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Lester Roloff - That Dirty Crowd Called "Mainstream Media" Lester Roloff was born on June 28, 1914, to Christian parents in Dawson, Texas. Raised on a farm, he learned the value of hard work at a young age. In his early teens he was saved and later committed his life to becoming a preacher. He knew he needed
JB Buffington - Full Time Christianity (Pt. 2 of 4) Be sure your sin will find you out! This is one of the most misunderstood statements in all God's Word. Moses is speaking of one particular sin, that being a stubborn refusal to wholly follow the Lord! There are many sins that go unexposed here on earth
Ed Devries - Do You Really Believe In Hell? (Pt. 2 of 2) DO YOU REALLY BELIEVE IN HELL? HELL IS REAL! The Bible teaches us a lot of things about Hell. In fact, Jesus, for every sermon He preached on Heaven, He preached two on Hell. Jesus preached a lot about Hell. He preached on Hell more than any other
James Knox - Dress Codes (Pt. 2 of 5) The Christian's Appearance The Christian is to take up his cross and follow Christ. Those who are born anew in Jesus Christ are new creatures in him and have "put off the old man with his deeds [and] put on the new man which is renewed in knowledge" (Col.
JB Buffington - Parent Sponsored Delinquency (Pt. 3 of 5) Younger Generation More Prone to Immoral Behavior, Survey Finds Young adults under 25 are more than twice as likely as all other adults to engage in behaviors considered morally inappropriate by traditional standards, a survey released Monday shows.
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Dear Friends,In this age marked by cultural brokenness and political division, it can be easy for Christians to shake our heads in resignation to this seemingly discouraging predicament and say, “God’s Kingdom is obviously not here right now.”Or is it? In the Gospel of Luke, the Pharisees ask Jesus when the Kingdom of God will come. He said in reply, “The coming of the Kingdom of God cannot be observed, and no one will announce, ‘Look, here it is,’ or, ‘There it is.’ For behold, the Kingdom of God is among you” (Luke 17:20-21).What does this mean? When Christ said these words in first century Judea, they would have caused great confusion amongst the Jews since it was clear from the Roman occupation of their ancestral land that there was certainly no “Kingdom” currently present. But Christ wasn’t speaking of the potential reign of an earthly king. He was asking those who were listening to realize that God’s Kingdom was right in front of them—in Christ’s own witness of love, mercy, and healing. He was asking them, and therefore all of us, to look into our hearts and see that whenever we act with love, compassion, and sacrifice, God’s Kingdom is literally “among” us.It should give us great encouragement to know that whenever we show Christ’s love to others, we are an ambassador for Christ’s Kingdom on earth. Keep in mind that showing love can take the form of seemingly small acts, such as simply giving encouragement to someone we encounter in our daily lives who seems like they are in need of a boost. Whenever we do any act of love, whether great of small, we bring God’s Kingdom in our midst.Thank you for your prayers and for your continued support of FRC and the family.Sincerely,Dan Hart Managing Editor for Publications Family Research Council FRC ArticlesEvangelicals Power Republicans to Senate Victories – David ClossonVoters Say ‘Full Steam Ahead’ On Judges – Travis Weber and Alexandra McPheeAmerica Deserves Better Than the Broward County Disaster – Ken BlackwellSchool Board Says Boys and Girls Have Different Brains — Except in the Bathroom – Cathy RusePost-Midterm optimism for religious freedom – Alexandra McPheeIs the Republican Senate Ready to Advance Pro-Life Policy? – Patrina MosleyThe Supreme Court can fix Establishment Clause jurisprudence with the Peace Cross case – Alexandra McPheeSpeaker Series: The Reality of Faith-Based Adoption ServicesTruth Obscured by Hollywood Take on Sexual Orientation Therapy – Peter SpriggMust the State Recognize All Identities? – Dan HartThe Times En-“genders” Controversy with Ignorance of “Sex” – Peter SpriggNotre Dame Students Take a Stand Against Porn – Patrina Mosley Religious LibertyReligious Liberty in the Public SquareSupreme Court's latest church-state conundrum: Must a 'peace cross' memorial to World War I vets come down? – Richard Wolf, USA TodayMuslims, the Bladensburg Cross, and the Preservation of Order – Ismail Royer, Public DiscourseProfessor Sues after University Requires He Use Student’s Preferred Pronoun – Jack Crowe, National ReviewTrump Administration Updates Conscience Exemptions for Contraceptive Mandate – National Catholic RegisterThe State of Hate – David Montgomery, The Washington PostChristian student senator at UC Berkeley harassed for abstaining from pro-LGBTQ vote – Caleb Parke, Fox NewsFordham University Political Science Department Mandates Use of Students’ ‘Preferred Pronouns’ – Alana Mastrangelo, BreitbartInternational Religious FreedomWhat you should know about the persecution of Kachin Christians – Joe Carter, Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission78 Kidnapped Cameroonian Students from Christian School Freed – Aliya Kuykendall, The StreamChristians Dragged Out of Cars and Beaten, Haunted With Fear as Asia Bibi Case Tears Pakistan Apart – Stoyan Zaimov, The Christian PostChristians, pray for your brothers and sisters in North Korea – Christopher Summers, Ethics & Religious Liberty CommissionAsia Bibi Leaves Pakistani Prison–Open Doors Calls for Urgent Prayer – Lindy Lowry, Open Doors USA LifeAbortionThe Point of Gosnell – Charlotte Allen, First Things6 claims of Planned Parenthood’s new president debunked – Kristi Burton Brown, Live ActionNew Planned Parenthood CEO: “I Plan to Expand” Abortions. We Have a “Moral Imperative” to Kill Babies – Micaiah Bilger, LifeNewsPro-life ballot measures win passage in two of three states – Valerie Richardson, The Washington TimesAdoptionPhiladelphia foster families continue fight for Catholic Social Services – Perry West, CAN3 ways your church can participate in orphan care and prevention – Brittany Salmon, Ethics & Religious Liberty CommissionBioethicsCanadian Doctors Get Ready for Child Euthanasia – Wesley J. Smith, National Review FamilyMarriageHow Expectations Affect One's Happiness in Marriage – Dianne Grande, Psychology TodayWhen the Military Takes a Toll on Your Marriage: Reflections on 'Indivisible' – Gary Chapman, Military.comMen and Women: Should We Just Call the Whole Thing Off? – Rachel Lu, The American ConservativeOne Couple's Fight to Honor God With Their Bakery – Benjamin Hawkins, Focus on the Family37.8 Percent in Generation That Starts Turning 21 Next Year Was Born to Unwed Moms – Terence P. Jeffrey, CNS NewsParentingHow to Respond When Your Kids Are Bullied – Jonathan McKee, Focus on the FamilyMothers Against Macron – Joy Pullmann, First ThingsI’m Raising an Old Soul And It’s Such a Gift – Heidi Hamm, HerViewFromHomeMaking of a Mom: How Motherhood Helped my Anxiety Disorder – Casey McCorry, VerilyNew Findings Add Twist to Screen Time Limit Debate – Jean Twenge, Family StudiesPodcast: Your Teenager Needs Discipleship – Jen Wilkin and Melissa Kruger, The Gospel CoalitionVideo: How is spiritual warfare involved in parenting? – Phillip Bethancourt, Ethics & Religious Liberty CommissionHow to Be a Kindness Role Model for Your Kids – Dale V. Atkins and Amanda R. Salzhauer, Greater Good MagazinePostpartum Depression and the Christian – Kathryn Butler, The Gospel CoalitionEconomics/Education9 Years Into Common Core, Test Scores Are Down, Indoctrination Up – Joy Pullmann, The FederalistThe Wealth of Nations Begins at Home – W. Bradford Wilcox, Family StudiesYour Family, Your Choice – Oren Cass, Family StudiesFaith/Character/Culture10 ways your unsatisfied life is a blessing – Amy Simpson, Ethics & Religious Liberty CommissionHonoring the ‘Invisible Work Force’ of Family Caregivers – Amy Ziettlow, Family StudiesHow to Love People You Don’t Like – Greg Morse, Desiring GodCultural winsomeness will not be enough for Christians – Andrew T. Walker, Ethics & Religious Liberty CommissionIn An America This Ignorant, It’s No Wonder We Struggle To Stay Free – Stella Morabito, The FederalistI Cremated My Unborn Son – Tish Harrison Warren, Christianity Today8 Signs Your Christianity Is Too Comfortable – Brett McCracken, The Gospel CoalitionA Fresh Perspective on Joy – Liberty McArtor, The Stream'Remarkable' decline in fertility rates – James Gallagher, BBC NewsHuman SexualityWhere to Find Hope and Help amid the Sexual Revolution – Sam Allberry, The Gospel CoalitionKissing Purity Culture Goodbye – Abigail Rine Favale, First ThingsWhat ‘The New York Times’ Gets Wrong on the ‘Transgender Memo’ – Andrew T. Walker, The Gospel CoalitionJesus Befriended Prostitutes. So This Victorian-Era Woman Did Too. – Kimi Harris, Christianity Today‘Boy Erased’ Suggests Sexual Desire Can’t Change, So Religion Must – Brett McCracken, The Gospel CoalitionWhere Angels Fear to Tread: The Fraud of Transgenderism – Babette Francis and John Ballantyne, Public DiscoursePornographyThe Problems of Pornography: Sexual Dysfunction and Beyond – Freda Bush, Focus on the Family
by Colin Eakinow that the Statement on Social Justice and the Gospel (https://statementonsocialjustice.com/) has arrived as a bulwark against the mudslide of attempts to merge the two (i.e. social justice and the gospel), not even those most opposed to its conception can disagree with its content.But one awkward truth lingers in the back of every thoughtful Christian's mind. It's a lesson that has been reinforced repeatedly by the cyclical rhythm of church history. It's this: When one merges human amelioration of suffering and injustice with divine remediation of sin, inevitably the purpose and impact of the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus Christ takes a backseat. As Pastor John MacArthur has remarked, this is the sad legacy of mainline Protestant denominations over the past century—a rise in the focus on enhancing social welfare tightly correlated with a decline of interest in (and understanding of) how sinners might be saved from their sin. So how does the "social justice gospel" maintain its appeal? To elaborate, how could the evangelion of Jesus Christ, with its transcendent promises—that a sinner worthy only of eternal punishment can be forgiven of all moral debt (Col. 2:13-14; 1 John 1:9), can be robed in the righteousness of the Savior (Isa. 61:10), can be adopted by God as a full-fledged sibling of Christ (Rom. 8:15-17), can be set higher than angelic beings with the same glory as of God Himself (John 1:12; 1 Cor. 6:3; 1 John 3:2), and can be made an ambassador of Christ for the sake of other souls He seeks to save (2 Cor. 5:18-20)—how could such an infinite, too-marvelous-for-words opportunity ever be pedestrianized with finite goals such as elimination of economic disparities and redress of earthly inequalities? With such a stupendous opportunity at stake, why would anyone be tempted to substitute anything for the incomparable prize of the upward call (Phil. 3:14)?Jesus knew how ludicrous any conflation of earthly and heavenly possibilities would be, asking—incredulously—(Mark 8:36), "For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?" For Jesus, it does not matter how much one might improve his or her condition in this world—even to the conquest of it all!—if such a development also brought eternal damnation. In another passage, Jesus wonders why one would come to Him to remediate an earthly injustice when His heavenly offer beckons, even going so far as to implicate covetousness as the root cause of fixation on earthly conditions (Luke 12:13-15).The true gospel is about how penitent and believing sinners—no matter the race, nationality, gender, or any other category—forfeit the world and become united in one spiritual family (Eph. 2:13-22) precisely because a Holy Father has redeemed them through faith in the substitutionary work of the Holy Son. It is about how one turns his or her back on the temporal in order to have one's sins forgiven, blotted out and remembered no more (Isa. 43:25; Heb. 8:12). It is about renunciation of this world and all its attractions for the sake of an eternal inheritance that is "imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you" (1 Pet. 1:4). It is about how doing the above grants access to the throne room of God! (Rom. 5:1-2). This should not be a tough sell, folks.So, given all of the above, given the gulf between what God offers in His true gospel and what "social justice gospel-ers" are offering in theirs, how does their so-called "social justice gospel" maintain any traction? What's behind the "social justice gospel-ers" and their incessant focus, on the temporal and material, on the evanescent here and now?The Bible is not silent on this question. In fact, it provides the universal explanation behind all corruptions of the true gospel, regardless of the age or form. But before we see God's explanation behind "social justice" (or any other) distortions of the true gospel, we must first address the two distinct aspects of what it means to be a Christian: (1) what one does and (2) what one says. From the earliest days of the Church, these have always been the twin features of the authentic Christian life. We might term them the benevolent works and benevolent words of the faithful.Let's start with benevolent works—what one does as a Christian. The Bible is clear—Christians love (1 Cor. 13:35). They serve (John 13:14-15). They bind up the wounds of the hurting, feed the hungry, and clothe the poor (Isa. 58:10). They remember the widows and orphans and others who are easily forgotten (Isa. 1:17; James 1:27). They care for the stranger, for the sick, and for the imprisoned (Matt. 25:34-40). And do you know what? The world loves it all. Write it down: the world has always loved the good works of Christians. In fact, it will even seek to partner with Christians in doing these works. The conflict between the world and the Christian promised by Jesus (John 7:7; 15:18; 16:1-4; 1 John 2:15-17) never comes from the world's disapproval of the benevolent works of the Christian.No, the conflict between the world and the Christian comes only in the other aspect of what it means to be a Christian, when the faithful believer proclaims the benevolent words of salvation. Here is where the love affair between the world and Jesus abruptly ends. Why is that? Because as much as the world will love what Christians do, when those same Christians are faithful in proclaiming the true gospel of Jesus Christ, the world will hate what they have to say (Matt. 10:22; Luke 21:17; John 15:19).Christians do good works and enjoy the affirmation of the world. Then the faithful open their mouths, starting with the announcement of a holy God who cannot look upon evil (Hab. 1:13), and who has promised its eventual just judgment (Eccl. 12:14). They tell the world that evil is endemic to all as the result of Adam's fall, and therefore everyone lives under a sentence of condemnation and coming judgment (John 3:18; 36). The faithful plead with the world to repent before Christ the Savior and surrender to His Lordship (Mark 1:15). The faithful warn all who will listen that without repentance and belief in the transforming work of Christ, they will die and spend eternity in hell as a penalty for their sin (Ezek. 18:4,20; Luke 13:1-5; John 8:24).All the while, faithful Christians announce the true gospel—the "good news"—that God will forgive those who repent and trust in His grace to pardon them of their sin, knowing that the true gospel message is the only hope for sinners. And because the gospel they proclaim is the only hope for a dying world, faithful Christians know that pointing sinners to the eternal life God offers for those who repent and believe is true love. But the sinful, rebellious heart is wired such that, apart from God's effectual call and power to illuminate His truth, it spurns the benevolent words spoken by Christians. In fact, Romans 1:18 says that the unrighteous suppress the truth precisely because of their unrighteousness.The last week of Jesus' life is a case study of the world's diametrically opposite responses to Christ's benevolent works and to His benevolent words. At the beginning of the week, Jesus rides into Jerusalem to the welcome of the adoring multitude, who hail Him as their coming King. The crowd had witnessed His miracles. They had eaten the miraculous loaves and fish (John 6:1-14). They had seen Lazarus raised from the dead (John 11:1-44). Jesus had proven to them with His miraculous works that He was someone of power and authority. The crowd worshipped Him for His signs, and they always pressured Him for more (Matthew 12:38; 16:1; Mark 8:11; Luke 11:29).So as Jesus rides into Jerusalem at the start of Passover Week, the people go before Him and cry, "Hosanna! Hosanna!" They are ready to follow Him as their leader. They are ready for the revolution and the new Kingdom they believe Jesus is introducing (Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-11; Luke 19:28-40; John 12:12-15). But do you notice that adoration does not last for long? In the following days, one sees Jesus deconstructing all the empty religious premises the people held dearest. One sees Him overturning the tables of profiteers in the temple and driving out the moneychangers (Matthew 21:12-13; Mark 11:15-19; Luke 19:45-48). One sees Him undermining the Jews' entire form of religion as He upbraids their religious leaders (Matthew 23:1-39). Pretty soon, the crowd has lost all its regard for Him. Now, Jesus is saying things to them, not doing things for them. And what He is saying insults them. His message offends them.In a parable, He says that the owner (understood as God) of a vineyard (understood as Israel) is coming to destroy the tenants and give the vineyard to those who will be more faithful (Matthew 21:33-46; Mark 12:1-12). The crowd knows that Jesus is referring to them as the unworthy tenants. So even though they cheered His entry into the city earlier in the week, by Friday they are crying, "Crucify Him! Crucify Him!" The benevolent works of Jesus brought the praise of the people. And, in the same manner, the benevolent words of Jesus brought about His crucifixion. The people loved His works and hated His words. And twenty-one centuries later, nothing has changed. God continues to bring sinners to repentance, day by day, one sinner at a time. But most ultimately reject His offer of eternal life, because they hate the message that they are sinners in need of a Savior.Jesus says in John 3:19, "'And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil'." Because the world loves its sin, the gospel message proclaimed by faithful Christians will provoke the world's hatred and rejection. And if one persists in declaring the benevolent message of pardon for repentance, it will ultimately bring persecution. Paul writes in 2 Timothy 3:12 that, "all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." This is the normal response to be anticipated for all faithful believers, for all who bring the true gospel message. The world has no problem with the Church doing good works. In fact, it welcomes them. It will even seek to partner with the Church in pursuing them. But the world despises the true message of the Church, the only message offering real hope by calling all to repentance and faith in Christ's atoning work. And it will reject and persecute those churches that persist in proclaiming the true gospel.So here is our answer to the question posed in our title: the social justice gospel is, at its core, driven by a desire to avoid repudiation by the world. Do you doubt this? Then look and see the extent to which those propounding a "social justice gospel" have in their teaching and ministries any statements or positions that would incite the world's opprobrium. Go to the body of teaching of any prominent spokesperson for a "social justice gospel" and see how often that individual highlights the vilification and persecution God says will come to those who faithfully pursue His true gospel. Look hard and look long, because the data will be slow in forthcoming.Paul writes to the Galatians, "It is those who want to make a good showing in the flesh who would force you to be circumcised, and only in order that they may not be persecuted for the cross of Christ" (Gal. 6:12). The Judaizers of Paul's day demanded that converts to Christianity must also comply with Jewish ceremonial stipulations—including circumcision—in order to be truly redeemed. The reason? The very real possibility that Jewish denunciation might lead to Roman persecution (Acts 18:12-17). And this potential for persecution has attended all gospel proclamation until now. Since the days of the early Church, no matter the particulars of the age or threat, the rationale for deviation from the true gospel is always fear of rejection, fear of reproach, fear of recrimination from a hostile world.All false gospel efforts—including the "social justice gospel"—are attempts to have it both ways, to maintain a veneer of Christian orthodoxy while at the same time currying favor with the world. The result? A reinvention of Jesus into someone who is less polarizing and more genteel, and a sanitization of His gospel into one that the world might accept. But this is nothing less than apostasy. Want to know what God considers an apostate church? It is a church that is all about good works, and timidly avoids saving words. It is a church that aligns its ministry with the works the world wants to see—helping the poor, healing the sick, feeding the hungry—without simultaneously proclaiming the saving gospel the world despises. And as it pursues good works, even claiming to do them in Jesus' name, the apostate church will deliberately shun Jesus' saving words. Its distorted gospel—devoid of sin, judgment, or any call to true repentance—becomes, "God loves us, so let's love Him back by doing good works in the name of Jesus." It will avoid bold proclamation of the true gospel message, because the true gospel is a message that the world abhors, and the apostate church is ever genuflecting at its throne.On the other hand, a true church knows that persecution is coming, but still remains faithful to the true gospel. A true church carefully extricates ideas of human munificence from the true gospel of divine accomplishment. A true church instructs its members on the two essential duties of all who are saved: yes, certainly, benevolent works bringing temporal reprieve toward those deprived of justice or suffering from want. But these works, no matter how good and how necessary, are never, ever to be the focus of, and therefore lead to the exclusion of, benevolent words bringing opportunity for redemption and eternal glory in union with God.Dr. Colin L. EakinPyromaniacDr. Eakin is a sports medicine orthopædic surgeon in the Bay Area and part time teacher at Grace Bible Fellowship Church's Stanford campus ministry. He is the author of God's Glorious Story.(Portions of this article are adapted from God's Glorious Story: GBF Press, 2017)
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