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CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH

Church Celebrates Drag Queen Sunday: They’re in ‘Open Revolt’ against God, Mohler Says

May 6, 2021 — ChristianHeadlines.com reports: “An Illinois church’s recent promotion of drag queen shows during its Sunday morning service was an example of ‘open revolt’ against God’s intent for humanity, says a prominent author and theologian.

Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., says the church – Hope United Methodist Church in Bloomington, Ill. – is promoting a ‘different’ religion than Christianity.

The church was featured in an April 15 story in Religion News Service, which spotlighted 23-year-old Isaac Simmons, the church’s director of operations who goes by the name of ‘Ms. Penny Cost’ as a drag queen. The church held a ‘Drag Sunday’ on April 11 in which drag artists sang, prayed and performed. A drag speaker during the service said the goal was ‘celebrating and uplifting the voices of drag artistry within the church.’ Drag itself, the speaker said, is ‘divine.’

The Illinois Great Rivers Conference’s Vermillion River District Committee on Ordained Ministry recently certified Simmons as a candidate for ministry, RNS reported. He likely is the ‘first drag queen certified’ in the United Methodist Church, the news outlet said…”  (For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.  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:  Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.  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.  Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:  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.  For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:  And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.  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;  Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,  Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,  Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:  Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them. – Romans 1:18 – 32.  See the next report.)

Evangelical Lutherans abandon Bible, elect first transgender bishop

May 12, 2021 — WND.com reports: “One of the largest Christian denominations in the United States has just elected its first transgender bishop as the abandonment of biblical authority within organized Christendom grows more pervasive.

The Rev. Megan Rohrer of Grace Lutheran Church in San Francisco initially broke barriers in 2006 when she became the first transgender person to be ordained in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, Religion News Service reported. In 2014, she became the first to serve as a pastor when she was placed at Grace Lutheran.

The ECLA is one of the nation’s largest churches, boasting almost 3.3 million members and 8,900 congregations across the country. Rohrer will become the first transgender person to serve as bishop in any major American Christian denomination…”

Judge rules Christian college must follow Biden rule opening dorms, showers to opposite sex

May 24, 2021 — The Washington Times reports: “A federal judge on Wednesday rejected a Christian college’s request to halt the Biden administration’s directive on gender identity in dwellings.

The College of the Ozarks, a Christian college in Missouri, had argued the government order, which claims to fight discrimination against transgender people, impinges on the rights of Christians and violates Biblical beliefs.

The dispute sets up a new legal battle over religious liberty and gender identity…”  (In Acts 5, the high priest and the Sadducees arrested Peter and the Apostles and put them in prison.  The Angel of the Lord opened the prison door to release them and told them to Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life [Acts 5:20].   The captain and his officers brought them back before the council who stated: …Did we not straitly command you that ye should not teach in his name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.  Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than man [Acts 5:28, 29].  After a long discussion, we read in verses 40 – 42: when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go.  And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.  And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.  Throughout the ages there have been those who have followed this example, obeying God rather than man, and many have paid the price for it.  In Hebrews 11 we have the Hall of Fame of Faith and it lists many that were delivered by their faith, but is also says: …others were tortured, not accepting deliverance; that they might obtain a better resurrection:  And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment:  They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented;  (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth. Hebrews 11:35 – 38.  God’s promise to His people – 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. – Revelation 2:10.  See the next report.) 

Christian Chaplain Reported to Anti-Terrorism Programme for Sermon on LGBT Ideology

May 11, 2021 — Breitbart.com reports: “A Christian chaplain at Trent College was fired and reported to the British government’s anti-terrorism programme for delivering a sermon in which he told pupils that it is acceptable to question and disagree with far-left LGBT ideology being taught at the school.

Trent College, which claims to have a ‘Christian ethos’, invited the educational charity Educate and Celebrate to their campus in 2018, in order to make their school more LGBT-friendly.

Educate and Celebrate declared that their mission was to ‘embed gender, gender identity and sexual orientation into the fabric of your school’.

The head of the charity, Dr Elly Barnes, has openly stated that the purpose of Educate and Celebrate is to ‘completely smash heteronormativity, that’s what we want to do.’…”

Major church looks to kill saying ‘husband and wife’ at weddings

May 17, 2021 — WND.com reports: “The general assembly of the Church of Scotland soon will be reviewing a plan to drop the terms ‘husband and wife’ from its marriage ceremonies.

It’s that sometimes, well, these days there’s no husband, or wife, because the church is planning to dive headlong into affirming same-sex duos.

The Christian Institute described the plan as ‘radical,’ and noted later this month the leaders of the religious organization will consider a specific plan to kill references to ‘husband and wife.’

Three years ago, the church’s leaders approved a plan 345-170 to have the Legal Questions Committee suggest new language…”  (…he [Jesus]  answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder – Matthew 19:4-6.)

43 Percent of Millennials Say They Either Don’t Know, Care or Believe God Exists

May 19, 2021 — ChristianHeadlines.com reports: “A new study from Arizona Christian University showed that the four generations of Americans share very different views on spiritual beliefs and practices.

ACU’s Cultural Research Center’s American Worldview Inventory 2021 studied how Millennials (born 1984-2002), Gen X (1965-1983), Baby Boomers (1946-1964) and Builders (1927-1945) each believe.

In one example, 90 percent of Builders believe that you should treat others as you want them to treat you. In comparison, less than half of Millennials agreed with that statement.

Also, 66 percent of Millennials said they are willing to try anything at least once, while just 28 percent of Builders said the same.

In comparison with Boomers, 43 percent of Millennials said they either don’t know, don’t care or don’t believe God exists as compared to just 28 percent of Boomers…”  (…when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth? – Luke 18:8.  The article, and the one following it [both taken from the same survey], makes one wonder what the answer to that question would be.  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.

Thankfully, God always has a faithful remnant.  In I Kings 19 following the victory over the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel, Elijah fled to the wilderness after hearing a threat from Jezebel.  We read: …he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O Lord, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers.  And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat.  And he looked, and, behold, there was a cake baken on the coals, and a cruse of water at his head. And he did eat and drink, and laid him down again.  And the angel of the Lord came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee.  And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God.  And he came thither unto a cave, and lodged there; and, behold, the word of the Lord came to him, and he said unto him, What doest thou here, Elijah?  And he said, I have been very jealous for the Lord God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.  And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake:  And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.  And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah?  And he said, I have been very jealous for the Lord God of hosts: because the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.  And the Lord said unto him, Go, return on thy way to the wilderness of Damascus: and when thou comest, anoint Hazael to be king over Syria:  And Jehu the son of Nimshi shalt thou anoint to be king over Israel: and Elisha the son of Shaphat of Abelmeholah shalt thou anoint to be prophet in thy room.  And it shall come to pass, that him that escapeth the sword of Hazael shall Jehu slay: and him that escapeth from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha slay.  Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him. – I Kings 19:4-18 [Emphasis mine].  Thank God for His faithful remnant.  See the next report.)

Millennials More Likely to Believe in Horoscopes Than an ‘All-Knowing’ God, Survey Shows

May 26, 2021 — ChristianHeadlines.com reports: “The United States is undergoing a ‘seismic worldview shift’ driven by younger Americans, according to a new study by Arizona Christian University’s Cultural Research Center, which found that Millennials are more likely to believe in horoscopes than in an ‘all-knowing’ God.

The report, released this month, is part of the center’s 2021 American Worldview Inventory, an annual report that examines the spiritual beliefs of Americans.

The report says Millennials (those born between 1984-2002) are leading much of the change. At the time of the survey, the age range of Millennials was 18 to 36.

The survey found that 35 percent of Millennials and 32 percent of Gen-Xers say they ‘personally receive guidance from’ horoscopes,’ compared to 10 percent of Boomers and 3 percent of Builders.

By comparison, only 31 percent of Millennials say they believe ‘God is the all-knowing, all-powerful, just creator of the universe’ and ‘still rules it today.’ That’s less than Gen-Xers (47 percent), Boomers (57 percent) and Builders (64 percent)…”

Brainwashing camps for Christians as persecution in China intensifies

May 14, 2021 — WND.com reports: “The Chinese Communist Party’s persecution of Christians has taken a disturbing new turn. According to a recent Radio Free Asia report, Chinese Christians are being detained at secretive ‘brainwashing camps.’

Writing under the pseudonym of Li Yuese, a Chinese Christian detailed the conditions of his detention in a ‘transformation facility’ where he was held for 10 months after the CCP raided his house church in Sichuan province in 2018…

Imprisoned in a windowless room without ventilation, Li was subjected to verbal and physical abuse. United Front officials use intimidation, threats, and beatings to force detainees to renounce their faith…”  (Great persecution will soon overtake most Christians in a majority of the world.  Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. – Matthew 5:10 – 12; 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. – John 15:18 – 21; …When he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held.  — Revelation 6:9; …I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. – Revelation 20:4; and 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. – Revelation 2:10.  See the next two reports.)

Report: 78 Priests Allegedly ‘Massacred’ in Ethiopia Conflict

May 12, 2021 — Breitbart.com reports: “Ethiopian army soldiers and allied Eritrean troops allegedly ‘massacred’ at least 78 priests of the Christian Ethiopian Orthodox Church in Ethiopia’s separatist Tigray region in recent months, Britain’s Telegraph newspaper reported on Monday.

An official Ethiopian Orthodox Church letter dated April 15 and recently leaked to the newspaper detailed the alleged attack on Tigray priests.

‘The letter, which was addressed to the Synod [council] of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, says that ‘priests, deacons, choristers, and monks’ have been ‘massacred’ over the last five months,’ the Telegraph wrote on Monday…”

ISIS-Linked Jihadists Massacre Christian Farmers in Indonesia

May 17, 2021 — Breitbart.com reports: “The remote Indonesian village of Kalemago held a mass funeral Wednesday for four coffee farmers murdered by jihadists the previous day.

The primarily Christian residents of the village demanded ‘firm action’ against the killers and seemed skeptical they would get it.

‘Our hope for the government, the president, is to resolve this. If not, we will no longer be able to go out to earn a living. Frankly, we feel that no one is paying attention to us,’ village secretary Otniel Papunde told Voice of America News (VOA)…”

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