Taking God to Work / Maintain the Grit to Succeed
On November 14, 2020, Frank Bruno will present the sermonette, titled, “Taking God to Work,” and Robb Harris will present the sermon, titled, “Maintain the Grit to Succeed.”
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.
God Is My Coach
by Eric Rank
Any life worth living involves encountering difficulties, accepting the challenges, and working in earnest to overcome them. Growth requires us to push our boundaries, press against the edges of our capabilities, and do more with what we have. Learning, being a type of growth, involves accepting that we don’t know something, and seeking out knowledge to increase our understanding. This principle of growth applies in every aspect of our lives. Spiritual growth requires that we continually ask, seek, and knock. Fulfilling our individual purpose in life requires that we find the gaps that prevent us from achieving our goals, and do the uncomfortable work to fill those gaps. A full life is only possible when we invite God in and ask for His help in guiding our growth. When we actively bring God into our life, He is willing to support our growth by coaching us through our challenges.
Our relationship with God involves pursuing our divinely ordained purpose in life (compare Romans 8:28). It is our responsibility to search out what that purpose is, and begin to do the work required to fulfill that purpose. But that work must involve the guidance from God. “A man’s heart plans his way,
But the LORD directs his steps” (Proverbs 16:9). When we actively involve God in guiding our direction, our plans have a much better probability of succeeding! Undoubtedly, we will encounter difficulties along the way when we pursue our chosen endeavors, but those difficulties serve a purpose. If we genuinely seek the counsel of God in prayer, faithfully step out to take action to achieve our goals, we can rest assured that any difficulty or trial set before us will help us to grow. And growth is necessary if we want to make progress in life. When God is our coach, He will push us to fulfill the potential that He sees in us.
With this in mind, we ought to ask ourselves what our attitude is when we encounter difficulties. Do we complain? Do we get discouraged? Do we begin to doubt or lose faith? Obviously, these kinds of responses are counterproductive when we are trying to achieve our goals and fulfill our purpose. If we consider that God, as our coach, guides us through all of our challenges, that source of discouragement completely flips. When God is for us, He will help us to grow in the direction we need to grow, and those challenges become a source of encouragement. Who or what can be against us when we seek God? When we think this way, we can begin to look forward to the difficulties that we will face day to day because we know that they are there for us to overcome, and draw closer to achieving our goals. God only presents or allows challenges to us that He knows we can overcome (compare 1 Corinthians 10:13).
The Word of God admonishes us to grow. Such growth must begin with our relationship with God and our spiritual development. We read these instructions in the Bible: “… but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…” (2 Peter 3:18) and “but, speaking the truth in love, [you] may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love” (Ephesians 4:15-16). When we work on our spiritual development by searching out the Truth, putting godly obedience into practice, and continually learning, we draw ever closer to God. This is important because if we want God to be our coach in life, we must have a good relationship with Him so we don’t lead ourselves astray by making decisions that exclude Him. When we actively work to grow spiritually and overcome the challenges that God allows or even gives to us, we will find growth to spring forth abundantly in every aspect of our lives.
by Norbert Link
In the morning of November 7, America’s mass media and networks, including CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, AP and Fox News all declared, in unison and at the same time, that Joe Biden is the next president.
Newsmax did not, pointing out that such declaration is premature in light of ongoing vote counts, mandatory recounts and legal challenges. While governmental leaders in Canada, Germany, France, the UK ,Turkey and Israel have “recognized” and congratulated Biden as the new president, Russia, China and Mexico have not.
We point out in this edition the irresponsible and totally premature announcements by the networks and the mass euphoria by certain politicians in the USA and around the world to “accept” what is a misleading conclusion. No matter what one thinks about President Trump, he has at this point not been defeated. Statements to the contrary simply constitute an appalling corrupt propaganda machine, worthy of the worst dictatorships, designed to create a scenario as a “fait accompli” which is simply untrue.
In this context, please watch Norbert Link’s recent message on the topic, titled, “Biden the President-elect? Not so Fast!—Comments on News and Prophecy (November 7, 2020).”
In other news, we report on developments in Europe and the UK, and conclude with articles on frightening and disgusting developments associated with autocratic governmental measures regarding the coronavirus.
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
“Biden NOT the Elected 46th President”
Fox 8 wrote on November 7:
“President Donald Trump is not conceding the presidential race.
“He released a statement after the Associated Press and other news outlets declared Joe Biden the next President of the United States:
“‘We all know why Joe Biden is rushing to falsely pose as the winner, and why his media allies are trying so hard to help him: they don’t want the truth to be exposed. The simple fact is this election is far from over. Joe Biden has not been certified as the winner of any states, let alone any of the highly contested states headed for mandatory recounts, or states where our campaign has valid and legitimate legal challenges that could determine the ultimate victor. In Pennsylvania, for example, our legal observers were not permitted meaningful access to watch the counting process. Legal votes decide who is president, not the news media.
“‘Beginning Monday, our campaign will start prosecuting our case in court to ensure election laws are fully upheld and the rightful winner is seated. The American People are entitled to an honest election: that means counting all legal ballots, and not counting any illegal ballots. This is the only way to ensure the public has full confidence in our election. It remains shocking that the Biden campaign refuses to agree with this basic principle and wants ballots counted even if they are fraudulent, manufactured, or cast by ineligible or deceased voters. Only a party engaged in wrongdoing would unlawfully keep observers out of the count room – and then fight in court to block their access.
“‘So what is Biden hiding? I will not rest until the American People have the honest vote count they deserve and that Democracy demands.’”
Trump is raising good questions. In addition, according to Fox News, dated November 6: “Trump campaign general counsel Matt Morgan on Friday said… ‘In Nevada, there appear to be thousands of individuals who improperly cast mail ballots.’”
Important Decision by US Supreme Court Judge in Pennsylvania
The Washington Post wrote on November 6:
“Republicans asked the U.S. Supreme Court to ensure county election officials were segregating mail ballots delivered after Election Day… On Friday evening, Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr., who received the petition because he is the justice responsible for that region, approved the GOP request for now, ordering county boards to comply with state guidance to keep the late ballots separate.”
To be exact, Alito ordered the election officials to keep the mail ballots separate which were received after Election Day, and, if they count those, to count them separately and not to include them in the figures of ballots for Biden. The reason being, under Pennsylvania law, those ballots must not be included in the final count, but election officials allegedly ignored that provision. So did the governor of Pennsylvania and the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, thereby acting totally unconstitutionally, according to legal scholars and experts. It is hoped that the United States Supreme Court will faithfully and dutifully apply the US Constitution and rectify these egregious violations.
In this regard, Fox News reported on November 8:
“Sen. Lindsey Graham announced Saturday that the Senate Judiciary Committee would investigate possible voting irregularities after receiving an affidavit from a Pennsylvania postal worker alleging a plot to backdate ballots mailed after Election Day.” This was also reported from Detroit. A “report” from the Washington Post suggested that the person in Pennsylvania, who had signed an affidavit, subsequently repudiated his claim after two U.S. Postal Service investigators “spoke” to him. However, the postal worker denied having repudiated his claim.
Fox News also reported that two census takers told the Associated Press that their supervisors pressured them to enter false information into a computer system about homes they had not visited so that they could close cases. One supervisor said: “ It was all a sham.”
Computer “Glitch” in Michigan… with potentially massive consequences
Elexonic wrote on November 6:
“Software used to tabulate votes… gave 6,000 votes to Joe Biden in Anterim County [in Michigan where] ballots were counted for Democrats that were meant for Republicans… Anterim County had to hand count all of the ballots, and these counties that used the software need to closely examine their results for similar discrepancies… Of note, Trump won Antrim County in 2016 with 62% of the vote vs. 33% for Hillary Clinton.”
Breitbart wrote on November 6:
“The Associated Press has called battleground Michigan for the former vice president, who leads Trump by an estimated 146,123 votes. Hypothetically, a similar ‘glitch’ of 6,000 ballots in each of those 47 counties would call 282,000 ballots into question, well above Biden’s current margin of victory.”
It added on November 7:
“Two Georgia counties using the same electronic voting software as a Michigan county that experienced a glitch have also reported encountering glitches during the 2020 election… A Georgia election official said that a technical glitch that halted voting in the two counties was caused by a vendor uploading an update to their election machines the night before the election… the state reportedly implemented [the controversial system] in every county for the first time this year…
“Trump attorney Jay Sekulow said that the Trump campaign’s lawyers should demand a manual recount of any other areas that used the same software… Sekulow said,… ‘If 30 states have used a software that there’s already proved to be a glitch of 6,000 votes in one balloting area, and now you’ve got over 30 states using it, lawyers should be… in every one of those jurisdictions… demanding a manual recount.’”
Sean Hannity reported on his show that in about 30 US states, the same software has been used (The software company admits to 28 states on its website.). It is remarkable that these kinds of “errors” always seem to occur in favor of Biden and the Democrats.
Trump Can Still Win
Newsmax published on November 8 an article by Dick Morris, former presidential advisor and political strategist:
“President Donald Trump can still win the presidency… Only the Electoral College or the various state legislatures can declare a candidate the winner. To base this decision on network vote totals and projections and to call Biden the president-elect is irresponsible.
“The recounts in Arizona, Georgia, and the other states are likely to go heavily for Trump. Most of the likely errors or invalid votes took place on mailed in ballots… Since Biden won upwards of two-thirds of mail-in votes and absentee ballots, it’s likely that most of the discarded mail ballots will be subtracted from Biden’s total…
“Alaska, where Trump has led by 2:1 all week and is now more than half counted will likely throw its 3 votes to Trump giving him 217. Trump has likewise led in North Carolina (15 votes) all week and his margin of 75,000 has not diminished. He will undoubtedly carry North Carolina…
“The vote count in Arizona shows Trump’s deficit shrinking from 30,000 on Friday to 18,500 on Saturday with about 100K left to count… In Georgia (16 votes), Biden leads by only 8400 votes, a margin that has been dropping. Like Arizona, Trump may still win the count and, if not, would have a very good chance of prevailing in the recount…
“Wisconsin (10 votes) is tallied as having been won by Biden by 21,000 votes but a recanvass is in the offing. Given the facts enumerated earlier, there is a very good chance Trump will carry Wisconsin. The recount process in Wisconsin is uniquely fair and transparent — a model for the nation — so Trump may well flip the state…
“Then, it comes down to Pennsylvania and its 20 votes… Joe Biden currently leads by 37,000 votes in Pennsylvania. The number of late arriving ballots likely far exceeds this total… Justice Alioto and a Court majority may throw out the late ballots, likely delivering the state to Trump… If he wins Pennsylvania, he would have 289 votes and a victory.
“Will there be a recount in Pennsylvania? The current law requires one if the margin is under 0;.5% and in Pennsylvania it likely will be slightly greater. There are two ways to trigger a recount:
“First, the U.S. Supreme Court could order one after the vote counters so flagrantly violated Alito’s order to segregate the votes that he had to re-issue it. And remember, four Justices wanted to reconsider whether to allow late ballots entirely but the high court deadlocked 4-4. Now with Justice Barrett in the mix it may take a different view, particularly if the presidency hangs in the balance.
“Second, Article II Section 1 of the US Constitution reads: ‘Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress.’
“The Pennsylvania State Legislature, solidly in Republican hands (both houses) may choose to demand a recount before appointing electors. To build the case for doing so, it may hold hearings into the allegations of fraud so as to help the voters of the state understand how flagrantly their votes were mishandled. Already, the leader of the State Senate in Pennsylvania and the Speaker of the State Assembly have held a press conference announcing their intention to ‘audit’ the vote counting process….”
Not Before the Middle of December
Breitbart wrote on November 9:
“Joe Biden is not ‘president-elect.’ Joe Biden has not won the 2020 presidential election. Donald Trump’s re-election has not been defeated. Right now, Joe Biden is merely ‘ahead in the count’ of enough states to win the presidency. But this is a contested election and we have a long way to go, probably more than a month and a plethora of legal filings, before a winner is declared. Per our own Constitution, there is only one institution legally entitled to declare a winner in a presidential election, and that’s the Electoral College, which does not meet until the middle of December…
“Democrats, most especially Joe Biden, are also trying to gaslight us into believing the election is over (along with Vichy Republicans), which is why Biden gave a premature victory speech on Saturday, and why he is already behaving like a president-elect. What Biden is doing is un-American, anti-democratic, fascist…
“Overall, though, what we are seeing the media do, aside from dismiss the possibility of widespread voter fraud before anyone has had adequate time to make their case and produce evidence, is declare Joe Biden the winner even before the legal recounts and re-canvassings have taken place. The bottom line is that the media want this election shut down before anyone has a chance to look into what happened, before anyone has a chance to even see if Biden did indeed win fair and square…”
What is happening in the USA is shocking and abominable. And even though certain foreign politicians want to see Biden in power and pretend to turn a blind eye on the scandal occurring in the USA, they will for sure not forget how corrupt the USA has become… and will act accordingly, when the time is ripe.
Breitbart reported on November 10:
“During the first presidential debate between President Donald Trump and Joe Biden, Chris Wallace of Fox News asked Biden if he would ‘pledge not to declare victory until the election is independently certified,’ to which the former vice president answered, ‘yes.’ ‘Will you urge your supporters to stay calm while the vote is counted, and will you pledge not to declare victory until the election is independently certified?’ asked Wallace of Biden at the first presidential debate in Cleveland, Ohio. ‘Yes,’ answered Biden…
“Biden, however, has done nothing of the sort, as he has since carried on as if he is president-elect… as he seemingly ignores the fact that the 2020 presidential election has not yet been independently certified.”
Fox 5 New York reported on November 11:
“British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called Donald Trump the ‘previous president’ of the United States and said it was ‘refreshing’ to talk to President-elect Joe Biden… he says he was ‘delighted to find the many areas in which the incoming Biden-Harris administration is able to make common cause with’ British lawmakers.”
Boris Johnson might become thoroughly disappointed.
Why Does the Mainstream Media Want to Suppress Investigations into Mail Fraud?
Future of Freedom Foundation wrote on November 11:
“I just don’t get the mainstream media’s vehement objections to President Trump’s desire to investigate whether Joe Biden [ends] up winning the election through fraud. Their argument, repeated from the very moment that Biden was declared the winner and ever since, is that Trump’s claims of fraud are ‘false’ and ‘baseless.’ But secrecy is normally at the core of fraud… It usually takes an investigation to ferret it out…
“Let’s assume, for example, that there was election software that corrupt officials were able to use to manufacture whatever number of votes Biden needed to win. How could anyone be expected to ferret out that fraud immediately after the election? One would need an investigation to discover fraud on that sophisticated level…
“The mainstream media asserts that there is nothing unusual about the massive number of votes that poured in for Biden after the election. But the fact is that it was unusual. Nothing like that has ever happened in U.S. presidential election history.
“Democrat Lyndon Johnson’s 1948 US Senate campaign in Texas, which I wrote about the day before the Trump-Biden election, is instructive. Johnson won that election by 87 votes out of almost a million votes cast.
“Johnson’s position was the same as that of the mainstream media today. Immediately after the election, he was asserting that there was no evidence of fraud. But as I indicated above, oftentimes election fraud is hard to ferret it. It takes an investigation to do so. Even with an investigation, Johnson’s opponent, Gov. Coke Stevenson, was unable to prevail in his election contest. Does that mean there was no fraud? No, it doesn’t. In fact, many years later, after Johnson had served as John Kennedy’s vice president and then as president, his electoral fraud rose to the surface.
“It turned out that Johnson had told a South Texas crony named George Parr to keep his poll tabulations open after the election, just in case Johnson needed more votes to win. Several days after the election, when Johnson was losing, Parr delivered 200 votes to him, which gave Johnson the win. This New York Times article, which is worth reading, details Johnson’s election fraud, which became known as the ‘Box 13’ scandal… In 1977, after Johnson and Parr were dead, an election judge in charge of Jim Well County’s Box 13, Luis Salas, came forward and confessed that he was part of the fraud. He said that Johnson told Parr that he needed 200 more votes to win the election. Parr instructed Salas to produce the additional 200 votes, which Salas did. The last 200 signatures on the election tally were all in the same ink, which was different from the ink of the other signatures, the signatures were in the same handwriting, and the names were in alphabetical order.
“Johnson went on to become US Senator. If he had lost the race, there is no chance he would have become president in November 1963.
“It’s certainly possible that Joe Biden’s election is legitimate. But it’s also possible that it’s not. What’s wrong with Trump investigating it now rather than have the fraud surface 30 years from now, as it did in the case of Lyndon Johnson? Surely, the mainstream media wouldn’t want another illegitimate Democrat president, would it?”
Rhetorical questions, of course!
What a Biden Presidency Might Mean for Israel
Jewish News Syndicate (JNS) wrote on November 5:
“The U.S. presidential election has illustrated more graphically than ever before that we are living beneath an erupting civilizational volcano. The flaming cultural lava is spreading well beyond America… If President Donald Trump is finally edged out, the recent startling prospects for peace in the Middle East may well be extinguished by the hideous prospect of a terrible war. Those who most threaten the Jewish people, as well as the peace of the world, have been banking on Joe Biden winning the presidency…
“War between Iran and Israel would become much more likely. There would also be a domino effect in the Arab world. The unprecedented moves by the Gulf states to normalize relations with Israel have been driven principally by their perception that Trump was determined to neutralize Iran, and that their interests therefore lay in an alliance with Israel and America. If America reactivates the nuclear deal, these Arab states may well revert to the strategy they adopted during the Obama administration’s appeasement of Iran…
“And a Biden administration, reflecting the increasing hostility to Israel within the ever-more radical Democratic Party, would be used by the Palestinians to reignite their terrorist and diplomatic onslaught on Israel which, under the pressure from Trump, had been dampened down.
“Beyond this looming Middle East disaster, the election has dealt a devastating blow to America’s standing and authority in the world…
“In Britain and mainland Europe, the Jews are now trapped inside this civilizational onslaught against the West. As a result, they are in the cross-hairs of the left, the far-right and the Islamists. Whenever a culture is in deep trouble like this, the Jews get it from all sides.
“But just as America is divided, so the Jewish world is also now divided within itself… The Jews of Israel are determined to survive. The Jews of America are steadily destroying most of their community…many of the Jews of Israel… are gazing in dread and despair at what America has now become.”
… or for Britain
Express wrote on November 7:
“NIGEL FARAGE raged at a future Joe Biden presidency in a furious on-air rant as he warned the Democrat was ‘strongly anti-Brexit and even anti-Britain’… [he said] that Joe Biden would take the side of the EU in the crunch Brexit transition, which ends on December 31. Mr Farage said the UK would again ‘be at the back of the queue for a trade deal,’ referencing Barack Obama’s claim in 2016… ‘The prospects of a trade deal between the UK and the US under a Biden presidency are very low. He was the vice-president to Obama, who delightfully came to London in 2016 and said we’d be at the back of the queue if we dared vote for our independence…
“Mr Biden has already issued a warning about Boris Johnson’s apparent willingness to tear up the Brexit withdrawal deal over measures around the Irish border…”
How the Left Wants to Persecute Trump Supporters
Breitbart reported on November 6:
“Left-wing Democrats and Never Trump Republicans appealed Friday for assistance in compiling lists of Trump supporters so they could be held ‘accountable’ for supporting President Donald Trump after the election… Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) tweeted: ‘Is anyone archiving these Trump sycophants for when they try to downplay or deny their complicity in the future? I foresee decent probability of many deleted Tweets, writings, photos in the future.’
“Michael Simon, who describes himself as a former staff member in Barack Obama’s administration, replied in the affirmative, linking to what he called the ‘Trump Accountability Project’: ‘Yes, we are… Every Administration staffer, campaign staffer, bundler, lawyer who represented them — everyone.’ The database at the site includes a list of federal judges appointed by the president…
“Jennifer Rubin, a Washington Post columnist and Never Trumper, tweeted that anyone challenging the 2020 election results should not only be disqualified from holding public office, but ostracized from society. ‘Any R now promoting rejection of an election or calling to not to follow the will of voters or making baseless allegations of fraud should never serve in office, join a corporate board, find a faculty position or be accepted into “polite” society,’ she tweeted. ‘We have a list.’”
Now, this is REALLY reminiscent of a socialist dictatorship. It was subsequently announced that the “Trump Accountability Project” was “no longer active”–whatever that means.
Trump Fires Defense Secretary
Newsmax wrote on November 9:
“President Donald Trump said Monday that he has fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper. In a pair of tweets, he announced that Christopher C. Miller, director of the National Counterterrorism Center, has been named acting secretary, mentioning almost as an afterthought that Esper ‘has been terminated.’…
“The relationship came close to collapse over the summer during civil unrest that triggered a debate within the administration over the proper role of the military in combatting domestic unrest. Esper’s opposition to using active duty troops to help quell protests in Washington, D.C., infuriated Trump, and led to wide speculation that the defense chief was prepared to quit if faced with such an issue again.
“Esper’s departure could foreshadow a broader post-election purge of appointees who displeased the president…”
There is no doubt about that.
Europe Creates Hurdles for Non-Bloc Countries to Participate in Common Defense
Defense News wrote on November 3:
“European Union officials in Brussels are setting up a labyrinth of rules for non-bloc countries and their companies to join defense-cooperation projects under the PESCO framework… the agreement text leans heavily in the direction of making third-party participation an exceptional affair…
“The PESCO framework envisions groups of countries working together – three, at least – to solve defense problems that range from military logistics to cyber warfare. There are currently 47 such projects on the books. Approved projects can apply for subsidies through the multibillion-dollar European Defence Fund… Those case-by-case reviews [of applications for admission by individual non-bloc countries] are designed to dispel any notion of an automatic process for outsiders into what defense-minded officials throughout Europe hope will evolve into a reliable pipeline for building military capabilities on the continent…
“It remains to be seen whether the most important NATO member, the United States, finds the terms enticing… Applicant countries must pass a series of requirements to be invited to specific projects. For example, it must ‘share the values’ of the European Union and honor ‘good, neighborly relations’ with member countries…”
Germany to Expand Air Force
Deutsche Welle wrote on November 5:
“Germany has given the green light to purchase [38 Eurofighter] jets worth at least €5.4 billion. The air force said that the new aircraft will be equipped with the latest technology and could be used against targets on the ground. The contract is part of the German Defense Ministry’s long-term plan to gain at least 93 Eurofighter jets, along with 45 F-18s from Boeing…
“According to the manufacturer Airbus, the new ‘Eurofighter Tranche 4’ is the best and most modern fighter aircraft that Europe currently has to offer. Germany’s ruling grand coalition government as well as the Free Democratic party (FDP), and the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party voted in favor of the billion-dollar purchase. The Left party voted against the deal, and the Greens abstained.”
Forcibly Institutionalizing Quarantine Violators?
MSN wrote on November 6:
“Baden-Württemberg’s Interior Minister Thomas Strobl (CDU) wants quarantine refusers to be forcibly transferred to a closed hospital [i.e., institutionalized]… Strobl, who is also the CDU federal vice-president, invokes the Infection Protection Act, which provides for forced segregation in a closed hospital… If a person has been identified as a confirmed or potential carrier of the virus, the ‘separation does not serve as punishment, but as protection of others’. The same applies if ‘the person has to be forcibly separated against his will because he does not comply with the orders for domestic separation,’ Strobl affirms…
“Social Affairs Minister Lucha believes that tough sanctions must be imposed on those who refuse quarantine…
“The local police authorities should immediately initiate the judicial procedure for ‘forced separation in a closed hospital’ after the first quarantine violation, Strobl demands. The German Police Union sees a lot of work to be done by the police in such a case…
“Criticism came from the FDP. ‘Mr. Strobl seems to have completely lost measure and center. The CDU’s renewed commitment to pay attention to proportionality in the future Corona measures was apparently only a lip service,’ said Michael Theurer, head of the FDP state and member of the Bundestag. AfD member of parliament Christina Baum called the interior minister an ‘unbearable human enemy’…”
Not since Nazi Germany…
According to Focus, dated November 11, German Health Minister Jens Spahn is proposing that Google gives articles from his Health Ministry preference to articles from the press. This proposal has been criticized by the media as a unique and unparalleled attack on and discrimination of the free press. Spahn keeps trying to gain more and more power for himself, wherever he can do so.
Brexit in a Second Lockdown—”Worst of Both Worlds for UK Business”
Bloomberg wrote on November 4:
“Businesses must get ready to exit the EU single market at year-end, even if Britain and the bloc end up signing a free-trade agreement. With staff off work, an economic slowdown, and swings in the supply and demand for essential goods, the new Covid-related restrictions will add to pressure on logistics firms and supply chains…
“The stakes are high: If companies aren’t prepared, Britain could face widespread disruption to commerce with its largest trading partner in the difficult winter months… The government is already concerned about poor levels of Brexit readiness. Businesses will need to file new customs paperwork, food products will be subject to new animal health certificates and lorries will need to comply with new government IT systems to cross the U.K.-EU border.”
The second lockdown in Germany is likewise not going to end any time soon, even though the government had said it would only last until the end of November. Now, Merkel, Spahn and others have declared that it might last for several months, with serious prohibitions for public assemblies, including religious services. More drastic limitations on personal liberties and freedoms are to be expected; they are currently being debated by the German Parliament which wants to enact a new law very soon.
Denmark to Kill Up to 17 Million Mink for Fear of Coronavirus
CNN wrote on November 5:
“Denmark, the world’s largest producer of mink furs, plans to cull all mink in the country to contain a mutated form of novel coronavirus. Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said Wednesday the decision had been made with a ‘heavy heart,’ but it was necessary based on the recommendation of health authorities. ‘The virus has mutated in mink. The mutated virus has spread to humans,’ Frederiksen said.
“Statens Serum Institut, the Danish authority based in Copenhagen which deals with infectious diseases, had found five cases of the virus in mink farms and 12 examples in humans that showed reduced sensitivity to antibodies, she said. Allowing the virus to spread could potentially limit the effectiveness of future vaccines… There are between 15 million and 17 million mink in Denmark, according to authorities. Outbreaks of coronavirus at the country’s mink farms have persisted despite repeated efforts to cull infected animals since June.
“One million mink within a five mile (8.4 kilometers) radius of suspected or confirmed farm infection were destroyed in October. Denmark’s police, army and home guard will be deployed to speed up the culling process, Frederiksen said. Mink have also been culled in the Netherlands and Spain after infections were discovered there.”
However, the Guardian added on November 6:
“… the experts stressed on Friday there was as yet no hard evidence to suggest [that the mutation of the virus could potentially have an impact on the efficacy of vaccines in development]. The World Health Organization also offered a circumspect assessment of the risk from the new mink variant.”
Disgusting and appalling… and all in the name of “science.”
More Epidemics Coming?
Express wrote on November 6:
“It could happen AGAIN: New fatal bat virus ‘jumping to humans’ – WHO escalates response.
“SCIENTISTS have raised the alarm over a worrying new disease repeatedly ‘jumping’ from bats to humans – sparking fears of another pandemic… It has been listed by the World Health Organization as one of the 10 highest-priority pathogens which must be urgently dealt with…
“The virus can spread to humans after eating fruit contaminated by bats. However, scientists were concerned to discover the virus is also spreading when no contaminated fruit was eaten…
“It comes just two months after another paper warned the world was facing a wave of pandemics. Anthony Fauci… and… David Morens warned of ‘extreme backlashes from nature’ in the years ahead. They wrote for scientific journal Cell: ‘… In a human-dominated world, in which our human activities represent aggressive, damaging, and unbalanced interactions with nature, we will increasingly provoke new disease emergences…’”
Great. More lockdowns in the making?
A New Safe Coronavirus Vaccine?
Deutsche Welle reported on November 9:
“German company BioNTech and its US partner Pfizer announced on Monday that early results from ongoing Phase III trials showed that their vaccine was 90% effective in preventing COVID-19 infections… According to their reports, they found no serious safety concern connected with the vaccine… Biden welcomed the promising results from the vaccine trials, but warned that widespread vaccination was still months away. He also urged the US public to continue wearing masks and social distancing… US President Donald Trump celebrated the news and the boost to the stock market… on Twitter…
“German Health Minister Jens Spahn said the European Union will wait to approve the vaccine until late-stage safety data is collected to ensure the broadest possible acceptance for the vaccine…”
So now, Spahn is speaking for the EU? At the same time, the push for MANDATORY vaccinations is ongoing. While Merkel stated there would be no mandatory vaccinations in Germany, the German Parliament is debating a change in the law regarding infectious diseases which proposes the exact opposite, especially for tourists wanting to enter the country.
Forcing Children to Be Vaccinated without Parents’ Knowledge and Permission
Natural News wrote on November 9:
“In the nation’s capital city, legislators are plotting to strip parents of their legal guardianship so their children can be coerced into vaccination behind closed doors… The new law would allow health care professionals to privately take children aside and coerce them to take vaccines, without parental consent… The new law would give health care professionals the power to establish the ‘informed consent standard’ for minors, allowing children as young as eleven to consent to vaccination without their parent’s knowledge.
“The new law allows the school, health care provider, and the parent’s private insurance to conceal the child’s vaccination status from their parent or guardian… The bill’s primary sponsor, Mary Cheh, said the bill is important because covid-19 is a public health emergency. This is yet another example of this so-called public health emergency being escalated and weaponized to strip people of their rights… The state keeps a registry of children who have medical exemptions… and religious exemptions to the vaccines… Legislators are trying to remove the religious exemption…
“Once the religious exemption is shamed out of existence, parents are left to beg medical professionals for medical exemptions. In order to receive a medical exemption, a child must have suffered an injury from the product first… vaccines would become the first and only product that a person must be injured from before they can legally opt out.”
This is truly an abominable assault on freedom and liberty.
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.
The Pope has recently spoken about indulgences. How do you understand this? (Part 4)
In the first three parts of this series, we began to discuss the concept taught by the Roman Catholic Church that the “immortal souls” of departed ones may be in hell or purgatory, and that “indulgences” or prayers for the dead can allegedly remove, partially (“plenary”) or completely (“in full”), punishment for sin, so that their souls can be freed from purgatory or even hell to go to heaven. In order to answer the question regarding indulgences, we reviewed, among other questions, related issues such as the fact that we do not have an immortal soul; that we neither go to heaven (where we, as immortal saints in heaven, could allegedly receive prayers from the living and intervene on their behalf), nor do we go to hell or purgatory when we die.
We also discussed the spirit in man and showed that it is not just another concept for an immortal soul; but that the spirit in man has no consciousness when a person dies. Rather, upon death, the entire human being—spirit, body and soul (1 Thessalonians 5:23)—ceases to “live” or have any conscious “life” in any manner, shape or form.
In this part 4, we will review further the idea of purgatory and we again refer to the Roman Catholic “In Brief” writings from their Catechism.
“1054 Those who die in God’s grace and friendship imperfectly purified, although they are assured of their eternal salvation, undergo a purification after death, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of God.”
The website https://www.catholic.com/tract/purgatory adds the following explanation:
“The Catechism of the Catholic Church defines purgatory as a ‘purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven’ which is experienced by those ‘who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified’ (CCC 1030). It notes that ‘this final purification of the elect . . . is entirely different from the punishment of the damned’” (CCC 1031).
“The purification is necessary because, as Scripture teaches, nothing unclean will enter the presence of God in heaven (Rev. 21:27) and, while we may die with our mortal sins forgiven, there can still be many impurities in us, specifically venial (that is, easily excused or forgiven; pardonable) sins and the temporal punishment due to sins already forgiven.”
Revelation 21:27 is quoted, but this is talking about the New Jerusalem (not heaven) when no more human beings nor anything physical will exist. Rather, the New Jerusalem will descend to a new earth, composed of spirit, where God’s immortal people will then dwell. Applying this verse to the need for purgatory is completely erroneous.
In 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17, we read: “For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.”
This applies to true Christians only and those asleep in Christ are the dead who will be resurrected as spirit beings at the return of Christ along with those, still living, who have the Holy Spirit of God, and who will be changed into immortal spirit beings as well at that time. They will then rule with Christ here on earth for a thousand years. Nothing is mentioned that they will go to heaven, purgatory or hell; or that they will have to be purified in any way. Rather, when they are resurrected as or changed into God beings at the time of Christ’s return, they will be resurrected or changed as PERFECT beings—not imperfect and in need of purification or perfection. As the Father is perfect and has no need of purification, so we will be (Matthew 5:48; Colossians 1:28; Luke 6:40; Hebrews 13:20-21; 11:40; 12:23). In this life, we will never attain perfection in the flesh, but we must work toward it so that at the time of Christ’s return, we will be resurrected or changed as perfect beings; and it is this godly perfection which God will grant us at that time.
We must understand that when we die, we will not have attained perfection but we do not need a period of time in purgatory in order to achieve this state of perfection. In Philippians 3:12 we read: “…not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me.”
A key to understanding is Matthew 24:13: “But he who endures to the end shall be saved.” We will be saved at the end of our lives, even though imperfect and without a visit to purgatory! In 2 Timothy 4:6-8—the apostle Paul’s valedictory—we read: “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.”
Paul looked forward to a crown of righteousness even though he would not have attained perfection in his life. In fact, in Romans 7:15, he pointed out his physical frailties: “For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do.”
It is obvious from these examples that through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit throughout and to the end of our lives, true Christians will be resurrected or changed to immortal spirit life which will ensure perfection, thus revealing that any imperfections that we may have at death or at our change if still alive at Christ’s return will count as nothing and be dismissed by God.
In our Q&A, “Do the Wicked go to Hell?,” we read the following about purgatory:
“In addition, the Bible does not teach the concepts of ‘limbo’ or ‘purgatory,’ either. These concepts have their origin in pagan mythologies, as well. Richard Craze points out these most incredible facts (in his book, ‘Hell, An Illustrated History of the Netherworld,’ copyrighted 1996):
“‘The early [nominal] Christians… introduce[d] the concept of a sort of waiting-room, where souls would stay for [a while]. They found a ready-made idea — limbo — that they freely borrowed from the Romans, who had borrowed it from the Greeks. Limbo became a place where anyone who did not quite fit could be put… Purgatory… was a cross between limbo and hell… Jesus’ mother, the Virgin Mary, was called back from heaven, where she had been asleep (the Dormition). She was given the keys of hell to look after, and the running of the purgatory. She does not administer any punishments — in fact, her main job seems to be protecting the souls of the sinners from the wrath of her son [Jesus Christ!!!]. Purgatory became a sort of temporary hell — but one from which sinners could be rescued.”
However, the Bible does not teach the concepts of limbo, purgatory or of an ever-burning hell. In the meantime, the Catholic Church has given up the idea of “limbo” as a doctrine and recognizes it, if at all, as mere human tradition. And, we have already seen, “the Virgin Mary” is not in heaven, hell or purgatory. Mary, the mother of Jesus, died and is awaiting her resurrection from the dead. In addition, the very thought that she is running purgatory and that she is protecting the souls of the sinners from the wrath of her Son is quite frankly blasphemous.
Continuing with the website https://www.catholic.com/tract/purgatory, we read the following:
“What Happens in Purgatory?
“When we die, we undergo what is called the particular, or individual, judgment. Scripture says that ‘it is appointed for men to die once, and after that comes judgment’ (Heb. 9:27). We are judged instantly and receive our reward, for good or ill. We know at once what our final destiny will be. At the end of time, when Jesus returns, there will come the general judgment to which the Bible refers, for example, in Matthew 25:31-32: ‘When the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate them one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.’ In this general judgment all our sins will be publicly revealed (Luke 12:2–5).
“Augustine said in The City of God that ‘temporary punishments are suffered by some in this life only, by others after death, by others both now and then; but all of them before that last and strictest judgment’… It is between the particular and general judgments, then, that the soul is purified of the remaining consequences of sin: ‘I tell you, you will never get out till you have paid the very last copper’ (Luke 12:59).”
First of all, it is misleading to say, “At the end of time, when Jesus returns.” In fact, it is the end of the age of man but eternity beckons after that for the Family of God which will comprise the Father, His Son Jesus Christ and all the born-again members of the true Church of God who have the Holy Spirit.
Let us look at the Scriptural “evidence” that is given in the piece above to “prove” the existence of purgatory.
Hebrews 9:27 states: “And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.” Nowhere here does it mention anything about purification in purgatory, and to even imply that purgatory is part of a purification process in judgment is simply twisting Scripture to fit in with an unscriptural belief.
It is true, of course that we all have to appear before the judgment seat of Christ to receive our reward (Romans 14:10-12; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Luke 19:16-17; Revelation 22:12; 1 Corinthians 3:8; 2 John 8). This has nothing to do with having to go through a judgment period of purification. The concept of obtaining our reward when we appear before Christ at His return is fully explained in our free booklet, The Gospel of the Kingdom of God.
It is also true that those who will be resurrected as human beings in the Second Resurrection will be given a certain amount of time (the Bible indicates a period of 100 years) to qualify for the Kingdom of God. At the end of that Great White Throne Judgment period, judgement will be pronounced (Revelation 20:11-12). But again, this has nothing to do with some kind of purgatory and burning in a hell fire for a certain amount of time; rather, people will be given the chance to qualify for God’s Way of Life then, so that their names can be written in the book of Life (verse 12), as this opportunity has been given to true Christians now whose names are already written in the Book of Life (Philippians 4:3; Revelation 21:27).
Matthew 25:31-32 reads: “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats.”
This passage refers to the time when Christ rules mankind (physical human beings) living here on earth. A separation will take place during the Millennium and the Great White Throne Judgment, based on how men will live at that time.
In our booklet “Is That In the Bible? The Mysteries of the Book of Revelation,” we read the following on page 41 under the heading “Jesus Will Return to This Earth”:
“Christ is coming in all His glory, with His holy angels, to begin a Millennial rule upon the earth (Matthew 25:31–32). The saints of God, who will have been resurrected from the dead at that time, along with those saints still living, who will be changed to spirit at that time, will be given power to rule with Christ (Revelation 2:26–27).
“The saints will have positions as Kings and Priests, and will reign with Christ during the 1,000 year period on the earth. The rest of the dead, who had no part in this resurrection, will await in their graves for a future resurrection (Revelation 20:5).
“No biblical passage tells us that we go to heaven when we die. Rather, Christians will rule with Christ here on earth, when He resurrects those who died, or when He changes those, who are still alive at His Coming, from mortal to immortal.”
There is no way that a concept of purgatory for “departed ones” could be applied to this passage of Scripture.
Luke 12:2–5 states: “ For there is nothing covered that will not be revealed, nor hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have spoken in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have spoken in the ear in inner rooms will be proclaimed on the housetops. And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!”
As we mentioned earlier in part 2 of this series, we repeat below the explanation for the word “hell” which is in the latter part of verse 5:
“It is true that the New Testament speaks about a fiery place, which is translated in some English Bibles as, ‘hell.’ The Greek word for this place is ‘gehenna.’ It does not, however, describe an ever-burning hell, as commonly understood by many. Craze explains: ‘Gehenna — the place of fire. It is probable that it was named after the place just outside Jerusalem where the household rubbish, including the bodies of criminals and animals, was burnt.’”
Please see other excerpts in part 2 about the word “gehenna,” and none of this passage of Scripture can, in any way, be construed as a reference to purgatory.
In the above-quoted passage in Luke 12:2-5, reference is also made to the killing of the body, and God’s power to “cast into hell.” We discuss the parallel Scripture in Matthew 10:28 in our Q&A about the “spirit in man” and the “immortal soul”:
“Let’s notice what Matthew 10:28 does say: ‘And fear not them which kill … the body [‘soma’], but are not able to kill… the soul [‘psyche’]: but rather fear him which is able to destroy… both soul [‘psyche’] and body [‘soma’] in hell [‘gehenna’].’ We need not fear man who can only kill us, taking away our physical lives. That is all man can do—man cannot prevent God from resurrecting us from death to give us life again. Instead, we must fear God, who not only can take away our physical lives, but who can also throw us—both ‘body and soul’—into ‘hell’ [‘gehenna’], taking away our opportunity for eternal life…”
Luke 12:59 reads: “I tell you, you shall not depart from there till you have paid the very last mite.”
The subheading is “make peace with your adversary” and this short parable shows what we should do in this life if we were taken to court to settle a matter for which we had a financial liability, and the reading from the last verse is that we, as debtors, should make every effort to settle the case with our creditor, lest we are convicted by a judge and, depending on the situation, would even be thrown in jail.
It has a spiritual message too. For those of us called by God we need to realise that this is our one and only calling that we will have, and we need to make sure that we are prepared for Christ’s return. It will be too late for those who have turned their back on God, for whatever reason, and who have not been faithful to the end of their lives (compare Matthew 24:13). The message is: Seek the LORD while He may be found (Isaiah 55:6). There is no way that a state of purgatory can be read into this passage except by those who look for Scriptures to try to defend an indefensible doctrine.
The New Bible Commentary says in connection with Luke 12:59 that “the parable cannot be pressed to teach a doctrine of purgatory.”
(To be continued)
Lead Writers: Brian Gale (United Kingdom) and Norbert Link
Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock
compiled by Dave Harris
A new Member Letter (November 2020) has been written and is available at our website. In this letter, Michael Link addresses the “core values” established at the founding of the United States but which are not being practiced today. He points out that we must look to God for the eternal values that will sustain us in these very troublesome times.
“Korruption, Verschwörung und Rebellion unter den Herrschenden,” is the title of this Sabbath’s new German sermon, presented by Norbert Link. Title in English: “Corruption, Conspiracy and Rebellion among the Rulers.”
“Alles unter Kontrolle!” the sermonette presented last Sabbath in Germany by Christian Mrosek, is now posted. Title in English: “Everything Under Control!”
“Wahre Freiheit” is the title of this Sabbath’s new German sermonette, presented by Michael Link. Title in English: “True Freedom.”
“Biden the President-elect? Not so Fast!—Comments on News and Prophecy (November 7, 2020),” the first message presented last Sabbath by Norbert Link, is now posted. Here is a summary:
In the morning of November 7, just prior to a press conference by President Trump’s attorneys, the mass media and most networks declared Joe Biden to be the President-elect. However, Newsmax refuses to call Biden the winner. Why is that? Newsmax explains that the votes are still being counted, recounts are certain, and accusations of fraud and irregularities in several states are going to be brought before the courts. In addition, President Trump is not conceding and has no intention of doing so anytime soon. What are some of the specific allegations which the courts will be asked to decide?
“Political Alliance and Friendships are Useless,” the sermon presented last Sabbath by Norbert Link, is now posted. Here is a summary:
The Bible has much to say about political alliances, covenants and “friendships,” and it shows that they transform very soon—almost without exception—into hostile relationships. God condemns modern political alliances, especially by the USA, the UK and Israel, which are not based on consideration for God but which are made because of selfish interests. All of this will contribute to the national downfall of those countries. Even friendly alliances, which will be or have been entered into by Europe with other countries, will end very soon in animosity.
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