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CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH

30% of U.S. evangelicals don’t believe Jesus is God, survey says

September 3, 2020  — WND.com reports: “According to a preliminary release on the findings of the 2020 State of Theology survey, 52% of American adults believe that Jesus was a great teacher, but he is not God.

Among those surveyed who identified as evangelicals, 30% agree that Jesus was merely a great teacher, and ‘nearly 65% still agree with the statement, Jesus is the first and greatest being created by God.’

Ligonier Ministries’ biennial State of Theology survey ‘provides key findings on what Americans think about God, truth, the Bible, worship, and ethical issues,’ the authors say.” (Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord: And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it. – Amos 8:11-12.  There is a famine of the Word of God in America, a famine caused by pastors who as Dr. Van Impe often stated “Preach little sermonettes that create Christianettes.  There is no substance to their messages.  Hadden Robinson, author of Biblical Preaching: The Development and Delivery of Expository Messages was lecturing his students on preparation for preaching and said “If it’s a mist in the pulpit, it’ll be a fog in the pews.”  Paul wrote to Timothy: I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine.  For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry – II Timothy 4:1-5.  Pastors, teach your people!)

Bolsonaro Urges U.N. to Fight ‘Christophobia’: ‘Brazil Is a Christian Country’

September 23, 2020  — Breitbart.com reports: “Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro ended his remarks at the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday with the declaration that Brazil ‘is a Christian and conservative country’ and urging the world to fight ‘Christophobia.’

Bolsonaro opened the General Assembly’s annual general debate, a tradition honoring Brazil volunteering to begin the first-ever general debate in the aftermath of World War II. This year, in light of the Chinese coronavirus pandemic, world leaders did not travel to New York for the event, instead addressing the world from their respective countries.

‘Liberty is humankind’s greatest asset. I call upon the entire international community to protect religious liberty and fight against Christophobia,’ Bolsonaro asserted during his speech. The president, among the most high-profile conservative Christian leaders in the world, did not elaborate on what he sought from fellow U.N. member states, but his comment was made in the context of developments in the Middle East, and so likely was a reference to the escalating rates of anti-Christian violence and Christian persecution in majority-Muslim nations…” (If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.  If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.  Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.  But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me.  If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.  He that hateth me hateth my Father also.  If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father – John 15:18-24.) 

Report: China Jails Christian Teenager for Practicing Banned Religion

September 10, 2020  — Breitbart.com reports: “Police in southwestern China this summer sentenced a Christian teenager to three years in prison for practicing her faith, human rights magazine Bitter Winter revealed on Tuesday.

In Yunnan province, which borders Vietnam, the People’s Court of Jianshui county sentenced 19-year-old Jiang Guangmei to three years in prison on June 29.

‘She was charged with ‘using a xie jiao [cult] organization to undermine law enforcement’ and also fined 3,000 RMB (about $430),’‘ according to the magazine. Police first arrested Jiang in September 2018 when she was 17 for writing articles about her religious experience as a member of the Church of Almighty God (CAG).

‘[A]ccording to the [CAG’s] official history, the denomination whose Chinese name translates as ‘Eastern Lightning’ was founded in the belief that Christ is born again and back on Earth in the guise of a mysterious leader of the faith — a woman who may now be living in the New York metropolitan area,’ the Daily Beast wrote of CAG in February. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has branded CAG a cult, or xie jiao in Mandarin, and banned the church in China…”  (Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death – Revelation 2:10, 11.  Christians who suffer and die for Christ will receive the “Crown of Life” to place at the feet of Jesus – James 1:12; Revelation 2:10.  The 24 elders represent 12 Old Testament Tribes and 12 New Testament Apostles – saved Jews and redeemed Christians.  In Revelation 4: 10 & 11 they cast their earned crowns before the Lord Jesus Christ.  Question – Will you be among them?  See the next two reports.)

Nigeria: 13-Year-Old Boy Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Blasphemy

September 18, 2020  — Breitbart.com reports: “Child rights agency UNICEF on Wednesday called for the Nigerian government to ‘urgently review the case’ of a 13-year-old boy sentenced to ten years in prison for blasphemy last month in majority Muslim Kano State, which practices sharia, the Islamic law.

The Kano State Sharia Court at Feli Hockey, Kano, convicted Omar Farouq of blasphemy on August 10 for using ‘foul language toward Allah in an argument with a friend’ and sentenced him to ten years’ imprisonment with menial labor. The court tried Farouq as an adult because ‘he has attained puberty and has full responsibility under Islamic law,’ according to CNN.

‘The sentencing of this child … is wrong,’ UNICEF Representative in Nigeria Peter Hawkins said in a press statement. ‘It also negates all core underlying principles of child rights and child justice that Nigeria – and by implication, Kano State – has signed on to.’ UNICEF urged the Nigerian government to review the teenager’s case ‘with a view to reversing the sentence.’

The same sharia (Islamic law) court that sentenced Farouq also sentenced 22-year-old Yahaya Sharif to death by hanging last month for blasphemy. A musician, Yahaya was found guilty of insulting Islam’s prophet, Muhammad, in a song he circulated via the WhatsApp messaging app in March…”

Lawyer: Pakistani Christian Sentenced to Death for ‘Blasphemy’ Just Refused to Convert

September 25, 2020  — Breitbart.com reports: “A lawyer for a Pakistani Christian man sentenced to death two weeks ago in Lahore for blasphemy told Fox News on Monday that his client did not insult the Islamic prophet, Muhammad, as alleged, but merely refused to convert to Islam.

Prosecutors accused Asif Pervaiz, 37, of sending ‘blasphemous’ text messages to his former supervisor in which he allegedly insulted the Islamic prophet. Pervaiz spoke in his own defense during the trial, denying the charges against him. The court rejected his testimony and sentenced him to death on September 8.

‘This is a tragic situation; the first case in Pakistan’s recent history where a Christian has been accused of blasphemy for refusing to embrace Islam,’ Pervaiz’s attorney, Saif Malook, said.

‘This man, Asif’s boss, wanted him to leave Christianity, and Asif knew he would suffer a lot by saying no. But he kept his faith,’ Malook explained…”

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