Tables Turn as Bibles Burn

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Good folks all over the place are so tired of being told that what’s been going on in cities like Portland and Seattle are peaceful protests.

Instead of trying to understand the wobbly language that’s being bandied about, the better route is to take a long hard look at what’s actually happening.

For more than two months street thugs armed with rifles, lasers, bombs, flame throwers, swords, spears, and an assorted array of sick weaponry have terrorized to the hilt average everyday people.

Meanwhile Democratic Party hacks and their media toadies give attaboys to the perpetrators. They insist that there’s no violence going on anywhere. They while away their leisure lockdown hours plotting ways in which they can torment their political enemies. And cruelest of all, they turn a deaf ear to folks who cry in the dark for help that never comes.

Here’s a little animal tale to ponder.

Early in June while on a walk through the park some Portland police came across a pig that had fallen asleep on the ground. The officers took to Twitter to see if the pig’s owner could be located. A photo of the little guy was displayed on the official police page along with a phone number and message that encouraged a happy reunion.

The presence of the animal in the park would be an eerie foreshadowing of something insidious that would take place about a month and a half later.

Last week rioters sent yet another symbolic message of the appalling kind. They set a pig’s head on fire. Atop the animal’s head was a police hat. An American flag completed the smoldering scene.

As if an incinerated pig’s head in police attire and a torched American flag didn’t assault the psyche enough, footage of another ugly event was posted on the internet. It showed participants, who were wielding Black Lives Matter signs and being cheered on by bystanders, happily hurling stacks of Bibles onto a blazing bonfire.

Providentially, Twitter user Ian Miles Cheong would catch the whole thing on tape.

Burning books is very much a specialty of fascists. The Nazis did it in the 1930s. But burning the Holy Bible? Even in fallen away corners this is not going to sit well.

Guess it should have been apparent though, considering the recent comments made by BLM activist Shaun King, who used a series of Twitter posts to urge the destruction of images and statues of Jesus Christ, his Blessed Mother Mary, and other figures from scripture.

“Yes I think the statues of the white European they claim is Jesus should also come down. They are a form of white supremacy,” King tweeted.

King also posted that “white Jesus is a lie” and is a “tool of white supremacy,” which in King’s words was created to help white people use Christianity as a “tool of oppression.”

King then wrote that all of the Christian imagery should be taken down, including “murals and stained glass windows of white Jesus, and his European mother, and their white friends.”

It was inevitable, being the Marxist-based global organizations they are, that BLM, Antifa, and like-minded radicals would attempt to defile, denigrate, and destroy the biblical message and its mystical messengers. After all, Judeo-Christian scriptures hold within them the very ideas upon which America in particular, and the whole of Western civilization in general, are built.

The Bible has often been viewed by the left with contempt, and for good reason. A government based on the Rule of Law, which sprang forth from laws transcribed by Moses and enshrined in the Ten Commandments, frequently prompts negative reactions on the part of those who are threatened by absolutes.

Donald Trump Jr. used his Twitter account to comment on the recent Bible burning.

“Now we move to the book burning phase. I’m pretty sure ANTIFA doesn’t actually stand for what they say it stands for. Maybe just remove the anti part of [its] name and it’s perfect,” Trump Jr. posted.

Organizations lurking behind the aforementioned street thugs are hell-bent on destruction.

Like all of the committed Marxists before them, the “utopian” world they seek can only exist when freedom dies.

The Bible is Truth. Truth will set you free. Freedom is forever.

The Roots of the Riots

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A peculiar phrase recently became a trending topic on Twitter. Its words read as follows: “Attack and Dethrone God.”

These same words were displayed on a graphic during a segment that had previously aired on Fox News Channel’s “The Ingraham Angle.”

Language contained in the graphic was intended to be a backdrop for a guest of host Laura Ingraham named Terrie Turchie, a former deputy assistant director of the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division.

Turchie was discussing ideas that had once been fostered by a violence-based group from our nation’s past, the Weather Underground.

In his appearance, Turchie drew parallels between the recent rioting and mayhem that plagued urban areas across America and the insidious activities in which the notorious 1960s group had engaged.

As Turchie noted, in the wake of its efforts the Weather Underground had left an intriguing package behind, which took the form of a book-length manifesto.

If all went according to a warped wish list, the manifesto would be adopted as a blueprint for future like-minded radicals to use. Its title, “Prairie Fire.”

“They had a major goal, and that goal was to form a communist revolution,” Turchie stated.

Authors of “Prairie Fire,” which include the familiar subversive names of Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, referenced the goal of bringing down the United States government.

“We are a guerrilla organization,” the authors wrote. “We are communist women and men.”

As the Fox guest distilled six strategies that the Weather Underground had laid out in its manifesto, a graphic appeared on the screen with the following objectives listed:

–Destroy Capitalism

–The Weapon of Choice – Systemic Racism and Police Racism

–Identify the Victim Classes

–Organize the Victim Classes

–Engage in International Solidarity with the Global Movement

–Attack and Dethrone God.

The resemblance to the rhetoric used by today’s activist organizations and their allies is, to say the least, highly disturbing.

Back in the day, the Weather Underground used a benign-sounding term to summarize its approach. It turns out to be the same not so benign-sounding term now that leftist activists have been using since President Donald Trump was elected—resistance.

Following Turchie’s appearance, trolls on Twitter took to the internet speedway. The many salient points that Ingraham and Turchie had made were ignored altogether. However, the last phrase that Turchie cited would trigger the dropping of an anvil of snarky social media hate. It dared to mention the Creator of the Universe.

Some in the antagonistic media slid down the Alice in Wonderland rabbit hole of fact checking, going on to dismiss the anti-religion phrase and muttering about how the words on the graphic were not actually in the Weather Underground document, at least not those identical words.

For those who are still able to peer into the non-flipped side of the looking glass, the similarities between the Weather Underground and the Antifa movement are striking. This was observed by heralded scholar of the left Noam Chomsky, who happens to be one of the few “progressive” voices who has warned about Antifa.

Back in 2017, Chomsky described Antifa to the Washington Examiner as “a minuscule fringe of the Left, just as its predecessors were.” He also described the group as “a major gift to the Right.”

Chomsky additionally said, “What they do is often wrong in principle…and is generally self-destructive.”

“There’s some limited similarity to the Weather Underground,” Chomsky noted, pointing out that the historical context was different and implying that Antifa was more prone to harming people than the “Weathermen,” who committed their acts “almost always against property, in intent at least.”

There are other things about the two groups that appear to be markedly similar. Both seem to view themselves as possessing the purity of true communist revolutionary beliefs. Both advocate violence, particularly against law enforcement. And both embrace a communist worldview, which requires a fundamental presupposition of a materialistic conception of history, making religion antithetical to communist thought.

Marxist theorist Leon Trotsky wrote, “Religiousness is irreconcilable with the Marxian standpoint.”

Communist co-creator Vladimir Lenin similarly cited atheism as “an inseparable element of the materialist view of life…a necessary condition for the theoretical education of the revolutionist.”

Founder of communism Karl Marx infamously dismissed religion as “the opium of the people” and argued that religion prevents a better communist existence from becoming reality.

The attempt to Dethrone God has been part and parcel of communism from its inception. Atrocities that have been committed against religious people and institutions reflect the hatred for all things relating to the Almighty.

But thankfully, people who have the gift of knowledge that flows from the Spirit know the truth.

No one can ever take the throne from the King of the World.

And the People Shouted Hallelujah

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In a bold move last week, President Donald Trump announced that his administration would seek to immediately reopen houses of worship across the country.

Next came an order to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to classify churches, synagogues, and mosques as “essential places that provide essential services.”

“Some governors have deemed liquor stores and abortion clinics as essential, but have left out churches and other houses of worship,” President Trump said in the White House press room, punctuating his statement with the words, “It’s not right.”

“The people are demanding to go to their church and synagogue, to go to their mosque,” the president said, adding that in America “we need more prayer, not less.”

Spirituality, by virtue of its existence, is essential. In America, its manifestation has historically been safeguarded by the words contained in our inspired foundational document.

Hard to believe that we could ever have been denied the necessity of the soul.

President Trump had another message for officials who have little sense of urgency and seem content to delay indefinitely when it comes to allowing houses of worship to reopen.

“If they don’t do it, I will override the governors,” the president said.

His remarks have been mischaracterized by the Democrats and the antagonistic media from the moment they were uttered. Many of the same partisan organizations and individuals show little or no regard for a paramount constitutional right—the free exercise of religion.

Some of the so-called experts have weighed in, indicating that President Trump does not have the authority to override governors who are dragging their feet on the reopening of religious institutions.

As head of the executive branch, the president maintains the authority to utilize the Department of Justice (DOJ) to accomplish the objective of securing the cooperation of the governors.

Among the many options, lawsuits can be filed and judges can impose limitations on the actions of governors who are in violation of federal and/or state constitutions. Attorney General William Barr has already demonstrated that he is willing to enter the fray of legal challenges to governors’ orders.

The free exercise of religion is included in our First Amendment precisely because the founders understood the essential nature of religious liberty. To ever have given houses of worship a “non-essential” label not only runs counter to the First Amendment, but it has the potential to hinder a primary life process in which an individual and/or groups engage, particularly in times of distress or anxiety.

Our country’s first president would have been on board with our current president in understanding the necessity for spirituality and religious expression.

As shown in Arnold Friberg’s famous painting “The Prayer at Valley Forge,” the image of then-General George Washington on his knees has inspired Americans since the work of art was first unveiled in 1976, the year of our nation’s bicentennial.

As the story goes, a young Pennsylvania senator named Isaac Potts was against the war that gave birth to America. His opposition would not last long, though.

One day he happened upon a man who was immersed in deep prayer. At his side a sword lay placid on the ground. The solitary figure turned out to be General Washington himself, asking the Almighty to assist him in his cause of emancipating a nascent country.

Reflecting on the prayer, Potts became convinced that the American Revolution “was the cause of God, and America could prevail.”

President George Washington would later say, “Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports.”

Perhaps much like something President Washington would have said if faced with the same circumstances, President Trump let governors and officials across the land know that religious institutions, and the worship services they provide, play an essential role.

He has spoken for the searchers whose life-sustaining spirituality is, and always will be, essential.

And the people shouted hallelujah.

‘Essential’ Faith

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At a time when folks are struggling to come to grips with grave illnesses, economic hardships, logistic challenges, and imposed isolation, faith has become an “essential” in the battle against the “invisible enemy.”

But worship communities that have been trying to follow government regulations and guidelines have suddenly found themselves under attack in several parts of the country.

It appears as though various state and local officials, who may or may not hold a different view of religious worship than their fervent faith counterparts, are using current coronavirus-related circumstances to target people who are participating in worship in safe and responsible ways.

The free exercise of religion is an absolute fundamental right endowed by the same Creator to whom the aforementioned worship is directed. This free exercise of religion is enshrined in the First Amendment of the Constitution.

In simple yet eloquent words, the text of the First Amendment states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

Recently, however, just prior to the pinnacle Christian celebration of Easter, several state and local officials took some aggressive steps in which they attempted to limit, and in some cases, even ban people from engaging in worship.

Thankfully, Attorney General William Barr has been paying close attention to the issue and is poised to intervene.

The Department of Justice (DOJ) notified state and local officials who had been involved in the banning of religious services and informed them that the DOJ was not going to sit back and allow the coronavirus pandemic to be used as an opportunity to target worshipers.

DOJ Director of Communications Kerri Kupec tweeted, “During this sacred week for many Americans, AG Barr is monitoring govt regulation of religious services. While social distancing policies are appropriate during this emergency, they must be applied evenhandedly & not single out religious orgs. Expect action from DOJ next week!”

The most blatant examples of overzealous government action have come against churches that were utilizing drive-in services, i.e., those in which congregants remained inside their own vehicles during church services.

Over this past Easter weekend in a supposed effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus, Greg Fischer, the mayor of Louisville, Kentucky, tried to ban such drive-in church services. For those who still value common sense, the overly broad action taken by the mayor was outrageous.

Folks who remain on the inside of their respective vehicles during worship services are actually safer than many of those who engage in so-called official “essential” activity.

The Fischer order singled out church-goers in cars who were merely sitting in the parking lot. Meanwhile people in vehicles all over the place lined up at drive-throughs of fast food restaurants, banks, pharmacies, and the like. Double standard like no other.

“It’s not really practical or safe to accommodate drive-up [church] services taking place in our community,” the mayor said in defense of his ban.

Claiming that if he allowed drive-in religious services, there would be “hundreds of thousands of people” driving around the community.

On Fire Christian Church, which is located in Louisville, Kentucky, sued Fischer and the city, alleging that the mayor’s action against the drive-in religious services was unconstitutional.

U.S. District Judge Justin Walker agreed, issuing a temporary restraining order against the mayor’s order.

“On Holy Thursday, an American mayor criminalized the communal celebration of Easter,” Judge Walker wrote.

Kentucky is a hotspot when it comes to interfering with the free exercise of religion. Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear went so far as to announce that the government would be tracking the license plates of any individuals attending Easter services and would subsequently mandate the owners of the vehicles to be quarantined for fourteen days.

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul denounced Beshear’s dictate. In a post on Twitter, Sen. Paul stated, “Taking license plates at church? Quarantining someone for being Christian on Easter Sunday? Someone needs to take a step back here.”

Similar to Louisville, two churches in Greenville, Mississippi had to contend with police officers who arrived at their drive-in services and threatened to levy fines on worshipers of $500.

“We were abiding by the CDC guidelines,” Rev. James Hamilton of the King James Baptist Church said, during an appearance on Fox News’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”

“Members of the church were inside their cars, had their windows up, and I was preaching the Word of God. So no one was outside, and also we had cars at a distance,” the reverend added.

Apparently, Greenville Mayor Errick Simmons had issued an executive order that targeted churches in a selective manner.

As Judge Walker wrote in the Louisville case, “…if sitting in cars did pose a significant danger of spreading the virus, Louisville would close all drive-throughs and parking lots that are not related to maintaining public health, which they haven’t done.”

At this critical time in America, the free exercise of religion is in greater need of protection than just about any other moment in modern history.

Thankfully, this Easter season has demonstrated it’s not faith that’s in short supply. It’s politicians who are willing to honor the Constitution.

Take Me to Church…Online

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At a time when society is experiencing a heightened degree of anxiety, many folks appear to be turning inward in search of the faith that they knew as a little child.

Our country has a treasure chest of faith traditions that are proving to be invaluable during these trying times in which we now find ourselves.

As human beings we need one another. This is a self-evident statement. Nevertheless it is a soothing one when freely acknowledged to self and others.

We have been forced to remain separate, but through the isolating experience we seem to have gained a greater appreciation for loved ones, colleagues, and even would-be friends.

While getting in touch with our most basic needs, many of us have discovered that the need to be together in worship is greater than we had ever imagined.

Saving grace to the rescue. Although our houses of worship have had to close their physical doors, digital windows the internet-over have been flung wide open.

Those, who for whatever reasons, had stopped attending holy wooden, steel, and brick and mortar structures are now filling digital pews in greater and greater numbers, thanks to online streaming and on demand viewing.

Ministry Brands is a leading provider of software for online religious streaming for churches, ministries, and faith-based organizations in the United States and Canada.

As indicated in a recent release by the company, its online service, ChurchStreaming.TV, reported an unprecedented surge in internet worship, due to the lack of availability of physical worship facilities during this period of home “sheltering.”

Amazingly, the streaming service has quadrupled its internet usage over the same period in 2019.

Life.Church is an evangelical multi-site worship center that serves congregants at 34 locations in 10 Midwest states. The church created technology back in 2006, Church Online Platform, which facilitates online services and makes it available to other churches free of charge.

Online church attendance through Life.Church’s platform has continued to increase significantly, breaking records with each consecutive weekend that passes. The church indicated in a news release that more than 7 million people attended services during the March 21-22 weekend, which was almost double the participation of the previous weekend. Thousands of new churches have been signing up to use the Life.Church technology.

Easter is rapidly approaching, which for many people is the highest of holy days. It remains the largest worship attendance day for Christians of all denominations.

Churches, ministries, and faith-based communities of all sizes are preparing for the challenge of holding Easter Sunday services while still practicing distancing. Online worship is the answer to many a prayer.

One of the most influential Christian congregations in Hollywood, Churchhome, is perhaps best known for its services held at a theater in Beverly Hills, where the front rows are reserved for celebrities.

In conventional times, the church draws thousands of people to its five locations spread throughout California and Washington.

“I think we have an opportunity, actually, to engage at a deeper level,” Churchome lead pastor Judah Smith told Fox News. “We’re finding that actually being home, engaging face-to-face is going to lead us actually to an interesting place in faith and I think will change how we worship going forward.”

Chruchhome, Zoe Church, Mosaic, Radius, VOUS, and Hillsong, are among the new breed of trendy worship centers that are attracting the famous. These churches have somewhat of an advantage over the more traditional denominations, because they have always incorporated the internet in their ministries, via online platforms and apps.

In addition to churches providing digital alternatives, an increasing number of pastors have turned to a much older concept to gather together their congregants; that being the drive-in venue. Churchgoers are driving into church parking lots, maintaining the appropriate distance from adjacent cars, and turning their radios on to listen to sermons. Some drive-in theaters that are now barred from showing movies are instead opening up their premises for local churches to utilize.

Although the future remains uncertain, new blessings will undoubtedly continue to emerge in this period of worship innovation.

In an article in Christianity Today, David Taylor, an assistant professor of theology at Fuller Seminary, writes, “I’ve discovered recently that my prejudices against media technology reflect an embarrassing ignorance about how such technologies might serve the deaf, the elderly, the homebound.”

Taylor adds, “Consider, then, not how this season of experimentation will make people woefully dependent on disembodied technologies, but rather how it may bring to your attention the people in your community who will be blessed long-term by adjustments that you make.”

Hope to see you at the online altar.

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