July 29, 2022
On Belay / What Are Our Priorities?
On July 30, 2022, Dave Harris will present the sermonette, titled, “On Belay,” and Brian Gale will present the sermon, titled, “What Are Our Priorities?”
The live services are available, over video and audio, at http://eternalgod.org/live-services/ (12:30 pm Pacific Time; 1:30 pm Mountain Time; 2:30 pm Central Time; 3:30 pm Eastern Time; 8:30 pm Greenwich Mean Time; 9:30 pm Central European Time). Just click on Connect to Live Stream.
Keep on Walking with God
by Norbert Link
Have you ever experienced feelings of discouragement? When things go wrong, as they often do—at least seemingly—have you wondered whether God is really there… being really involved in your life, guiding and directing it? Did promises that God even knows about what you are thinking and what you will be saying lose their meaning, somehow, during those times?
Now, I hate to admit it but there were moments in my life when I felt exactly that way.
Surely, you and I know certain key Scriptures… Scriptures such as that all things work together for our good (Romans 8:28); that the very hairs of our head are all numbered (Matthew 10:30); that God will never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5)… but how real, how relevant, how ever-present are those promises when hard times hit us? Are we really convinced even then, that nothing… and I mean, nothing! – can happen to us, unless God specifically allows it… and that He does so for a grandiose reason and purpose?
It may become easy to dismiss or forget such knowledge and fall into the trap of believing in “time and chance”—it just “happens” to us; our misery has nothing to do with God being or not being there and watching over us!
I have found and concluded and am convinced that believing in the concept of “time and chance” is perhaps the surest way of destroying our faith in Almighty God. While “time and chance” does happen to this world, it quite decisively does NOT rule over true Christians. As we explain in our free booklet, “Human Suffering, Why… and How Much Longer?”, “True Christians are NOT in the ‘hand’ of time and chance. Rather, Solomon tells US: ‘… the righteous and the wise and their works are in the hand of God’ (Ecclesiastes 9:1). David understood, too, that he was in God’s hands. He wrote, in Psalm 31:15: ‘My times are in Your hand.’ He knew that he was always, constantly, and completely under God’s observation, His protection, and in His loving care… as are all true Christians today. God promises that nothing will happen to us that is too difficult for us to bear (compare 1 Corinthians 10:13). This means, then, that God must be watching us every second to guarantee the fulfillment of His promise.”
But knowing this intellectually and believing it wholeheartedly, without any shred of doubt, even in times of serious trials, may be two different things. Christ gave all of us this clear and at the same time serious and sobering challenge: “… when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8). He was not just talking about any kind of faith, but THE faith—the living faith of Christ and God the Father in us. With THAT faith, we can move mountains, and nothing will be impossible for us. But we must cultivate that faith, growing in it.
Christ never lost that special faith of His Father in Him. He never believed for one second that He was just the potential victim of “time and chance”. He never became discouraged (Isaiah 42:4). But this does not mean that He never struggled with His human nature, or that His human will was always identical with the Father’s Will. He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane: “…not as I will, but as You will” (Matthew 26:39). And He submitted to the Father’s Will (John 6:38)… never sinning by rebelling against it—always believing that the Father’s Will was the best for Him.
That is what we must believe too… how we must behave, and what we have always to remind ourselves of. Even if we don’t understand why some things “happen” to us, we MUST be fully convinced that whatever trials we are confronted with, God knows about them, and He is most powerful to intervene every time when it is in accordance with His Will. Sometimes, He might not act immediately, for His very purpose, but we must never doubt that God is there and that He knows what He is doing.
To accept, believe and live this Truth is not always easy. To really embrace the fact that His thoughts are so much higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8-9), and that His understanding and foresight are so much more superior than ours might pose quite a challenge for us at times. And then, discouragement can creep in—even finding fault with God. Elijah thought at one time that God was unfair… that He had fought for God but that he was left all alone (1 Kings 19:14). He felt at that moment that his work was useless and without meaning and effect. Jeremiah even exclaimed that God had become to him “like an unreliable stream, As waters that fail” (Jeremiah 15:18).
But God showed them, and many others, that their perspective and concept of Him was wrong; that He had been with them all the time, and that His purpose will stand (Isaiah 14:24). And so, God tells us today: “But now, thus says the LORD, who created you, O Jacob, And He who formed you, O Israel: ‘Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, Nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the LORD your God, The Holy One of Israel, your Savior…” (Isaiah 43:1-3).
With this ever-present conviction, we can walk with the invisible God as if we could see Him (Hebrews 11:27). By KNOWING that God is with us and in us, we can overcome fear and discouragement (Deuteronomy 1:21). We will not always be successful in this, and we might slip and fall, but we can get up again and keep on walking (Proverbs 24:16). And we can—and must—wholeheartedly agree with Paul when he encourages all of us: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).
by Norbert Link
We begin with a deal between Russia and Ukraine to allow the export of needed grain from Ukraine, but subsequent events cast a shadow of doubt on the effectiveness of that arrangement. We address some of Ukraine’s unpopular moves and publish the opinion that Ukraine—and Europe—are losing the war against Russia.
We point out the dire state of America’s economy; incredible hypocrisy and political “blindness” of some American politicians; and discuss the contempt court conviction of Trump advisor Steve Bannon which has been labeled by legal experts as unconstitutional.
We speak on the fight against the traditional family in the UK and attempts to codify same-sex marriages in the USA; and we report on the controversy between the Pope and German Catholic Bishops; as well as the “apologies” for sinful misconduct by the Catholic and the Protestant Churches.
Turning to the history of COVID measures, restrictions and persecutions of “dissidents,” we report on a court decision in Canada reversing what appeared to have been blatantly illegal conduct by politicians, the police and the courts towards Pastor Artur Pawlowski and others; Dr. Fauci’s irresponsible and dangerous “follies”; further speculations about the origin of Covid-19; and the lies of Trump’s White House Covid response coordinator Deborah Birx; and we point out the undeniable dangers of menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars especially for kids and young adults being targeted, among others, by the tobacco industry.
We conclude with an article speculating about the possibility that Boris Johnson may be planning a comeback.
Please view our new StandingWatch program, titled “COVID 19–a Man-Made Pandemic?”
Throughout this section, we have underlined pertinent statements in the quoted articles, for the convenience and quick overview of the reader.
This Week in the News
Ukraine and Russia Sign Deal to Export Grain
The Associated Press wrote on July 22:
“Russia and Ukraine signed separate agreements Friday with Turkey and the United Nations clearing the way for exporting millions of tons of desperately needed Ukrainian grain — as well as Russian grain and fertilizer — ending a wartime standoff that had threatened food security around the globe.
“The deal will enable Ukraine — one of the world’s key breadbaskets — to export 22 million tons of grain and other agricultural products that have been stuck in Black Sea ports due to Russia’s invasion…
The deal makes provisions for the safe passage of ships through the heavily mined waters.
“A coordination center will be established in Istanbul, staffed by U.N., Turkish, Russian and Ukrainian officials, to monitor the ships and run the process through specific corridors. Ships would undergo inspections to ensure they are not carrying weapons…
“A key element of the deal is an agreement by both Russia and Ukraine that there will be no attacks on any of the vessels, according to the official. It will take a few weeks before the deal is fully working, the official noted.”
Deutsche Welle added on July 22:
“The signing of the deal comes a day after Russia restored critical gas supplies to Europe via Germany… The Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline had been shut for 10 days of maintenance, stoking fears it might not be turned on again. However, while it did come back online, the gas being sent through was only at 40% capacity.”
Russia Further Cuts Gas Deliveries to Germany
Deutsche Welle reported on July 25:
“Russian gas giant Gazprom said Monday it was cutting daily gas deliveries via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to 33 million cubic metres starting Wednesday. That would correspond to 20% of the pipeline’s capacity. The current flow of gas into Germany is only at 40%. The company said it was halting the operation of another turbine due to the ‘technical condition of the engine.’… Germany says the cuts are not the result of maintenance or technical issues but are punishment for EU sanctions… Germany, which is heavily dependent on Russian gas, has previously accused the Kremlin of using energy as a ‘weapon.’”
Putin also stated that negotiations regarding the Nord Stream 2 pipeline may have to be resumed. German Chancellor Scholz rejected the idea. In the meantime, the EU is waiving several sanctions imposed on Russia.
Russia’s Breach of Contract?
The Associated Press wrote on July 23:
“Russian missiles hit Ukraine’s Black Sea port of Odesa just hours after Moscow and Kyiv signed deals to allow grain exports to resume from there. Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry denounced Saturday’s airstrikes as ‘spit in the face’ of Turkey and the United Nations, which brokered the agreements…
“The head of Zelenskyy’s office, Andriy Yermak, said on Twitter that the Odesa strike coming so soon after the endorsement of the Black Sea ports deal illustrated ‘the Russian diplomatic dichotomy.’”
Newsmax added on July 23:
“‘In our contact with Russia, the Russians told us that they had absolutely nothing to do with this attack, and that they were examining the issue very closely and in detail,’ [Turkey’s] Defence Minister Hulusai Akar said in a statement. ‘The fact that such an incident took place right after the agreement we made yesterday really worried us,’ he added.”
This war will not end until Russia has achieved what it wants to achieve… for now. Ultimately, as we have emphasized over and over again, Russia and Ukraine [the modern Medes] will be united against continental Europe [modern Babylon]. And they will be used to destroy it. Compare Revelation 18:1-2, 21; 19:2-3.
Ukraine Places Prominent Americans on Their Blacklist
The Washington Examiner wrote on July 25:
“The Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation released a list of politicians, academics, and activists who it claimed promote ‘Russian propaganda.’ The list, published on July 14, includes multiple high-level U.S. figures, including Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) and former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI). The criteria for making the list are not clear, and the agency did not say what consequences, if any, result from being placed on the list…”
“Heterodox journalist Glenn Greenwald also rejected being called a Russian propagandist… ‘War proponents in the West and other functionaries of Western security state agencies have used the same tactics for decades to demonize anyone questioning the foreign policy of the US and NATO. Chief among them, going back to the start of the Cold War, is accusing any dissidents of spreading ‘Russian propaganda’ or otherwise serving the Kremlin…’
“‘The Ukrainians have the absolute right to pursue whatever war policies they want. But when they start demanding that my country and my government use its resources to fuel their war effort, then I, along with all other Americans, have the absolute right to question that policy or to point out its dangers and risks. I don’t care at all about Ukraine’s attempts to shut down debate in our country by smearing journalists and politicians who are questioning US/NATO policy as being Russian propagandists…’”
It was pointed out that even though America and Europe claim that they have to support Ukraine against Russia for upholding and protecting democracy, the conduct of Ukraine’s leadership has been anything but democratic. This includes, not allowing single men to leave the country, suppressing any news agencies criticizing Ukrainian politics and jailing journalists who do.
Ukraine and Europe Lose Against Russia
The Ron Paul Institute wrote on July 27:
“Beyond the damage in Ukraine, the war also has significant casualties in the rest of Europe as the continent is losing its most competitive energy supplies, compromising the region’s manufacturing edge and accelerating an inflation wave that through higher energy costs will severely affect the wellbeing of its population this coming winter.
“Europe has been trying for years to diversify its energy sources but it did not have a comprehensive contingency plan to counteract the impact of abruptly severing access to Russia’s oil and gas since the beginning of the Ukraine war. European politicians have grossly exaggerated the substitution potential of other energy sources (like LNG) and are facing the need to accept alternatives that not too long ago were considered politically unpalatable, like the reopening of coal production in Germany.
“How this gross miscalculation took place?… It can be argued that the wrong assessment on the war outcome has its roots in faulty US-British intelligence which forecasted Russia’s defeat through economic warfare and, therefore, a limited impact of sanctions on Europe. This not being the case has now made European leadership to scramble for solutions…
“On the other hand, dissenting and unorthodox European political views are sounding louder, as Hungarian prime minister Orban’s recent speech where he boldly mentioned that Russian sanctions and arming Ukraine have failed, Ukraine can’t win the war, the more weapons go to Ukraine the more territory it will lose…”
Further Raise of Interest Rates
Breitbart wrote on July 27:
“The Federal Reserve on Wednesday raised its benchmark interest rate target by three-quarters of a percentage point… This is the second consecutive 0.75 point raise, a rate of increases that is unprecedented in the modern era of interest rate targeting…
“The U.S. economy contracted 1.6 percent in the first three months of the year. Two consecutive quarterly contractions is often considered a recession…
“The Biden administration has been insisting that the economy should not be considered to be in a recession even if it shrinks in the second quarter, pointing to the historically low unemployment rate. Critics have said the administration is attempting to redefine recession to avoid being blamed for a serious downturn. Much of that debate, however, is likely to be moot in the near future. Most economists now think a recession will start next year, with many thinking it will begin in the first half of next year. A few think it may come even earlier. Bank of America says it thinks the economy will be in a recession this year.”
Deutsche Welle added:
“The increase is the fourth since March and brings the interest rate to its highest level since 2018. The move comes as inflation, at 9.1%, has been increasing at its fastest rate in 41 years… The aim of the central bank is to increase the cost of borrowing, for example for a car or a mortgage on a house, so that consumers are less likely to borrow and spend. The hope is then for the economy to cool and for inflation to slow down.
“But with the US economy already slowing down, the interest rate hike may be increasing the risk of inducing a recession.”
Many feel we are already in a recession. Regardless, the American people are hurting, and they don’t care for political games and interpretations.
US Government Corrupt?
Reason wrote on July 25:
“A new poll from the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics finds a majority of Americans think the government is corrupt and stacked against them… 73 percent of poll respondents who identify as ‘strong Republican’ respondents agreed with the statement that the government is ‘corrupt and rigged against everyday people like me.’… Fifty-one percent of ‘very liberal’ voters agreed with the same statement. Overall, 56 percent of survey respondents said that the government is corrupt. This included 66 percent of all Republican respondents, 63 percent of independents, and 46 percent of Democrats.
“The survey… found that a significant number of people expect that extreme measures may be necessary to protect against government overreach. 28 percent of respondents agreed with the statement that ‘it may be necessary at some point soon for citizens to take up arms against the government.’ Thirty-six percent of Republicans, 35 percent of independents, and 20 percent of Democrats agreed…
“Most respondents, regardless of political affiliation, were also in agreement that ‘it should be illegal for private companies such as Verizon, Google and Facebook to collect information about people’s phone and internet usage.’”
Hypocritical Democrats Questioned Republican Wins in 2016 and 2004
Newsmax wrote on July 22:
“Former President Donald Trump overnight shared a video montage showing 10 minutes of Democrats, ranging from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams, denying the results of elections, including several who questioned his win in 2016… Trump’s posts, and the video, came after the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6, 2021 attacks at the Capitol — which Trump calls the ‘Unselect’ Committee — held its eighth hearing Thursday night.
“In the prime-time hearing, the last before the committee resumes in September, testimony was presented accusing Trump of dereliction of duty for not stopping what was happening that day… The testimony, over the three hours, outlined a case that during the incidents, Trump was in a dining room near the Oval Office, where he watched televised reports of what was happening at the Capitol and rejected pleas from aides, staff, and congressional Republicans to stop the violence that was unfolding. The testimony also said he was calling senators to try to stop Congress from certifying the Electoral College results.
“The video Trump posted early Friday first shows Clinton commenting after her loss to Trump in 2016 that ‘you can run the best campaign, you can even become the nominee and you can have the election stolen from you.’ It goes on to several key Democrats, mainly questioning his 2016 win and blaming the victory on Russian interference:
“Vice President Kamala Harris: Agreed with a show host’s contention that Trump was an ‘illegitimate president that didn’t really win.’ President Joe Biden: Agreed with an audience member that Trump was not a legitimate president. Former President Jimmy Carter: Maintained that Trump did not win in 2016 and that he was ‘put into office because the Russians interfered.’
“The video also shows political figures questioning former President George W. Bush’s win over Al Gore, including Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe saying that if all Florida’s votes had been counted, Gore would have been elected.
“Others featured in the video while questioning election results included Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., saying people are ‘very worried that when they cast a ballot on an electric voting machine that there is no paper trail to record that vote’ and Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, saying that ‘we cannot declare that the election of 2004 was free and clear’ and that there must be ‘independent testing of the voting machines’ in Ohio, after President George W. Bush’s win over Democrat nominee John Kerry.
“The video wraps with Harris declaring that Abrams would be the governor in Georgia, and with Abrams commenting that she stands by her decision refusing to concede she lost the race.”
A great video by Trump, showing the incredible hypocrisy of those Democrats featured in the video. It again raises the distinct possibility, if not probability, that the election in 2020 was stolen from Trump. That would of course mean that Biden is an illegitimate president, and that Trump was the duly elected President in 2020. Here is a link to the video. Judge for yourself.\ https://truthsocial.com/@realDonaldTrump/posts/108689194787620302
More Political Hypocrisies
The New York Post wrote on July 23:
“Democrats have carved out quite a niche for themselves as the party of the have-nots, even if it’s mostly a hypocritical marketing ploy. Bernie Sanders, the socialist, lives a pretty non-socialist life with a town house, a vacation home… while he claims to champion the proletariat.
“There’s no shortage of similar examples… The latest of these ‘freedom for me but not for thee’ hypocrisies involves the matter of Paul Pelosi, [husband] of Nancy Pelosi… [He][ has been killing it in the stock market in recent years… enough of his winners involve companies that appear to have been benefiting from legislation that his wife, as the powerful… house speaker, has a hand in… Nancy Pelosi is one of the richest members of Congress — with an estimated net worth of more than $100 million on an annual salary of about $200,000.
“The power couple have a vineyard in tony Napa Valley plus many of the perks of wealth and status. She represents the dysfunctional congressional district in and around San Francisco, which means she’s regularly attacking wealth creators while virtue signaling about the poor and downtrodden…
“Insider trading — or trading stocks on material, non-public information — is a crime, of course. Recent legislation puts people who use information they learned based on their position in Congress (or their spouse’s) in the same slimy bucket. But most lawmakers who have been investigated for allegedly using their position to trade almost always never face criminal charges. See the case of North Carolina Republican Sen. Richard Burr. Lawmakers get private briefings, as Burr did before selling stock just before the pandemic rocked the markets. They can and do point to the fact that the same information was swirling around on the Internet or business television. “
“That’s why any case against Paul Pelosi would likely go nowhere. His timing on Nvidia may have been fishy, but he could just as easily point to countless news reports about the legislation going back at least six months, long before his trades were made.
“So it may not be illegal— but it sure does look scummy. The Pelosis are in positions of influence with access to information not available to most Americans. And they have no shame taking millions while Nancy Pelosi leads a party that is dedicated to virtue signaling about the sins of capitalism….”
As the old saying goes: “I am for socialism and communism, as long as it does not hurt me.” But God will deal with the hypocrites in His due time (Isaiah 33:14).
Blind on the Left Eye
GBH News reported on July 23:
“The leader of a known Neo-Nazi group was placed into custody today by Boston Police following a demonstration by the group in Jamaica Plain. The protest by NSC-131 took place outside the historic Loring Greenough House where residents had gathered for a children’s drag queen story hour, an event in which individuals in drag read to children. The white supremacist demonstrators shouted anti-LGBTQ slogans and taunted counter-demonstrators who had gathered across the street amid a heavy police presence. Among those arrested was NSC-131 leader, Chris Hood, on charges of disturbing the peace according to Boston police. He was handcuffed and transported to the West Roxbury precinct… They too were charged with disturbing the peace. Reports of injuries during the protest and counter protest were not confirmed by GBH News.
“Hours after the protest, residents stood outside the Greenough House to show support for their LGBTQ neighbors…”
We most certainly do not condone, endorse or support activities of Neo-Nazi groups or white supremacists. On the other hand, the prejudice against those who are opposing drag queen activities for children, apparently without resorting to violence, is stunning in light of the fact that Antifa, BLM and other radical left-wing groups are permitted to conduct violent demonstrations without having to face any arrests.
Conviction of Bannon Unconstitutional
The Daily Beast wrote on July 23:
“After former Trump adviser Steve Bannon was found guilty Friday of contempt of Congress, attorney and former Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz was on Newsmax complaining about the jury, calling the conviction ‘entirely in violation of the Constitution,’ and predicting that a higher court will ‘very likely’ overturn it. ‘The only provision of the Constitution, which appears basically twice, is trial by jury in and in front of a fair jury. Number one, he didn’t have a fair jury. Number two, the judge took his defenses away from him,’ claimed Dershowtiz.
“Bannon’s legal team chose not to call a single witness in his defense. The jury in the case, composed of Washington, D.C. residents, took just three hours to come to its conclusion. After Newsmax host Greta Van Susteren said the district is ‘94 percent Democrat,’ Dershowitz chimed in, ‘Well, not only that, but probably 97 percent Trump haters.’ He added, ‘And all you had to do was say, “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, this man Bannon worked for Trump.” That’s the end of the case.’”
Dershowitz also said: “The judge denied him a jury trial. They wouldn’t allow him to put it on evidence that he believed that there was an executive privilege involved, and he wanted a judicial determination before he violated the executive privilege.”
Steve Bannon commented:
“I only have one disappointment and that is the gutless members of that show trial committee, the J6 Committee didn’t have the guts to come down here and testify in open court… We may have lost the battle here today but we’re not going to lose the war…”
Fox News wrote on July 22:
“After his contempt of Congress conviction Friday, former Trump strategist Steve Bannon warned Democrats are waging an ‘ideological war’ that regular Americans must win, pointing to the House January 6 committee and Biden administration as being tinged with Chinese Communist Party style governance… Bannon expressed confidence he will continue to mount his appeals, saying the law is on his side against a ‘lawless committee [conducting] a blatantly unethical and one-sided investigation.’”
It appears that Bannon’s conviction must be overturned… if fair and honest procedures are employed. Sadly, not much righteousness, justice, fairness and equity can be found in the land today (compare Isaiah 5:7).
The Fight Against the Traditional Family
Daily Mail wrote on July 23:
“The whole thing, which operates in the name of ‘gender equality’, is based on the firm belief that women ought to go out and earn wages to be fulfilled and that the raising of the next generation is a second-rate task, best farmed out to paid strangers…. It suits the state, because it creates millions of new taxpayers. And it suits big business, because it provides a willing new workforce. And, of course, it suits the minority of women who pursue exciting high-flying careers of the Cherie Blair type, and who can afford good nannies.
“It is not so great for those who must work in call centres and such places, leaving their young all day in dreary childcare. And it is pretty terrible for the children themselves… If a woman (or a man for that matter) prefers to stay at home to bring up and educate the young, conservatives respect them for it and, at the very least, don’t get in their way. But look at how the tax breaks and the social attitudes go, if you want to choose this way of life.
“The tax and benefits system, and the attitudes of all parts of the state, will help almost any form of childcare – except the one where a parent stays at home to do it and the family has to cope on a single income. Since this form of ‘equality’ got under way, the old form of family has been badly squeezed. You have to be rich, or grimly determined, or both, to do it. And in any case this point of view is now dismissed by millions as bigoted. Why does nobody in politics oppose this anti-family policy, even though there are good, strong arguments against it?…
“… traditional ideas about the family have been falsely classified and smeared as ‘phobias’ about other ways of life. Defend traditional marriage, the type of family universally accepted as good and normal until recently, from discrimination against it, and the radicals will not bother to argue with you. They will just try to destroy you by claiming that you wish to discriminate against them.”
God condemns those who want to replace the traditional family with all the wrong and unbiblical alternatives.
Rubio vs. Buttigieg
Fox News reported on July 25:
“Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg hit out at [Sen. Marco] Rubio early Sunday over the senator’s opposition to codifying gay marriage. Rubio fired back in a video on Twitter, mocking the Biden administration official for telling Americans suffering under high gas prices to buy expensive electric cars. ‘We have a transportation secretary named Pete Buttigieg who believes that highways can be racist; who believes that $5 gas—which is killing working Americans—is a great thing because that means people are gonna drive less, or because everyone is now gonna go out and buy a $65,000 electric car with a Chinese battery in it,’ Rubio said. ‘I’m gonna focus on the real problems. I’m not gonna focus on the agenda dictated by a bunch of affluent, elite liberals and a bunch of Marxist misfits who sadly today control the agenda of the modern Democratic Party,’ he added.
“Rubio had previously called the push to codify gay marriage in Congress a ‘stupid waste of time.’ Democrats began pushing the bill after the Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade, causing some within the party to fear that Obergefell v. Hodges, the ruling creating a right to gay marriage, could fall as well… The same-sex marriage bill passed through the House of Representatives last week and now must gain the support of at least 10 Republicans to pass the Senate.”
Pete Buttigieg is famously openly gay and the “wife” to his male partner, “husband” Chasten Buttigieg, born as “Chasten James Glezman.” But the homosexual lifestyle is condemned by God, both in the Old and in the New Testament (Leviticus 18:22; Romans 1:24, 27).
Pope vs. German Bishops
Fox News wrote on July 21:
“Pope Francis on Thursday took a swing at the Catholic Church’s leadership in Germany, reminding faithful in the country that the German bishops do not have the authority to propagate new theology or alter church governance… In the message, the pope expressed concern for the laity and clergy of Germany if their leaders break with established church teaching. The statement claimed that Catholics would be negatively affected by the many proposed changes to the church pushed by Cardinal Reinhard Marx and other liberal German leaders in their ‘Synodal Path.’… The synod, organized by the German Bishops’ Conference and the Central Committee of German Catholics, aims at discussing and addressing four loose topics: sexual ethics, the structure of church governance, women’s role in the church and the vocation of the priesthood…
“Marx, who spearheaded the committee, has tabled propositions to change teachings on homosexuality, marriage, masturbation, female priests and more that go against the Catechism of the Catholic Church. A significant alteration in the governance of the German Church or its belief system could push it into schism with the Holy See, thereby splintering out of the Catholic Church. Such a conflict could prove catastrophic for both German Catholics and the Catholic Church at large — thanks to a long-standing government ‘church tax,’ the Catholic Church in Germany is perhaps the wealthiest branch of the institution.”
Especially the Catholic Church in Germany seems to be moving more and more to the left, thereby clearly inviting strong controversy with the Vatican. Pope Francis may not be the one able to control this fight and return the Catholic Church to its historic conservative stance, but a successor might very well do that.
AP wrote on July 23:
“When Pope Francis apologizes to Indigenous groups on Canadian soil this week, he will make another effort toward healing harms inflicted at church-run residential schools — and add to the Catholic Church’s growing ledger of atonement for past transgressions. Like the papacy, top Protestant leaders also have gradually issued institutional mea culpas for their churches’ historical wrongs. Many of the apologies on behalf of Christian denominations are for grave offenses: genocide, sex abuse, slavery, war and more… For 1,900 years, churches didn’t apologize for the bad things that they did… significant apologies [came] in the aftermath of World War II, especially a declaration by Germany’s Protestant churches that they failed to adequately oppose the Nazis. It was among the first in a series of recognitions that Christian institutions themselves committed wrongs…”
Of course, the Catholic Church in Germany did not oppose Naziism either. The Catholic and the Protestant churches will have a lot to “apologize” for when they will work with the “beast” in persecuting true Christians and engaging in military activities in the prophesied near future (compare Revelation 13:4, 6, 15).
Justice for Pastor Pawlowski and His Brother?
Life Site News wrote on July 22:
“An appeals court today nullified contempt charges against Alberta pastor Artur Pawlowski and his brother Dawid for protesting COVID health rules, ruling that a ‘not sufficiently clear’ May 2021 ban on virus protests did not apply to them. ‘The Pawlowskis’ appeals are allowed. The finding of contempt and the sanction order are set aside. The fines that have been paid by them are to be reimbursed,’ wrote a penal of three judges, Justices Barbara Lea Veldhuis, Michelle Crighton and JJo’Anne Strekaf.
“The Alberta judges ordered that Pawlowski and Dawid be reimbursed by Alberta Health Services (AHS) for all costs associated with their appeal, including fines paid. The fine amounts that must be returned are $23,000 for Artur and $10,000 for Dawid. Also, the court ordered that the brothers be paid $15,733.50 in costs associated with their appeal by AHS.
“In essence, the judges ruled that Pawlowski and his brother’s jail time, arrests, and charges along with the censorship mandate by the court were not valid.
“The Pawlowskis made international headlines after they were arrested in a highway takedown in May 2021 for holding worship services contrary to Alberta’s COVID rules affecting church service capacity limits. The Pawlowskis served three nights in jail before being released on bail.
“They were jailed under a court injunction dated May 6, 2021, by Alberta Chief Justice J. Rooke, who placed a ban on ‘illegal’ protests in Alberta against COVID mandates. This order allowed police to arrest, detain, and imprison anyone who disobeyed. However, this order was intended to be directed at Christopher Scott, the owner of Whistle Stop Café in Mirror, Alberta, who earlier defied government health orders and opened for dine-in service…
“The Pawlowski brothers and Scott were found to be in contempt of a court order by Justice Adam Germain in May 2021. However, the brothers appealed the contempt charges and other sanctions imposed on them. Today, the appeals panel ruled that Rooke’s injunction ‘was not sufficiently clear and unambiguous.’ As a result, the panel also reduced penalties placed on Scott to time served…
“Under Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, many were fined and others jailed for fighting against his government’s draconian COVID rules, which severely impacted thousands of businesses.
“After the judges’ decision regarding Pawlowski was released earlier today, many praised it as a win for religious freedom… Olympic gold medalist and former NHL Canadian hockey legend Theo Fleury tweeted, ‘Congrats to Pastor Arthur for your courage strength and perseverance… You were and always will be on the right side of history…’ Jamie Salé, gold medal pairs figure skating champion who recently spoke out on her ‘awakening’ to combat the COVID narrative, tweeted, ‘The TRUTH WINS again in the case of Art P!!!’
“In total, since the start of the COVID crisis, Pawlowski was jailed not less than five times. After his last arrest, he was initially denied bail when a provincial judge ruled he was a threat to ‘public safety.’ This despite his purported ‘crimes’ being completely non-violent in nature… Pawlowski was jailed for nearly three months after speaking out against COVID mandates when he gave a sermon to truckers blockading the highway in Coutts, Alberta.”
This is a classic example of terrible injustice in an authoritarian country under left-wing dictator Justin Trudeau, fueled by uninformed propaganda disseminated by proverbial politicians. Note the next two articles as well.
Fauci’s Irresponsible Follies
The New York Post published on July 23 the following opinion piece:
“The man almost single handedly responsible for the failed COVID policies of the past two-plus years has announced that he will be retiring soon. For many of us, that day cannot come soon enough. During the first year of the pandemic, Anthony Fauci MD was a study in confusion. He expressed wildly conflicting opinions about how lethal and contagious the coronavirus was depending on who he was talking to. In private he questioned whether it could be spread asymptomatically, whether wearing masks could help contain it, and whether it was possible to be re-infected.
“In public he warned us that we were facing a viral apocalypse, touting a pandemic model from the Imperial College in London that predicted millions upon millions of US deaths. It turned out that the model was algorithmic garbage, but that didn’t stop America’s most famous virologist from recommending — in mid-March 2020 — that the economy of the entire country be shut down indefinitely, 40 million people be put out of work, tens of millions of children be denied an education, and millions of ‘nonessential’ small businesses be shuttered, many never to reopen.
“Under Fauci’s influence, the US Coronavirus Task Force then proceeded to commit every epidemiological sin in the book. Among his mistakes were:
“… At the outset of the US outbreak, Fauci insisted on contact tracing. An enormous amount of valuable time and resources was wasted trying to track down every last person who might have come into contact with every person who might have had COVID — because Fauci insisted on it. He actually made Zoom calls to groups of hundreds of ‘contact tracers’… For a highly infectious airborne viral infection, however, it was a criminal misuse of public health resources that did nothing to stop the spread of the disease…
“From the first, Fauci was calling for nationwide school closures… Few dared to question the all-knowing Dr. Fauci in those days, but the proper response to his fear-mongering about infections among children would have been: So what if children get infected? Their risk of dying from COVID-19 is effectively zero, far lower than their risk of dying from the seasonal flu, which itself is minuscule…
“Closing America’s schools did not save lives. But it did have a destructive effect on the academic performance and the emotional health of children… As professors Martin Kulldorff and Jay Bhattacharya wrote at the end of 2021, ‘Considering the devastating effects of school closures on children, Dr. Fauci’s advocacy for school closures may be the single biggest mistake of his career.’
“… Perhaps one day Fauci will tell us why, throughout the last half of 2020 and 2021, he ignored, dismissed, even ridiculed the idea that those who had recovered from COVID-19 had acquired natural immunity. This wasn’t the way he was talking at the outset of the pandemic. In a March 2020 interview with Trevor Noah of Comedy Central, for example, Fauci asserted that it was highly likely that those who had been infected with coronavirus were now immune… You don’t have to be an immunologist like Fauci to know this, of course. Medical practitioners have known about natural immunity since at least the time of the Antonine Plague that began in 165 AD. Everyone who’s had high school biology knows about natural immunity from disease.
“… Fauci committed his ‘original pandemic sin’ long before the present pandemic by playing a key role in enabling it. The long-time head of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Disease was the chief cheerleader and funder of gain of function research — the dangerous idea that deadly viruses could be created and studied in the lab to help prevent the next pandemic. China was happy for its scientists — including the head of the Wuhan Institute of Virology — to be taught these techniques in Fauci-funded labs. After COVID-19 likely leaked from that Wuhan lab, Fauci’s errors began to multiply as rapidly as the coronaviruses he paid Chinese scientists to collect in bat caves and study. He made a bad situation much, much worse.”
Fox News wrote on July 23:
“Fauci says he still believes that the coronavirus originated in nature but acknowledged he is keeping an ‘open mind.’ Fox News host Bret Baier pressed Fauci on emails showing that Fauci has previously dismissed the lab leak theory as a ‘shiny object’ that will ‘go away’ when discussing the origin with top scientists…
“Fauci has faced heated criticism from Republicans who have suggested a possible government coverup on the origins of the virus which many believe came from a lab in Wuhan, China and not an animal in nature. Republican Sen. Rand Paul said on Fox News this week that if his party takes control of Congress in November that Fauci will be forced to testify under oath about the origins of the virus and gain of function research that Fauci’s office was reportedly conducting at the Wuhan lab. ‘I do fully believe this virus, this pandemic that killed 6 million people around the world, leaked from the lab,’ Paul said on America Reports. ‘But I think there was a concerted effort by him and his colleagues to cover this up and make sure it didn’t come to light, that the NIH was funding that lab and that there was reasonable scientific evidence that suggests that it came from the lab. So he’s going to be made to testify under oath. And I hope he sticks around because we do have some questions.’”
The bad news is, many “scientists” around the world followed Fauci’s dangerous and incompetent directives. And they still do this today, including Germany’s doom-and-gloom Health Minister Karl Lauterbach, who received advice from Fauci while in Washington. Lauterbach declared on his return to Germany that “Germany and the US will cooperate on how best to control the next outbreak of COVID-19” (Deutsche Welle, dated July 23). This sounds terribly dangerous!
Origin of Corona Virus Pandemic?
Deutsche Welle wrote on July 27:
“A pair of studies in the latest issue of the journal Science appear to back up the theory that an animal market in the Chinese city of Wuhan really was the source of the coronavirus pandemic… Mammals that can carry the coronavirus — including red foxes, hog badgers and raccoon dogs — were all sold live in the market, the team showed… They found that both lineages jumped from animals at the market to humans on separate occasions, and that one did not come from the other…
“Co-author Kristian Andersen of Scripps Research, based near San Diego in the United States, said the findings did not disprove the lab-leak theory but gave a plausible explanation for the origin of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in humans.”
“Ugly Covid Lies”
On July 25, 2022, Dr. Ron Paul wrote the following editorial in his weekly column:
“After two years of unprecedented government tyranny in the name of fighting a virus, the prime instigators of this infamy are walking free, writing books, and openly pretending they never said the things they clearly said over and over.
“Take Trump’s White House Covid response coordinator Deborah Birx, for example. She was… the principal architect of the disastrous ‘lockdown’ policy that destroyed more lives than Covid itself… She sold the White House on the out-of-thin-air ‘fifteen days to slow the spread’ all the while knowing there was no evidence it would do any such thing… she was also destroying the lives of millions of Americans. The hysteria she created led to countless businesses destroyed, countless suicides, major depressions, drug and alcohol addictions. It led to countless deaths due to delays in treatment for other diseases. It may turn out to be the most deadly mistake in medical history.
“As she revealed in her book, she actually wanted to isolate every single person in the United States!… She wanted to prevent even two people from meeting. How is it possible that someone like this came to gain so much power over our lives? One virus and we suddenly become Communist China?
“Last week in a Fox News interview she again revealed the extent of her treachery. After months of relentlessly demanding that all Americans get the Covid shots, she revealed that the ‘vaccines’ were not vaccines at all! ‘I knew these vaccines were not going to protect against infection,’ she told Fox. ‘And I think we overplayed the vaccines…’
“So when did she know this? Did she know it when she told ABC in late 2020 that ‘this is one of the most highly-effective vaccines we have in our infectious disease arsenal…’?… she admits in her book, she believes it’s just fine to lie to people in order to get them to do what she wants…
“The big question now, after what appears to be a tsunami of vaccine-related injuries, is will anyone be forced to pay for the lies and subterfuge? Will anyone be held to account for the lives lost for the arrogance of the Birxes and Faucis of the world?”
Sadly, the answer is probably no… for now. But it is going to be quite a different story when they have to appear before the Judgment Seat of Jesus Christ. Note Matthew 12:36-37.
The Danger of Menthol Cigarettes and Flavored Cigars
On July 25, Axios published the following article by the American Heart Association:
“In 2009, Congress ended the sale of flavored cigarettes — except for menthol cigarettes… A study published in the journal Tobacco Control estimated that 650,000 lives would be saved between 2021 and 2060 if the FDA ended the sale of menthol cigarettes… Menthol cigarettes are still on shelves today… From 1980 to 2018, menthol cigarettes led to 10.1 million new smokers, caused 378,000 premature deaths and took nearly 3 million years off people’s lives… More than half a million kids — and even more young adults — use flavored cigars… Cigars are the second-most popular tobacco product among high schoolers…
“Today, tobacco companies relentlessly market menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars to Black, Hispanic/Latino, Asian American and American Indian/Alaska Native populations, as well as to LGBTQ+ communities and youth… Tobacco companies intentionally hide the health dangers of their products. In reality, smoking harms almost every organ in the body, causes disease and leads to premature death. Menthol also makes it easier for people to start smoking and harder to quit. Tobacco companies deliberately use kid-friendly flavors in their cigars, such as chocolate, strawberry, banana split, cherry dynamite and tropical twist.
“Surveys show that nearly three-quarters of kids who smoke cigars do so because they like the flavors… In the 1950s, less than 10% of Black people who smoked used menthol cigarettes. Today, about 85% of Black people who smoke use menthols… Tobacco use is a major contributor to three leading causes of death among Black people in America: heart disease, cancer and stroke… Black people account for 41% of all premature deaths from menthol cigarette use, even though they are only 12% of the overall U.S. population.”
Smoking is a sin! It is clearly harmful to the human body. Ephesians 5:29 explains, in principle, how unnatural and ungodly the ugly habit of smoking really is.
Is Boris Johnson to Emulate Winston Churchill?
Express wrote on July 24:
“Christopher Hope, political editor for The Telegraph, said the outgoing Prime Minister could ‘copy his hero Winston Churchill who was pushed out at the 1945 election only to return triumphantly to 10 Downing Street in 1951.’
“Mr Johnson, who will be a caretaker Prime Minister until September, hinted at a possible comeback when he told MPs at his final Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday ‘Hasta la vista, baby’ and said it was ‘mission largely accomplished – for now’…
“… a growing number in the grassroots have made it clear they want the incumbent Mr Johnson to remain in post.”
There are others who could make a comeback… including Benjamin Netanyahu and Donald Trump.
Acknowledgement and Disclaimer
These Current Events are compiled and commented on by Norbert Link. We gratefully acknowledge the many contributions of news articles from our readership. The publication of articles in this section is not to be viewed as an endorsement or approval as to contents or accuracy of the selected articles, but they are published for the purpose of pointing at worldwide developments in the light of biblical end-time prophecy and godly instruction. Our own comments are provided in italics.
Could you please explain what Antinomianism is? (Part 3)
Following on from the previous two instalments of this series, we continue to review and respond to the antinomianism arguments set forth by the adherents of this belief system, claiming that the law is dead; look at where some who don’t espouse this “understanding” can go wrong; and come to the biblical conclusion on the matter.
Edgar Andrews is another supporter of antinomianism. He wrote: “As regards sanctification, the law can be accorded no special place today in the life of the believer, that is, no place over and above [his emphasis] the rest of Scripture. To suggest that the ten commandments are in some special way the Christian’s rule of life does an injustice to the whole body of New Testament teaching on Christian conduct.” Commenting on Galatians 5:18, he writes: “Had Paul intended to teach that the law, or any part of it, should be the Christian’s rule of life, here was his opportunity to do so. What does he say? He tells us that those led by the Spirit are not beholden to the law with respect to righteous living. Indeed, he seems to go further; being led by the Spirit and being ruled by the law are mutually exclusive in the area of Christian conduct” (compare Welwyn Commentary on Galatians).
In our booklet, “Paul’s Letter to the Galatians – How to Understand It!”, we quote Galatians 5:15-18 and explain this passage on pages 58-59:
“‘(Verse 15) But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another. (Verse 16) This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. (Verse 17) For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would. (Verse 18) But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law.’
“Paul describes again (especially in verse 17) two ways of life, as he had done earlier in his allegory of the two covenants. We can choose to walk in the Spirit (verse 16), which will motivate and empower us to KEEP the law of love, and when we do, we will not fulfill the lust of the flesh which will induce us to sin and to break the law (compare 1 John 3:4: “Sin is the transgression of the law.”)’
“But if we chose, instead, to walk in the flesh, we don’t show love, but selfishness, and we will engage in biting and devouring one another (verse 15). Vincent’s Word Studies adds: “Partisan strife will be fatal to the Christian community as a whole. The organic life of the body will be destroyed by its own members.’
“And Albert Barnes’ Notes on the Bible says: ‘… in their contentions they would destroy the spirituality and happiness of each other; their characters would be ruined; and the church be overthrown. The readiest way to destroy the spirituality of a church, and to annihilate the influence of religion, is to excite a spirit of contention.’
“To walk in the Spirit and not in the flesh is a constant struggle, as Paul explains in verse 17. There is a battle going on in our minds between God’s Spirit and our fleshly desires. And as Abraham had to cast out the bondwoman, so we have to cast out those fleshly desires. When we are led by God’s Spirit and do the things which are pleasing in God’s sight, we are no longer “under the law” (verse 18). When we walk after the Spirit and are led by it, we will keep the law. And since and as long as we don’t break it, we are not under the penalty of the law.”
Rather than being silent on the law or doing away with it, Paul makes it very clear that we must keep it if we want to walk in the Spirit.
Another supporter of antinomianism is Christopher Bennett. He wrote: “The Mosaic law was an expression of God’s holiness in terms of Israel, one nation long ago, and in terms of the people of God in their immature state before Christ came. It is fulfilled by Jesus, both in his life and death, and in his teaching and that of the apostles… The law of Moses, including the ten commandments, is not the direct set of regulations for the Christian – we are not under it any more. Instead we are obliged to obey Jesus’ commands, the ‘law of Christ’(Article in Foundations: Not under law, but not without God’s law).
“Not under law, but not without God’s law,” says this writer. If by this he means that we are not under the penalty of the law but have God’s spiritual law which we must follow, then that “puzzling” phrase can be understood; otherwise he makes very little sense.
Jesus said to that He had not come to do away with the law (see Matthew 5:17-20) and he also counselled the rich young ruler to “keep the commandments” where he quoted a number of them (see Matthew 19:16-19). As was pointed out in Dave Harris’ recent Editorial, “Loved and Kept,” “The Worldwide English (New Testament) presents Matthew 5:17 this way: ‘Do not think that I have come to take away the law and the writings of the prophets. No, I have not come to take them away. But I have come to do what they say must be done.’”
Further, when answering a question from the religious elite at that time, we read the following exchange when a lawyer asked Him: “‘Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?’ Jesus said to him, ‘“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets’” (Matthew 22:36-40).
It simply could not be clearer; the first four of the Ten Commandments show our love for God and the final six show our love for fellow man in spite of the current theological stance taken by many “learned” theologians who think otherwise. This has been the teaching of the Church of God throughout its existence.
Jesus, as the God of the Old Testament, gave the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20, and in Exodus 31:18 we read: “And when He had made an end of speaking with him on Mount Sinai, He gave Moses two tablets of the Testimony, tablets of stone, written with the finger of God.” (Also see Exodus 32:16). We read in Revelation 15:5: “After these things I looked, and behold, the temple of the tabernacle of the testimony in heaven was opened.” This testimony is mentioned in Exodus 25:21-22, and 40:20-21, which was placed inside the ark. The ark, in turn, was placed in the tabernacle in the wilderness and later the temple. If the 10 Commandments were no longer relevant, why would they be in heaven as referred to in Revelation 15:5? After all, the tabernacle and its contents under Moses were patterned after the heavenly tabernacle.
Richard Brooks, previously mentioned, states in his answers to “what is ‘antinomianism’?” that the word itself was first coined, he understood, by Luther. He goes on to say:
“A tendency of both antinomianism and New Covenant Theology is, quite arbitrarily, to remove the fourth commandment from its nine other companions and argue that it no longer applies. As a result, ‘Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy’ (Exodus 20:8) comes in for its own separate treatment.
“They urge that the Sabbath was an essentially Jewish institution, that in the New Testament the keeping of special days is looked upon negatively, and that the Lord’s Day is mentioned only once (Revelation 1:10—unconnected to the fourth commandment and without any specific directions as to how the day should be observed). It will be seen that they do not accept the principle of ‘the day changed but the Sabbath preserved’ and reject an Old Testament Sabbath/New Testament Lord’s Day tie-up.
“Once again, how do we respond? The Sabbath is a creation ordinance, predating the law given at Sinai, and so for all mankind at all times and what God sanctifies, it is our business to do all that we can to preserve the holiness of and not let it be profaned;
“So then: are the Ten Commandments for Christians today? Indeed they are. As Jonathan Bayes puts it: ‘They sum up the life of holiness to which we are called. They are the channel for the Spirit’s sanctifying power.’
“Let the Lord Jesus Christ himself have the last word. ‘If ye love me, keep my commandments’ (John 14:15).”
He goes on to say:
“While it is true that the New Testament indicates that Old Testament festal sabbaths were destined for oblivion as fulfilled in Christ (Colossians 2:16). This does not bear directly upon the fourth commandment itself, which stands tall above all those ceremonial occasions.”
He misunderstands and comes to a wrong conclusion when addressing Colossians 2:16, which we have written about many times – please see our Q&A titled “Would you please explain the meaning of Colossians 2:16-17?” for a full explanation. Below is just a part of what is written in this thorough exposition of the correct understanding of this passage of Scripture, which upholds and enjoins the keeping of the weekly and annual Sabbaths:
“Professor Troy Martin wrote an article entitled, ‘But Let Everyone Discern the Body of Christ (Col. 2:17),’ which was published in the Journal of Biblical Literature in the Summer of 1995. In that article, he confirms—based on the Greek structure of the sentence—that the second part of the statement in Colossians 2:16–17 explains who is doing the judging.
“He first points to a parallel passage in 1 Corinthians 10:24 that states: ‘Let no one seek his own, but each one the other’s well being.’ In order to understand this passage correctly, one has to repeat in the second phrase the opposite of the beginning of the first phrase. In other words, the clear and intended meaning of this passage is: ‘Let no one seek his own, but let each one seek the other’s well being.’
“This Scripture is grammatically structured in the same way as Colossians 2:16–17. Therefore, according to Professor Troy in regard to both 1 Corinthians 10:24 and Colossians 2:16–17, ‘The verb judge determines the action that is forbidden [by the first phrase = let no one judge you…] and then enjoined [or commanded, by the second phrase].’
“With this understanding, the sentence in Colossians 2:16–17 has to read this way: ‘So let no one judge you… regarding a festival or Sabbaths…, but let the body of Christ judge you.’”
Mr Brooks, having spent much time repudiating antinomianism, then falls into a common trap when he writes about the weekly Sabbath and the annual Holy Days, and, on the other hand, Sunday, which is NOT a holy day, but merely a workday, the first day of the week: “The principle of ‘the day changed but the Sabbath preserved’ very much applies, the practice being testified to as the New Testament period developed, and the first day of the week having particular (what we might call) ‘New Testament sabbath appropriateness’, following the glorious resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ from the dead upon that day.” We know that Jesus was not resurrected on the first day of the week but towards the end of the true Sabbath – Saturday sunset, and, again we have covered this many times. Please see our Q&A for a full exposition on the days Jesus was both crucified and resurrected.
There is no biblical evidence to suggest that we ought to keep Sunday holy, either in addition to or in place of the weekly Sabbath—the seventh day of the week. The common argument that we ought to do so because Christ was allegedly resurrected on Sunday fails in that He was resurrected at the end of the Sabbath, and NOT on Sunday. The “inbuilt” repudiation of the weekly and annual Sabbaths which is introduced later in Mr Brook’s whole repudiation of antinomianism is disappointing and shows how error can be slipped into what can be otherwise a very accurate understanding of the subject. And that is where many can be led astray…
Ken Raggio is very forthright in his condemnation of antinomianism and we quote, selectively (due to space constraints) from his blog as follows:
“Antinomianism would have you believe that the Holy Spirit magically puts both the law and perfect righteousness into your heart without your actually observing any laws or commandments of God, as written in His Holy Word; and that you will become righteous without actually being told what to do… Antinomianism therefore attempts to squash or silence all mention or teaching of the Laws of God, and urges ignorance and rejection of the law.
“The Antinomian preacher insists that God does not see your sins after you believe. He demands that your righteousness miraculously appears like Tinkerbell sprinkles magic dust. He insists that you should NOT concern yourself with knowing God’s laws, or in making ANY attempt to obey God’s laws. You will be made perfect by GRACE alone… Antinomianism is ANARCHY. It is LAWLESSNESS. And that is the Modus Operandi of Lucifer himself.”
Mr Raggio calls antinomianism “absolute hogwash” and mentions two high–profile names (which we omit), and an army of mega-wealthy TV preachers who have discovered that antinomianism sells hotter than iPads and iPhones. They have made hundreds of millions of dollars telling people that Christianity really has no rules. They live in palaces and jet-set all over the world, telling packed arenas full of people that Heaven waits for all those who do nothing more than love Jesus and ignore everything else in the Bible.
Christianity has spawned theologians who simply don’t love the Ten Commandments as God said they should. No amount of theological “legerdemain”; i.e., sleight of hand, deceitful cleverness or trickery can change the clear teaching of the entire Bible that we must keep the Commandments of God. The twisting of Scripture is a practice that is condemned by God (see 2 Peter 3:16-17; 1 John 2:26; 1 John 4:1; Galatians 1:6-9).
We have provided much material in our Q&A’s, booklets and sermons over the years showing that the people of God are to be commandment-keeping people, the views of dissenting theologians notwithstanding. These further three Q&A’s are reinforcing that understanding for the people of God and those others who may be coming into the knowledge of the Truth.
We have also printed a booklet entitled “God’s Law… or God’s Grace?” where we read on page 6: “The teaching of the Bible is consistent. In order to inherit eternal life, we must keep God’s law—the Ten Commandments—as well as the statutes and judgments that further define and explain the Ten Commandments. Christ did not come to ‘fulfill’ the law by doing away with it or by destroying it. Rather, Christ came to ‘fulfill’ the law by making it more honorable (Isaiah 42:21), by MAGNIFYING it, by showing us HOW to obey it both in the letter AND in the SPIRIT. This includes ALL of God’s commandments, including the Fourth Commandment, which enjoins us to keep God’s Sabbath holy (Exodus 20:8).”
It is astonishing that a few of those who argue against antinomianism may themselves be guilty of the very thing they seem to be against, by seeming to substitute the 10 Commandments for some other vague law which usually finishes up as some sort of variation on the 10 Commandments themselves. In addition, the 4th Commandment is acknowledged by some but changed to become a “1st day of the week” Sabbath!
1 John 2:3-4 reads: “Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, ‘I know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”
1 John 3:4 reads: “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law” (Authorized Version), and in the New King James Bible, it reads: “Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.”
And there we have it!
For much more information, please read our free booklet, “The Ten Commandments.”
Lead Writer: Brian Gale (United Kingdom)
Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock
compiled by Dave Harris
“COVID 19–a Man-Made Pandemic?” is the title of a new StandingWatch program, presented by Evangelist Norbert Link. Here is a summary:
The Bible prophesies for the end time serious worldwide disease epidemics and pandemics, which are caused far too often by human misconduct, resulting in incredible pain for innocent victims. Governments may contribute to the suffering when attempting to combat the pandemics. What can be said, then, in regard to the origin of COVID-19? And does the Bible include many warnings which, if headed, would prevent the spread of many disease epidemics?
Written by Norbert Link, our newest booklet, “God Is… Our Destiny!” has been forwarded to our printer, and it is now posted on our webpage.
“Die Bedeutung von Gottes Heiligen Herbstfeiertagen,” a new German booklet, has been sent to graphic artist Shelly Bruno in preparation for printing. This is a translation from the English booklet, “The Meaning of God’s Fall Holy Days.”
“Der prophezeite Fall des Staates Israel” is this Sabbath’s new German sermon, presented by Norbert Link. Title in English: “The Prophesied Downfall of the State of Israel.”
“Sei ein Kämpfer!” the sermonette presented last Sabbath in Germany by Dmitrij Niemann, is now posted. Title in English: “Be a Fighter!”
“Der zweite Zehnte,” the sermon presented last Sabbath in Germany by Christoph Sperzel is now posted. Title in English: “The Second Tithe.”
“The Cover Up,” the first split-sermon presented last Sabbath by Frank Bruno, is now posted. Here is a summary:
In this age of moral relativism people seek ways of justifying behaviors that just a decade ago were discouraged. Many who claim to be Christian seem to forget the ever-present Creator Father and His requirement for obedience. The world has become skilled at crafting legalistic reasoning to excuse truly horrible actions. Just as Adam and Eve covered themselves when they had sinned, many, including God’s people attempt to cover sinful behaviors with rationalizations. In this Split Sermon we will consider scriptures that tell us how God views these behaviors, false arguments, and the pathway to repentance.
“Personhood—What the Bible Reveals,” the second split-sermon presented last Sabbath by Dave Harris, is now posted. Here is a summary:
When does human personhood begin, and is that a question for which we are free to simply make up answers? Amidst the controversial definitions, there is only one source which encompasses the true meaning and purpose for the life of every individual person!
How This Work is Financed
This Update is an official publication by the ministry of the Church of the Eternal God in the United States of America; the Church of God, a Christian Fellowship in Canada; and the Global Church of God in the United Kingdom.
Editorial Team: Norbert Link, Dave Harris, Rene Messier, Brian Gale, Margaret Adair, Johanna Link, Eric Rank, Michael Link, Anna Link, Kalon Mitchell, Manuela Mitchell, Dawn Thompson
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