeSantis was trailing mightily to Adam Putnam.  Trump’s endorsement saved DeSantis, which landed him the nomination and eventually proved to be the difference in his slim victory in the general election.  Trump delivered a victory for DeSantis in a way DeSantis himself couldn’t.  Only a legitimate leader could have such a powerful influence on the electorate.

Despite Trump sporting a 91% endorsement success rate, (which shenanigans prevented from being higher) somehow the Paul Ryan directedKarl Rove contributed Fox News continues to inform their viewership that Trump hurts the party and that he is to blame for its shortcomings.  Ryan has called Trump a “proven loser,” and stated he will not attend the 2024 Republican National Convention in his home state of Wisconsin unless the party nominates someone other than Trump.  Not exactly indicative of an unbiased media outlet.

The greatest disappointment regarding Fox’s analysis is that it ignores reality: Election fraudunconstitutional changes to election law, and other irregularities are what has cost Republicans the last two elections, not Trump.  In fact, if not for Trump’s ability to generate such significant enthusiasm across America, election integrity wouldn’t even be on the Republican agenda, since the obvious lengths gone to in order to defeat Trump and the candidates he endorses is what makes the issue so undeniable.  Fox’s refusal to take potential election fraud into account indicates they shouldn’t blame anybody but themselves for their overzealous midterm predictions.

In addition to the media, the Establishment continues to prove how out of touch they are with the American people.  Nikki Haley, the only non-Trump candidate to officially enter the race, believes it is time for “a new generation” to lead the Republican Party.  Both Mike Pence and Mike Pompeo are mulling runs.  They both shared a similar sentiment to Haley.  Pence claims “The times call for different leadership.  I’m confident we’ll have better choices than my old running mate.” Pompeo says we need “leaders who are looking forward … not claiming victimhood.” All three have spent many more years in government than Trump and never came close to rivaling the support he has and are primarily known for their time in the Trump Administration.  So, if they truly believe America needs to cut Trump ties, wouldn’t that disqualify themselves?

In regard to a potential DeSantis run, recent predictions and compliments from those rejected by the Republican base will solidify Trump as the only clear anti-establishment candidate, if there was any doubt.  And unlike previous eras in history, Republicans now prefer candidates with a shorter track record of government service because the distrust of elected officials and government agencies continues to rise.

Beyond the Republican Party, every day under the Biden Administration proves Trump is still America’s strongest leader even after leaving office.  One of the most important roles of the Presidency is to comfort those suffering.  As we witnessed calamity unfold in East Palestine, Ohio, it was fitting that Joe Biden delivered a speech in Ukraine to comfort its citizens on the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion.  America Last.

While Biden was in Ukraine, Trump not only brought comfort to the people of East Palestine, but also leadership and resources.  After Trump’s visit, FEMA reversed course from an earlier decision where they deemed the state “ineligible” to receive federal resources.  A federal agency acting only after Trump did is as vital a sign of strength, influence, and leadership as can be.

Despite Americans becoming less supportive of U.S. involvement in overseas conflict, a multinational conflict is brewing.  You may remember doomsday predictions about Trump starting World War 3 (how ironic looking back now).  Instead, he went on to broker numerous international peace deals, while Russia exhibited more restraint than during other recent periods.  Trump was also able to bring North Korea to the negotiating table after previous administrations failed to.  Is there a better leader for these contentious times than a president whose term did not involve the U.S. entering any new wars, especially as Ukraine begins to suggest American soldiers will soon die?

The greatest leaders are ahead of the curve.  They set the trend, not follow it.  Trump was the first to address border security in 2016, suggest the U.S. getting along with Putin would be a net-positive, that Covid came from a lab leak in Wuhan, and that mass mail-in voting would be disastrous.  He has been proven right time and again, and as his predictions unfold, he sturdily withstands the media backlash.

In 2016, the only candidate willing to take on the establishment was Trump.  He was able to raise up “the forgotten man” in a way no career politician ever could.  After getting a taste of life under non-establishment rule, Americans desire that again perhaps now more than ever.

America has become a shell of its former self. When the opportunity to take back America arrives, a proven commodity is essential, and there is only one person with the track record to prove they are up for the job.  President Trump is a trusted leader who has the hearts of the people at a level nobody else can match. Once again, it’s Trump versus the Establishment.

 

By Matt Kane

Source: Trump Is Leader of Republican Party… and America – American Thinker

DDNI Featured News Article – ‘A historic first’: Vietnam allows Franklin Graham to hold evangelism event with 300 churches

In what is dubbed a “historic first,” Vietnam’s communist government has permitted a foreign Christian speaker to hold an evangelistic outreach. Evangelist Franklin Graham will share God’s love with the people of the Southeast Asian country this weekend at the Spring Love Festival.

“The Spring Love Festival is historic because this is the first time the government has given permission for an evangelistic outreach with a foreign speaker outside of a religious holiday,” the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association shared in a statement to The Christian Post.

BGEA President and CEO Graham, the son of late evangelist Billy Graham, will speak at two events at the Phu Tho Sports Facility in Ho Chi Minh City on Saturday and Sunday.

Graham arrived in Vietnam Wednesday and was “warmly welcomed” by Deputy Prime Minister Le Minh Khai and officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Government Committee for Religious Affairs.

“I am grateful for this, and thankful to the Deputy Prime Minister and the government for allowing me to come and preach in Vietnam a second time,” Graham said. “I will share a message of God’s love for the people of Vietnam.”

BGEA is working with more than 300 churches in Vietnam for the Spring Love Festival, which is open to all.

This weekend’s program will also feature musical performances from singers Michael W. Smith, Luu Chi Vy, Isaac Thai, Le Nguyet Anh and Naomi Nguyen.

Pastor Ho Tan Khoa, one of the local leaders of the event, said in a statement that “Protestant churches love the people of Ho Chi Minh City very much, of which more than 90% of the population do not know God.”

“We are honored to join the Billy Graham Missionary Association for the opportunity to share the love of the Lord,” the pastor said in a statement. “We have been praying for a long time for the evangelism to take place and are so happy that Pastor Franklin Graham is coming to share the Good News of God’s love with everyone at the Spring Love Evangelism Program.”

In their meetings in Hanoi, government officials discussed with Graham the country’s religious diversity and claimed that government supports religious freedom even though human rights advocates have warned for years about the troubling religious freedom conditions in Vietnam.

Officials reportedly told Graham how helpful churches were in their communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Graham preached in Hanoi in December 2017, and the communist government has given permission to hold Christian events during the Easter and Christmas seasons in the past, but not to a foreign speaker or outside of religious festivals.

The 2023 Open Doors US World Watch List, which ranks countries based on the level of persecution and discrimination faced by Christians, ranked Vietnam as the 25th most dangerous country in the world for followers of Christ.

“Historical Christian communities (such as Roman Catholic churches) enjoy a certain amount of freedom unless they become politically active, which can lead to imprisonment, or are involved in land-grabbing cases,” Open Doors warns in a Vietnam fact sheet. “Evangelical and Pentecostal congregations, most of whom gather in house churches, are closely monitored and face discrimination at various levels of government and society.”

Open Doors notes that since many converts belong to ethnic minority communities like the H’mong, authorities are “particularly suspicious of them.”

“Their homes are sometimes destroyed and they are then forced to leave their villages,” the fact sheet states. “Yet their numbers are reported to be growing.”

Last year, critics warned that new draft regulations proposed by the Government Committee for Religious Affairs would allow the government to exert even more pressure on registered religious organizations. 

The Christian Post recently spoke to Rev. Peter Nguyen Van Khai, a Vietnamese Catholic priest now living outside the country, at the 2023 International Religious Freedom Summit in Washington, D.C.

He spoke about the religious freedom conditions in his home country, one of the few remaining countries still ruled by a communist party. For years, regulations and laws governing religion have allowed the government to control the activities of registered religious organizations and churches. 

Van Khai was forbidden by the communist government from becoming a priest, studying in a monastery, doing pastoral work in churches and going abroad to study. He had studied theology and philosophy secretly for 14 years before being ordained as a Catholic priest. After his ordination, his family faced adverse treatment by the government, including job loss.

Although he acknowledged that “the Communist government doesn’t arrest the priests or bishops anymore,” he said the situation has “worsened because the Communist Party is trying to control the bishops.”

“In our country, the Holy See sends the bishop candidate to [the] government, and the government chooses who they want. So they try to control the church and the priest and the [Catholics] via bishop. And the government [holds] the right of veto,” Van Khai explained.

He said that the ruling party in Vietnam is seeking to “turn the church into tools for their domination.”  

In northwestern, central and southern Vietnam, Van Khai said, “people of different ethnic minorities are often persecuted.”

Converts from Buddhist or ethnic-animist backgrounds face the most severe persecution from authorities, their families, friends and neighbors.

By Anugrah Kumar, Christian Post Contributor

https://www.christianpost.com/news/vietnam-allows-franklin-graham-to-hold-outreach-with-300-churches.html

DDNI Featured News Article – ‘I Couldn’t Be A Christian And A Teacher‘: School Teacher Fired For Resisting Trans Agenda

A California high school gym teacher has been fired from the Jurupa Unified School district because of her religious beliefs on gender identity. 

Although Jessica Tapias had never had a transgender student in her classes, the school district demanded that she be willing to refer to transgender students by pronouns not matching their biological sex, according to the Pacific Justice Institute (PJI), which Tapias has hired to help her get reinstated. 

“The school district further required her to agree to lie to parents who are unaware of their student’s gender identity confusion,” PJI said in a news release. “She was also ordered to permit transgender students to use locker rooms at the same time that students of the opposite sex might be changing and possibly be completely naked.” 

Tapias ultimately decided her Christian beliefs would not allow her to go along with hiding students’ gender transitions from parents and lying to them. She requested a religious accommodation to the demands, and the school district subsequently fired her. PJI has submitted a discrimination complaint with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Tapias has spoken out about her firing to Fox News, Newsmax and other outlets. 

“I knew immediately, like in my gut, in my heart, in my soul, that there was a decision I had to make because, you know, these two things were totally butting heads,” she told Fox News. “I essentially had to pick one. Am I going to obey the district in the directive that [does not line up] with … my own beliefs, convictions and faith? Or am I going to stay true … choose my faith, choose to be obedient to … the way the Lord has called me to live? And so it was crazy to be in the position where I realized that I couldn’t be a Christian and a teacher.” 

According to the PJI release, Tapias posted her personal views on Instagram, during her own time, about the use of pronouns and teaching gay pride to 3-year-old children, and although she didn’t identify her employer or state where she was a teacher, the post prompted an investigation and multiple hypothetical demands by the school district. 

During an interview with Newsmax’s American Agenda, Tapias said that some students found her on social media and sent some of her posts to her school district. She was immediately removed from her tenured position and put on paid administrative leave while the district investigated.

“It very much feels like the school is taking on these parental responsibilities and taking away the students’ actual parents’ rights,” she said during the interview. “It’s interesting … the district asks us as educators to uphold honesty. And so, I looked them in the eye, and I wanted to be very clear, ‘Are you asking me to lie to parents,’ and they said ‘yes, it’s the law, and it’s for the students’ privacy.’ And it hit me that they want us to be honest in only … certain situations.”

According to Fox News Digital, a notice written under Superintendent Trenton Hanson’s letterhead informed Tapias that the district couldn’t accommodate her Christian beliefs, which prohibited her from withholding information on gender transitions from parents. 

“Consequentially, the District will release you from your employment effective at the end of the day on Jan. 31, 2023,” the notice said. 

“Based on your religious beliefs, you cannot be dishonest with parents … If asked about student gender identity by a parent, you cannot refer the parent to a counselor, defer the inquiry and suggest they speak with a student … or otherwise deflect the parent’s inquiry,” a letter, signed by the assistant superintendent of human resources, Daniel Brooks, said. 

Tapias also refused to allow “male genitals” in the girls’ locker rooms. 

“I don’t believe in my faith that that’s how God’s calling us to love, by affirming those lies and confusion,” she told Fox. “I believe firmly that God created man and woman, and you are who He made you to be. And when someone has confusion about that, I believe that’s lies and confusion from the devil.”

Tapias said she originally went into teaching because she loved the idea of helping and supporting kids.

“I thought how amazing it would be to be a light to [kids] possibly coming from very rough homes like I did when I was a child. And so it was just so exciting … to get to work in a field where it was just way beyond a paycheck, [where I would be] able to make a difference in a way that was priceless on young lives.”

Franklin Graham expressed his support for Tabias on Facebook.

“I appreciate this teacher!” he posted. “She has the guts to stand up for what’s right. And they have absolutely no right to fire her for it! We need many more like her … This is a crime against children. It just shows how upside down the world has become.” 

Tapias has a strong case, PJI Attorney Brad Dacus told Newsmax’s American Agenda

“We at Pacific Justice Institute in fact are taking on cases like this in the hundreds, of people of faith being purged from their jobs because of their faith. Her situation is particularly strong because it’s not about what she did in the workplace. She has a spotless record of what she does as a teacher. It’s because of her beliefs.” 

Beliefs that are solid and reasonable. 

“She doesn’t want to lie and use pronouns affirming something that violates her conscience and her love for those children,” Dacus said. “She doesn’t want to hide information and lie to parents. She doesn’t want to allow biological boys, teenage boys, to go into the girls’ locker room at the same time when girls could be changing, could be naked … We at Pacific Justice Institute intend to take this case as far and as long as we need to make sure there’s justice.”

ByDecision Magazine

And Just Like That, Natural Immunity is No Longer a Conspiracy Theory

And Just Like That, Natural Immunity is No Longer a Conspiracy Theory

 

Natural immunity to disease is, or at least was, a well-known concept in medicine.

By disease, I mean viral infections. One can’t develop natural immunity to diseases like diabetes or heart failure. Many of us remember “chicken pox parties” where when one kid was infectious, he or she was invited over to play with your kids, so they all got infected and then they did not have to worry about getting chicken pox again, due to natural immunity.

The CDC defines it as follows: “Natural immunity is acquired from exposure to the disease organism through infection with the actual disease.” Contrast this to: “Vaccine-induced immunity is acquired through the introduction of a killed or weakened form of the disease organism through vaccination.”

Both can be effective depending on the virus, assuming exposure doesn’t kill you, and the type of vaccine, assuming one exists for that virus. As the CDC describes, “If an immune person comes into contact with that disease in the future, their immune system will recognize it and immediately produce the antibodies needed to fight it. Active immunity is long-lasting, and sometimes life-long.”

Yet with the COVID pandemic, this basic and longstanding medical concept became a right-wing, Q-Anon conspiracy theory.

Far-left Mother Jones described it, “Anti-vaxxers have a dangerous theory called ‘natural immunity.’ Now it’s going mainstream.”

The CDC: “Getting a COVID-19 vaccination is a safer and more dependable way to build immunity to COVID-19 than getting sick with COVID-19.

The Mayo Clinic: “It’s recommended that people who have already had COVID-19 get a COVID-19 vaccine.”

USA Today was also quite certain: “Fact check: COVID-19 vaccines provide safer, more consistent immunity than infection.”

Anyone saying otherwise was accused of spreading mis- or disinformation. For physicians this could manifest as a threat of or loss of medical license or employment.

For example, Dr. Peter McCullough, prominent cardiologist, and outspoken challenger of government COVID policies had his Texas medical license threatened.

Denial of natural immunity was the basis of vaccine mandates which deprived millions of Americans of “the right to choose” or “my body my choice.” Countless individuals with proven natural immunity based on antibody testing lost their jobs since the government mantra was that vaccine immunity was the only path forward and natural immunity was a dangerous conspiracy theory.

Those serving in the military, playing professional sports, or attending college had to make a potentially life-changing choice between natural and vaccine immunity and losing their job or education. For those suffering a vaccine-adverse event, such as myocarditis, stroke, or even sudden death, this was a fatal choice.

Lo and behold, The Lancet changed their tune a few weeks ago with a paper, specifically a meta-analysis reviewing 65 studies from 19 countries showing that previous infection with COVID provided better and longer lasting protection than vaccination. This is not to say vaccines provide no protection, but that natural immunity is more effective.

From the paper: “Protection from past infection against re-infection from pre-omicron variants was very high and remained high even after 40 weeks.” Immunity may last far longer. A 2020 study published in Nature found that after the 2003 SARS epidemic, a virus similar to COVID, infected patients had immunity 17 years later.

This was the length of surveillance meaning that immunity could last far longer, even a lifetime. For this SARS coronavirus, previous infection provided long term protection against reinfection. Or as Nature headlined: “Had COVID? You’ll probably make antibodies for a lifetime.”

“Protection was substantially lower for the omicron BA.1 variant and declined more rapidly over time than protection against previous variants.” But their graphs still showed better protection from previous infection than vaccination.

Also, “Protection from severe disease was high for all variants.” This was the argument for vaccination that it would keep you out of the hospital and ICU, although natural immunity did just fine in this regard.

Although even that point about serious disease is in question. Steve Kirsch performed an analysis and found, “The government data from New Zealand shows that for each age group, the more you vax, the more likely you are to die from COVID.”

This is similar to the recent Cleveland Clinic study finding that the more vaccine doses one had the more one was likely to get COVID. If would be helpful of the CDC would carry out its own similar studies to either confirm or refute these reports. Rather than sticking to their guns and screaming “disinformation.”

Why is natural immunity more robust? One reason is that natural infection is through the respiratory tract via mucosal surfaces, as opposed to vaccination which bypasses mucous membranes and only provides immunity within the body. Natural infection provides mucosal immunity to future infection, at the point of viral entry into the body, whereas vaccine immunity does not.

Look at it another way. Natural infection locks the doors and windows to the house versus vaccine immunity which simply has a guard inside the house which can’t stop the bad guys from getting inside.

Another reason is that natural immunity protects against 29 viral proteins compared to vaccines which protect against only one protein, the spike protein. This would like guarding your home with 29 guards rather than only one.

As a necessary disclaimer, I am not antivaccine, having received two COVID vaccine doses in late 2020. But all vaccines and patients and their risk factors are not the same. With any medical treatment, a thoughtful approach is required, rather than a one size fits all management.

Is this a sudden revelation about natural immunity? Hardly. Dr. Anthony Fauci, in a 2004 C-Span interview, sang the praises of natural immunity for the flu virus, another respiratory virus similar to COVID. Here are his words.

“Well, no, if she got the flu for 14 days, she’s as protected as anybody can be, because the best vaccination is to get infected yourself.” When asked about getting the flu vaccine he replied, “She doesn’t need it, because the most potent vaccination is getting infected yourself.”

Flash forward 17 years and the self-proclaimed fact checkers, like Reuters, claim Dr Fauci’s previous statements were “missing context.” His words seemed very clear and straightforward that previous infection is the best form of immunity. Instead, the CDC recommended vaccination even after previous infection, ostensibly to prevent reinfection, which simple observation and the Cleveland Clinic study refutes. How many people do you know who have been fully vaccinated and multi-boosted are still getting COVID?

Common sense suggests that previous infection should count for something, such as full vaccination, with booster doses for those at higher risk. The EU COVID certificate acknowledged “recovered from COVID-19” as equivalent to vaccination. Yet in the U.S., citizens suffered ostracization or job loss if they chose to rely on previous infection as providing sufficient immunity. Similarly, foreigners still cannot enter the U.S. without proof of vaccination, regardless of how many times they have had and recovered from COVID.

It turns out that the COVID vaccines don’t stop transmission, and based on the above reviews, may increase susceptibility to infection and death. Those were the reasons for vaccine mandates. And natural immunity, a well-known concept, was ignored for COVID and called a conspiracy theory which like many previous bits of “misinformation” turned out to be true.

What about young individuals forced to take vaccines and boosters to attend school, despite having had previous COVID infection, and the few that suffered myocarditis or blood clots despite their risk of getting seriously ill from COVID was near zero? How do they get their lives back?

COVID will not go away but is mutating, as viruses generally do, into a more contagious and less virulent form, much like the common cold. Pushing a vaccine which at this point for most people, provides little if any benefit, and exposes recipients to small but potentially significant risks (another conspiracy theory) is pointless and goes against the medical admonition to “first do no harm”.

Since medical authorities and public health agencies followed the political rather than the medical science, their credibility may be permanently damaged. Why did the medical smart set purposefully ignore the role of natural immunity when formulating COVID policy? Did they all have sudden amnesia to well established immunology or were other agendas at play?

This will not be the last public health emergency we face and if those in charge choose to play God rather than be honest and transparent, the public will have little faith in any future public medical pronouncements.

 

By Brian C. Joondeph, M.D.

Brian C. Joondeph, M.D., is a physician and writer. Follow me on Twitter @retinaldoctor, on Truth Social @BrianJoondeph, and on LinkedIn @Brian Joondeph.

 

Source: And Just Like That, Natural Immunity is No Longer a Conspiracy Theory – American Thinker

DDNI Featured News Article – Kate Forbes: Would a Christian be permitted to lead Scotland?

With a Hindu as the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and a Muslim as the mayor of London, it would seem that the UK is at last fulfilling the promise of a multi-cultural society. Yet events in Scotland suggest that there is one group who are in effect banned from meaningful political leadership – Christians who actually believe what Jesus says!

This week there has been a concerted campaign against the candidature for First Minister of the young Scottish Finance Minister, Kate Forbes, within some of the Scottish media online and even in UK-wide press such as The Guardian, whose headline says what they want – “Kate Forbes’ religious beliefs could stall her bid to succeed Sturgeon”.

Here is the problem: Kate Forbes is a young, intelligent, woman who has already shown she is the most competent politician of her generation. The trouble is that for those who now mainly control the civic elites in Scotland she is not the ‘right sort’ of woman. She is a Christian who belongs to the Free Church of Scotland and is unashamed of her faith.

In an interview with the BBC’s Nick Robinson in 2021, she could not have been clearer: “To be straight, I believe in the person of Jesus Christ. I believe that he died for me, he saved me and that my calling is to serve and to love him and to serve and love my neighbours with all my heart and soul and mind and strength. So that, for me, is essential to my being. Politics will pass. I was a person before I was a politician, and that person will continue to believe that I am made in the image of God.”

This week she was asked whether she would have voted for same-sex marriage, and she honestly admitted ‘no’. Everyone from The Times to The Guardian thinks that this has blown up her campaign – although I suspect the wish is father to the thought. Same-sex marriage is not up for debate in the Scottish Parliament. There is no chance it will be voted on in the next Scottish Parliament. It is a non-issue compared with the NHS, the economy, poverty etc. The only reason is to damn Kate Forbes for who she is, not what she will do.

Because of her experience with the poor in India, where her parents were working in a Christian charity, that is Forbes’s big concern. But the SNP establishment has been taken over by the progressives who now enjoy the gravy train that comes along with being in almost total control of Scottish government patronage. They were never going to let that be disrupted by such mundane issues as poverty, the economy, the NHS, housing, drugs deaths and education. According to Toni Giugliano, the SNP’s policy chief, the important issues include legislation on gender recognition, assisted suicide, abortion buffer zones and sex workers’ rights. Forget the poor.

Part of Kate’s concern for the poor is her concern for the unborn. This week some of the Scottish media and Twitterati were up in arms because of a speech she gave in 2018 to a charity run by Stagecoach co-founder Brian Souter. What did she say that was dredged up from the past that was so outrageous? “May our politicians recognise that the way we treat the most vulnerable – whether the unborn or the terminally ill – is a measure of true progress.” Imagine that! Being condemned as unfit to lead because of such a statement!

It is interesting that the only candidate who is being subjected to this kind of questioning and the inevitable Twitter mob abuse, is the young Christian woman. Her main rival, Humza Yousaf, is never questioned about whether he accepts the Quran and its views on polygamy, domestic violence or the treatment of unbelievers. Why? Because nothing else matters to the Woke than their doctrines. To question them is blasphemy.

Which is ironic because Humza Yousaf as justice minister introduced Scotland’s notorious Hate Crime laws in 2021, which in effect brought in a new law of blasphemy for anyone who dared to question the ‘protected characteristics’ determined by the Scottish government. The irony is that this draconian law could and should be used to deal with the hate being poured out towards Kate Forbes because of her religion. But of course, that was not what it was designed for.

In terms of the New Religion which has now become State doctrine, Kate Forbes is deemed to be a heretic. A new Test Act has been introduced into British politics. Accept the approved State dogmas – or you are out. Christian politicians have tried to operate a ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy – even to the point of lying or denying their beliefs. But it’s getting harder. We are moving into a world where having the wrong opinion, never mind expressing it, can get you fired. I remember one journalist who interviewed me about transgenderism a few years ago. She told me that she agreed with me but that it would be more than her job was worth to do anything other than write a condemnatory piece about me.

As I watch the hate campaign being poured out from the usual quarters (sadly aided and abetted by some professing Christians) I am saddened that what I saw coming four years ago has now arrived.

Nicola Sturgeon lost her job, partly because of the insanity of her transgender policy, so the initiators of that policy are getting their revenge. But it’s not just the pettiness…which includes jibes about Forbes being a woman with a young family (so much for gender equality!) …it’s the fundamentalistic narrowness of it all. If you do not buy into the new religion, or at least publicly bow the knee, you are out. No matter your skills, abilities, policies or any such political nuances. In the new fundamentalist Scotland, ideology is everything.

Kevin McKenna, one of Scotland’s top journalists has recognised this, calling the targeting of Kate Forbes because of her faith ‘Scotland’s shame’.

In a paragraph worth quoting in full he argues: “Ms Forbes’ views on the sanctity of all human life from conception until death is a fundamental pillar of both Christian and Muslim belief. As is her belief – based on science – that sex is binary. The treatment that she’s already beginning to receive offers further evidence of the poison now circulating at the top of the SNP. That you’re free to be whoever you want to be, just so long as you’re not a Christian.”

Pray for Kate Forbes. In a normal world she would win this contest – her opponent has already failed in three ministerial portfolios. But this is a twisted world where being a Christian who believes what Jesus says is enough to get you cancelled. Who knows but that the world of the Twitterati and Scottish politics may not represent the wider constituency of the 100,000 SNP members who will vote?

However, we know that whatever happens the Lord is in control, Kate is in good hands. She has already won – because her life is defined by Christ and his ultimate victory, not by political victories. Kate Forbes has borne faithful witness to Christ and shown the people of Scotland a better way than the way of hate she is facing. I am thankful for her… and proud of our sister!

David Robertson 

David Robertson leads The ASK Project in Sydney, Australia. He blogs at The Wee Flea.

https://www.christiantoday.com/article/kate.forbes.would.a.christian.be.permitted.to.lead.scotland/139870.htm

DDNI Featured News Article – ‘Let The Bible Do The Teaching’: Trusted Pastor Warns Against Denomination-Linked Biblical Illiteracy

Trusted Ministry leader Jack Hibbs, the senior Pastor of Calvary Chapel Chino Hills, called attention this week to a denomination-linked stumbling block plaguing countless church pews.

During his Wednesday night service, the California Pastor warned about the biblical illiteracy that arises from relying upon denominations rather than personal study of God’s Word.

Pastor Hibbs pointed to the apostle Paul’s rebuke in 1 Corinthians 3 against dividing into different sects, following men rather than Christ:

1 Corinthians 3:3-5 KJV – “For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men? For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal? Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?”

“Some people will say, Well, I’m of Calvin, or I’m of… fill in the blank. That’s sad. I’m sure that if John Calvin was here today, he would slap you and say that you should say you’re of Christ,” Hibbs explained. “The Bible is one, but the views of men have divided things up… When you get carnal, you begin to follow the teachings and traditions of men instead of the Bible.”

“Too many of you who have been trained—if you know it or not in your previous denominational experience—to approach the Bible in what I call a pre-emptive or a pre-loaded manner, reading into Scripture the doctrinal influences of the denomination that you’ve come out of,” he stressed. “I want to tell you, every one of us should always let the Bible do the teaching.”

Many in the church are quick to confer with their “denominational manual” to interpret the Bible for them, Hibbs asserted, adding that this mistaken thinking is “why people have no unction, no passion, and no power about God’s truth—they don’t own it for themselves.”

“Growing up, there was a commercial on TV. Granted, it was, I think, black and white TV in those days. But there was a pair of fingers walking, and it said, ‘let your fingers do the walking through the Yellow Pages.’ That’s how you found stuff. A good thing to keep in mind is this: Let your fingers do the walking through the Bible,” the Pastor underscored. “What is the correct view? Can we know? Oh, yes, we can know if we let our fingers do the walking through the Bible.”

“Every Christian is to know how to use their Bible,” Hibbs implored. “Not Google, not denominations, not pastors, popes, or priests. You being directly connected to your Bible is the will of God.”

“It’s so important that when a pastor, pope, or priest is teaching from the Bible, Acts 17:11 says that you are to be judging those who teach the Word of God, against/by the Word of God. Did you know that?” he stated. “How are we going to know if we’re being led astray? You won’t know unless you know your Bible. Thus, a lot of people are being led astray today. Because they’re not reading the Word.”

A 2022 survey conducted by George Barna found that a mere 37% of Pastors hold to a Biblical Worldview. However, as noted by Lee Weeks for Decision Magazine, “pastors of nondenominational and independent Protestant churches scored the highest for upholding Biblical beliefs” among the 1,000 pastors surveyed.

“Calvary Chapel is not a denomination,” Pastor Hibbs highlighted. “Some people want to say it is, but it’s actually not. [In] a denomination, you pay fees and dues to the hierarchy, [and] there’s a governing body that tells you what to do, what not to do.”

“You didn’t walk into a pre-loaded service whereby we must maintain a denominational foundation. We don’t have to come from a Catholic approach of this verse. We don’t have to come from a Baptist approach. We don’t have to come from an Anglican approach. We don’t have to come from a Lutheran approach, a Presbyterian approach, none of that,” he maintained. “Let the Bible interpret the Bible.”

Hibbs then pointed to Second Timothy 3:16-17, which states, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.”

No denomination needed. No need to add water. It’s all there, right here in the Bible,” Pastor Hibbs declared.

By Breanna Claussen

DDNI Featured News Article – Behind the velvet ropes: Thoughts from a Met museum guard.

Patrick Bringley spent a decade as a guard at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, but don’t expect any scandalous behind-the-scenes revelations in his appealing and tender memoir, “All the Beauty in the World: The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Me.” Instead, the author chronicles his personal transformation amid a magnificent collection of galleries watched over by a diverse and genial workforce.

Bringley hadn’t set out to work at the Met. With a plum post-college job at The New Yorker, he was on an ambitious career track when his older brother, Tom, was diagnosed with cancer. When Tom died in 2008 at age 26, Bringley, devastated, felt compelled to take a breath, to “drop out of the forward-marching world and spend all day tarrying in an entirely beautiful one.” 

The book captures Tom’s intelligence and playful personality and conveys the magnitude of the author’s loss. Bringley finds the Met an extraordinary place in which to grieve, and he is eloquent, if at times wide-eyed, in expressing the ways that art assists him in that process. 

Bringley’s story overflows with wonder, beauty, and the persistence of hope, as he finds not just solace but meaning and inspiration in the masterpieces that surround him.

Perhaps not surprisingly, portrayals of Christ’s crucifixion particularly resonate with the author – and the Met, which was founded in 1870, has plenty of them. Gazing at one, a tempera painting by Fra Angelico, an Italian artist of the early Renaissance, Bringley observes art’s capacity to remind us “that we’re mortal, that we suffer, that bravery in suffering is beautiful, that loss inspires love and lamentation.” 

Bringley approaches the museum’s vast collection of roughly two million objects with a similar openness and wonder. (An appendix lists the many pieces cited within the book’s pages.) He is equally curious about its pool of guards, at that time about 400 strong, who assist and keep eyes on an astonishing number of visitors, topping 7 million people in some years. “The glory of so-called unskilled jobs is that people with a fantastic range of skills and backgrounds work them,” he notes, adding that his colleagues are “not only diverse demographically – almost half of the guard corps is foreign born – but diverse along every axis.” The author depicts that heterogeneity in a charming scene: He explains that the Met guards produce an occasional journal of art, poetry, and prose, and he fondly describes its raucous release party, which doubles as an open-mic night, running an eclectic gamut of performances and genres.

Comfortably settled in his museum routine, Bringley is certain that he’ll remain at the Met forever. Training a new guard, Joseph, a middle-aged man from Ghana who becomes a close friend, he gushes about the job. “It would be an indecency, a stupidity, even a betrayal to find fault with such peaceable, honest work,” he writes.

But a lot changes in 10 years. His grief becomes less acute, as grief tends to with time. What’s more, during his tenure at the museum, Bringley marries and becomes a father to two children; his new family further draws him out of his stillness and his sadness. “I no longer need so pristine a setting,” he realizes. “I don’t have to stand on the sidelines, a quiet watchman. I find myself watching parents and children in the galleries and plotting about all that I could do to introduce my kids to the big city and wide world.”  

By the time Bringley decides to move on from the Met, we’ve learned a lot about a job that is at once remarkable and unremarkable: the boredom (“Nothing to do and all day to do it,” the guards quip); the discomfort (with shifts of 8 to 12 hours, galleries with wood floors are easier on the feet than those with marble); the inside jokes (it’s apparently not uncommon for visitors to ask where to find the Mona Lisa, which resides not in New York but in Paris, at the Louvre).

“All the Beauty in the World” also offers lessons, drawn from Bringley’s own years of experience, in how to look at and appreciate art, a practice he has devoted himself to with earnestness and humility. After reading this memoir, visitors to the Met or any other museum will likely pay closer attention – not only to the art but to the people watching over it.

By Barbara Spindel

https://www.csmonitor.com/Books/2023/0216/Behind-the-velvet-ropes-Thoughts-from-a-Met-museum-guard

“All the Beauty in the World: The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Me” by Patrick Bringley, Simon & Schuster, 240 pp.

 Surfer Bethany Hamilton to Boycott WSL Tour Due to New Transgender Rule

American surfing icon Bethany Hamilton has vowed to boycott the World Surf League’s (WSL) professional tour over a rule change that allows biological males who identify as women to compete against female surfers.

Hamilton, who lost her arm to a shark attack when she was 13, survived and has been surfing competitively for 15 years.

She took to Instagram over the weekend to express her views after the WSL announced it would comply with the policies of the International Surfing Association (ISA) when it comes to transgender surfers.

The ISA policy states that “Athletes born men can compete in female divisions if they maintain a testosterone level less than five nmol/L (nanomoles per litre) for 12 months.”

“Is a hormone level an honest and accurate depiction that someone indeed is a male or female? Is it as simple as this?” Hamilton asked in her Instagram video.

She also asked several other questions:

“How is this rule playing out in other sports like swimming, running and MMA? Have any of the current surfers in the World Surf League been asked what their thoughts and opinions are on this new rule before it was passed or announced? Should there be a conversation with the 17 women and all of the men on tour on tour prior to a rule change such as this?”

She continued: “Who is pushing for this huge change? Does this better the sport of surfing? Is this better for the women in surfing? If so, how?”

Hamilton gave her life to Jesus Christ at age 5, she told BGEA in a 2011 interview. As a young girl growing up in Hawaii, she was surrounded by a family who loved Jesus and loved surfing. She followed in their footsteps faithwise, and entered her first competition at age 8.

She has credited Christ for getting her through the shark attack.

“It was Jesus Christ who gave me peace when I was attacked,” she told BGEA. “I just kept remembering, ‘The peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus,” (Philippians 4:6-8).

In her Instagram video, she said she strives to love all of mankind, no matter what their differences. But as a professional athlete who has been competing in the WSL events for the last 15-plus years, she is concerned by this new rule change.

She decided to go public in order to “stand up and speak up” for those who feel threatened to express their views.

“I think many of the girls who are on tour are not in support of this new rule, and they fear being ostracized if they speak up,” she said.

“I personally won’t be competing in or supporting the World Surf League if this rule remains,” Hamilton said.

She argued instead that a new division should be created solely for transgender athletes in order to protect the female division.

Franklin Graham expressed his support for Hamilton on Facebook today.

“Who makes these rules anyway? It’s tragic. I don’t understand why all women don’t stand up in revolt! Pray for Bethany and other brave young women like her who are trying to defend what even common sense tells you is right. Thank you for taking a stand Bethany—I hope they will decide to change this new rule.”

Judge Phil Ginn, president of Southern Evangelical Seminary, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, told Fox News Digital via email on Monday morning, “Bethany Hamilton captured our hearts and minds many years ago as the nation watched her triumph over her serious injuries and subsequent inherent fears to get back on her surfboard and learn to excel again in the sport she obviously loves.

“Casting aside the moral issues for a moment, no one who is thinking right can come to the conclusion that creating an obvious advantage for one group over another in sports or any other venue is a good idea. Yet that is exactly what we are now being told by our own government that needs to be done.”

Trent Talbot, CEO of Brave Books in Texas, which recently published Hamilton’s children’s book, told Fox News Digital on Sunday, “What an act of bravery. I stand with Bethany Hamilton and her choice to not participate in the World Surf League if they allow men to compete in the women’s division.”

Talbot added, “God designed males and females differently with a purpose—and when we reject this, we reject God. Men do not belong in women’s sports.”

Source: Standing For Christ And Common Sense: Surfer Bethany Hamilton to Boycott WSL Tour Due to New Transgender Rule | Harbingers Daily

DDNI Featured News Article – The Pulpits Are Silent

What incredible times we live in — like no previous generation. The world is heading pell-mell for a conclusion though nobody knows the timing on this. But we are privileged to look at signs that are like clouds forming on the horizon. In the 1970s there were only a few events that were prophecy-related happening. There were minor shakings but sometimes connecting the dots was even a stretch!

Fast forward to today and there are so many prophecy-related events happening daily and hourly that it presents a major dilemma for those of us watching the signs of the times to know just where to focus. As I post stories daily on my website, I agonize that I must leave off so many as space and time won’t allow readers to zero in on all that is happening!

It is a privilege and a challenge to be born for such a time as this. Very little that is predicted to happen in the “last days” is good news and who wants a steady dose of bad?But if one can “look up” one can bear the heartache of looking around as the signs of the times explode on our news outlets.

The Bible asks us to be “watchmen” (Ezekiel 33). We’re to be sounding an alarm. Trouble is ahead. Time is short. And I have never felt such a sense of urgency and the realization that time is, indeed, short.

I am watching signs “converge.” They are stunning and breathtaking. But most pastors will not talk about them!

LifeWay Research is a Nashville-based, evangelical research firm that specializes in surveys about faith in culture and matters that affect the church. They report that a third of America’s Protestant pastors expect Christians to be Raptured — or taken up in the sky to meet Jesus — as the last of the last days begin. Over 36% believe in a pre-Tribulation Rapture. In spite of this glorious good news, their pulpits remain silent.

Over 50% of Protestant pastors, according to the survey, believe in a literal Antichrist — but their pulpits are silent.

Most pastors hold to the basic teachings of Christ’s Second Coming — but their pulpits are silent.

This same survey says almost 50% of Protestant pastors believe in a coming Millennium and hold to premillennialism. At this time we finally do away with the curse and fallen human nature — but their pulpits are silent.

Pastor Tom Hughes leads The 412 Church in San Jacinto, California. He has written a thoughtful article titled, “Five Reasons Pastors Don’t Teach Bible Prophecy.” He writes, “Prophecy fills the Bible. End time prophecy touches every person alive today. Jesus taught on it. So did John, Paul, Peter, James, and Jude. Yet only a small percentage of churches teach this crucial part of God’s message to our generation.

“Some pastors don’t teach it for theological reasons. They don’t believe it, don’t think it applies to us, consider it symbolic, or whatever. Others believe we’re probably living near the end of the age, but still refuse to touch the topic. They see it as an elective part of God’s curriculum. Take it or leave it.”

Hughes continues, “That’s not how Jesus saw it. He reprimanded the Pharisees and Sadducees for not discerning the times. ‘When it is evening you say, it will be fair weather, for the sky is red; and in the morning, it will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening. Hypocrites! You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times.’ ” (Matthew 16:2-3)

Hughes concludes, “More than a quarter of the Bible is prophecy — much of it yet to be fulfilled. How can we give congregations a well-rounded understanding of scripture if we leave out such a vital part of it?”

He then goes on to list these five reasons pastors may not be sharing these issues in the pulpit:

1) They don’t understand prophecy.

2) They fear offending members of the church.

3) They sense this will scare people.

4) People might not tithe if they think we’re close to the end.

5) There is fear in looking like the “loony-tune fringe. The Harold Campings have done great damage.

The prophecies of the first coming of Christ were fulfilled. They stand as evidence that the Bible can be trusted. Prophecies of His second coming work the same way, except we get to witness these events in our time, often with our own eyes.

The nations of the world seem moved, as though by a hidden hand, into exactly the right positions on a global chess board. What an amazing thing to see it happening before our eyes! It builds faith and draws our attention God-ward. And it is a fantastic evangelism tool.

I think the church is headed into the home stretch of her history! I base that not on emotions or wishful thinking. I base that on what I see happening daily. Man can live for a week or two without food. We can live only days without water. But our spirits are crushed within hours without hope.

We have the good news of the ultimate hope — the “blessed hope.” (Titus 2:13) His glorious appearing. Pastors, please don’t remain silent! Share the only good news out there.

ByJan Markell

The Pulpits Are Silent

DDNI Featured News Article – Honoring Marriage Is Not Racist: Time To Shine The Light On The Left’s Charade

Only a few weeks ago, I was sitting just behind the counsel’s table at the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., listening to the arguments in 303 Creative, LLC v. Elenis. The issue at hand is whether a website designer can be forced by the government to create speech against her deeply held convictions about God’s design for marriage. 

Would designer Lorie Smith be forced to create words, content and video promoting same-sex marriage—a message that violates her sincerely held beliefs?

Smith serves all people, including the LGBTQ community, but she will not express all messages. Alliance Defending Freedom CEO Kristen Waggoner represented 303 Creative and, as she always does, made clear and convincing arguments detailing how the Constitution and the high court have protected free speech, even when controversial or offensive.

Waggoner opened the arguments expressing the prevailing constitutional view that in our nation we rarely restrict speech and generally do not force people to say things they do not want to say. Smith did not want to use her creative skills to promote and celebrate same-sex marriage. 

What happened next was entirely predictable. The liberal justices and the solicitor general of Colorado used the fear tactic of comparing Smith’s refusal to express messages about same-sex marriage—a message that would sear her conscience—to refusing to serve someone based on race. In their view, to put it bluntly, living out her Biblical view on marriage is akin to racism. Christians and other reasonable people should soundly reject and counter this tactic.

Justice Samuel Alito signaled he rejected this tactic when he asked, “In Obergefell, did the court say that religious objections to same-sex marriage are the same thing as religious or other objections to people of color?”

Waggoner quickly responded “No,” and reminded the justices of the Supreme Court’s opinion that reasonable and sincere people disagree with same-sex marriage based on decent and honorable religious or philosophical premises. That’s a good start to counter this unjustified analogy, but Scripture itself and historical reality make the best case.

Racism is sin against image bearers of God. Conversely, Scripture holds a high view of marriage. Ephesians 5 compares the relationship between husband and wife to the relationship between Jesus Christ and the church. A husband is to give himself up for his wife just as Christ gave up His life for the church. In Matthew 19, Jesus while speaking to a very large crowd says God created them male and female, and He created male and female for each other, to become one flesh in marriage. 

Marriage is so important that this union between a man and a woman is the only context permissible for sexual relations. And Jesus defined the Biblical grounds for divorce very narrowly because intact marriages are of immense value to family, community and society. God designed marriage to be the fundamental building block of a stable family, community and nation. For Christians, the Biblical recipe for marriage cannot be cavalierly cast aside. Marriage is deeply rooted in the Christian faith; in fact, it is often noted that Jesus’ first miracle took place at a wedding. Lorie Smith should not be forced by the government to betray her convictions on marriage.

Scripture is truth, and it describes reality. The reality of the timeless treasure and blessing from mother/father-intact marriages on outcomes for children is well documented in the social sciences. Children of intact marriages with a mother and father generally excel in education. They face less poverty; have better physical, emotional and mental health; lower crime rates; lower substance abuse; and experience less child abuse than other family structures.

For the committed, married couple, Biblical marriage encourages personal responsibility; enhances relationships with children; reduces poverty; improves physical, mental and emotional health; fosters longevity; reduces risky behavior; breeds greater happiness; improves volunteerism and altruism; and results in quicker recovery from illness. 

The benefits of Biblical marriage are undeniable. 

Bradford Wilcox, a University of Virginia professor and director of the National Marriage Project, documents this in “Why Marriage Matters: 26 Conclusions from the Social Sciences.” God’s merciful design of marriage cannot be taken lightly by the faithful, and our government should not force us to act or speak otherwise.

The reality is that millions of Americans wake up each morning, enjoy a cup of coffee, open the Bible, study Scripture, seek to apply God’s truth to their lives that day, and imperfectly pursue an obedient walk with Christ. This is a part of Christian discipleship, being a student of God’s Word. A high view of Biblical marriage is a long-held, revered Christian teaching and part of discipleship. 

Unfortunately, our government’s new orthodoxy on sexuality and marriage happens to clash with Christian teachings of God’s merciful design for marriage. Christians need to love and care for others who think and live differently from us. Yet love does not mean affirming and celebrating all ways of life, conduct, beliefs or behaviors. First Corinthians 13:6 states that love “does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth.”

Like millions of others, Lorie Smith of 303 Creative honors Biblical marriage—the bedrock of stable societies throughout history. Honoring marriage is not akin to racial discrimination. And if the First Amendment still means anything in 2023, the Supreme Court will send a clear message and strike a blow against forced speech that violates deeply held religious convictions. Being able to freely live according to the Scripture hangs in the balance.

ByTodd Chasteen

DDNI Featured News Article – An appeal to Andy Stanley: Stop deconstructing sexuality, ignoring ex-LGBT people

By Derek Paul, Op-ed contributor – CP VOICES

Pastor Andy Stanley speaks during Catalyst Atlanta at the Infinite Energy Arena in Duluth, Georgia, on Oct. 6, 2016. | Catalyst

A couple of days ago, I noticed ministry friends of mine sharing videos of a well-known pastoral voice, Senior Pastor Andy Stanley of North Point Community Church located in Alpharetta, Georgia. After looking around for the video myself, I discovered the video was an excerpt from the Drive Conference at North Point in 2022.

Many people are familiar with this pastor in Georgia. Some of his statements diminishing the authority of Scripture, and his callous jest at Christians who think it more authoritative, led those in the Church to surmise that his issues with biblical authority indicate a much more corrosive theological viewpoint that has not yet been made public.

Then, on January 23rd, a short video dropped on Twitter. In the video, Stanley laid out a general example demonstrating the lack of eagerness of straight Christians to serve in his churches when comparing them to the eagerness of the gay men and women he knows, who would serve. This setup statement has no way of being validated and yet appeared to be a two-fold manipulation technique.

First, it incentivized his congregation to serve, but also to view homosexuals as a more virtuous community by comparison. It appeared as if Stanley was edifying the gay community and promoting the culture to his congregation while degrading his own church for the moment, a persuasive deconstruction tactic, making it easier for them to adopt his subsequent statements.

The video went on a path of pandering to the gay community and their allies in an unscripted rant against the Church. Stanley concluded that gay men and women have more faith than he has and “more than a lot of you.” It even belittled the Word of God itself by calling scriptures referencing homosexuality “clobber passages.”  His indictment seemed to be: Straight Christians and God’s Word don’t measure up here; the gay people I know are better.

Such was the theological views that were similar to those views espoused by fallen Exodus leader Alan Chambers and McKrae Game of Hope For Wholeness, which survived past him in another form. Additionally, what message does this send to those struggling with sexual confusion at North Point Church? By Stanley’s most recent comments, it seems that they should expect further promotion of slippery, watered-down theology, and they can also expect that anyone adhering to the biblical-historic view on sexual ethics will be castigated as unwelcoming bigots.

Over the last few years, congregations in the West have awoken, surprised by their pastor’s deconstructed theology. Bewildered by their pastor’s unforeseen animus toward the majority group, matched with an unsurpassed bias for one or two “ostracized groups” of the pastor’s choosing, they are left with a trail of spiritual casualties in their wake.

But there is good news: Jesus has an answer for us and did not leave us unequipped for this moment. Scripture reminds us:

“They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death” (Revelation 12:11).

This is not some antiquated Scripture removed from contemporary Christian life; this passage is alive and well in the Church. But it is suppressed through the self-righteous deconstruction and faithlessness of some leaders.

Meanwhile, those who have found freedom in Jesus Christ from LGBTQ and victory over their previous identity and lifestyle, have become all too familiar with the internal persecution from legacy lukewarm Christianity spouted by the present-day false teachers, false prophets, and, may I say, wolves-in-sheep’s-clothing-pastors. Thankfully, not all Christian leaders or churchgoers are this way — there are still many worthy shepherds and sheep in God’s flock.

The Bride of Christ has been given a scriptural key to the prison door of LGBTQ socio-political correctness. Overcomers exist within the Church body in all locales. The Andy Stanleys may have forgotten or suppressed the testimony of these faithful believers, in favor of their ostracized group, but God’s sanctifying workmanship has never stopped advancing.

As an Overcomer myself, I ask that born-again Christians would quit choosing to stand idly by or even promote homosexuality and cross-identification because your Savior has and is fulfilling His promises in Scripture in the lives of real people. It is abusive to teach a lesser Gospel to LGBTQ-identified people. Instead, love your true spiritual brothers and sisters since that is the evidence that you are the actual Church (John 13:35), and have faith that God has the intention and power to set people free from all sexual immorality and expression, not just your choice sins.

If you are interested in learning more about this transformative process that Christ has offered to those who used to go by LGBTQ labels and who lived LGBTQ lifestyles, please visit our ministry websites at: TMAcorp.orgVoiceofthevoiceless.info, or IdentifyMinistries.org.

There is an authentic Christian community, more resilient than ever, and waiting for all those impacted by this issue to ally with Christ and reap the rewards of transformation together.

Derek Paul is the Network Director for the Transformation Ministries Alliance, a board member of Voice of the Voiceless, and an executive pastor of Identify Ministries.

https://www.christianpost.com/voices/an-appeal-to-andy-stanley-stop-ignoring-ex-lgbt-people.html

Christian scientists viewed as less intelligent, study shows 

Christian scientists viewed as less intelligent than their peers, study suggests

The research, published in the Public Understanding of Science journal, analyzed two separate studies to examine the perceptions of incompatibility between Christianity and science in the United States and how it influences nonreligious individuals’ stereotypes of Christians in the field.

The first study, with a sample size of 365, found that the 214 nonreligious participants were more likely than the 151 Christian participants to perceive Christianity and science as incompatible. The second study featured 799 respondents — 520 Christians and 279 nonreligious participants.

“[M]anipulating perceived Christianity-science compatibility reduced negative perceptions of Christians’ scientific ability and general intellect among nonreligious participants,” the abstract states.

While nonreligious respondents perceived Christians as less intelligent, Christian respondents were more likely to perceive Christians as more intelligent and scientific than nonreligious participants.

In comments to PsyPost, study author Cameron Mackey, a doctoral candidate at Ohio University, noted that there has been “countless debates over the teaching of evolution in schools and whether Intelligent Design has a place in the classroom.”

“Our research demonstrates that perceiving conflict between religion and science can have detrimental effects not only on Christians’ performance and interest in science (as prior research has shown), but also on nonreligious people’s stereotypes about Christians,” Mackey said. “That is, because nonreligious individuals are more likely to believe that Christianity and science can’t work together, they are more likely to stereotype Christians as uninterested in or incompetent at science.”

Mackey added that many prominent atheists like Sam Harris and Steven Prinker opposed Francis Collins, an Evangelical Christian who served as the head of the National Institutes of Health until his retirement last year.

“We were interested in the consequences of this belief in religion-science conflict for nonreligious people’s attitudes toward religious people (in this case, Christians),” Mackey stated. “That is, we wanted to know whether the belief that Christianity and science conflict with each other explains why nonreligious people stereotype Christians as incompetent in science.”

Perry Enever, the founder of Canterbury Christianity and Science Interactive, told Premier Christian News that stereotypes are set up to be disproven.

“I think if you can relate to someone and get to know them, they can get to know you,” he was quoted as saying. “There are all kinds of questions and stereotypes and wrong ideas that people have, and Christians can do the same things as well, sometimes.”

“The Christians in this were presuming that actually the atheists were less intelligent and less into science. So I think there’s a lesson for us as well, to avoid that stereotyping and getting to know the people that are asking the questions.”

Earlier this month, the Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C., opened the new exhibit “Scripture and Science: Our Universe, Ourselves, Our Place.” The exhibition highlights the dynamic relationship between science and religion throughout history.

Attending the exhibit’s grand opening, retired NASA astronaut Jeff Williams told The Christian Post that science doesn’t “contradict” Christianity. The Christian astronaut said that because of the perception that science and the Bible conflict, he dedicated much time to studying the religious beliefs of early scientists.

“Many of the scientists in the age of science — who we all read about in our textbooks about the laws of physics and chemistry — were believers first,” Williams said. “They were theologians first. People like Kepler and Newton and Faraday and Maxwell, and many others. They were driven by their faith and their understanding of their calling before God to fulfill that calling.”

He contends that the “Bible supports and informs science with the elements of the mathematical order of God’s Creation” and “God has equipped us to explore and extract that order and utilize it for the glory of God and the good of mankind.”

 

By Anugrah Kumar, Christian Post Contributor

Source: Christian scientists viewed as less intelligent, study shows | U.S. News

DDNI Featured News Article – Parsing an Ungrateful Generation

You can already tell by our title the direction this piece is going.  

But it’s much more than just a bunch of selfish crybabies.  Today’s story is about a fundamental shift in how the country thinks and acts, whereby we have lost another critical piece of what made us unique. 

Let’s step back for a moment, and I’ll share a story highlighting the problem as I see it.

I live in a small rural county run by a five-person Board of Commissioners. Virtually every decision of consequence is made in a consensus-focused manner.  During one of the recent department reports, commissioners were advised that some employees had been put on standby status in case a quick response was required to a recent cold snap. The department head acknowledged that employees would be paid if they were called to work. 

But a dispute followed over whether employees should be paid for “standing by” in case of need, whether ultimately activated or not.

I argued that the essential nature of public service employment is that they might be inconvenienced from time to time, but such emergency call-ups were or should be part of their job description. 

A decision was not reached, but it made me think. 

I’ve employed individuals continuously for nearly fifty years. During that time, I’ve seen a change from gratitude for employment to an attitude that turns the relationship on its head.   

Today, employers bend over backward to accommodate the needs and seemingly arbitrary desires of hires to a degree that would have been unthinkable in years past.

A recent Fox and Friends program featured employees quitting their job without notice and even going so far as to place their joyful resignations on TikTok!  

It seems there is a not-so-subtle disdain for employers in general, and it’s cool and hip to “shove it to the man,” so to speak.  Of course, not all employees behave in such a manner, but too many no longer feel loyal to their employers.  Indeed, a lack of gratefulness or partnership is much more common than I can remember in my lifetime.

The situation with my county commission and TikTok antics highlight an absence of gratitude.  

Our historical work ethic is now associated with White Privilege.  The White Privilege war has become the go-to weapon the Left has embraced to destroy traditional American society and families.  Those people whom I term the ‘Destroyers’ accuse the government of being predicated on a virtually unchallenged assumption that America was formed, run, and exists for the benefit of white people in general and privileged whites in particular.

Quitting your job without giving the standard two-week notice (or more if you are in a critical position) is considered by molly-coddled younger workers to be nothing more than leveling the playing field. The prevailing thinking seems to state that companies are exploiting their workers through the very requirement to show up for work.  Many of those young believe they have better things to do than punch a clock or make money for someone other than themselves and detest the inconvenience of having to work for money.  To them, this is literal proof of White Supremacy.

How did this come to pass?  Growing up in the ’60s and early ’70s, I was anxious to work.  I wanted to build businesses and create opportunities.  I wanted to hire people smarter than me, not to exploit them, but to create wealth and prosperity for all of us.  And I did.  I speak to many entrepreneurs who still believe in that pathway.  Still, large companies, government workers, and many non-profit employees have been inculcated into an anti-free market culture and subsequent entitlement and victimhood. 

Fortunately, many good old-fashioned workers and employers still think and act as I do.  However, the contaminated individuals who believe the Left’s tripe can and are pulling the rest of us down. 

Here’s an analogy to explain how this will inevitably come to pass:

Remember the Titanic?  She would not have sunk except for one flaw; its watertight bulkheads were not sealed at the top.  So, as the water rose in one compartment, it spilled over to the next compartment and then the next until it was inevitable that the Titanic would founder and sink.  I believe it is now that way with our country.  Attitudes toward work, family, savings, debt, and entitlement are like flooded compartments, ultimately sinking our ship.  

In addition, millions of illegal aliens are like surging water overtopping the nation’s bulkheads, leading to the ship of state sinking rapidly to the bottom.

But unlike the Titanic, we have a little time to find a solution before it is too late.  We could right the ship if we tried hard.  The question is, will we?  On one side, we have the people, institutions, companies, and others intent on reinventing the U.S. into something foreign and unworkable.  On the other side, we have the silent majority.  President Nixon popularized that term in 1969.  Why don’t people speak out in defense of their self-interests?  The fact that so many are silent is telling.  Many of the remaining producers remain modest and frugal, keeping to themselves, be that church, social circles, or even immediate family.  That silent majority is quite the opposite of those individuals shouting their opinions loudly and often to any target they think is a threat to their view of how the world should be as far as they are concerned.

In my life, each day, I pray to do something “decent and right” that will help someone that day.  In an imperfect world, it is up to the individual, not the government, to make this world better than how we found it.  Government interferes with our duty and obligation by trying to be something that it can never be…Daddy.

Distortion of reality of all kinds, exhibited by millions, is a condition I will call ‘Woke Brain.  It is observable within those mentally weak or adrift from reality who are disengaged from traditional life requirements that have defined us since our inception. 

Wrongheaded thinking derived from decades of brainwashing has left us where we are today.  Can you believe that 18% of those under 34 don’t believe we landed on the Moon?  Think about that!  This statistic encapsulates everything you need to know to understand what’s wrong with our society.  Those naysayers don’t believe we went to the Moon because they can’t imagine they/we could do it again today based on their observations of lazy society, waning intelligence, and the drive among their friends.  Add to that a deep distrust of anything and everything that constitutes our collective history and culture. 

Their starting point was 1619 when slaves were first brought to America, which the New York Times now says defines us as a predator nation to this day.

Millions of our young live with a profound distrust for America, its systems, fairness, and perhaps, even a question of how long the America of their parents and grandparents will continue to exist. These issues constitute the root cause of our current predicament and where we must collectively make our stand.

God Bless America!

By Allan J. Feifer – is a patriot, author, businessman, and thinker.  Read more about Allan, his background, and his ideas to create a better tomorrow at www.1plus1equals2.com

DDNI Featured News Article – Regional emergency declared in eight states due to gasoline, diesel and jet fuel shortages



Regional emergency declared in eight states due to gasoline, diesel and jet fuel shortages

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has declared a regional emergency in eight states due to a shortage of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel caused by the combination of low production and high demand.

The FMCSA’s regional emergency declaration affects Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and Wyoming. The agency, a component of the Department of Transportation responsible for regulating the trucking industry, made the declaration in response to the closure of a refinery in Colorado and the exceptionally severe winter weather that is causing demand for fuel to surge.

“This seems almost engineered,” commented political commentator Patrick Humphrey in a video posted on social media. “How is this happening? How does this keep happening in the most prosperous and the most energy-producing country in the entire world?” (Related: No trains, no planes, no automobiles and NO GAS – Welcome to the DE-CIVILIZATION Democrat utopia.)

On Dec. 24, the Suncor Refinery in Commerce City, Colorado, unexpectedly shut down due to “extreme and record-setting weather,” according to the company’s press release. Suncor claimed the refinery isn’t expected to resume full operations until late into the first quarter of 2023.

This factor, combined with the shutdown occurring in the middle of winter, has made in difficult to obtain the necessary gasoline, diesel and jet fuel in the affected states, according to the FMCSA’s emergency order.

“This declaration addresses the emergency conditions creating a need for immediate transportation of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel and provides necessary relief,” reads the emergency declaration.

Regional emergency declaration to provide aid to drivers and companies supporting relief efforts

The FMCSA’s emergency declaration temporarily lifts the maximum driving time of property-carrying vehicles as established by Part 395.3 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.

This waiver of the regulation only affects drivers providing direct assistance to the FMCSA’s emergency relief efforts, such as truckers hauling gasoline, diesel and jet fuel into the affected states

According to the FMCSA, any driver or motor carrier who wants to aid emergency relief efforts must also abide by certain conditions. First and foremost is the motor carrier or driver’s understanding that no other part of the Federal Motor Carrier Regulations are waived.

Another condition is an understanding that “direct assistance” to emergency relief efforts does not include the transportation of fuel supplies or other products “related to long-term rehabilitation of damaged physical infrastructure.”

Truckers that are carrying mixed loads that include the much-needed fuel supplies and commercial goods, or those providing services that are not in support of emergency relief efforts, are immediately no longer eligible for emergency benefits.

Furthermore, once truckers are sent by motor carriers to another location to begin commercial operations, their participation in the Part 395.3 waiver is immediately terminated. Other conditions include:

  • Motor carriers or drivers who are subject to out-of-service orders are not eligible for the benefits of the emergency declaration until the orders have been rescinded in writing by the issuing jurisdictions.
  • Drivers that move from aiding emergency relief efforts to normal commercial operations are required to take a 10-hour break when the total time they engaged in emergency relief efforts, or in a combination of emergency relief and normal commercial operations, equals or exceeds 14 hours.

The FMCSA’s declaration remains in effect until the end of the emergency or until 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on Feb. 15, 2023, whichever comes first.

by: Arsenio Toledo

(Natural News)

Learn more about the energy crisis in the United States and other parts of the world at NewEnergyReport.com.

Watch this video of political commentator Patrick Humphrey discussing the FMCSA’s regional emergency declaration.

DDNI Featured News Article – Is transhumanism compatible with Christianity?

Last week 2,700 political and civil society leaders from 130 countries, including 52 heads of state, gathered in Davos for the annual World Economic Forum (WEF). Led by the infamous Klaus Shwab, the WEF agenda is pushing several controversial initiatives — from mandatory vaccine passports and universal surveillance to absolute control over the free flow of information. Ultimately, their solution for a world in crisis is to replace human-scale participation with a more manageable, editable version of future humanity. From their point of view, humanity is a problem that can finally be solved with innovative technology like biometric implants and personal avatars that would dominate our interaction with the world.

Their goals are best understood in their own words.

Dr. Yuval Noah Harari, Schwab’s top advisor, put it this way:

“We are no longer mysterious souls; humans are now hackable animals … replacing evolution by natural selection with intelligent design. Not the intelligent design of some God above the clouds, but the intelligent design of our clouds, the IBM cloud, the Microsoft clouds. These are the new driving forces of evolution … the idea that humans are spiritual beings having free will is over … through transhumanism, we become the Gods. It’s a religion coming from silicon valley.”

Ray Kurzweil, a heavyweight in the Davos crowd who heads up engineering at Google, predicted humans would be transformed into “Spiritual Machines” because they will “resurrect” our minds onto supercomputers, potentially extending our lifespan indefinitely. He predicted that technological advances could make our bodies incorruptible, preventing diseases and decay. People would acquire knowledge by uploading it to their brains stored on a supercomputer. Nanotechnology would allow us to remake Earth into a paradise and expand into space to inhabit other planets. This hybrid human creature would have limitless power.

According to the WEF, “The central premise of transhumanism, then, is that biological evolution will eventually be overtaken by advances in genetic, wearable, and implantable technologies that artificially expedite the evolutionary process.” The transhumanist declaration asserts, “We favor morphological freedom — the right to modify and enhance one’s body, cognition, and emotions.”

Juxtapose this agenda with what the Bible says, “God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them” (Genesis 1.7). So, does a believer have unlimited morphological freedom to change their biological sex or implant a chip to alter their lifespan? At what point would our participation in the transhumanist future violate the sovereignty of God? These are serious and important questions we all must ask ourselves.

We cannot naively assume this is only about improving the human condition when the result permanently alters what it means to be human. It’s them playing God with everything from saving the planet to creating a virtual village that uses an avatar instead of real people.

Regardless of whether this sounds like something made up for a science fiction movie, wealthy and powerful globalists are determined to make this the future of society and our human experience.

As Christians, we can accept medical or technological advances that improve the human experience, but is there a line we should not cross? The fundamental challenge arises when people or governments assume that humanity has unrestricted power to alter creation without needing God or setting up a false God that promises immortality. Since God gave mankind dominion over the Earth, there are spiritually acceptable means of improving the human condition through technology. However, that is not the same as saying humans are entirely free to change themselves in any way they choose. Ultimately, God is sovereign over us; we are not sovereign over ourselves. To assume we can re-create ourselves as some hybrid computer program is to usurp the prerogatives only God has.

Clearly, there is a spiritual aspect to this challenge of the sovereignty of God over creation. Since the Garden, Satan has wanted to eliminate man’s obedience to God and His will for our lives. The enemy of mankind wants to convince us — whether it’s preventing aging, changing biological gender, or killing the unborn — that he can control these outcomes in a more desirable way. It is the perennial struggle of humanity constantly drawn to worship “other Gods” that Satan sets up for mankind. From the Tower of Babel to Nebuchadnezzar and Cesaer, man is repeatedly enticed into battle against the Lord, defiantly trying to break the shackles of his perceived oppressor. It happened to the Israelites for thousands of years, and it’s happening again — there’s nothing new under the sun.

“The kings of the Earth prepare for battle; the rulers plot together against the Lord and against His Anointed One. ‘Let us break their chains,’ they cry. ‘And free ourselves from this slavery.’ But the one who rules in heaven laughs. The Lord scoffs at them” (Psalm 2:1-4).

By Hedieh Mirahmadi, Exclusive Columnist

https://www.christianpost.com/voices/is-transhumanism-compatible-with-christianity.html

Hedieh Mirahmadi was a devout Muslim for two decades working in the field of national security before she experienced the redemptive power of Jesus Christ and has a new passion for sharing the Gospel.  She dedicates herself full-time to Resurrect Ministry, an online resource that harnesses the power of the Internet to make salvation through Christ available to people of all nations, and her daily podcast LivingFearlessDevotional.com.

DDNI Featured News Article – You must bow at the LGBT altar or else

Do you remember when the main goal of LGBT activism was creating an atmosphere of “tolerance and acceptance”? Those days are long gone, and the goal posts have been moved dramatically. Today, if you do not partake in the public, mandatory celebration of LGBT pride, you will be marked and you will be ostracized. If you don’t believe me, just ask NHL hockey player Ivan Provorov.

Provorov, who is from Russia and plays on the Philadelphia Flyers, declined to participate in pregame warmups for the Flyer’s LGBT pride night, since he would have been required to wear a pride-themed jersey.

He explained to reporters, “I respect everybody and I respect everybody’s choices. My choice is to stay true to myself and my religion [which is Russian Orthodox]. That’s all I’m going to say.”

In other words, if someone identifies as LGBT, that’s their business, and he respects that. He has his own religious beliefs which dictate how he lives, and he would ask others to respect that. Live and let live.

Flyers coach John Tortorella was supportive of Provorov’s choice, explaining that the team made clear where it stood on LGBT pride. As for Provorov himself, Tortorella said that “he is being true to himself and to his religion. This has to do with his beliefs and his religion. That is one thing I respect about Provy, he is always true to himself, so that’s where we’re at with that.”

But not everyone was as tolerant (remember that word?).

According to hockey journalist Pierre LeBrun, if Provorov really respected the LGBT community, he would have participated in the event and worn the jersey. To paraphrase, “Who gives a hoot about his religious convictions? To respect someone means to celebrate who they are and what they do, even if it is in fundamental contradiction to one’s own beliefs and convictions.”

Hockey commentator Gord Miller seconded LeBrun’s sentiments, adding that Provorov should have been banned from playing in the game. After all, he tweeted, “Freedom of expression doesn’t give you freedom from the consequences of your words or actions.”

To paraphrase again, “Failure to celebrate LGBTQ+ Pride has serious professional consequences!”

Sports and comedy writer Rachael Millanta was even more blunt, calling Provorov “ignorant, obnoxious, and homophobic,” also referring to people like him as “bigots” who “hide behind their cherry-picked religion.”

Oh, the beauty of open-minded, liberal tolerance!

So, by Provorov following the consistent Christian teachings of the last 2,000 years (or, more broadly, the consistent biblical teachings of the last 3,000+ years), he is an ignorant, obnoxious and homophobic bigot who is cherry-picking his beliefs.

The same can be said for the tens of millions of Russian Orthodox Christians who share these beliefs, along with many hundreds of millions of other Christians of like heart and like mind.

In short, you cannot graciously disagree. You cannot respectfully opt out. Instead, you must deny your convictions, rewrite the Bible, run roughshod over your faith and publicly celebrate something you believe to be wrong. Otherwise, you are a crass human being and a small-minded bigot. Those are your only choices!

Already in 2011 in my book A Queer Thing Happened to America, I could point to the Riddle Homophobia Scale, used in schools to evaluate whether the students were “homophobic.” According to the scale, both tolerance and acceptance were considered homophobic, since homosexuality was not something to “tolerate” or “accept.”

Instead, the only way not to be homophobic was to embrace a “positive” attitude which called for “support, admiration, appreciation, and nurturance.”

Yes, if you don’t want to be a homophobe, you must admire your lesbian friend. You must nurture your transgender colleague’s new identity. Otherwise, you will be marked.

Are you surprised?

Well, consider this: “The Riddle homophobia scale was developed by Dorothy Riddle in 1973–74 while she was overseeing research for the American Psychological Association Task Force on Gays and Lesbians.”

That’s how far back it goes, although it wasn’t widely released until 1994. That’s why I started my article with this question: “Do you remember when the main goal of LGBT activism was creating an atmosphere of ‘tolerance and acceptance?’”

Most young people, including young adults, do not remember this time because they never experienced it. Instead, they have grown up with the choice to celebrate LGBT pride or be branded, to comply publicly or be ousted.

That’s why one of the chapters in my forthcoming book Why Have So Many Christians Left the Faith is titled, “If Gay Is Good, Christianity Is Bad.” That’s how much the tables have turned, even though the testimony of Scripture remains as clear today as it has ever been.

One of my colleagues, who is now a pastor, worked for years as a computer programmer with Bank of America. He told me that little by little, he was getting pushed out of his job through LGBT activism. By the time he quit, every employee, let alone higher-level manager or executive, could see on your bio whether you identified as an LGBT ally. If not, you could virtually kiss your career advancements goodbye.

Provorov is just the latest example of this reverse bigoted, small-minded, judgmentalism which leaves us with only one ethical choice: We will continue to love our LGBT neighbor as ourselves and we will refuse to back down on our convictions regardless of cost or consequence. That’s what Jesus would have us do.

By Michael Brown, CP Op-Ed Contributor| Monday, January 23, 2023

Update: Since writing this article, it was reported that, “Jerseys for Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Ivan Provorov have sold out online days after the 26-year-old refused to wear a gay pride-themed jersey for religious reasons.”

Dr. Michael Brown(www.askdrbrown.org) is the host of the nationally syndicated Line of Fire radio program. His latest book is Revival Or We Die: A Great Awakening Is Our Only Hope. Connect with him on FacebookTwitter, or YouTube.

Playing With Personhood — Denying Creation Dehumanizes People 

Deep Dive: Playing With Personhood — Denying Creation Dehumanizes People

Rudyard Kipling’s classic 1894 work, The Jungle Book, came to life onscreen in the very memorable 1967 Walt Disney animated film. It featured many popular characters like Baloo the bear, Bagheera the black panther, and of course Mowgli (an abandoned child raised by wolves), whose peaceful jungle existence is threatened by the return of the man-eating tiger Shere Khan.

But one of my favorites was always the kooky character King Louie, an ambitious orangutan with a bit of a chip on his shoulder, who wanted to move up in the world so to speak. And he had a specific way he thought he could do it.

You might remember some of the words to the song he sings to Mowgli after his minion monkeys capture and attempt to extract a special secret from him. Louie believes he’s at the top of the animal kingdom, but that’s not good enough—he wants to be a man and be recognized as one!

King Louie was depicted as a kind of scatter-brained, bebopping, jazz-singing character that Disney (according to their own disclaimers on the Disney+ streaming service) now considers an offensive caricature that utilized racist stereotypes of African Americans.

However, I want to use him to illustrate a variety of concepts that may also seem scatter-brained and disconnected initially (and I’ll be using a lot of rhetorical questions as well), but I will try to pull everything together toward the end of the article for a fuller understanding of our topic.

Evolutionary Personhood

You see, what King Louie (or rather the writer[s] of his song) was really getting at was the issue of personhood. He was tired of “monkeying around” and wanted his “cuz” (cousin) to give him the secret of how to become human. And what did he think was that secret? The ability to make and manipulate the use of fire.

Now, where did the writers get this idea? Was it just a whimsical notion thrown into the story’s amusing side-plot? Not at all, it was a very specific point made to promote the materialistic and atheistic story of evolution through a commonly taught idea.

This is the notion that the ability to master fire was one of the major transition points in the supposed evolution of our apelike ancestors as they turned into modern humans. As a 2016 Royal Society article stated, “It is plain that fire control has had a major impact in the course of human evolution.”

This notion has roots right back to the father of modern evolutionary thought, as the author makes the point that fire “was regarded by Darwin as the greatest discovery made by humanity, excepting only language” in his 1871 book, The Descent of Man. And so, the “fire drove evolution” notion persists, as this quote from a Smithsonian science article makes clear.

Harvard biologist Richard Wrangham . . . believes that fire is needed to fuel the organ that makes possible all the other products of culture, language included: the human brain.

And lest some skeptics want to downplay its inclusion in The Jungle Book as simply an innocent accident, this admission by a PMLA article published online by Cambridge University Press in 2020 makes the point that Kipling himself embraced Darwin’s ideas and expressed them in many of his works, including his controversial book White Man’s Burden, where his biological views of white superiority (as per Darwin’s conclusions) and Social Darwinism were front and center.

Scholars have long described Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Books as a Darwinian narrative. . . . This essay contextualizes Mowgli’s narrative within a fierce late-nineteenth-century debate about whether the Darwinian theory of natural selection or Lamarckian use inheritance was the main driver of evolutionary change.

The fact is, artists and authors often embed their own beliefs into their works, and Kipling was not immune to that tendency. And this can often influence others.

The Evolution of Disney

Now Walt Disney, although in the past it portrayed itself as a company promoting “traditional family values” (which used to include portraying biblical morality), has long promoted the story of evolution in many of its movies and in its theme park exhibits—sometimes with more subtlety like in King Louie’s lyrics, and sometimes more upfront, such as the entire pond-scum-to-people finale in the animated feature Fantasia.

Of course, the Disney of today is hardly family friendly in any traditional sense at all; rather, it has “evolved” far beyond such notions and seems willing to sacrifice billions of dollars of potential profit just to promote so-called progressive values by including themes and characters in their content that offend many conservative-minded people.

Disney’s 100th anniversary happens this year, and although many (especially older) folks may have a tug of nostalgia for the “old Disney” and what it supposedly used to stand for, they recognize it as extremely agenda-driven today in many ways that it never was before. Why such a big transformation in such a short time?

It seems like they are not just keeping up with society’s acceptance of naturalism and its inevitable consequences, but rather are at the forefront of endorsing all sorts of unbiblical nonsense, such as the idea that people can change their God-given identity by sheer force of will (i.e., a person born A can become Z simply by “deciding it is so”)!

Apparently, a majority of their decision makers are attempting to push their Marxist views of personhood through this entertainment giant now, whereas in the past, there were probably fewer with that bent, so it was less obvious.

What Is a Person?

Now what’s interesting is that up until the last few hundred years, everyone in the West seemed to know exactly what a person was. A human being was considered a special creation—different from and superior to the animals—made in the image of God. Why? Because that’s what the book of Genesis in the Bible plainly said about man’s origins, and the Bible was held in high esteem by most.

But that conceptualization of what a human being is and what personhood means began to change as the story of evolution began to take root among naturalistic influencers in the early 1800s. For example, as early as 1846, promotional material for a Barnum circus sideshow performer touted as a “man-monkey” (a man named Harvey Leech) asked,

Is it an animal? Is it human? . . . Or is it the long sought for link between man and the Ourang-Outang, which naturalists have for years decided does exist . . . ?

You see, this idea that humans are nothing more than hairless apes linked to our hominid forerunners began to be accepted, popularized, and taught as science in academia and eventually to the average child in public schools. Genesis became mythologized for many (even within the church), and this of course radically changed what people believed about what humans are and what personhood means.

No wonder King Louie eventually got the memo that all he needed to do to be like the “other humans” was to inch his way up on the evolutionary scale.

People Championing Personhood for Apes and Other Animals

And his message seems to have made an impact over the years, as at least one of his kind (an orangutan named Sandra) has attained what he was looking for (although not in the same way he’d been trying). An NBC News article reported,

Judge Elena Liberatori’s landmark ruling in 2015 declared that Sandra is legally not an animal, but a non-human person, thus entitled to some legal rights enjoyed by people, and better living conditions. “With that ruling I wanted to tell society something new, that animals are sentient beings and that the first right they have is our obligation to respect them. . . .”

Now (aside from the biblical notion that we should care for animals) this certainly is something new in Western society and puts us in a situation that raises the question, “What is a non-human person?” Is the qualifying factor for personhood being sentient (“able to perceive or feel things”)? Because lots of creatures could be considered sentient, and that’s likely why Sandra isn’t the only animal that people have tried elevating to human status.

For example, Happy the elephant (a resident of the Bronx Zoo) may have been denied personhood (in a recent New York court case testing the boundaries of applying human rights to animals) but the decision was arrived at by a 5-2 vote.

And that means 2 out of 7 of New York’s top court judges were in favor of assigning an elephant personhood and accompanying human rights. Let’s think about this from a modern societal view.

Evolutionists often argue that humans aren’t special in any true sense because we are just evolved animals. For example, a 2004 Australian Broadcasting Corporation TV production promoting the story of evolution had the following narration.

Once we believed we were unique, blessed with a soul and lovingly created by God in His image. Today, evolution says we are just a product of Natural Selection, the descendants of primitive bacteria, not the children of God.

However, if we’re ultimately just overgrown bacteria, why is it then that many want to give animals “human rights”? What makes our rights so special?

Back to Sandra the orangutan—she has now been declared not to be an animal; however, the reason is not because she’s a human, but because she’s a non-human person? But if she’s not an animal, and not a human, what is she then? And how can whatever she is be called a person with “human rights”?

Under this “new information” being doled out to society by this judge (and by the way, who gave her the authority to change the “old information”?), what then does the concept of humanity or personhood even mean? In the big picture of things, where did all of this word salad quackery we now have to deal with come from?

The Evolution of Personhood

Well, the adoption of the story of evolution (including how we supposedly became human) by many has changed the perception of personhood across the entire cultural landscape.

If everything we experience can be traced back to a cosmic explosion, then we are simply the result of random chance processes. And if everything is in a constant state of flux and change (despite us apparently not being able perceive it, because according to many, evolution supposedly takes place so slowly no one can see it), there can be no absolute and permanent definition of anything.

If there is no God who created male and female, cats and dogs, trees and flowers—each with a uniqueness about them—then everything is just a current form that flowed out of something else. So who knows what it may eventually become? And, without the concept of created norms, it seems that the concrete certainty of what personhood means may eventually slip away entirely.

An extreme example comes from my home country of Canada, with a 2022 National Geographic article titled “This Canadian river is now legally a person.”

“The Innu Council of Ekuanitshit and the Minganie Regional County Municipality declared the Mutuhekau Shipu a legal person in 2021. Now the river has nine rights, among them the right to flow, maintain biodiversity, be free from pollution, and to sue.”

Who Determines Personhood?

People need to understand this isn’t simply allusion or allegory—this is now part of Canadian law (as the article explains). But isn’t it astonishing that so-called modern culture has done away with the idea of legal personhood for actual persons (the unborn) and yet is willing to assign personhood to a body of flowing water?

You see, under Canadian law (in Section 223 of the Criminal Code), a child is only a person,

When it has completely proceeded, in a living state, from the body of its mother, whether or not it has breathed [or] . . . has an independent circulation, or the navel string is severed.

That’s right, in Canada, the person who cuts the umbilical cord somehow magically imbues personhood upon a human being. And yet preborn babies are self-aware, feel emotion, can hear Mom’s and Dad’s voices and respond to them, react to music, smile and cry, and do all of the things that babies outside of their moms do. So why is there this arbitrary assignment of personhood in this case?

Meanwhile, rivers aren’t even sentient beings like Sandra the orangutan—they don’t have a personality or emotions whatsoever. As a matter of fact, from minute to minute at any given location, they aren’t even the “same” thing, and the sand and dirt and wildlife and vegetation surrounding them can constantly change as well.

I guess one could suppose according to a naturalistic worldview that perhaps rivers (or portions of their constituent parts) could eventually change and become sentient beings over time—so why not give them “human rights” in advance?

However, again, if people (human beings) aren’t special, why should we be able to determine whether anything else is or if it should be assigned our own status—that of a person? And which people (based on what criteria) should be given the authority to do so? Because as new people with different ideas come and go, then the definition of what a person is could also constantly change.

Can you see how utterly absurd people’s thinking has become? It’s as Romans 1:21 describes: “For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened” (emphasis mine).

Nature Ruling Man

It has now become a Western-world phenomenon to have animals and nature elevated to a status above humans. In many countries, it is illegal and punishable by huge fines or imprisonment to kill or destroy the eggs of endangered species, pollute a specific area, emit a specific greenhouse gas, etc.

We are supposed to obsess over whether driving our cars might make the climate change (literally its job description!) because of the possible harm to “mother earth”; however, it is perfectly legal and acceptable to murder a human child in the womb, and in some cases, after they are born!

Why is it that millions of people are comfortable with supporting organizations and individuals committed to destroying actual living people through abortion, many of whom will also attend gala fundraisers and donate millions of dollars to preserve all sorts of plants, animals, and eco-systems?

Why, instead of placing a high value on all human life, has our culture shifted its focus to make animals and the environment the highest priority? It’s quite simple—it’s because of their spiritual condition. People have knowingly rejected God as Creator and have embraced the idea that nature itself is god by accepting the story of evolution. As Scripture describes,

Romans 1:20, 22-23, 25, 28 KJV – “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse… Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things… Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen… And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient.”

Church, It’s Not “Just Science”!

Brothers and sisters in Christ, it’s time to come to terms with what is happening in our culture. Often, when looking at the utter clown show of sheer confusion we see in society today regarding personhood, identity, and morality, many Christians don’t seem to be able to connect the dots between what is going on out there and the fact that the majority of the church has abandoned its Genesis foundation and accepted the story of evolution.

As a matter of fact, many of our church leaders, Christian authors, Bible colleges, and seminaries have bought into evolution as the supposed “scientific” explanation for how God created us as well, which not only encourages people’s belief in the false story of evolution, but also signals to the world that the Bible can’t be taken as plainly written.

Adopting theistic evolution weakens the Christian’s ability to imitate our Lord Jesus in quoting Scripture as the final authority (remember his habit of saying, “It is written” or “Have you not read?”). Because let’s face it, the Bible makes no mention of millions of years or evolution but explicitly teaches that God created in six literal days ex nihilo—from nothing.

People naturally end up thinking, “If I can’t trust what’s plainly written in the Bible at the beginning, then why should I trust it anywhere else?”

No, the story of evolution is not “simply a scientific theory” as I have heard so many of my brethren say; rather, it is a concept that claims nature made everything and there’s no need for a Creator.

The Universal Acid of Darwinism

Spiritually and morally, it is a cocktail for utter chaos—and one that has been poured out and served through our schools and media outlets for years now, weakening the fabric of society in unimaginable ways.

As the atheist Daniel Dennet (in reference to the concept of a metaphorical “universal acid” that could conceptually disintegrate anything) once said,

Little did I realize that in a few years I would encounter an idea – Darwin’s idea – bearing an unmistakable likeness to universal acid: it eats through just about every traditional concept, and leaves in its wake a revolutionized world-view, with most of the old landmarks still recognizable, but transformed in fundamental ways.

And he was correct. Today—even with the remnant of church influence in society—many people’s understanding of the world has been turned upside down, including even the basic concept of what it means to be a person.

Who Has the Authority to Assign Personhood?

Even the average child understood what made King Louie’s brief appearance and performance so amusing in The Jungle Book. It was ultimately his autonomous decision to try to assign himself personhood, but as every child knows—apes aren’t people!

Or are they? Now many aren’t sure. Are humans animals? If we are, are we the only animals entitled to fundamental rights such as liberty, autonomy, equality, and fairness? If so, who decides? Who has the ability to define what a person is and give them rights?

Do elected officials that change from year to year have the authority to decide what personhood means for the rest of us? Because if they do, we might not be very happy with how the next one that comes along defines us based on their personal (pun intended) point of view.

As a matter of fact, almost all genocides committed against groups of people began with campaigns to dehumanize the victims to some extent, so that their eradication could be justified by their oppressors. If our standard of personhood is not absolute, there’s no guarantee any of us won’t fail to meet the criteria some other person later decides upon.

Only God Can Decide What a Person Is

One can try and point out specific attributes that separate us from the animals as a reason that we’re special, such as the fact that only humans can think abstractly, are able to use complex language to communicate, and use tools to make tools. But those characteristics alone are not what determines that humans have personhood.

Only God can define who and what we are (and what the rest of reality is), based on his sovereign authority as Creator and Sustainer of everything. And his written revelation to us shows he has created us separate from the animals and has given humans certain rights that he has not given to animals. And he also declared that we are called to care for creation and steward it kindly and correctly.

What makes us unique is described in Genesis 1:27:

Genesis 1:27 KJV – “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.”

We are image bearers of God, distinct from animals and given dominion over them.

Genesis 1:28 KJV – “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

The very idea that men would have the audacity to believe they should grant personhood to animals and even nonliving things like rivers while denying their own children that right is utter madness. But it’s the result of a degenerate culture that has turned its back on the Creator. As atheist Jeremy Rifkin once said,

We no longer feel ourselves to be guests in someone else’s home and therefore obliged to make our behavior conform with a set of pre-existing cosmic rules. It is our creation now. We make the rules. We establish the parameters of reality. We create the world, and because we do, we no longer have to justify our behavior, for we are now the architects of the universe. We are responsible to nothing outside ourselves, for we are the kingdom, the power, and the glory for ever and ever.

Biblical Creation: A Return to Reality

It is doubtful that most people watching The Jungle Book’s debut in 1967 would ever have imagined the implications King Louie’s idea of attempting to turn an ape into a man would have on society’s future. But the full weight of dismissing the idea of a created world with absolute meaning, structure, normality, and reality has finally hit home.

Christians, it is time to stop messing around with ideas like millions of years of supposed evolution and attempting to insert them into the Bible where they don’t belong and where they do great damage to biblical understanding.

People are watching reality unravel and will be looking for those who can provide a consistent worldview, which is what Bible believers have. Indeed, what we see in the world matches what we read in God’s Word when we view the world through the plain reading of Scripture.

However, we must stand on the authority of God’s Word from the very first verse and use it as the plumb line for all of our human experience lest the very meaning of personhood be washed away.

 

Source: Deep Dive: Playing With Personhood — Denying Creation Dehumanizes People | Harbingers Daily

For More Information into Origin of Life and Creation Science please check out some of our newest videos on the DDNI Video Library

The dangers of theological liberalism 

The dangers of theological liberalism

 

 

We live in an age of great compromise and confusion, especially regarding the Christian faith. In some ways, that means we live in the same sort of day and age that every Christian has lived in since Christ ascended to Heaven approximately 2,000 years ago.

The New Testament authors, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in the immediate decades following the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ, were acutely aware of the need to defend the pure teaching of the faith against those who would undermine its doctrine and application.

In 1 Timothy 4:1, Paul writes that “The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.”

God knew what He was doing when He gave the Church such strong warnings.

But while there is no doubt that false teaching and heresies have always plagued the Christian Church, each era has its own battles to fight. In the early Church period, they had to deal with Gnosticism, Christological errors, and confusion about the Holy Spirit.

Thankfully, in our day and age, we have creeds and confessions, like the Apostles Creed and the Nicene Creed, which set forward the clear, uncompromised principles of historical, orthodox Christianity. Or, if you are a Baptist, we have the Baptist Faith & Message 2000.

Still, even though we have these statements, false teaching abounds. One particularly pernicious strain of corrupted Christianity is what’s known as “theological liberalism.” The late R.C. Sproul warned that “We are living in a day when liberal theology has made deep inroads in the church.”

Even if you don’t know its name, I’m confident you’ve encountered some of its teachings — like those who deny the reality of the resurrection of Christ. So, to better equip you to spot and counter theological liberalism, let me explain what it is and why it’s dangerous.

What is theological liberalism?

In his book The Making of American Liberal Theology: Imagining Progressive Religion, 1805 – 1900, Gary Dorrien explains,

“The idea of liberal theology is nearly three centuries old. In essence, it is the idea that Christian theology can be genuinely Christian without being based upon external authority. Since the 18th century, liberal Christian thinkers have argued that religion should be modern and progressive and that the meaning of Christianity should be interpreted from the standpoint of modern knowledge and experience.”

In other words, the starting point of theological liberalism is that it trades the external, objective, God-given standard of the Bible in matters of faith for an individual’s personal, subjective opinion and experience.

This is an exact inversion of the Christian faith. We know who God is and what He wants from mankind because God speaks — and speaks first. Theological liberalism trades “Thus saith the Lord” for “So saith man.”

Summarizing Dorrien’s book, pastor and theologian Kevin DeYoung provides six other characteristics of theological liberalism along with the rejection of external authority (in addition to the one above). He says it argues that:

  1. “Christianity is a movement of social reconstruction.”
  2. “Christianity must be credible and relevant.”
  3. “Truth can be known only through changing symbols and forms.”
  4. “Theological controversy is about language, not about truth.”
  5. “The historical accuracies of biblical facts and events are not crucial, so long as we meet Jesus in the pages of Scripture.”
  6. “The true religion is the way of Christ, not any particular doctrines about Christ.”

DeYoung concludes that “Liberals believe they are making Christianity relevant, credible, beneficial, and humane. Evangelicals in the line of J. Gresham Machen believe they are making something other than Christianity. That was the dividing line a century ago, and the division persists.”

What does this look like in practice? Theological liberalism denies key doctrines like the inerrancy and infallibility of Scripture. They deny that the Bible is, in the words of Chicago Statement on Inerrancy, “to be received as the authoritative Word of God” and that “Scripture in its entirety is inerrant, being free from all falsehood, fraud, or deceit” and serves as the final rule of faith and practice.

Because it denies the truthfulness and reliability of Scripture, it denies the historical creation account, events like the flood, the virgin birth, the miracles of Jesus, and often the resurrection of Jesus itself.

In other words, theological liberalism largely rejects the supernatural and miraculous events recorded in the Bible as fact, calling them fiction instead. Furthermore, it denies essential doctrines like original sin and the indwelling sin in all mankind, which makes the sacrifice of Christ on the cross unnecessary.

Finally, in our present moment, theological liberalism is often seen in the rejection of the creation order and biblical sexual morality.  Denominations that deny the truthfulness of God’s Word almost always end up rejecting what it teaches about sex and marriage when the world pressures it to compromise. This is why many of the major “mainline denominations,” like the Presbyterian Church of the United States (PCUSA), most United Methodist churches, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, American Baptists, and the Episcopal Church, are all LGBT-affirming.

Make no mistake about it: Once a denomination, church, pastor, or Christian leader adopts the core teachings of liberal theology, progressive (Bible-denying) political positions will be adopted as well.

Why theological liberalism is dangerous

The main reason theological liberalism is so dangerous is that it destroys the Gospel. What is the Gospel? It is “the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes” (Romans 1:16), the message that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:23-24), and that this salvation is found only in Jesus Christ, the “lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world” (John 1:29).

Liberal theology denies that man is so sinful he needs a savior. It tells us that we can’t trust the Bible as God’s Word and that Jesus might not have been anything more than a good teacher who set an example for moral living. Theological liberalism is a “religious system” that has been constructed to help sinful man feel better about himself, not show him that he is a rebel on the way to Hell and then reveal a gracious, God-sent, God-incarnate savior.

Thus, the danger of theological liberalism is that it sends people to Hell. That’s not an exaggeration, that’s a biblical fact. This is why Paul warns that false teaching is, in fact, the teaching of demons — because it comes from Hell and damns man to Hell in the final judgment.

J. Gresham Machen was a faithful theologian in the 20th century. He wrote a best-selling theology book called Christianity and Liberalism that is still well-known and well-read today. In this book, Machen warned that liberal Christianity isn’t just a compromised form of Christianity, but really another religion altogether — and a false one at that. He argues that “despite the liberal use of traditional phraseology modern liberalism not only is a different religion from Christianity but belongs in a totally different class of religions.”

In other words, it’s not Christianity — and it’s not even close to being Christian.

Sproul agreed with Machen, warning that “Liberalism stands in every generation as a flat rejection of the faith. It must not be viewed as a simple subset or denominational impulse of Christianity; it must be seen for what it is — the antithesis of Christianity based on a complete rejection of the biblical Christ and His Gospel.”

Jesus warned His followers to “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13).

Theological liberalism represents the “broad gate” that ultimately leads to destruction. Why? Because it follows in the footsteps of the serpent, who, in the garden planted the deathly seed of doubt in the form of “Did God really say?”

As faithful Christians, we reject this question and confidently claim, “Yes, God really did say” — He said we are fallen, Jesus Christ is the savior, the Bible is trustworthy, men are men and women are women, marriage is between a man and woman, Heaven and Hell are real, and the only way to eternal life is to repent of our sins and trust in the finished work of Christ on the cross.

That’s the narrow gate. It might sound fantastic — and it is. But it is the way that leads to life. So, reject theological liberalism, which is no Christianity at all, and, as the Apostle Paul admonishes us, “Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers” (1 Timothy 4:16).

 

https://www.christianpost.com/voices/the-dangers-of-theological-liberalism.html

 

 


Originally published at the Standing for Freedom Center. 

 

 

William Wolfe served as a senior official in the Trump administration, both as a deputy assistant secretary of defense at the Pentagon and a director of legislative affairs at the State Department. Prior to his service in the administration, Wolfe worked for Heritage Action for America, and as a congressional staffer for three different members of Congress, including the former Rep. Dave Brat. He has a B.A. in history from Covenant College, and is finishing his Masters of Divinity at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Follow William on Twitter at @William_E_Wolfe