TRANSGENDER PEOPLE AND THE CHURCH

Rev Christina Beardsley is a transgender priest in the Church of England and author of numerous resources on trans experience in the church. She engages with Preston Sprinkle, author of ‘Embodied: Transgender Identities, the Church, and What the Bible Has to Say’ who takes a grace-filled but traditional Christian approach to sexuality. They discuss how churches should engage with trans people, theological questions of ‘bodily’ and ‘gender’ identity, and the issue of Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria.

It was unsettling for me to watch this video but it was valuable to do so to learn of Beardsley’s journey and the decisions he made along the way to now present as a woman. I concluded that Preston Sprinkle had done a credible job of presenting the Biblical viewpoint.

SUBMISSION TO AUTHORITY

Submission comes down to a choice. Are we going to recognize the authority of another, or are we going to insist on doing things the way that we want to do them? Above all do we recognise the authority of our Creator God. The following Scripture tells us exactly what our Creator thinks about the importance of us submitting to authority. Moreover, His word tells us exactly the roles and rules He has established for male, females, fathers and mothers, elders and children that enable us to function in His world.

“Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men.  Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name.” Philippians 2:5-9.

Understanding that submitting to authority does not have anything to do with the value or worth of an individual is fundamental to our ability to accept whatever role God assigns to us.

Submission is defined as, “The action or fact of accepting or yielding to a superior force or to the will or authority of another person.”

People have struggled with the idea of submission forever, usually because of pride, ego, or greed. For organizations to function effectively, there must be order and recognition of authority. In the absence of these two things, we have chaos. Jesus is such a great example for us and yet Jesus asserted His authority over man when He said:

“I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” – John 14:6. and “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.” Matthew 28:18

Sadly, the roles and rules established by our Creator are no longer considered valid in todays society. We would prefer to make up our own rules so that we can do whatever we desire to do whenever we want to do it. Lawlessness is the result. God’s Word tells us that in the last days before Jesus returns to this earth lawlessness will abound.

And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.Matthew 24:12-14

Now concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered together to him… Let no one deceive you in any way. For that day will not come, unless the rebellion comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction, who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God, proclaiming himself to be God.” 2 Thessalonian 1:1,3-4

Jesus second coming is as important as His first coming. It is glorious for those of us that have accepted His offer of eternal life. It was achieved by Jesus sacrifice on The Cross which was necessary to bring us back into a righteous relationship with our Heavenly Father. However, accepting Jesus offer also requires us to submit to His Lordship over our lives. When we do, Jesus makes it possible for our Heavenly Father to send the Holy Spirit to indwell our Spirit enabling us to live the Christian life. Our Spirit is the lamp of the Lord which requires oil, the Holy Spirit to function, to produce light.

“The spirit of man is the lamp of the Lord, searching all his innermost parts.” Proverbs 20:27

When we say to our Heavenly Father, as Jesus did during His time on this earth, not my will but your will be done, the Holy Spirit will produce the fruit of the Spirit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, faithfulness gentleness goodness, kindness and self control. Also all nine gifts of the Spirit will be available for us to achieve God’s purpose for our lives (1 Corinthians 12;4-11).

Sadly, many people who think they are Christians have never truly submitted to the Lordship of Christ and so have never received the Holy Spirit to enable them to live the Christian life. They have never truly died to self to enable them to be born again in Christ. Where do you stand?

ISRAEL – EFFECTIVENESS OF COVID VACCINE ALMOST 99%

Data so far shows the Pfizer vaccine has a very high effectiveness in preventing illness, hospitalizations and mortality. By Paul Shindman, World Israel News

With nearly half of Israel’s population having received at least one shot of the coronavirus vaccine, data released on the weekend by the Health Ministry shows that it has almost 99% efficacy in preventing serious illness, Israel Hayom reported Sunday. According to the data, 14 days after injection, the second dose of the vaccine was 95.8% efficient in preventing new infections, and 98% of those inoculated did not develop fever or respiratory symptoms.

The vaccine is 98.9% effective in preventing hospitalizations due to corona, 99.2% in the prevention of severe corona cases and 98.9% in preventing death by coronavirus, the data shows.

The data as of Feb. 13 was for those Israelis who had received the required two shots of the vaccine made by the American company Pfizer, which are given three weeks apart. The effectiveness was compared to people who had not been vaccinated at all.

“Thanks to the strong health care system of the State of Israel, which has allowed us in a short time to reach an unprecedented inoculation in the population, and our ability for comprehensive epidemiological surveillance, we are the first country in the world to demonstrate the effect of corona vaccine in a real clinical world,” said Health Ministry Director General Hezi Levy. “The vaccine significantly reduces morbidity and mortality and this effect can be seen in the morbidity data in the country,” Levy said.

Israel releases astonishing results about effectiveness of COVID vaccine
A woman receives a coronavirus vaccine injection at a mobile vaccine station at the Tel Aviv beach, Feb. 20, 2021. (Flash90/Tomer Neuberg)

LAST DAYS PROPHESIED EVENTS

YouTube bans LifeSiteNews, removes all of the website’s Pro-Life Videos

Amazon has removed a conservative author’s book, Ryan T. Anderson’s, “When Harry Became Sally from the web store. The best-selling book about the transgender movement was removed without offering Anderson any notice or explanation.

Ryan T. Anderson, president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center, discovered Sunday his book, “When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Movement,” had been removed from the web store.

Target removes Abigail Shrier’s book critical of Transgender Agenda: Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters

As Big Tech continues its efforts to censor conservative voices, YouTube has banned the website LifeSiteNews from its popular video-sharing platform and removed all of its pro-life videos. 

This isn’t a temporary ban; every single one of our videos is completely gone,” the website’s staff wrote. “Thankfully, we have backups of all our videos, but this means hundreds of thousands of people have lost access to our truth-telling content.”

Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images

LifeSite tells CBN News, “We have faced increasing censorship from YouTube in the last three months. They flagged several of our factual videos on the COVID-19 vaccine as violations of their Terms of Service. As a result, we were given two strikes and suspended for multiple weeks, unable to post any new content. We were informed at that time that if another violation occurred within 90 days, we would be removed permanently.” 

YouTube suspended the website over a video titled “Catholic Christmas traditions to instill faith in your kids.” The video also was also tagged with a “medical misinformation” stamp before YouTube removed the video. 

In a statement to CBN News, LifeSite’s Marketing Director Rebekah Roberts said, “The truth is, we’ve been anticipating this for some time. YouTube and other tech titans are simply not interested in allowing anyone to dissent from their state-approved, liberal, totalitarian ideology. Fortunately, we’ve already taken pre-emptive measures to ensure the truth will continue to reach the ears of those most in need of it in these dictatorial times. We are active on various other platforms like Gab, Telegram, and Rumble, and encourage others to join us there.” 

Jesus gave us due warning as to what is ahead as the world increasingly rejects God and all He commands. The wrath of God will be poured out on an unbelieving world prior to Jesus second coming to rule and reign on this earth for 1000 years.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:9-14

COMING PERSECUTION

Many Christians worldwide are being persecuted, and the persecution is growing! In this Studio Elective, Michael Weis, who has ministered to the persecuted Church, gives biblical principles about the reality, expectation, and preparation for “Persevering Through the Coming Persecution.”

Hopefully, it will help prepare you for the coming persecution prophesied in the last days before Jesus returns. Persecution of Christians is certainly growing around the world. Christians are increasingly being accused of hate speech and being intolerant. Why, because of holding God’s values on abortion, marriage, sex and gender.

FREEWILL DOES NOT MEAN AUTONOMY

A powerful sermon on the sovereignty of God and the free will of man. God gives us the desire to know Him. Without God’s grace no one would come to Him.

The Scriptures teach that God is sovereign over all. The Scriptures also teach that man is responsible for his actions. Are the two teachings contradictory? In this session Dr. R.C. Sproul addresses the perennial questions surrounding the relation between the sovereignty of God and the responsibility of man.

END TIMES PROPHETIC EVENTS UNFOLDING NOW

Turkey is assembling a multi-national Islamic Army it calls “the West’s Greatest Fear.” Could it end up being the 2nd largest in the world? What is Erdogan’s goal is assembling an army of this size from most of the northern middle east and western Asia? Will this army fulfill Ezekiel 38 and invade Israel? Is that its ultimate destiny. Watch this Nelson Walters video to see who is joining with Turkey to form the world’s most dangerous army. Turkey 2023: Satan’s Throne from Nazi Germany to Caliphate?

I have posted a number of articles on the prophesied coming wars of Daniel 8 involving first Iran (Ram of Daniel 8) and then Turkey (Goat of Daniel 8).This video only confirms that these prophesied events are unfolding in our time.

I saw the ram (Iran) charging westward and northward and southward. No beast could stand before him, and there was no one who could rescue from his power. He did as he pleased and became great.” Daniel 8:4

This prophecy is already playing out with Iran pushing west with its proxies. The article “Meet the Proxies: How Iran Spreads Its Empire through Terrorist Militias” by Arabic-language research analyst, David Daoud describes how in Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen, and elsewhere, Tehran has perfected the art of gradually conquering a country without replacing its flag in its efforts to establish a new Persian Empire.

As I was considering, behold, a male goat (Turkey – a revived Ottoman Empire) came from the west across the face of the whole earth, without touching the ground. And the goat had a conspicuous horn between his eyes. He came to the ram with the two horns, which I had seen standing on the bank of the canal, and he ran at him in his powerful wrath. I saw him come close to the ram, and he was enraged against him and struck the ram and broke his two horns. And the ram had no power to stand before him, but he cast him down to the ground and trampled on him. And there was no one who could rescue the ram from his power.” Daniel 8:5-7

Nelson’s video demonstrates what Turkey (Goat) of Daniel 8) is already doing to re-establish its dominance with a revived Ottoman Empire. It will demolish Iran’s hopes of a new Persian Empire as described above in Daniel :5-7

Other related videos from Nelson Walters on Turkey’s (former Ottoman Empire) prophesied end times role.

Erdogan: Caliph or Antichrist ? Answers from the Bible https://youtu.be/D3VoOj9UVQk​)

Erdogan vs Israel: Is Gog and Magog Alliance Forming Before Our Eyes? https://youtu.be/A3K_D-dhSYU

Pergamum Prophecy https://youtu.be/Nr_sKPpplSM

CHRISTIAN INSTITUTIONS

It is profoundly wrong that so many Christian institutions seem to be deliberately set up to insulate their leadership, from any private or public criticism, and designed to keep bad news from seeping out. It is past time for our institutions and our institutional leaders to act in ways that demonstrate they recognize and believe that our sinful nature applies to them as well to ordinary people.

Watchdog groups such as MinistryWatch and the Roys Report have extensively noted, many Christian ministries are run like family businesses. Ravi Zacharias’ ministry was a family affair: it was named after him, and his wife and several daughters were on the board or employed by the ministry at six-figure salaries. The same is true at Liberty University, where Jerry Falwell Jr. followed in his father’s footsteps and his son is a vice president. I could name many other similar Christian celebrities. The reality is the Christian celebrity culture is toxic.

Ravi Zacharias was the head of an international, $40-million-a-year apologetics ministry devoted to explaining and justifying Christianity to a watching world. The position brought him international fame and fortune. When he died there was an outpouring of hagiographies of him from Christian circles.

But increasingly, evidence shows that Ravi Zacharias was guilty of significant levels of adultery and sexual abuse, and lying. Ravi lied about his academic credentials, claiming degrees from Oxford and Cambridge, along with a fake doctorate. Worse was his years long sexting scandal with a married woman that he repeatedly lied about and, more recently, the discovery that he was a part-owner of a number of “massage clinics” where he sexually abused women.

Zacharias and his ministry apparently spent years denying, obfuscating, and covering up piles of evidence of his misconduct. Finally, after Ravi’s death, the executive committee of the board of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries has admitted that there is credible evidence that he engaged in sexual misconduct for many years. In a statement clearly designed to claim a show of transparency, the board noted: “We are heartbroken at learning this but feel it necessary to be transparent and to inform our staff, donors, and supporters at this time, even while the investigation continues.”

In truth, the board seems to have been far from transparent. Only now, almost a year after Ravi’s death, and after years of obfuscation, has the board finally admitted that the stories about Ravi are true. To its credit, the board hired a law firm that has already investigated and authenticated many of the allegations and has engaged victim-advocate Rachael Denhollander as a consultant and a separate compliance firm to evaluate RZIM’s board. But frankly, for many, this comes far too late.

All about making disciples who in turn will make disciples

Thank goodness for the Francis Chan’s of this world who recognise that Jesus did not want an Institutional Church. He walked away from his church of 5000 to set up Home Churches without paid pastors or buildings. These churches are set up as the church is described in the Book of Acts. Look at the requirements Paul outlines for church leaders there. Also, the ante-Nicene churches were simple and free. They found their unity in wholehearted devotion to Christ, not in a systematic theology or set of doctrines.

The Last Reformation Movement initiated by Torben Sondergaard is a good example of what God is doing in these last days. Take a look at my recent post “Obedience and Listening to the Holy Spirit” and watch the video. It gives two great testimonies of the type of people God is using to complete the Great Commission before Jesus returns.

OBEDIENCE AND LISTENING TO THE HOLY SPIRIT

These interviews and testimonies will help you to acknowledge the necessary actions we need to take to disciple and make a difference in other peoples lives. There is 6 minutes of introductory music so you can do something else while you listen to the delightful music but the testimonies that follow are worth the wait. The TLR movement is being used by God mightily to bring many into God’s Kingdom. The healings and the miracles demonstrate that the power is back in the church as disciples move out into the marketplace totally dependent upon the Holy Spirit to do ministry. For me in Australia it was wonderful to learn what God is doing in Eastern Europe. It is wonderful to see how God was moving in wonderful ways so it was obvious God was doing the work. His children were just doing His will. The testimony of the couple Abraham and Annemarie Levy is powerful. You must listen to them on “love”, Abraham makes three important observations of being a disciple that stand out: “You cannot follow Jesus without sacrifice”, “You must deliberately bury your own life”, “The flesh will always war against the spirit”, tough but exciting when you learn what God has done and is doing with their lives. If you live in Poland make sure you connect with this couple.

WORLD GOES FROM BAD TO WORSE

Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived.2 Timothy 3:7

From here on in Christians do not expect the world to embrace you as they have every conceivable abomination. Look what Jesus said,

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.Matthew 24:9-14

Be reminded, the main battle going on is in the spiritual realm. The Bible tells us that Satan who has had dominion over this fallen world as a result of Adam and Eve’s rebellion is soon to be overthrown by our Lord Jesus at the same time the Antichrist is defeated at the Battle of Armageddon. At which time, Satan will be bound for a 1000 years in the Abyss. Jesus will then begin His Millennial reign on this earth from a reconstructed Jerusalem with the saints in their transformed bodies. That is the time when the following Scripture is fulfilled.

Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.Philippians 2:9-11

The last seven years on this planet is described as a time of Tribulation leading to Great Tribulation and then a final period when the wrath of God is poured out on an unbelieving world. It terminates with Jesus return with the raptured saints (raptured prior to the Wrath of God being unleashed with the Trumpet and Bowl judgements) to deliver a remnant Israel at the Battle of Armageddon and begin His Millennial reign on this earth.

Christians, God has a role for you to play in these last days to fulfill this Scripture “And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.” are you in prayer and listening to the Holy Spirit so that you will fulfill your destiny and take up your assigned role to rule and reign with Jesus in the Millennium?

The Judgment at Christ’s Coming
This is evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be considered worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering— since indeed God considers it just to repay with affliction those who afflict you, and to grant relief to you who are afflicted as well as to us, when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels in flaming fire, inflicting vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might, when he comes on that day to be glorified in his saints, and to be marveled at among all who have believed, because our testimony to you was believed. To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Thessalonian 1:5-12