July 22, 2022
The Cover Up / Personhood—What the Bible Reveals
On July 23, 2022, Frank Bruno will present the first split sermon, titled, “The Cover Up,” and Dave Harris will present the second split sermon, titled, “Personhood—What the Bible Reveals.”
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.
Loved and Kept
by Dave Harris
We regularly sing a hymn during Sabbath services which is based on wording found in Psalm 119. The title is, “O How Love I Thy Law!”
Unfortunately, that title doesn’t describe how most people feel about God’s laws. For the broad majority of nominal Christians, the law of God is neither loved nor kept. Rather, many forcefully (and sometimes viciously) proclaim that the law of God is “done away!”
Doing away with the law of God makes it literally impossible to be a Christian! Because Jesus kept the law of God, He never sinned and sin is the breaking of God’s laws (1 John 3:4; Authorized Version). If Jesus loved and kept the laws of God, then so must we:
“Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, ‘I know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked” (1 John 2:3-6).
It is ironic that religious types will often proselyte others asking them, “Brother, do you know the Lord?” The “Lord” they are promoting is certainly not the Son of God revealed in the Bible, because Jesus Himself said:
“‘Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven’” (Matthew 5:17-19).
The Worldwide English (New Testament) presents Matthew 5:17 this way:
“‘Do not think that I have come to take away the law and the writings of the prophets. No, I have not come to take them away. But I have come to do what they say must be done.’”
What Jesus is explaining is very plain, very simple! First, that He had come to keep the law of God without sinning (Hebrews 4:15); and, second, that He would fulfill all the prophecies about Himself (Luke 24:44).
Jesus loved and kept the law of God. It is exactly what Christians must also do:
“For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome” (1 John 5:3).
One reason people reject the law of God is that it is hard to keep—in fact, it is absolutely impossible on our own to obey God perfectly. Paul wrote of this, saying, “For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin” (Romans 7:14).
Still, we are commanded to love and keep the law of God. We can do so by turning to God in heartfelt sincerity, asking Him for His help in our lives to become converted, as Peter taught:
“Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit’” (Acts 2:38).
Very, very few people are responding to God in our generation. The world is descending ever more rapidly into inextricable chaos and only the very few will break free from the stranglehold Satan now exercises as “the god of this age” (2 Corinthians 4:4). Those who do will be those who have loved and kept the laws of God.
Does that describe us?
by Norbert Link
We begin with reporting on Joe Biden’s trip to the Middle East, covering his meetings with Israel’s current leader Lapid and Israel’s main opposition leader Netanyahu, Palestinian leader Abbas and Saudi Arabia’s de-facto leader Bin Salman. As the articles point out, Biden’s visits did not accomplish much, if anything, and were to an extent quite counter-productive, while the Biden Administration had miscalculated and hoped that his trip would bring him some desperately needed support even among deeply divided Democratic voters at home. However, Biden’s overall popularity in the USA has reached an unparalleled low point, and many Democrats hope that Biden will not run again in 2024. Still, the damage caused by Biden during his presidency—so far—and the resulting negative perspective of America’s weakness and irrelevance by its allies and enemies cannot be easily fixed.
We also speak of Biden’s “dead horses” and the bad politics by Mitch McConnell and the Republican Party; and worldwide “punishing heatwaves.” Please view our new StandingWatch program, titled, “America’s Armed Forces in Big Trouble” .
In other news, we address the resignation of Mario Draghi in Italy; Germany’s ignorant leadership and its role in running the EU (and that under an indecisive German president and an unruly German government coalition); Biden’s “disgraceful” anti-British comments; Britain’s chaos; the shocking biblical ignorance of the Church of England; the question as to whether Boris Johnson might make a comeback; and the shortsightedness and unbiblical man-made “wisdom” of Pope Francis.
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 vs. Netanyahu and Lapid
“The Times of Israel wrote on July 14:
“Opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu met briefly with Joe Biden in Jerusalem on Thursday and later said he told the US president that an offensive military option against Iran and a readiness to use it were necessary to confront the regime in Tehran… Sanctions and defensive military preparations were not enough to thwart Iran’s nuclear weapons program, he said. ‘I told him the [2105 JCPOA] deal is lousy. He knows my position… I told him that with no credible military option, Iran won’t be stopped. If Iran isn’t deterred, that military option has to be used.’… ‘That’s what I will do if and when I return to the Prime Minister’s Office,’ Netanyahu added…
“Netanyahu and Biden have had a long, friendly relationship, although they are often politically at odds…
“Prime Minister Yair Lapid, at the moment Netanyahu’s main political rival… issued a similar message on Iran during his meeting with Biden on Thursday… Lapid stressed to Biden that Iran will not agree to a stronger nuclear deal without a credible military threat…
“According to a report by Channel 12 news Thursday evening, Israeli officials have failed to convince US leaders to take a tougher approach toward Iran and increase the pressure on it at this time. Citing unnamed security sources, the report said this has created frustration in Jerusalem, as well as resolve to accelerate Israel’s own preparations to act if needed.”
And so, Israel will not be helped by America and may try to fight Iran alone. But it could well be that Israel would not win that military confrontation. The Bible indicates that Israel will receive an incurable “wound”—prior to the Great Tribulation. (Compare Hosea 5:13; note also the rendition in the New American Bible).
Biden Unable to Move the Needle on Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
JTA wrote on July 15:
“After meeting with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, U.S. President Joe Biden conceded that ‘the ground is not ripe at this moment’ to restart long-dormant peace negotiations between Israeli and Palestinian leaders [with the goal of creating two states]… Biden made the remarks at a Palestinian hospital in East Jerusalem on Friday on the last leg of his first trip to Israel as president. He announced $316 million in new aid measures [to the Palestinians]… in a move that contrasts sharply with the policy of his predecessor Donald Trump, who slashed most U.S. aid to the Palestinians…
“Biden left his meeting with Abbas without having moved the needle on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. High-level peace talks have not taken place since 2014, and a significant flank of Israeli politicians have moved away from supporting a two-state solution…”
Israel 365 wrote on July 20:
“Standing next to US President Joe Biden at their joint press conference, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas unblinkingly called to end ‘74 years of… occupation.’ In other words, Abbas called for the end of Israel, as Israel was established in 1948 – 74 years ago… Abbas added that the path to destroying Israel starts with creating a Palestinian state.”
Finally, the USA (Manasseh) and Great Britain (Ephraim)—even though divided among themselves—will align themselves against Israel (Judah); compare Isaiah 9:21.
Worse Than a Handshake
Mediaite published on July 15 the following headline:
“‘Worse Than a Handshake’: Washington Post SLAMS Biden for ‘Shameful’ Fist Bump with Saudi Crown Prince Who Ordered Its Columnist’s Murder… “
The article continued:
“Bin Salman ordered the 2018 murder of Post columnist and Saudi dissident Jamal Khashoggi… After the gesture between Biden and Bin Salman, Post publisher and CEO Fred Ryan ripped the president in a statement: ‘The fist bump between President Biden and Mohammed bin Salman was worse than a handshake – it was shameful. It projected a level of intimacy and comfort that delivers to MBS the unwarranted redemption he has been desperately seeking.’…
“Several U.S. presidents have visited the kingdom over the years. However, perhaps none had condemned the country as sharply as Biden did while campaigning for president. As a candidate, Biden said he was prepared to make Bin Salman and the Saudi regime ‘pay the price, and make them in fact the pariah that they are.’ Early in his presidency, Biden announced he was ending sales of ‘offensive weapons’ to Saudi Arabia. However, a $500 million military contract he signed off on last year involving attack helicopters appeared to contradict that pledge.
“In addition to Ryan’s remarks in the statement, Washington Post columnist and CNN political analyst Josh Rogin said on the network Friday that he agrees with Ryan and called it ‘an embarrassing moment for the United States, President Biden, and a concession to the propaganda victor of Mohammed bin Salman.’”
One is reminded of President Obama when he bowed before Arab leaders. Biden claims he brought up the murder to the Crown Prince who allegedly responded, according to Biden, that he was not responsible, to which Biden allegedly responded to, according to Biden, that he probably was. (However, all of this is doubtful; note articles below).
Biden’s Account Questioned
Reuters and The Algemeiner wrote on July 17:
“US President Joe Biden on Saturday differed with Saudi Arabia in their account of discussions at a bilateral summit about the 2018 murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a major point of contention between the two countries. Answering reporters as he arrived at the White House from his first Middle East trip as president, Biden disputed the Saudi foreign minister’s account that he did not hear Biden blame Mohammed bin Salman for the killing of the Washington Post columnist, a harsh critic of his native Saudi Arabia. Asked whether the minister of state for foreign affairs, Adel al-Jubeir, was telling the truth in recounting the exchange between Biden and the crown prince, the president said ‘No.’…
“A Saudi official who was present at the meeting said the exchange was not as President Biden described and discussion over Khashoggi occurred before the official meeting in ‘an informal way.’ The official said he did not hear the president telling the crown Prince that he held him responsible for Khashoggi’s killing.”
Minister of State for Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia Adel al-Jubeir had told Fox News’ Alex Hogan that Biden never addressed Khashoggi’s murder during the visit. The problem is, as it has been reported quite frequently and regularly, Biden has been lying, inventing stories or exaggerating on many occasions.
On his trip, Biden was begging Saudi-Arabia for oil, apparently unsuccessfully, which the USA is short of, due to Biden’s ill-conceived policies, while he is selling American oil to China. Even Adam Schiff, among other leading Democrats, criticized Biden for his trip to Saudi Arabia and his conduct there. The Democratic Party is divided, but almost unified in their criticism of Biden. Note the next article by a left-liberal publication.
Fox News wrote on July 21:
“Biden was visiting a former coal power plant in Somerset, Massachusetts, to discuss new executive orders to fight climate change. While discussing the harm caused by emissions from oil refineries, Biden referenced his childhood home in Delaware and said that he and many other people he grew up with now ‘have’ cancer.”
The White House later denied the claim and “clarified” that Biden has no cancer. Another fabricated story by Biden.
Biden Sick with Corona
“President Joe Biden tested positive for coronavirus on Thursday morning, the White House revealed, just hours after returning from a trip to Massachusetts. The White House said Biden, age 79, is only experiencing ‘very mild symptoms’ [with dry cough and fatigue] and is fully vaccinated and boosted with four shots of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine… The president will ‘continue to work in isolation until he tests negative’ the White House said.”
On Wednesday, Biden claimed in Ohio during a town hall meeting: “You’re not going to get COVID if you have these vaccinations.” This claim was obviously false. Even CNN’s post-event panel criticized Biden’s claim, with Anderson Cooper saying it was “just obviously not the case.”
Also, when Dr. Fauci who had been fully vaccinated tested positive for coronavirus, it was likewise claimed at first that his symptoms were minor, which turned out not to be true at all.
Biden’s Dangerous Vision for the Middle East
The Huffington Post wrote on July 15:
“Trump defended Mohammed bin Salman, but Biden’s approach – promising a new U.S.-Saudi relationship, then changing course – is even better for the prince. [He gave him] an aura of invulnerability. Biden traveled to Crown Prince Mohammed’s home turf, greeted him with a fist bump that immediately made global headlines and then sat down for a meeting with the crown prince that was structured to present him as the president’s equal, despite the White House’s past insistence that Biden would largely deal only with King Salman. Both men and their teams ignored a reporter who shouted out: ‘President Biden, is Saudi Arabia still a pariah?’
“Biden’s approach to the crown prince conveyed the sense of normality in U.S.-Saudi ties that he has sought since 2018, when he faced global outrage and unprecedented fury from Washington after Saudi agents murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi on a mission that he had ordered. Trump repeatedly defended the crown prince, but public pressure forced him to end some U.S. support for the Saudi military campaign in Yemen, and senators from both parties voted to condemn Crown Prince Mohammed. The embrace Friday sent a message of complete rehabilitation for the crown prince, known as MBS, precisely because it came from Biden.
“Biden and his allies, including nearly all top Democrats, spent years bashing Trump for resisting accountability for the Khashoggi murder and ignoring MBS’s other alarming behavior, such as kidnapping Lebanon’s prime minister and launching a vicious domestic crackdown. As a Democratic presidential candidate, Biden pledged ‘to insist on responsible Saudi actions and impose consequences for reckless ones.’ And once Biden entered office ― accompanied by Democratic majorities in both chambers of Congress ― the Saudis took him seriously enough to make concessions, partially releasing some dissidents and moving toward ending their brutal Yemen operation…
“Yet by last fall…, Biden seemed to have reached the limits of his willingness to challenge Riyadh and America’s historic policy of overlooking Saudi abuses. With his current trip, the president has clearly signaled that he is not seeking a major change….
“Biden may soon give in to more of his demands. A congressional source told HuffPost that the administration seems close to lifting its year-old ban on selling offensive weapons to the Saudis… Biden’s moves have spurred fear for the future and deep disappointment. Earlier in the week, Saudi activist Lina Alhathloul told a Capitol Hill audience that the U.S. was endorsing a dangerous vision of the Middle East. ‘This is not what stability looks like for me as a Saudi citizen. I don’t want a country that is governed by someone who tortures women, including my sister. Someone who cuts journalists into pieces. Someone who starts wars all over the region,’ she said… ‘It has been crushing for the activists in Saudi and Israel and Palestine who believed Biden. They feel completely abandoned,’ said Sarah Leah Whitson, the executive director of DAWN, a nonprofit that Khashoggi founded before his assassination…”
The Bible shows that ultimately Saudi-Arabia (Ishmael) will be part of a military confederacy with other Arab and Muslim nations (including Edom or Turkey) and with Assyria (modern Germany) against “Israel”—which could be a reference not just to the state of Israel or Judah, but also the modern House of Israel, including the USA and Great Britain (compare Psalm 83:1-8). Note the next article as well.
Biden’s Major Miscalculation
The Guardian wrote on July 17:
“For all the careful choreography of Joe Biden’s Middle East tour, the White House made a major miscalculation when the president finally came face to face with Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman, for the first time…. [Saudi Arabia] has important relationships with China and Russia… Those countries sell weapons, and have influence on Iran that the US doesn’t have….
“Saudi Arabia is home to the second largest proven oil reserves in the world, and is the producer with the biggest influence on its price, but Biden went home on Saturday without being able to make any major announcements on increasing global oil supply. ..
“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has widened emerging cracks in the US relationship with the Gulf monarchies, who no longer view Washington as a reliable bulwark against Tehran… Despite the rhetoric about maintaining ‘active, principled, American leadership’, the chess pieces of the Middle East are moving, and the US is ready to quit…”
America is no longer a country which allies or enemies consider seriously.
Too Many Dead Horses?
The American Conservative wrote on July 18:
“Gaius Julius Caesar Germanicus, known to history as Caligula, ruled as the Emperor of Rome from A.D. 37 to 41… Caligula, the great grandson of Rome’s first emperor… Augustus Caesar, squandered the enormous wealth of the Roman State, declared himself to be a god, appointed his favorite racehorse to serve in the Roman Senate, and according to some sources, considered deifying the animal…
“Biden’s… deified horse, NATO, is on life support… The problem for NATO is, the economic hardship wrought by Biden’s sanctions against Moscow are threatening Europe with economic Armageddon. It’s bad enough when European bond and stock futures plunge and the euro dips below parity with the U.S. dollar, but when Paris, the city of light, shuts off its famous night lights to save energy, things are truly horrific.
“Germany, the E.U.’s largest economy and NATO’s keystone state, is struggling… Every NATO member state realizes that the longer the conflict [between Russia and Ukraine lasts], the more likely the fighting will escalate and spill into NATO’s East European member states… Europeans see that a collision with Russian military power is a distinct possibility…
“The withdrawal [of] U.S. forces from Afghanistan was long overdue, but the timing and the method of withdrawal demonstrated that the U.S. armed forces are not just poorly commanded, the planning and execution of the withdrawal from Kabul was disastrous. To suggest that the U.S. military left a very dead horse on the tarmac in Kabul is an understatement.
“The Ukrainians trained, equipped, and enabled by NATO in key areas like intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance fought well, but they could not withstand the firepower and determination of a Russian Force that has endured 150 days of continuous combat in an area roughly the size of the United States between St. Louis, Missouri, and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania…
“… it is vital to understand that all is not well inside the U.S. armed forces. The Biden Pentagon has created a system of intolerance that rewards unquestioning compliance with the Left’s policies and actively punishes dissent and divergence from the left’s prescribed behavior. Put another way, the lives of Americans in uniform are controlled by ideologically driven bureaucrats… The Biden administration has chosen the American military establishment as their instrument of social change, or as a new dead horse awaiting deification.
“It is an undisguised plan to eliminate any semblance of a colorblind military meritocracy in favor of elevating persons of color and women to dominate the senior ranks… There are good reasons to expect more white men to leave the armed services…
“No one in Washington, D.C., ever complained of too many white soldiers (95 percent of whom were cultural, if not religious, Christians) during the Civil War, on the battlefields of the First World War, on the beaches at Normandy and Okinawa, or in the deserts of Iraq. No one complained of too many white men in the skies over Midway, Vietnam, Afghanistan, or Iraq.
“Biden’s policies are fraught with danger. The basic requirements of warfare do not change to accommodate woke ideology. Officers must cultivate discipline, morale, and esprit, and the officers must themselves be first class soldiers, sailors, airmen, or Marines of proven character, competence, and intelligence. If Americans in uniform see evidence for racially biased policies, quotas and preferences, America’s best will not enlist. And that is arguably already happening.
“Americans and Europeans are becoming impatient with their timid and incapable political leaders…”
A frightening consequence of these developments is described in Ezekiel 7:14 (“… no one goes to battle”).
The Bad Politics and Leadership of Mitch McConnell and the Republican Party
Blaze News wrote on July 19:
“‘Bidenflation’ existed before he staggered into office on January 20, 2021. It was catalyzed when nearly every Republican supported the worst piece of legislation in American history on March 25, 2020, which set off a cascade of several other pieces of legislation underwriting, incentivizing, and consummating COVID lockdowns. The chief cheerleader of the bill at the time was none other than Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the man whom Republicans are pining to see become floor leader once again next year to solve the inflation crisis…
“… the bulk of the unfathomable levels of spending came from the worst legislation in American history: the $2.2 trillion COVID lockdown/Big Pharma bill that (McConnell) ardently pushed for in March 2020, which at the time, represented half of the entire federal budget! That bill led to a cascading effect of unconscionable spending and tyranny that, between Congress and the Federal Reserve, unleashed more than $10 trillion on the economy.
“At the time, McConnell praised it as ‘a wartime level of investment into our nation.’ ‘The men and women of the greatest country on Earth are going to defeat this coronavirus and reclaim our future,’ said Majority Leader Mitch McConnell when announcing the deal that morning…
“Except, it wasn’t a wartime investment in production, it was an investment in lockdown, paying people not to work, imposing tyranny, and inducing a vicious cycle of Big Pharma failure that perpetuated both the pandemic and the economic misery… Never was there a time in history when Congress voted to spend so much money to simultaneously shut down production and make goods scarce while lining the pockets of individuals and corporations with endless cash…
“Because of the terrible COVID policies Republicans still refuse to acknowledge, the federal reserve went on such a bond buying spree that it literally increased the money supply by 40%… What’s worse, these same Republicans then immediately jumped on the bandwagon of the ‘next current thing’ by criticizing Biden for not giving enough money to Ukraine. It wasn’t just the over $50 billion we sent there without an understanding of the outcome we hoped to achieve, but it perpetuated a war and sanctions that are crushing supply chains, which further exacerbates the inflation…
“Obviously, Biden has done things on the regulatory side and through exacerbating the war on fossil fuels that aggravated this crisis, particularly as it relates to energy. But the foundation for this crisis was set in stone with the bills shepherded by McConnell when he was in the majority. And that date was not January 2021, but March 2020, when Republicans controlled two of the three branches. Since March 2020, the gross debt has increased by over $7 trillion. It took from George Washington’s day to the first half of 2004 to accrue our first $7 trillion in debt.
“Which brings us back to the GOP senators and congressmen… At least in 2010 during the Tea Party era, they claimed to oppose spending and then betrayed their promise. Today, they are not even acknowledging the issue of our time that caused the inflation. As such, how are we to believe anything would change…?”
Sadly, the downfall of the USA—first caused by bad domestic politics, and then by foreign enemies—is inevitable. Nothing and no one will change this. In describing mainly the USA, Isaiah 1:6 states: “From the sole of your foot even to the head, There is no soundness in it, but wounds and bruises and putrefying sores; they have not been closed or bound up, Or soothed with ointment.”
AFP wrote on July 18:
“… nearly half of the EU’s territory is currently at risk of drought, as southwest Europe wilted under a punishing heatwave…. Italy was the hardest hit, with the Po River basin in the north of the country facing the highest level possible of drought severity… In Spain, water reservoir volumes are currently 31 percent lower than the 10-year average… while in Portugal, water to produce hydroelectric energy is at half the average of the previous seven years.
“The EU researchers also warned that the lack of water and strong heat are driving crop yields lower in France, Romania, Spain, Portugal, and Italy. Weather forecasts predict more of the same, the report said, adding to an already ‘very critical situation’ that will exacerbate the effects on agriculture, energy, and water supply.”
AS wrote on July 19:
“Around forty-million people in the United States are under heat advisory as the country grapples with a severe heat wave. More than 115 excessive heat warnings and heat advisories have been released… which will be active through the end of this week. An excessive heat warning kicks in when temperatures are expected to hit more than 105 degrees F…. Temperatures could hit as high as 115 degrees in some parts of the country.”
Europe, as well as the USA and Great Britain [see article below]—all being plagued by devastating heatwaves—are receiving a warning of impending punishment (compare Isaiah 30:26). But sadly, they do not recognize it.
Italy’s Draghi resigns
The Associated Press wrote on July 21:
“Italian premier Mario Draghi resigned Thursday after key coalition allies boycotted a confidence vote, signalling the likelihood of an early election and a renewed period of uncertainty for Italy and Europe at a critical time…
“Italian newspapers on Thursday were united in their outrage at the surreal outcome, given Italy is dealing with soaring inflation and energy costs, Russia’s war against Ukraine, and outstanding reforms needed to clinch the remainder of the EU’s 200 billion euros in recovery funds. ‘Shame,’ headlined La Stampa on the front page. ‘Italy Betrayed,’ said La Repubblica. ‘Farewell to Draghi’s Government,’ said Corriere della Sera.”
Deutsche Welle wrote:
“Draghi’s resignation couldn’t come at a worse time for Italy. A change of government in Italy is part of the folklore. But Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s resignation is hugely damaging for the country as it struggles with one of its biggest crises in decades… if Italy goes bankrupt and the euro comes under pressure, the European Union will teeter. Italy is too big to fail, too important to fail.”
Italy has been stumbling from one governmental crisis to the next… until a charismatic leader will appear whom Italy will give their power.
Germany’s Ignorant Leadership
Breitbart wrote on July 19:
“Germany’s ostensibly liberal Free Democratic Party (FDP), a globalist, pro-business member of Germany’s ruling coalition government, has said that it wants to see forced masking brought back this winter to help fight the flu. The country has already confirmed that it aims to return country-wide forced mask-wearing measures to Germany this winter, likely between October and Easter next year ostensibly in the hopes of keeping COVID-19 case numbers low.
“However, according to a report by Die Welt, some in government appear to have other motives, with the head of the FDP within the German parliament saying that the measures should be brought back to fight off the flu…. FDP bigwig Christian… Dürr’s statement follows confirmation from authorities within the so-called ‘traffic light coalition’ that a mask mandate will soon be returning to Germany, with the country’s lockdown-loving health minister, Karl Lauterbach, previously comparing mask mandates to laws requiring drivers to use winter tires during one half of the year. ‘The effectiveness of masks for individuals indoors is undisputed’, government minister Marco Buschmann claimed in an interview, continuing. ‘That is why some form of wearing masks indoors will certainly play a role in our concept.’”
To say that the “effectiveness” of masks is “undisputed” is beyond belief. The ignorance of politicians and scientists like Lauterbach, Dürr and Buschmann is frightening. Also, LifeSiteNews wrote on July 20:
“D.C. schools have a new mandate requiring all students 12 and up to receive the experimental COVID-19 vaccine before returning to school this fall.
“According to the mandate, all students 12 and up, unless exempted, must have received a series of COVID-19 shots or begun the process of vaccination before the start of the school year. The press release does not provide information on what kind of exemptions will be considered.
“The mandate is part of the implementation of a COVID-19 vaccination law passed in D.C. last year. The law required all eligible teachers and students to receive the experimental vaccines.
“On July 8, the FDA fully approved the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for children 12 to 15 years old, despite evidence showing the vaccine is more dangerous to children than the virus.
“Similarly, the Centers for Disease Control Prevention (CDC) recently approved the experimental shots for children as young as six months old.
“Meanwhile, a study from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine found a “mortality rate of zero among children without a pre-existing medical condition such as leukemia,” leading numerous experts to conclude that the benefits of injecting children against COVID-19 do not outweigh the risks.”
The EU Run by Germany?
Counterpunch wrote on July 15:
“The European Union is run on a day-to-day basis by Germany for German interests… The clueless Olaf Scholz has promised to up the German military budget and arsenal. Scholz follows in the footsteps of the equally clueless and dangerous Ursula von der Leyen when German Defense Minister… The European project a vehicle for peace? The proposition is ludicrous…”
The idea is, the clueless Germans are leading without realizing that they are being used… Imagine what will happen when the current weak and inconsequential German coalition will be replaced by powerful and decisive leaders.
Biden’s “Disgraceful” Anti-British Comments
Express wrote on July 17:
“… during a speech at Jerusalem, [Biden] said: ‘The background of my family is Irish American. And we have a long history not fundamentally unlike the Palestinian people, with Great Britain and their attitude toward Irish Catholics over the years for 400 years.’… Margaret Thatcher’s former aide Nile Gardiner lambasted the US President and said: ‘Disgraceful anti British comments from Joe Biden. A reminder why this clueless US President is no friend of Great Britain.’
“His comment did not go down well on social media as well as many Twitter users criticised the President for his statement…
“This is not the first time that the US President has put his foot in his mouth. On Tuesday, he got embroiled in teleprompter trouble after he mistakenly read out the instructions: ‘End of quote. Repeat the line’ and on Wednesday he said he wants to keep ‘alive the honor of the Holocaust.’”
He then corrected himself saying “horror” of the Holocaust, as the line had been written for him. On Saturday, he also spoke of the “selfishness” of the American troops, but then correcting himself as well by using the word “selflessness.” In spite of the recognition of Biden’s frailty and a certain lack of cognitive functions, the fact remains that America’s prestige is suffering in the world as never before—and that the confidence in America’s reliability and friendship is being questioned as well.
Britain in Chaos
Gulf News wrote on July 16:
“After strikes, transport disruption, soaring inflation, a jump in COVID-19 infections and even the resignation of its prime minister, now the sweltering summer is about to add to the havoc in the UK. The Met Office issued its most severe warning for next week, with temperatures set to rise above 35 degrees Celsius (95 Fahrenheit) in parts of England, including London, and might hit national records exceeding 40 degrees. The red alert… was triggered for the first time…
“It all adds to the chaos in a nation that’s grappling with messy politics and a wilting economy… Searing temperatures across Europe have crippled agriculture in France, forced Spain to cut water supply in some regions and triggered a state of emergency in parts of Italy. But while more drastic this year, increasingly hot summers aren’t as unusual as they are in Britain. Greece, for example, regularly experiences deadly wildfires… The heat is set to put added strain on a UK energy system that’s already under pressure from soaring natural gas prices… the high-pressure system that’s bringing the heat also creates low winds that sap Britain of one of its biggest sources of cheap energy…
“Britain already faces a summer of train chaos, with several labor unions planning July walkouts over pay and conditions after travel across the country was previously halted in June… The health system is already under pressure with a huge backlog of patients awaiting treatment that was delayed during the pandemic lockdowns. Staff shortages are also pushing up wait times in accident and emergency wards while ambulance response times have also gotten significantly worse….”
Great Britain does not seem to be blessed at all by Almighty God. The same is true for the USA. All of this has been prophesied, due to the grave sins of both nations. And it will get MUCH WORSE. (Compare Leviticus 26:14-39 and Deuteronomy 28:15-68).
Could Boris Johnson Make a Comeback?
Express wrote on July 20:
“BORIS Johnson today had one final curtain call as Prime Minister as he ‘probably, certainly’ faced MPs in PMQs for a last time. But with thousands of Tory members demanding he stays on, is there a scenario in which the great survivor can make a comeback?
“Few Prime Ministers have been hounded out of office in quite the same way as Mr Johnson in what has been a relentless campaign since 2016 initially driven by Remainers and many in the broadcast media to portray him as a liar and buffoon. But as the leadership contest to replace him [h]as unfurled, the increasing feeling among some Tory MPs and many party members is that they have made a catastrophic mistake ejecting a man with a mandate from 14 million people.
“Picture the scenario in two years’ time. Britain continues to be mired in an economic crisis with high inflation, strikes by train drivers, doctors, teachers, nurses and more have brought the country to its knees. The cost of living crisis is out of control with thousands of households choosing between heating their homes and buying food. Extreme climate change protesters continue to cause chaos and the Government is still unable to stop illegal migrants crossing the Channel in small boats by the thousands each day. Meanwhile the war in Ukraine is dragging on and not going well, the fragile international alliance has fragmented and fractured…
“It is not beyond the bounds of possibility that he could stand for a third seat and win again particularly if there is a groundswell of support for him to lead again… If you think this sounds farfetched, it probably is… But the rules of what is normal do not apply to a small number of highly charismatic politicians. That was true of Churchill, and it is certainly true of Boris Johnson. A comeback can never be ruled out and a divided Conservative Party with no clear consensus leader or outstanding figure may be desperate for it to happen. Certainly, the petition calling for a vote on him by members is just the start.”
Church of England Cannot Define “Woman”
IFN News wrote on July 12:
“You would expect the English to be able to define a simple English word because they are English, right? Unfortunately, this logic does not apply to the English leaders of the Church of England. According to GB News, when asked the question ‘What is the Church of England’s definition of a woman?’ at a General Synod of the Church, senior bishop Robert Innes stated: ‘There is no official definition, which reflects the fact that until fairly recently definitions of this kind were thought to be self-evident, as reflected in the marriage liturgy. The Living in Love and Faith (LLF) project however has begun to explore the marriage complexities associated with gender identity and points to the need for additional care and thought to be given in understanding our commonalities and differences as people made in the image of God.’
“This lack of an answer is particularly troublesome because the first chapter of the first book of the Bible states: ‘So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.’ And since that time at the dawn of history, people have been able to define what a woman is: ‘an adult human female,’ as Matt Walsh so simply put it in his recent documentary ‘What is a woman?’ People have also been able to differentiate women from men. For example, women are able to bear and nurse children while men are generally faster, bigger and stronger than women; indeed, scientists have found that there are over 6,000 genetic differences between men and women. And one of the first things people do when they see another person is to determine whether that person is female or male. Even babies are able to do this.
“Yet what even babies can do the Church of England cannot. Indeed, the venerable Church of England cannot define what a woman is… If there ever was a case of George Orwell’s doublethink, this is it…”
The ignorance of our religious “leaders” is mind-boggling. Compare our recent Q&A, titled, “What is the definition of a woman?”
The “Wisdom” of Pope Francis
Merco Press wrote on July 14:
“Pope Francis, who comes from Argentina, known for its beef production and consumption, said that in some parts of the world, it would be a good idea to ‘consume less meat’ to help save the environment… Even though there have been several leading voices in support of a reduction in meat consumption, this is the first time the Argentine pontiff has made such proposal… Argentines are among the world’s largest consumers of meat, together with neighboring Uruguay, Australia and United States.
“Francis also said it is ‘legitimate to rebel’ when a ‘few powerful people’ decide to send them to ‘fight and die’ in a war. He defined the fighting in Ukraine as ‘senseless,’ and argued that if younger generations governed today, there wouldn’t be as many global conflicts…
“The pope also referred to a better world if ruled by women, ‘because those who have the mission of giving life cannot make death choices’ – the same would be true if the rulers were young people, because they wouldn’t want the future awaiting them to be thrown away.”
What incredible nonsense. Women are making death choices by the millions when they decide to abort their unborn children. Also, Scripture tells us that many problems exist or will exist because women and children are or will be ruling the nations (cp. Isaiah 3:4, 12).
The Bible says that the wisdom of men is foolishness with God (compare 1 Corinthians 1:20).
Acknowledgement and Disclaimer
These Current Events are compiled and commented on by Norbert Link. We gratefully acknowledge the many contributions of news articles from our readership. The publication of articles in this section is not to be viewed as an endorsement or approval as to contents or accuracy of the selected articles, but they are published for the purpose of pointing at worldwide developments in the light of biblical end-time prophecy and godly instruction. Our own comments are provided in italics.
Could you please explain what Antinomianism is? (Part 2)
In the first part of this series, we discussed that antinomian is one who takes the principle of “salvation by faith and divine grace” to the point of asserting that the saved are not bound to follow the moral law contained in the Ten Commandments. As mentioned, the Bible refers to the Ten Commandments as the “spiritual law,” not the “moral law.” In this second part of this series, we will look at additional arguments put forward by those who fall into this category.
From the “Banner of Truth” website, the author gives further information about others who have their own say, in their own way. He states: “In order to have as clear a view as we can of the present confusion, it is important to let some of the leading contributors to it be ‘heard’ in their own words.” Below are these together with our observations.
Statements of some of the leading contributors:
“John Reisinger… is one of the major exponents of New Covenant Theology. One of the chapter headings in his book Tablets of Stone is this: ‘The Tablets of Stone, or Ten Commandments, as a Covenant Document, Had a Historical Beginning and a Historical End’. He writes: ‘The Bible always considers the Tablets of Stone [i.e., ten commandments] as the specific covenant document that established the nation of Israel as a body politic at Mount Sinai’. ‘The Scripture nowhere states or infers that we are to think of the Tablets of Stone as “God’s eternal unchanging moral law”. We are always to think “Old Covenant.”’”
The author confuses the “tablets of stone” with the “old covenant.” As we explain in our free booklet, “And Lawlessness Will Abound,” and in our recent 7-part series of Q&As on the topic of covenants, the Law of the Ten Commandments and the “old covenant” (whatever covenant is described or identified as the “old covenant”) are by no means identical. We also explain in our booklet:
“… a covenant is something altogether different from the law. A covenant is based on law–it does not bring law into existence. And when a covenant ceases to be in force, that has absolutely no influence on the validity or invalidity of the law, on which the covenant was based. A covenant is simply an agreement, and the parties can decide that the agreement is no longer valid. Unless the lawgiver revokes the law on which the covenant is based, the law continues to be in effect.”
Let us briefly review our Q&A entitled “Would you please explain the two covenants, as mentioned in Galatians 4:21-31? Doesn’t this passage teach that the Old Covenant with all of its Old Testament laws was abolished and is no longer in force and effect?”:
“In order to fully comprehend what Paul is referring to with his symbolism or allegory (compare Galatians 4:24), we must carefully review the context. We should note, first of all, to whom Paul is writing. The letter is addressed to ‘the Galatians’ — non-Jewish peoples who had come to the faith. These peoples never were part of the Old Testament relationship between God and the ancient nation of Israel. They were never part of the Old Covenant. IF Paul had in mind to address the so-called ‘Old’ and ‘New’ Covenants in Galatians 4, then his concluding statement in Galatians 5:1 would make little sense. There, he says: ‘Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled AGAIN with a yoke of bondage.’
“Most commentaries say that Paul used his allegory to show that the Old Testament laws were abolished. They reason that Christ came to set us free from the ‘bondage’ of the Old Testament law. However, as we prove in our booklet, “And Lawlessness Will Abound,” Christ did not do anything of the kind. He did NOT come to do away with the Ten Commandments, and the statutes and judgments which define the Ten Commandments even further. Paul taught the Gentiles to keep the Sabbath. He taught them to follow him, as he followed Christ, and Paul kept the Sabbath, as did Christ. Paul taught the Gentiles on the Sabbath. Paul could not possibly have told the Galatians that they were no longer under the ‘bondage’ of the Old Testament law, when he told them not to be entangled AGAIN with a yoke of bondage. Whatever that yoke of bondage is, it is something the Galatians were entangled with before— and they were never ‘entangled’ with the Old Testament laws and covenants.
“Even IF Paul had in mind the abolition of the Old Covenant, that still would not mean that he was also stating that God’s law was no longer in force.”
In Jeremiah 31:31-34, we read: “Behold, the days are coming,’ says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah— not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the Lord. But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the Lord. For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.”
Richard C. Barcellos (“In Defense of the Decalogue”) explains this Scripture in this way: “The law under the new covenant is God’s law… This promised blessing of the new covenant of the law written on the heart is to be enjoyed by the whole new covenant community… God is both the author of the law itself and the one who writes it on the heart.” He concludes: “The text of Jeremiah clearly assumes that the law of God under the new covenant is referring to a law that was already written at the time of writing of Jeremiah… Jeremiah clearly teaches that the law of God under the new covenant is a law that was written on stone by God and that will be written on hearts by God’. In other words: identical law. The law was first written upon tables of stone, whereas the great work of the Holy Spirit is to write it upon the table of the heart.”
Another writer trying to dismiss and reject God’s Law is Michael Eaton. He states:
“Christians are in no way under this tyrannical figure, the law” (Westminster Record). “If you walk in the Spirit deliberately you will fulfil the Mosaic law accidentally” (How to Live a Godly Life).
OUR RESPONSE – This is such a ridiculous assertion that the law is a tyrannical figure. Merriam Webster Dictionary’s definition of tyrannical is: “…being or characteristic of a tyrant or tyranny: DESPOTIC” How can the Law of God fit into such a description? Romans 7:12 gives the opposite description: “Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good.”
Continuing with another proponent of antinomianism is R T Kendall who wrote: “The moral law is not the Christian’s code of conduct, for true godliness is never to be achieved by being under the moral law. It will make you a legalist – long-faced, grouchy, without joy or peace” (sermon preached at Westminster Chapel). He claims that the Law of Christ is “a much higher law than the moral law, far more demanding. It presents a far greater challenge than the moral law, which is really the easy way out. It’s just so easy to keep the moral law and hate the Law of Christ” (Westminster Record).
How can the Law of Christ be more demanding than The Ten Commandments? Such theologians do not understand that the God of the Old Testament was the Logos who became Jesus Christ. It was He who gave the Ten Commandments and He mentioned them as the commandments to be kept when He answered questions when He was here on earth – please review Matthew 19:16-19; 22:37-40; Mark 10:17-19; Luke 18:18-20.
It is significant that those who hate the Law of God try to undermine those who do love God’s Law and keep it as King David did: “Oh, how I love Your law! It is my meditation all the day” (Psalm 119:97). Such people are derided and can be called long-faced, grouchy, without joy or peace. It is a way of undermining the Truth and those who adhere to God’s clear instructions.
Another writer who rejects God’s Law is Gerald Coates, who wrote: “When the believer properly fulfils the royal law of love for God and neighbour, he renders the law obsolete” (What on Earth is this Kingdom).
This is such a ridiculous and at the same incongruent and contradictory argument. The law is not obsolete (see Mathew 5:17-19). Verse 18 of this passage is particularly significant: “For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.”
Mr Coates, like so many, talks in riddles. As we have said, love for God and love for fellow man is enshrined in the Ten Commandments. They are one and the same but some refuse to acknowledge this.
Peter Meney is the editor of New Focus. He strenuously refutes any accusation of antinomianism, in the light of some editions of the magazine having “questioned the emphasis in some quarters on the ten commandments and their role in the life of a believer”. He writes: “… despite rumours to the contrary we regard the law of God to be holy, just and good.” He urges “that Christians are not duty bound to the ten commandments” but that “it does not follow that there are no objective laws, or rules for Christian living. There are. For these we enlist all of Scripture as our final authority and inerrant guide, interpreted and displayed in the life and teaching of our precious Lord Jesus and his apostles… We believe in the unconditional acceptance of a sinner with God on the sole basis of Jesus Christ’s blood and righteousness without reference to works and acts of obedience on the part of the believer. We believe that this assurance, personally received, is the only effective motive for holy living.”
Even though Peter Meney refutes the “accusation” that he is a proponent of antinomianism, his statements quoted above prove that he is. These are duplicitous and contradictory remarks. He refutes any accusation of antinomianism but says that Christians are not duty bound to the Ten Commandments. He follows this up by saying, “it does not follow that there are no objective laws, or rules for Christian living.” This is ridiculous. He further asserts: “We believe in the unconditional acceptance of a sinner with God on the sole basis of Jesus Christ’s blood and righteousness without reference to works and acts of obedience on the part of the believer.” Perhaps he ought to look at Acts 2:38 which reads: “Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.’” Repentance is required, and that is an act of obedience in itself. We then have to live a life of keeping the Commandments, as Jesus, Himself, taught.
Don Fortner is the last example in this instalment of a person who is antagonistic to the Law of God and a proponent of antinomianism and the “New Covenant Theology.” He argues as follows:
“Those who tell us that believers are under the law as a rule of life have a hard time proving their position from the New Testament. This is because every statement about the believer and the law in the entire New Testament asserts exactly what Paul says in Romans 6:14 – ‘ye are not under the law’!…
“If you are a believer, if you trust Christ, you are not under the law for justification, for sanctification, for holiness, or for any other reason. This is the teaching of the New Testament. It is simply wrong for Christian ministers and teachers to bind believers to the law as a rule of life and conduct….
“The believer’s rule of life is not one section of Scripture but the whole revealed will of God in holy Scripture” (the New Focus website).
“The law of God is holy and just and good. But it becomes a very great evil when it is perverted and used for something other than its divine purpose… The law of God has but one singular purpose. It exposes man’s guilt before God, shutting him up to faith in Christ alone for salvation… To use the law for any other purpose is to pervert and abuse the law… When true love reigns in the heart there is no need for law.
“Not only is it unwise, it is a sinful practice, contrary to the faith of the gospel, for a believer to make the law a basis for his life before God” (Grace for Today).
The remarks by Don Fortner show a terrible ignorance and misunderstanding of the biblical teaching as to what it means that we are no longer “under the law.” We have this to say in our free booklet, “And Lawlessness Will Abound,” on page 18:
“… Others quote Romans 6:14, stating that we are no longer ‘under law but under grace,’ saying this means we don’t have to obey the law anymore. However, the correct meaning of this passage is that when we violate the law, we are no longer under the curse of the law—the death penalty—as the blood of Christ, given to us by grace, has covered and forgiven our sins—has paid the death penalty that we earned. Paul explains in the very next verse (verse 15), that this does not mean that we can now continue to sin—that is, to break God’s law. Rather, we are now to be ‘slaves of righteousness’ (verse 18), in keeping God’s law.”
Mr Fortner comes to an unbelievable conclusion when he writes: “Not only is it unwise, it is a sinful practice, contrary to the faith of the gospel, for a believer to make the law a basis for his life before God.” He ignores, either on purpose or because he simply doesn’t understand the many Scriptures that show that a believer has to keep the Law and that Jesus, the founder of Christianity, preached this obedience message too. For an in-depth discussion of this vital and salvational question, please read our free booklet, “God’s Law… or God’s Grace?”
Christ will reject those at His return who claim that they practiced “Christianity,” but instead practiced “lawlessness” (Matthew 7:23). The Amplified Bible writes: “.. depart from Me, you who act wickedly—disregarding My commands.” The revidierte Lutherbibel 2017 says: “… depart from Me who transgress the law.” And John adds in 1 John 2:4: “He who says, ‘I know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.”
(To be continued)
Lead Writer: Brian Gale (United Kingdom)
Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock
compiled by Dave Harris
“America’s Armed Forces in Big Trouble,” is the title of a new StandingWatch program, presented by Evangelist Norbert Link. Here is a summary:
Pope Francis said that when women and young people governed today, there would not be as many global conflicts. But is this true in the eyes of God? And how serious is the situation inside the US armed forces, in part due to the attempt to accommodate the woke ideology? What prophesied consequences will that development have for the US military and the entire country?
“Franziskus und Gauck gegen die Bibel?” is the title of a new AufPostenStehen program, presented by Norbert Link. This program covers a similar topic as the StandingWatch program described above.
“Gefalle ich Gott?” the sermonette presented last Sabbath in Germany by Johann Schell, is now posted. Title in English: “Am I Pleasing to God?”
“What Do You Say To God?” the sermonette presented last Sabbath by Dave Harris, is now posted. Here is a summary:
We are taught to hallow God—especially when we pray. Recognizing God as Creator of all things will help us praise and glorify God when we speak to Him.
“Incremental Growth,” the sermon presented last Sabbath by Rene Messier, is now posted. Here is a summary:
This message reviews the characteristics of God and explains why it is important to implement them in our lives for spiritual growth in knowledge and understanding.
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