GOD IS GOOD FOR YOU – A defence of Christianity in troubled times

A great Christian book from the Foreign Correspondent of The Australian Newspaper, Greg Sheridan. Reaction to the book is surprising. Overall it has been good. Atheists response predictable – How dare you promote Christianity.

The fact western civilisation was shaped by Christianity has been wiped from our consciousness in universities and schools. Cultural crisis is rampant. culture is fluid, it rejects a grand narrative. a coherent narrative and rejects truth, your truth is not my truth.

The only cause for hope is God exists, He loves us and He is in control. Moreover, He has provided us with an account of true history from the beginning to the end, in His Word.

Listen to a great interview: John Anderson, Former Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party of Australia interviewing Greg.

NOAH'S FLOOD PROVIDES ONLY CREDIBLE ANSWER FOR ICE AGE

This article is from Creation 41(4):44–47, October 2019. Since 1837, when Louis Agassiz (1801–1873) first presented evidence for the Ice Age, secular scientists have been mystified. Why did it start? What caused it to stop? Over the years, creation scientists have realised that the unusual conditions created on the earth by the global Flood described in Genesis caused the Ice Age. And they have developed a powerful model that answers questions surrounding it.1 Table 1 presents the three requirements that must be met before an ice age can develop. These conditions existed immediately after the global Flood.

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The cooler summers needed were caused by abundant volcanism and meteorite impacts during the Flood, which filled the stratosphere with very small particles that reflected some of the sunlight back to space. This volcanism has left evidence in the geological record. Secular scientists have estimated the effect of small particles high in the stratosphere by studying an impact in southern Mexico. They found it cooled global mean temperatures by more than 27°C (49°F) for about 30 years,2,3 and this was just one large impact. The net result of volcanism during the Flood would be a quick start to the Ice Age immediately after the Flood, especially in susceptible areas such as central Canada, and in high mountains of the mid and high latitudes. As the quantity of snow built up, the geographical area covered by the ice increased. The ice sheets did not have to physically move from the higher latitudes.

Ongoing volcanism prolongs cooling
With time, these small volcanic particles would slowly sink out of the stratosphere. However, copious post-Flood volcanism would replenish them, allowing the cooler summers to persist for many years. Ice Age expert J.K. Charlesworth writes: “…signs of Pleistocene [Ice Age] volcanicity and earth movements are visible in all parts of the world.”4

The Ice Age portion of Greenland ice cores shows evidence of 1,927 volcanic events recorded in the ice sheet.5 There are 700 stratovolcanoes on Earth (figure 2), and these cones would mostly represent post-Flood volcanism.

Data from eruptions during the past 2,000 years reveals that a single eruption can cause global and/or regional cooling of around 0.5 to 2.5°C (1 to 4.5°F) for several years. Some eruptions during the post-Flood Ice Age were much larger than eruptions in historical times. The great Toba, Sumatra, eruption is believed to have cooled global climate 3.5°C (6.3°F) for 9 to 10 years,6 with some estimates much greater.

As a result of these eruptions the land would have cooled much faster than the oceans, especially lowering the mean temperature of the summers. The oceans would lose their heat mainly through evaporation. This heat loss would occur much more slowly than that of the atmosphere. The cool land and warm oceans would create the ideal conditions for a rapid ice age.

Warm oceans supply the moisture The warm ocean provided the abundant moisture essential for the Ice Age. Evaporation is linked to sea surface temperature. After the global Flood, ocean temperatures would have been much warmer than they are today mainly due to the enormous volcanism during the Flood, when “all the fountains of the great deep burst forth” (Genesis 7:11). This is consistent with much super heated underground water as well as lava from the enormous volcanism pouring into the ocean, as seen in the geologic record.

The greatest warming compared with today’s oceans would have been at the mid and high latitudes. The Arctic Ocean would have been warm and ice-free with strong evaporation, generating high rates of precipitation. Snowstorm after snowstorm would have dropped their loads on land where eventually large ice sheets developed. The lower latitudes also had a higher rate of precipitation during this time, expressed as much higher rainfall, including in areas that are now extremely dry.

The Ice Age would persist until the oceans cooled and the post-Flood volcanism decreased, after which it would wane. The Ice Age was roughly 700 years long, taking some 500 years to build and 200 years to wane—40,000 or 100,000 years are not needed for an ice age.

Short timescale—key to mystery Concerning volcanism, secular scientists recognise that large volcanoes cool the climate for several years. If these Ice Age volcanoes were spread out over tens of thousands or more years, each volcanic eruption would have an insignificant effect on long-term cooling. However, if we telescope all these volcanic eruptions into several hundred years, volcanism provides the powerful cooling mechanism for the Ice Age. The short timescale the Bible sets out is not a side issue, but key to solving what to secular scientists has remained a mystery for the past 200 years—the cause of even one ice age.

The creationist post-Flood Ice Age differs greatly from the ice age envisioned by secular scientists. They postulate very cold, dry winters, but in the biblical model the winters would be much warmer and wetter than today, especially during the early- and mid-part of the Ice Age. This warmth would come from two processes unique to the climate effects of the Flood. The first is the heating of oceanic air by contact with the warmer ocean. This warmer air would produce a warm onshore air flow, especially in western North America and western Europe. Onshore flow today is the reason why western Washington, USA, is much warmer in winter than the interior of the United States at the same latitude. As a result of this onshore air flow, the Ice Age would be delayed in western North America and western Europe, except for the high mountains.

Second, when water vapour condenses and precipitates, it releases much heat to the atmosphere. This would be especially significant in storms, which would be strongest in winter at mid and high latitudes. This winter heat would spread all over the earth. Warmer, wetter, winters would produce much more rain and snow, since the warmer the air, the more moisture it can hold (figure 3).

Solving Ice Age mysteries The unique biblical Ice Age model solves the stubborn mysteries of earth science that secular scientists have been wrestling with for some 200 years. The Genesis Flood explains why the Ice Age began, why it stopped, and how it took only hundreds of years, not hundreds of thousands. The Ice Age model solves other mysteries such as the life and death of the woolly mammoth in Siberia, Alaska, and Canada’s Yukon Territory; the end-Ice-Age mass extinction of animals; the mix of warm and cold-climate animals and plants; and why today’s dry areas (e.g. the Sahara, Central Australia) were once well-watered. These will be dealt with in later articles.

What about the other Ice Ages? Secular scientists say that the first ice age began more than two billion years ago and envisage there were five main ice age periods (see table). Each of these are thought to have lasted from a few million to hundreds of millions of years. The last major ice age period is called the Pleistocene and is currently divided into 50 glaciations of variable intensities, each of which are said to have cycled every 40,000 or 100,000 years in the past 2.6 million years.1 These numerous glacial/interglacial cycles are deductions from the astronomical or Milankovitch theory of the ice ages. Creationist scientists generally maintain that the theory is incapable of explaining even one ice age. They agree with secular scientists, however, that the last of the Pleistocene ice ages is real.2 The claimed earlier 49 ‘ice ages’, which creation scientists maintain did not happen, are mainly based on speculative interpretations of oscillations of certain variables in deep-sea sediment cores.

Not ancient ‘ice ages’ but huge landslides during the Flood Secularists infer the four oldest alleged ice age periods (‘ancient ice ages’ to distinguish them from the recent Ice Age that followed Noah’s Flood) from features in sedimentary rocks similar to those in glaciated areas. One problem is that these sorts of features are not always caused by glaciers. Another major flaw in this ‘glacial’ interpretation is that the rocks are found near the equator, and more disastrously, they were formed below sea level. So, secular scientists are forced to postulate that Earth was totally glaciated at least twice! This so-called ‘snowball Earth’ hypothesis4 is scientifically implausible because it would be almost impossible to melt the ice and snow because of the reflection of the sunlight back to space. An alternative, more logical explanation is that the features are from widespread underwater landslides, which would have been common during the Flood.5,6

PREDICTIVE PROPHECIES MAKE BIBLE UNIQUE

No sacred book of any other world religion reveals future events as does the Bible. It is unique in this regard. God’s prophets predict with amazing accuracy and descriptive detail – events of history many centuries before they took place and future events up to the end of this age.

“For I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is none like Me,
Declaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things that are not yet done,”
Isaiah 56:9-10

The ability to predict history with such accuracy implies the ability to control history. In fact, God the creator, the one who sustains the cosmos can say without contradiction, “My purposes will stand.”

One of the major themes of biblical prophecy is the destiny of Israel. From the birth of Israel as a nation to the final consummation of their destiny, every major stage has been predicted by its prophets. At least 80 percent of these prophecies have been already fulfilled, so it is reasonable to presume that the other 20 percent will be fulfilled with equal accuracy.

Interwoven with Israel’s history is the destiny of another people the church of Jesus Christ. The church had its origin within Israel and all the early Christians were Jews.

Jesus was Israel’s long awaited Messiah, but sadly the Pharisees and Sadducee’s rejected Him, and the Jews were cast out of their homeland and scattered across the world exactly as prophesied. However, the Bible tells us that God would gather them from all the nations and bring them back to their homeland at the appointed time. This extraordinary event happened in 1948, and it signalled one of the major signs Jesus gave us of His second coming.

Slide from Prophesied Restoration of Israel – Prior to Jesus Second Coming

One of the most exciting features of the period in which we live is that the destinies of Israel and the church are beginning to converge. Berean Christians recognise from the prophecies that Israel’s regathering to their homeland is one of the signs preparatory to Jesus second coming.

Is your church preparing its members for the tribulation that is prophesied prior to Jesus return? Is your church actively engaged in bringing in the “end times” harvest? If not, get into prayer to determine what it is God would have you do at this critical time in earths history.

If you want to see how God has controlled history in the present and spread the Good News then download the Power Point Presentation “Prophesied Restoration of the Land to Israel – Prior to Jesus Second Coming. It is based on Jonathan Cahn’s book The Oracle. Contact me to request a copy.

MEGACHURCH MODEL IN DISARRAY

After the suicides of two young pastors of Megachurches, one in 2018 and one this year, Rev. Howard-John Wesley, senior pastor of the historic Alfred Street Baptist Church in Alexandria, Virginia, surprised his congregation earlier this month with an announcement that he is stepping away from his ministry for a season because he feels far from God, tired in his soul and needed to recuperate mentally and physically.

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“From January 1 (2020) to April 1. I am walking away from every responsibility I have as pastor,” Wesley announced in his sermon on Dec. 1.

“You can’t pour out of an empty cup. It is very dangerous for your pastor to be on empty,” he told congregants.  “I need to take care of me.

In a sermon entitled “Selah” on the value of rest, Wesley noted how common pastoral sabbaticals are in white churches while pointing out how rare it was in black churches. He argued that many black pastors don’t take sabbaticals because they are afraid attendance might dip and affect the bottom line or the church may just function just fine without them.

The journey of Francis Chan from a Megachurch in California to starting a successful House church movement and more recently to a ministry in Hong Kong demonstrates God is taking His church back. The end times church will be like the church described in the Book of Acts. Take a look at my recent post Thailand – Free in Jesus Christ to see the Book of Acts church in action.

THAILAND – FREE IN JESUS CHRIST

In 2018, Free in Jesus Christ Church (FJCCA), Thailand brought in new Christians in numbers that would confound most projections, statisticians, and historical trends. In January, 2019 the group baptised 520 new Christians in an outdoor service in Chon Daen. It was the largest baptism national church leaders had ever seen, crowds waded chest-deep in a public reservoir with lush hills behind them.

Thai pastor Somask Rinnasak (left photo) prepares 520 new Christians for a record-setting baptism in the Kuttu Phra Reservoir near Chon Daen in January. Another 444 were baptized in the same waters last October.

In village after village, Thai people who had never before heard the name Jesus responded by the dozens to follow him. In a single day last December, 309 people began following Christ as FJCCA teams visited four villages for the first time.

It’s the fastest-growing church movement in the country’s history.

Founding pastor Somsak Rinnasak, a motorcycle mechanic and garage owner, has no seminary background or formal theological training. FJCCA converts start house churches in as little as six months and go on to plant “mother churches” in as little as a year.

When the house church planters were asked: “Who taught you how to do this?” They didn’t understand the question. After a pause, Khun Rajirot, Rinnasak’s wife, responded, “We just read what Jesus and Paul did in the Gospels and Acts and do the same thing.”

The FJCCA’s church planting movement in Thailand represents a success story amid a shifting approach to global missions as Christians rely less on evangelism led by Western missionaries and instead trust the Spirit’s work among their own people.

Put simply, “Thailand will be reached by the Thai.” FJCCA now plants more churches in two weeks than more than 300 evangelical missionaries with the Evangelical Fellowship of Thailand do in an entire year.

Post taken from article in Christianity Today by Kate Shellnutt: Making Missions Count: How a Major Database Tracked Thailand’s Church-Planting Revival

BY THE POWER OF GOD, JEWS COMING TO JESUS

 Rabbi Eric Tokajer says the Good News of Jesus is beginning to spread throughout Israel, and it’s important for Christians to continue to support that effort.

The founder of Brit Ahm Messianic Synagogue in Pensacola, Florida, and the publisher of The Messianic Times, Tokajer, who conducts tours in the Holy Land, says the growth of Messianic ministries in Israel proves God’s hand indeed is upon that land

“Years ago, when I became a Jewish believer, there were only a handful of Jewish believers in Israel,” Tokajer told Dr. Steve Greene on a recent episode of Greenelines on the Charisma Podcast Network. “Now there are thousands, probably somewhere around 10,000 that are Jewish believers born in Israel. There are others that came from outside that live there, but when I became a believer, there were almost none.

Now, there are hundreds of groups that meet together around the land that are sharing the Good News, which is part of end-times prophecy being fulfilled as God is re-grafting the natural branches into the olive tree.

“A lot of the Christian world never hears those stories. But if they go to Israel, they will actually see what’s happening where the blind see, the lame walk, the deaf hear and people are preached to in prison.

The Jewish people are discovering the power of the Holy Spirit and the power of Yeshua. And by the power of God the Good News will continue to spread in Israel.”

IS GOD A MORAL MONSTER?

Is there a difference between the God of the Old Testament and the God of the New Testament? How do we understand things like God commanding the extermination of the Amalekites and other judgements? And how does this all point to the Gospel? Listen to Gary Bates and Lita Cosner discuss this important issue.

Other HELPFUL RESOURCES Christianity for Skeptics https://creation.com/s/10-2-585 Why Does a Good God Allow Bad Things?

SIGNS OF THE END TIMES

According to a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, just 30% of respondents identifying as Millennials or Generation Z (ages 18-38) say religion or belief in God is very important, which means 70% don’t believe in God. This compares with 67% of those over 55 who say belief in God is important. 

The above poll results demonstrate, conclusively, the devastating effect the teaching of evolution as fact in our schools and universities has on belief in God and His Word.

Despite the fact the latest scientific evidence, particularly the DNA Encode project, has proved conclusively, living things are highly complex, with an extraordinary multi layer level of information on the DNA. Moreover, the DNA controls highly complex machines in the multitude of cells that make up a human body so that only intelligent design can be their source. The information on the DNA, and the design of the machines in the cells, had to be correct when the organism came into existence (irreducible complexity). Evolution by random chance is nonsense and yet it is still being taught in our schools and universities. Why? Because they cannot countenance a supernatural God, certainly not the God of the Bible. Moreover, they are oblivious to the fact that supernatural beings are influencing their actions. This is spiritual warfare as described by Paul in God’s Word.

“Put on the whole armour of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armour of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.” Ephesian 6:11-13

Another devastating result is most respondents under 38 do not see having children as very important while some 54% of respondents over 55 say it is. 

Don’t believe in God, and judgement, and life after death, then why be concerned about anything but self. God’s Word prophecies that prior to Jesus second coming that this is what it will be like for Christians.

“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.” Matthew 24: 9-14

Will the church be prepared for the coming tribulation? What is being preached in your church about increasing persecution of Christians and the end times? Has your church compromised with the world on gay marriage and homosexuality?

SAVING POWER OF JESUS CHRIST – POWERFUL TESTIMONY

As the victorious South African national rugby team prepare to return home to a hero’s welcome, one player’s life story has captured the world’s imagination.  Captain, Siya Kolisi has been on an extraordinary journey.  Growing up in an extremely poor township outside Port Elizabeth, his mother died when he was just 15 years old and his family struggled to get him a decent education.

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  Captain, Siya Kolisi

 “Sometimes we didn’t have enough money to pay my primary school fees of R50 ($4) a year,” Siya said.  Relying solely on his talent and a relentlessly positive attitude, Siya was eventually scouted for his athletic talent after being spotted playing a sports game with his friends.

He earned a scholarship to the prestigious Grey High School in Port Elizabeth.  The rest was history.  Fast forward to Tokyo and this extraordinary player, the first black man to captain the South African national team, was lifting the Webb Ellis trophy aloft, his proud family watching on.  

Speaking to SportGo Mag just prior to the World Cup, the rugby star opened up about how the Lord had been getting him ready for the big stage by refining his character.  “God has been preparing me for such a time as this,” he said.  “While struggling with a lot of things personally, temptation, sins and lifestyle choices, I realised I wasn’t living according to what I was calling myself: a follower of Christ.  I was getting by, but I hadn’t decided to fully commit myself to Jesus Christ and start living according to His way.”

Kolisi continued: “Something I was struggling with in my personal life was suddenly exposed to the public (God will do this to cause us to make a decision). I knew I either had to change my life, or lose everything. Up until then everything I was fighting against was hidden, but when my sin was exposed I decided to lose my life and find it in Christ.  Walking alongside a spiritual mentor, I’ve been able to discover the saving power of Christ in a whole new way.  This new life has given me a peace I’ve never experienced before.  Now that I have given everything to God, nothing else affects me.  I now live and play with the freedom of knowing His plan will always happen, and at the end of the day, that’s all I care about!”