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Do you live in “Hauntington”?

October 31, 2018  |  
town has changed its name to “Hauntington” at the urging of a seven-year-old.

Second grader Angelica Dee Cunningham wrote to the town council of Huntington, New York, suggesting that they make the switch for Halloween. To her surprise, they agreed.

Their decision may be a parable for our culture today.

Americans are not unique in celebrating Halloween. Romania has a Day of Dracula; Japan stages a giant parade; children in the Philippines go door to door to ask for prayers for those in Purgatory.

Nor do we devote more time and money to Halloween than other holidays. We will spend $9 billion this year on costumes, candy, and decorations. However, our Halloween spending pales in comparison to our spending on Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Easter, and Christmas.

Nonetheless, I believe Halloween may reveal more about American culture than any other holiday. Here’s why.

How many Americans will participate in Halloween?

“Halloween” is a contraction of “All Hallows’ Eve,” the evening before All Saints’ Day. Tomorrow, the Catholic Church will focus on the saints of the Church. This tradition began in AD 609 and encourages participants to remember and emulate the heroes of the faith.

Tonight, by contrast, the focus will be strikingly different. Fifteen million American adults will dress in costumes; witches are most popular, followed by vampires, zombies, and pirates. If your neighborhood is anything like mine, you’ve been haunted by ghosts, skeletons, and dragons for weeks.

Some 69 percent of Americans plan to participate in Halloween today. Since that is three times the percentage of Catholics in America, it is clear that far more people will observe Halloween than All Saints’ Day.

What two mistakes do we make about the devil?

My point transcends popularity, however. How much time do Americans really focus on being thankful at Thanksgiving? How much attention do we really give Jesus on Christmas Day?

By contrast, fascination with the figures of Halloween is clearly on the rise in America.

Witches made national headlines when they gathered to “hex” Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. The US witch population has seen an “astronomical rise,” according to one report. Recent studies indicate that Wicca is now the fastest growing religion in America.

Satanism is growing in our culture as well. Satanist students at Clemson University recently held a “Bible torching” ceremony. A member of the so-called Satanic Temple was allowed to make an opening prayer to Lucifer at a local council meeting in Alaska.

C. S. Lewis: “There are two equal and opposite errors into which our race can fall about the devils. One is to disbelieve in their existence. The other is to believe, and to feel an excessive and unhealthy interest in them. They themselves are equally pleased by both errors and hail a materialist or a magician with the same delight.”

What is the lure of the occult?

Dressing our children in innocuous costumes and taking them to the neighbors to collect candy is a fun tradition. Participating in occult practices, today or any other day of the year, is both sinful and perilous.

The lure of the occult is simple: power. It is another version of Satan’s first temptation: “You will be like God” (Genesis 3:5). Horoscopes and fortune-tellers promise the ability to predict and control the future. Occult rituals claim to offer an empowering connection with spiritual forces.

The explosion of fascination with astrology and the occult is not surprising. Researchers connect such interest directly to stress, noting that we search for comfort and coherence in times of chaos and confusion. And the power and pleasure offered by occult practitioners appeal to our existentialist, consumeristic culture.

But Satan is “a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44) who “disguises himself as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14). His resume is simple: he “comes only to steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10). He wants to attack God but cannot (Revelation 12:9), so he attacks those God loves as “a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).

All he offers costs far more than it pays. I’ve quoted many times the maxim, “Sin will always take you further than you wanted to go, keep you longer than you wanted to stay, and cost you more than you wanted to pay.” If you think you’re the exception, you’re being deceived.

That’s why God’s word forbids all occult practices (cf. Leviticus 19:3120:6Deuteronomy 18:10Isaiah 8:19Micah 2:5Revelation 21:8). And it’s why our Father calls us to “give no opportunity to the devil” (Ephesians 4:27).

What causes the devil to flee from us?

Let’s redeem Halloween by using today as an opportunity for ministry. In a time when it can be hard to know our neighbors, this is one day when they come to us. Pray about ways you can use this day to build relationships with them. A smile, a kind word, a “God bless you,” perhaps an introduction and conversation can build bridges for the gospel in months to come.

Let’s also use this day to remember that “we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness” (Ephesians 6:12).

In this battle, we have two jobs: “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). When we submit to God, only then can we resist the devil. And only then will he flee from us.

Will Satan flee from you today?

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The popularity of Halloween is growing exponentially. Americans spend over $5 billion dollars annually on Halloween, making it the country’s second largest commercial holiday. In addition, a quarter of all annual candy sales occur during the Halloween season in the United States. What is it about Halloween that makes October 31 so popular? Perhaps it’s the mystery–or just the candy? Perhaps the excitement of a new costume? Whatever the draw, Halloween is here to stay. But what does the Bible say about it? Is Halloween wrong or evil? Are there any clues in the Bible as to whether a Christian should celebrate Halloween? What Does the Bible Say About Halloween? First of all, understand that Halloween is mostly a western custom and it has no direct reference in the Bible. However, there are Biblical principles that directly relate to the celebration of Halloween. Perhaps the best way to understand how Halloween relates to the Bible is to look at the meaning of Halloween and its history. Let’s look at what the Bible adds to this topic in Ephesians 5:11, “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.” This text is calling us to not only have no association with any type of dark activity BUT ALSO to shed light upon this topic to those around us. As stated earlier in this article, Halloween was not exposed by the church for what it was, but rather was incorporated into church holy days. Are Christians responding in the same way today? As you think about Halloween—its origins and what it stands for—would it be best to spend time dwelling upon its themes or to shed light upon what lies below the surface of this holiday’s celebration. God is calling humanity to follow Him and to “come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing” (2 Corinthians 6:17).

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If we look back at Ephesians 5:3-5 it will tell u what Paul was talking about there 

Ephesians 5:11 with the unfruitful works of darkness Refers to the illicit behavior Paul mentioned in Eph 5:3–5. Such actions are characteristic of sin and death. 

Ephesians 5:3–5 (KJV 1900): But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; 4 Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. 

But if we just keep reading past that it talks about more what Paul trying to say.

Ephesians 5:6–10 (KJV 1900): Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. 7 Be not ye therefore partakers with them. 8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: 9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) 10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord.

Oh just read the whole thing lol and let not take just one verse to get your point across

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Halloween…Light vs. Darkness~ ✟

“Jesus have come as Light into the World, so that everyone who believes in Me will not remain in darkness.” ~John 12:46 ✟

 

The whole world lies in darkness and wickedness but we put so much emphasis on certain days as though Christ’s declaration that He would build His Church and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it has no effect on those days. 

2 Corinthians 4:3-7. 3 But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: 4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. 5 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake.
6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

Believers have been called to be light to a darkened world. 
A light shines no brighter by avoiding the darkness, any more than an army wins a victory by avoiding the enemy. 
It is time that believers took back the night.
The only way this is going to happen is if Believers in Christ Jesus take His Gospel to the enemy instead of “giving the night” to the devil. 

I for one refuse to give the enemy credit or victory for any day, and certainly not Halloween and Christmas or any other “special day”.

Do you think that Satanists, witches, atheists or other pagan worshipers cringe because “Christians” are more forceful or stronger against them on any special day?

When Paul went to Athens and come across the group of people that were “too superstitious” because they worshiped various gods, what did he do? 
He did not celebrate or worship with them. 
He did not go to other believers and tell them that the Athenians were evil and should be avoided. 
Nor did he leave. 
He used their own superstitions to “make known to them” the unknown God.
Acts 17:23 For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, To The Unknown God. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.
Romans 13:12-14. 12 The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. 13 Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. 14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.
Ephesians 5:14-17. 14 Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light. 15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, 16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

“Not called!’ did you say? Not heard the call,’ I think you should say.
Put your ear down to the Bible, and hear Him bid you go and pull sinners out of the fire of sin. Put your ear down to the burdened, agonized heart of humanity, and listen to its pitiful wail for help. Go stand by the gates of hell, and hear the damned entreat you to go to their father’s house and bid their brothers and sisters and servants and masters not to come there. Then look Christ in the face — whose mercy you have professed to obey — and tell Him whether you will join heart and soul and body and circumstances in the march to publish His mercy to the world.”― William Booth.

Romans 10:13-16. 13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. 14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
15 And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
16 But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?

WHAT IF??? Verse 16 was in reference to the preachers (believers) that were sent but did not obey, and therefore did not go??
They did not go, so did not preach?
They did not preach so none heard and none believed?


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women-reformation

October 31, 2017, marks the 500th anniversary of the beginning of the Protestant Reformation, and because I’m all theme-y and whatnot, I’m in the midst of a fantastic book called Reformation Women by Rebecca VanDoodewaard who I dearly wish were on social media so I could shamelessly fangirl her and make a general nuisance of myself by asking too many questions. Normally, I would actually finish a book before slobberingly commending it to you, but in case you like being all theme-y and whatnot too, and because time is of the essence, I’m throwing caution to the wind and telling you:

Get this book. Now. You’re welcome.

Normally, when we read about the Reformation, we’re reading about great preachers and leaders like Luther, Calvin, Zwingli, and Hus, but preaching was not the only work of the Reformation. And that’s one of the things that has captivated me about Rebecca’s book. All of the women included therein were strikingly courageous, tireless laborers, who contributed greatly  to the success of the Reformation, and they did it all while coloring inside the lines of biblical womanhood – doing vital work godly women are uniquely equipped by Christ to do. They opened their homes as a refuge to scores of Protestants (often including those aforementioned notable preachers and other integral leaders) fleeing for their lives from Catholic marauders. They set up prison ministries and fed and clothed the poor. They nursed their communities through the Plague. Those who were queens and princesses used their power to protect Reformers and change persecutory laws. Those who were married to pastors and leaders helped in their ministries and edited their books and papers. And they wrote. Poetry. Position papers. Booklets. Letters. What a happy discovery (for me, anyway) to find sisters of the quill from so long ago.

But these great ladies were not our only foremothers in the faith. For as long as God’s people have been God’s people, God’s people have rebelled and needed to be reformed. In fact, that’s the entire, overarching theme of the Old Testament- the need for Israel to reform from its idolatry. And all along the way we see faithful women like Deborah, Jael, Esther, Jehosheba, Jedidah, Huldah, Samson’s mother, and others willing to buck the trend of sin and rebellion and point the way back to God and holy living by their deeds and the example of their lives.

The New Testament gives us extraordinary examples such as the women who ministered to Jesus during His earthly ministry, stood by Him at the cross, and were the first ones at His tomb. Priscilla, Lydia, Dorcas, Eunice, Lois, Phoebe and other believing women soon followed, all lending their aid in their own unique ways to reforming dead, legalistic Judaism into biblical Christianity.

All of these great women of God, serving Him through thousands of years as only godly women can, laying the foundation with their blood, sweat, and tears, for the church we know today.

But have we “arrived”? Is the need for women to work for reform in the church a fast fading dot in the rear-view mirror of modern day evangelicalism? Judging from the articles I read and the e-mails I receive about the problems in the church, the answer to that question would be a big, fat “no.”

Perhaps armies of the Catholic “church” no longer hunt down fleeing Protestants. And, maybe Nero isn’t using Christians as torches for his garden parties any more (although there are certainly areas of the world where our brothers and sisters in Christ face similar threats every day). But the stealth, guerrilla warfare Satan has been waging against the Western church in recent decades might be even more damaging. Certainly, it’s more diffuse and wider spread. Instead of raping the bride of Christ, Satan has chosen instead to seduce her. Why forge an enemy when you can woo a lover?

False teachers. Word of Faith heresy. The New Apostolic Reformation. Abuse in the church. Biblical illiteracy. “Lone Ranger” Christians. Idolatry. Irreverence in the sanctuary.

For doctrinally sound Christians, it’s like being in that giant trash-masher with Luke, Leia, Han, and Chewie – surrounded by slime and garbage on all sides with the walls closing in, and, seemingly, no way out.

It is easy to see why the heart of the Protestant Reformation was Semper Reformanda– “always reforming.” The work of fighting for sound doctrine, biblical worship, and pure hearts and hands never, never, never ends.

So what does it look like to be a woman of the modern day Reformation? What can we church ladies do to help turn the tide of apostasy in Christendom? Permit me to nail eight theses to the door of your church.

1.
Realize You Can’t Change the World

None of the women named earlier in this article changed the world or the entire church. Not a single one of them. In fact some of them brought about great changes in their locales that were overturned in the years after their deaths.

The problems facing the church today are overwhelming. You’re one person. You can’t fix everything (and God doesn’t expect you to). Maybe you can’t even fix everything in your own church. But what you can do is determine to be faithful to Christ and His Word in your sphere of influence. Bloom where you’re planted. “Brighten the corner where you are“, as the old gospel song says. You can’t do everything, but what’s something you can do?

2.
Color Inside the Lines

One of the major problems plaguing the church today is Christian women who rebel against God’s word by stepping outside the boundaries God has drawn for women in the family and the church. Don’t shoot yourself in the foot by following suit in your zeal to reform. There’s plenty of work to be done by godly women – work that we’re better equipped for than men – without violating Scripture.

3.
Mind Your Demeanor

No, we shouldn’t be wishy washy milksops or mealy-mouthed shrinking violets. But we also shouldn’t be loud-mouthed harpies, brashly marching into hell with a water pistol (just trust my own failures on this one). We need to be velvet-covered bricks: soft on the outside, firm on the inside. We should attain to all the Christlike virtues of demeanor: patience, kindness, compassion, mercy, and grace mingled with an unyielding stand on Scripture and an uncompromising commitment to Christ. For some of us, the former comes easier. For some of us, the latter. But we must seek that godly balance as we go about the work of the Kingdom.

4.
Serve the Local Church

If you have rejected the mere idea of local church membership and think you’re going to bring about change from the outside as an unchurched (or functionally unchurched) writer, speaker, or Christian celebrity, you’re part of the problem, not part of the solution. The church is God’s plan for Christianity, not evangelical gurus. Do whatever you have to do to find a doctrinally sound one, join it, and get to work serving.


5.
Pray

When it comes to the church, fixing what’s broken doesn’t rest on your shoulders. Spiritual problems require spiritual solutions, and only God can bring those about. You can defend Scripture til you’re blue in the face or explain all day long why someone is a false teacher, but only God can lift the veil and enlighten the eyes of the heart. Be faithful in your efforts, but be more faithful in prayer. Like the persistent widow, grab hold of the Lord on behalf of the church and don’t let go.


6.
Teach Other Women

In my experience, the number one way false doctrine enters the church is through women’s ministry and women’s “Bible” study. You want to work for reform in the church? Work on reforming your church’s women’s ministry. Explain to your sisters why that divangelista is a false teacher. Request Bible study classes that study the actual Bible. Volunteer to organize the next women’s conference or retreat and schedule doctrinally sound speakers. Teach a women’s or girls’ Sunday School class. Transform the church by transforming the hearts and minds of women.


7.
Help

The book of Exodus tells the story of Israel’s battle with Amalek. When Moses held up his arms, Israel prevailed. When he let down his arms, Amalek prevailed. Eventually, Aaron and Hur came alongside Moses and held up his arms for him so that Israel could win the battle. Who was more important to Israel’s victory in this story- Moses or Aaron and Hur? If you answered “both,” you’re correct. Israel couldn’t have won without Moses holding up his hands, but Moses couldn’t have held up his hands without Aaron and Hur. Most of the women of the Old Testament, New Testament, and Protestant Reformation who effected godly change among God’s people were not Moseses. They were Aarons and Hurs. What can you do to hold up the arms of your pastor, your elders, your husband, your church?


8.
Stand

Make sure you know your Bible backwards, forwards, and upside down in context. Know right from wrong, the biblical from the unbiblical. Learn what God’s word says, and stand. Don’t back down. Do it with a godly demeanor, but do it. Refusing to budge from the truth of Scripture might cost you your “church”. It might cost you your family and friends. It might cost you your job, your reputation, and your finances (as we’ve seen in recent years with Christians in the business world who have refused to cave to the homosexual agenda). But as our brothers and sisters who went to the fiery stake, the dank prison cell, and the gallows would tell you, fidelity to God’s Word is worth it. Loyalty to Christ is worth anything it might cost you. Stand.


Whether your women’s ministry is using a book by a false teacher, there’s a faction of backbiters in the church that needs to be quelled, or your pastor is overwhelmed and needs some help, there’s something in your church that you can pray about, help with, or work on to help it move toward spiritual health. The church needs discerning, biblically knowledgeable, mature Christian women to step up and fight ungodliness whenever and wherever we’re able. Will you be a courageous laborer in the modern day Reformation?

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AMIR TSARFATI-

September 30, 2018

Behold Israel

God created peace and man rebelled and violated this peace, thus war has entered our history. Man ever since has been trying to achieve peace. But can he do it apart from God? What can the Bible tell us about the future? Will it be with peace or war? Amir identifies peace and war in a cycle of 4. Which will be the one God intended us to have? Amir gave this teaching at the Understanding the Times Conference.

Bible Bite: God Loves To Declare His Plans

The Apostle Paul gave us a wonderful reminder in the book of Romans that needs to be recognized today…

Romans 15:4

For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.

If we were to paraphrase Paul’s statement we could well say; the Old Testament (the things written before) was written for our learning, patience, comfort and hope. Yet sadly, many in the church today minimize or marginalize the Old Testament to some sort of secondary status even though it’s content is just as inspired as every word of the New Testament.

Today, some say only read the red letters, pointing to the Words of Jesus printed in red in many Bibles. There are two major problems with such thinking. The first is there were no red letters in the Greek manuscripts. The second is such statements deny the inspiration of the rest of the Bible and are an insult to the third member of the Triune Godhead, the Holy Spirit, who inspired all that is written in the Scriptures, including the New Testament.

Genesis 18:17-18

And the Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?”

It is the Lord’s desire to make His plans known to His people. Through the ages He has continually revealed what His will is for the present and what awaits us in the future. For some He revealed the near future, like with Abram and Sarai having a child. For others, and in some instances for all, He has revealed the distant future like with Daniel when he was told of things that would happen “many days from now.”

The point is this;

2 Peter 1:2-4

Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

In his opening greeting and remarks in his second epistle, Peter gives God’s will for us in the present, being partakers of the divine nature and by that living in godliness. Then he tells us of our future through the exceedingly great and precious promises of escaping the corruption that is in this lustful world. He prefaces these two things by stating that God’s divine power has given us “all things” that pertain to life and godliness.

That means we don’t need to try and create sensational things that aren’t found in Scripture in order to live or have a more fulfilling or exciting Christian life. God has given us all we need in order to live godly and He has told us all we need to know in order to live in anticipation of escaping this lustful world.

Daniel 12:4

“But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”

There are things in Scripture that will only be fully understood by the generation that sees them unfold. The Bible often refers to them as “mysteries”. That doesn’t mean that we will need a bible code to decipher them, it simply means the mysterious will become obvious in its time. For example, the church is referred to as a “mystery” in Ephesians 5:32 and it was hidden, or a mystery, in the Old Testament. But now God’s love and desire to save the Gentiles is no longer a mystery through the reality of the predominantly Gentile church. Babylon is called “mystery Babylon” in Revelation 17:5 and the fullness of the meaning is hidden from us and will only be completely understood when the events concerning mystery Babylon occur or are fulfilled.

Deuteronomy 29:29

“The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.”

With all the wonderful “secret things” God has revealed to His people through His word we need to recognize that there are still things that are known only to Him, such as the day and hour of Christ’s return. Yet the fact remains that through His divine power and the revelation of His word we have been given all the things we need to live a godly life in expectancy of His return. We are, however, fortunate to live in the time Daniel wrote of that was sealed to previous generations as we live in the “time of the end.” Therefore we don’t need to force anything in to any given text to make it more sensational nor do we need to search for secret or coded meanings of various prophetic passages.

Let the Bible speak for itself and let Scripture interpret Scripture recognizing the most reliable means of prophetic interpretation is fulfillment. Some things we don’t know and others we can and do know and the things we can and do know are sensational enough without forcing anything on to them for the sake of creating excitement or selling books.

Here is something sensational we know for sure yet “when” it happens remains a mystery and that is; Jesus is coming soon! And until He does, His divine power has given all things pertaining to life and godliness as we live in expectancy of His sensational return. Maranatha!

September 30, 2018

Our mailing address is:
Behold Israel
P.O. Box 689
Monument, CO 80132

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