TAKEN CAPTIVE THROUGH PHILOSOPHY AND EMPTY DECEPTION

“See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception [pseudo-intellectual babble], according to the tradition [and musings] of mere men, following the elementary principles of this world, rather than following [the truththe teachings of] Christ. For in Him all the fullness of Deity (the Godhead) dwells in bodily form [completely expressing the divine essence of God]” (Colossians 2:8 -9 AMP).

Political correctness is a control issue and a bullying tactic, used by the politically left special interest groups, and their fake news media outlets, to oppose and oppress free speech and religious freedom. They quickly label anyone and everyone who disagrees with their unnatural, crazy worldview, as a bigot, racist, and every other derogatory name they can come up with.  

You know we live in a mad, crazy, politically correct world, when the natural is unnatural and the unnatural is natural; when right is wrong and wrong is right; when normal is abnormal and abnormal is normal. In this world, God does not exist or if acknowledged is powerless and homosexuality, trans genders, same sex marriage are all acceptable lifestyle choices. God’s laws on sexuality and morality are unacceptable.

The further down the political correctness road you go, the further away you get from common sense. God has given each of us a conscience. In our hearts we know what is right and wrong but a rebellious spirit is increasingly evident in society. This should not come as a surprise to Christians that rightly discern the Word of God. Godlessness, lawlessness will abound in the last days before Jesus returns. Moreover, even though Jesus and glorified saints are ruling here on the earth during the Millennium. Scripture tells us they need to do so with a “rod of iron”. People, at least some, will still be rebellious not wanting to submit to God’s laws, God’s commandments. It appears the Millennium is a transitional period, the curse has not been totally lifted off the earth as people still die and people will still need to repent and accept Jesus as their Lord and Saviour in order to inherit eternal life. We know Satan is bound for most of the thousand years but he is released at the end and is still able to assemble a great army to come against Jesus. The following Scripture reveals the outcome.

And when the thousand years are ended, Satan will be released from his prison and will come out to deceive the nations that are at the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them for battle; their number is like the sand of the sea. And they marched up over the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, but fire came down from heaven and consumed them, and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.Revelation 20:7-10

Judgment Before the Great White Throne

Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.” Revelation 20:11-15

The New Heaven and the New Earth

​” Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:1-4

PERSECUTION OF CHRISTIANS ESCALATES IN LAST DAYS

Over 4,000 people were killed in Islamic extremist attacks in Burkina Faso, Niger and Mali in 2019, according to the U.N.’s envoy for West Africa and the Sahel Mohamed Ibn Chambas.

Since 2016, extremist groups including the Islamic State West Africa Province and Ansaroul Islam have carried out attacks throughout the Sahel region of West Africa. But attacks increased fivefold in 2019 — deaths rose from 80 in 2016 to 1,800 in 2019.

A Nigerian organisation claims that more than 350 Christians have been killed across the West African country since the start of 2020 and estimates that about 11,500 Christians have been killed since 2015.  “Nigeria has become a killing field of defenceless Christians,” the non-governmental organisation, International Society for Civil Liberties and Rule of Law, Intersociety, said in a new special report.”

IS and al-Qaeda's JNIM are both active in the Sahel region where they compete for power
IS and al-Qaeda’s JNIM are both active in the Sahel region where they compete for power

Jihadist violence has now spread from the country’s north to the western Boucle du Mouhoun region where rice and maize are produced and transported to other areas, resulting in a food shortages and might cut off food for millions more in the region, according to the Associated Press.

It is feared that the COVID-19 pandemic might exacerbate the situation at a time when 2 million people in the country are already facing food insecurity.

“If production goes down in this area and if movement restrictions due to the coronavirus drive up food prices in the markets, it could push numbers of severely vulnerable people to double or triple,” Julia Wanjiru, communications coordinator for the Sahel and West Africa Club, an intergovernmental economic group, was quoted as saying.

According to the U.N., the number of people displaced in Burkina Faso rose 1,200 percent in 2019. There are about 600,000 internally displaced people in the country as it is becoming one of the world’s fastest-growing humanitarian crises. 

Authorities in the Borno state of Nigeria said Wednesday that at least 81 people were killed in an attack on a nomadic community believed to have been carried out by militants aligned with the Islamic extremist groups Boko Haram or Islamic State West Africa Province. 

Signs of the End of the Age

Jesus said, “And when you hear of wars and rumours of wars, do not be alarmed. This must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines. These are but the beginning of the birth pains.” Luke 13:7-8

NATIONS RAGE AGAINST GOD AND HIS VALUES

Biblical prophecy is accurate, God has told us how events will unfold prior to His return to rule and reign from Jerusalem.

PSALM 2 gives us an accurate picture of the nations today, the rulers have taken counsel together against God and His people. They have cast away God’s values and commands. We can make up our own rules about sex, marriage and gender.

Look what God says and what He will do. They will face His wrath and Jesus will rule and reign from Zion’s Hill (Jerusalem). Notice what Jesus will do to the nations “break them with a rod of iron and dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel”.

Fortunately, Christians have been given a detailed picture of the “last days” and know that God is going to first refine His church with tribulation. Sadly, Jesus told us that many church goers will fall away from the true faith and compromise with the world and its values. This is already happening as gay marriage and homosexual pastors are being accepted in some denominational churches.

Why do the nations rage, and the people plot a vain thing?
The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together,
against the Lord and against His Anointed, saying, “Let us break their bonds in pieces and cast away their cords from us.”
He who sits in the heavens shall laugh; the Lord shall hold them in derision.
Then He shall speak to them in His wrath, and distress them in His deep displeasure: “Yet I have set My King on My holy hill of Zion.”
“I will declare the decree: the Lord has said to Me, you are My Son, today I have begotten You. Ask of Me, and I will give You the nations for Your inheritance, and the ends of the earth for Your possession.
You shall break them with a rod of iron; you shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel.’ ” Now therefore, be wise, O kings; be instructed, you judges of the earth. Serve the Lord with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
Kiss the Son, lest He be angry, and you perish in the way, when His wrath is kindled but a little.
PSALM 2

PERSECUTION AIDS THE SPREAD OF THE GOSPEL

Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word.” Acts 8:4

We can see it played out in the death of Stephen. The religious communities’ rejection of Stephen, to the point of stoning him, caused the believers to run for their lives. If not for this rejection, Philip would never have ended up in Samaria. And what happened there? Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Messiah there.

Image result for picture of Phillip being stoned for preaching the Gospel

“Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them. And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralysed and lame were healed. And there was great joy in that city.” Acts 8:5-8

A great revival broke out. The more the believers were persecuted, the more they spread out, fulfilling the words of Yeshua to start in Jerusalem, and then go to the ends of the Earth .

But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

“Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went” (Acts 8:4).

And this Gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. (Matt. 24:14)

Of course, we can see it played out in the Middle East and Africa where the church is under intense persecution by the greatest antichrist spirit of all, Islam. On this website, on a recent post, “Church Grows Under Persecution” I record the story of the rapidly growing church in Iran. Check it out if you haven’t already done so.

May we be like Paul who said:

“Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.” Philippians 3:8-11

PASTORS – PREPARE FOR THE COMING TRIBULATION

There are thousands of pastors out there that should be preparing the bride of Christ for the coming tribulation, but instead they are taking the easy road.  Since most American and many Australian Christians have embraced the Pre Tribulation position due to best selling books such as The Left Behind Series it is comforting for them to get confirmation from their pastors that they won’t face the Antichrist nor the great tribulation spoken of in Revelation. And yet Scripture is replete with warnings such as Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.  2 Timothy 3:12

Moreover, Matthew 24:29-31, Mark 13:24-27 Luke 21:25-28 clearly teach that the Rapture takes place “immediately after the tribulation of those days

Paul confirms itLet no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshipped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God2 Thessalonians 2:1-4

Then they will deliver you to tribulation, and will kill you, and you will be hated by all nations because of My name. At that time many will fall away and will betray one another and hate one anotherThen many false prophets will arise and will mislead many. Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. Matt. 24: 9-12

It was granted to him (Antichrist) to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation. Revelation 13:7

All of the apostles were killed for their faith.  Some early Christian leaders were stoned, others were killed by sword or spear, and some were even reportedly crucified upside down. Later on, the Roman Empire invented even more sadistic ways to kill Christians.  Entire families were fed to lions, and one emperor even lit the roads with the burning bodies of Christians that he had killed. During the Dark Ages, the popes of Roman Catholicism tortured and killed millions that did not submit to their authority.  Great men of God were burned at the stake for “crimes” such as translating the Bible into English and preaching a gospel of salvation by faith. Even today, Christians are being raped, tortured, beheaded and crucified by radical Islamic groups in the Middle East such as ISIS. Once again, “Yes, and all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.2 Timothy 3:10-12

Paul to the church at Thessalonica: “and sent Timothy, our brother and minister of God, and our fellow labourer in the gospel of Christ, to establish you and encourage you concerning your faith, that no one should be shaken by these afflictions; for you yourselves know that we are appointed to this. For, in fact, we told you before when we were with you that we would suffer tribulation, just as it happened, and you know.” 1 Thessalonians 3:2-4

It is sad to contemplate that many Christians will be faced with horrors that they have never been prepared for.  Perhaps many will deeply question their faith or give in to despair and depression. Even of more concern, some may commit suicide so that they can get the “escape” that they were promised.

Ultimately, it really will come down to whether you will trust God regardless of your circumstances, knowing He is in control and will be with you every step of the way, just as He was with the early martyrs. Be encouraged, read some of their stories in Foxe’s Book of the Martyrs (updated 2006).

In fact, knowing Jesus return is not too far off we should be excited and committed to making sure we are in the centre of His will for the short time we have left on this planet and prior to meeting Him at the Wedding Supper of the Lamb – Revelation 19:7.

 

 

REJOICE AND BE GLAD WHEN PERSECUTION COMES

“Dear friends, do not be astonished that a trial by fire is occurring among you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice in the degree that you have shared in the sufferings of Christ, so that when his glory is revealed you may also rejoice and be glad. If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory, who is the Spirit of God, rests on you.” 1 Pet 4:12–14

Peter does not want Christians to lose hope in the midst of adversity, which is the reason he exhorts them to keep perspective and look ahead and even rejoice of that future day when Christ’s glory is revealed.

Jesus gave the disciples the following warnings about the time of His second coming so we will be prepared for persecution in the “last days”.

“For nation will rise up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. 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 many will be offended , will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up to deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end will be saved.” Matthew 24:7-13

These are tough words and only those who truly know God, who trust God with all their heart will endure to the end.

We need to be able to say like David: ” You are my strength and shield; My heart trusts in Him and I am helped; therefore my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song I will praise Him.” Psalm 28:7

You will be helped by God. He will be with you through the coming times of trouble, persecution. You need to keep an eternal focus. Hence the title of this blog: living eternal now.

200 CHRISTIANS MURDERED IN PLATEAU STATE, NIGERIA

In a 60-hour killing spree about 200 Christians were slaughtered in Plateau State even as the U.S. ambassador at large for International Religious Freedom, Sam Brownback was departing Nigeria.

Sam Brownback’s one-week visit was pockmarked with six suicide bombings by Boko Haram in one day (the largest single day detonations), deadly Shiite clashes with the police, altercations between local Muslims and a community, and continuing killings by Muslim Fulani Herdsmen.

 

The grand finale of this perfect storm of violence was the triple-digit massacre in Plateau State. 

Overnight, I have been inundated with photos too gruesome to share here of horribly mutilated bodies of children hacked to death and even after death for maximal horror effect, charred corpses and bodies stacked in mass graves.

Already the Fulani have justified this heinous crime against humanity.

The sad thing is this is not the first time, nor will it be the last. In 2012 when Fulani massacred over 60 Christian villagers in Plateau State, an executive of the same cattle-rearing group said the same thing.

Worse still, some of the communities attacked this weekend were attacked previously. One community was part of the notorious 2010 Dogo Na Hawa Massacre in which 500 Christians were killed.

That massacre eight years ago spurred me to launch the “Justice For Jos” project that has evolved to covering Boko Haram atrocities. Ironically, the Herdsmen atrocities have continued unabated while Boko Haram hogged the spotlight.

We hear reports that authorities have ordered mass burials to hide the true casualties.

In amongst the horror, a kind-hearted and brave Muslim cleric told the BBC how he saved about 262 Christians from being killed in the last attack in villages in Plateau State by suspected Fulani herdsmen. He said “upon seeing victims fleeing from suspected herdsmen who attacked Nghar Yelwa village, I opened the door of the mosque and hid them.”

Report by Emmanuel Ogebe founded Jubilee Campaign’s Justice for Jos Project, in Abuja, Nigeria. 

BILL WHATCOTT FACES TWO YEARS IN PRISON FOR PASSING OUT JESUS SAVES PAMPHLETS AT GAY PRIDE PARADE

A Christian bus driver in Toronto has been charged with a “hate crime” for distributing pamphlets saying homosexuality can lead to diseases and that Jesus can save gay people if they repent.

Bill Whatcott “distributed anti-gay material which promoted hatred toward the gay community,” Toronto Police Service said in a statement, adding that he was arrested in Calgary and later returned to Toronto.

The 51-year-old Christian man was charged with “willful promotion of hatred against an identifiable group, namely the gay community.”

The pamphlets he allegedly distributed said homosexuality is associated with sexually transmitted diseases, including HPV of the rectum, which the U.S. Centers for Disease Control says is true, according to The Federalist.

The pamphlets, which reportedly included negative remarks against the Liberal Party and left-wing politicians, also said that supporting homosexual acts without repentance could lead to “eternal peril,” and repentance to “the free gift of eternal life.” However, reports say that the pamphlets neither encouraged hate against homosexuals, nor advocated violence.

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reacts as he and his wife Sophie Grégoire Trudeau (L) walk in the Vancouver Pride Parade in Vancouver, British Columbia, July 31, 2016.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, a Roman Catholic, became the world’s first national leader to march in a gay pride parade when he took part in Toronto’s event.

Whatcott, who has been fired from his job, said he wasn’t given food for 24 hours while in jail, according to The Daily Wire.

“It might have been on purpose, because it didn’t happen, like — some inmates did go half a day without food — but they actually made me go a full 24 hours,” he was quoted as saying.

He said he was also denied medical attention for a leg injury. “I had a leg infection, and it was bad enough that I was brought to the hospital, but they simply refused to fill the prescriptions. So for four days I had no medications. The infection was actually going up my leg. I was a little concerned it was gonna go systemic.”

Hopefully, Bill was able to maintain an eternal perspective and be encouraged by these Scriptures:

“Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake.” Matthew 5:11

“If you are insulted and reviled for the name of Christ , blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you . On their part He is blasphemed , but on your part He is glorified.” 1 Peter 4:14

Trudeau has also supported Canada’s embrace of same-sex marriage, which stands against the Catholic Church’s definition of marriage between one man and one woman.

Months later that year, a poll showed that the majority of Canadians supported the expansion of the country’s non-discrimination laws to include gender identity. The Angus Reid Institute survey was conducted four months after Trudeau’s Liberal Party introduced a bill that would punish transgender discrimination with up to two years in prison for violators. Earlier this year, Ontario Province started allowing individuals born there to remove “male” or “female” on their birth certificates or opt for a “nonbinary” designation.

 

 

PASTOR GETS FIRED – IMPOSSIBLE TO PUT NEW WINE IN OLD WINE SKINS

When the church reaches out to the community, God turns up and Holy Spirit gifts are manifest. Why then would the pastor who started this move out into the community be fired. Listen to this pastor tell his story and decide what is the truth about the church in these “last days”.

Jesus said we will see division and strife in the church: “Do you suppose that I came to give peace on earth? I tell you, not at all, but rather division.” Luke 12:51. As the church moves away from the inerrancy of Scripture we will see more division in the church. Come out from your church if you see compromise. It is impossible to put new wine into old wine skins.

The unity movement in the church in these “last days” is a move to one world church submitted to the Antichrist as revealed in Biblical prophecy. Deception is rife, but remember Jesus said in the “last days” that even the elect will be deceived.

DO NOT FEAR SUFFERING FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS SAKE

Let Peter reassure you, “But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled…” 1 Peter 3:14 

“Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified.” 1 Peter 4:13-14

“But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.”  1 Peter 5:10.

Most of us don’t know the kind of death we face but there are many in our generation who are losing their lives because they follow Jesus. How are they are received in heaven?

“These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve Him day and night in His temple. And He who sits on the throne will dwell among them. They shall neither hunger anymore nor thirst anymore; the sun shall not strike them, nor any heat; for the Lamb who is in the midst of the throne will shepherd them and lead them to living fountains of waters. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” Revelation 7:14-17

“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death. Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.”  Revelation 12:11.