Weighed in the balance …

Louisville, Kentucky awaits an announcement that could bring “the shot heard round the world.”

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,

    the holy place where the Most High dwells.

God is within her, she will not fall;

    God will help her at break of day.

Psalm 46:4-5 NIV

My home is in a city that most people probably don’t think much about, except maybe on the first Saturday in May. We have around a million people in the metropolitan area. Generally if you hear about Louisville on the news, it’s for basketball, and occasionally you may relate us with UPS, KFC, or Louisville Slugger. This is an average city in America … usually.

Not in 2020, though. And definitely not today.

Oddly, unless you live here, you probably haven’t heard much about what’s going on here, but in the coming days, I suspect you will.

Breonna Taylor. Have you heard her name?

We have. We will never forget it, either. We have heard her name for 118 days of protests. We have seen it on 26 billboards around the city, purchased by Oprah. We have seen her name in our social media feeds and heard it on the news. You can’t be a Louisvillian and not know who Breonna Taylor was.

Yet, if you don’t live here, you probably don’t know of this young lady, whose case has become a platform for police reform, Black Lives Matter, and social justice.

Taylor was killed by police during a raid of her home on March 13, the same day things shut down for COVID. Police had a “no-knock” warrant, and there is confusion as to whether this warrant was executed without knocking. However, they did attempt to knock down the door, and Taylor’s boyfriend shot them. Fire was returned and Taylor was shot repeatedly, and subsequently died from her injuries.

Breonna Taylor has served as an EMT.

There are all kinds of reports regarding the events of that fateful night, and this case has been tried in the jury of public opinion by various factions, yet the truth is that only a few people have any actual knowledge of what happened.

Folks from BLM, Until Freedom, the NFAC, and other activist groups, as well as a whole lot of angry individuals, want to see the arrest of “the cops that murdered Breonna Taylor.” Others are “backing the Blue.” Due to the high level of sensitivity, and need for further investigation of this officer-involved shooting, the FBI and Kentucky Attorney General David Cameron have gotten involved, and the results of their investigation, and the decision of the Grand Jury, of whether or not to charge anyone in Taylor’s death, are likely to be announced this week, perhaps today. Last week, Taylor’s family was awarded an enormous civil settlement.

Protests have taken place for 118 days so far.

NO JUSTICE .. NO PEACE! has been the rally cry of the revolution … and make no mistake, this is a revolution. It’s a revolution of ideals, and today could be a turning point.

Many Christians claim Psalm 46 and other Scriptures that promise God’s protection. I believe God will protect us through anything, but that doesn’t mean we will come out without a scratch. Many of the faithful New Testament saints and church heroes were tortured, persecuted, and even martyred for their faith. And we are not exempt from the consequences of other people’s actions.

Grandmaster Jay, of the NFAC, has mentioned more than once that if justice doesn’t happen in Louisville, this will be the stage for “the shot heard ’round the world,” a reference to the American Revolution. There are those who want a second American Civil War, and it isn’t too far removed from reality to envision Louisville as ground zero.

Opposing militias and protest groups encircled Churchill Downs on Derby Day, Sept. 6.

I cannot weigh in on the facts of March 13, with regard to Ms. Taylor. I believe there are many possibilities. I acknowledge that injustice occurs, and that it likely happens statistically more often to black people than to white. I also acknowledge that slavery and segregation are stains on our nation’s history, and that we may be reaping what our predecessors sewed. Yet I also know a decent amount about police, and, to an extent, understand their pressures and protocols.

Regardless of speculations and “sides,” I ask my brothers and sisters in Christ to consider this from a Biblical perspective. Here are some takeaways for me:

  1. We should not judge a situation about which we do not have the facts.
  2. We should not allow the enemy to divide us on any and every difference we may have. Instead, we need to look for agreement, and have honest conversation about differences.
  3. God may intervene on behalf of the believers in our city, our nation, and our world, or He may allow us to go through some intense difficulties; either way He gets the glory.
  4. “Solutions” that involve proving whatever “side” we are on are not solutions. People are rarely, if ever, convinced, by repeatedly being told we are right and they are wrong. We do need to call out wrongdoing and push for justice, but there are ways to do this that are more likely to change hearts and minds.
  5. No justice, no peace is not an attainable ideal. Jesus, the Prince of Peace, and the Just Judge, is the only answer to what ails our society. Without Him, there is neither justice, nor peace.
  6. No matter what, God is on His throne. “Though He slay me, yet I will hope in Him” (Job 13:15).

Lord Jesus,

Today your people are hurting. We have been awaiting an outcome of this case for several months. We anticipate it very soon and we are holding our breath as we wait for the announcement and the outcome of that announcement.

I don’t ask that we be delivered from whatever may ensue; I only ask that You be glorified, that we be brought to repentance, and that many come to know You as a result.

I pray for Breonna Taylor’s family and friends, that they may know peace. I pray for the police officers and other officials involved, that they also may know peace.

I pray for every LMPD officer, for Mayor Fischer, for AG Daniel Cameron, for the FBI agents and the Grand Jury, as well as every other person directly involved in this determination, that they would know the truth and carry out justice, whatever that may be, and however that should look.

I pray that the Christ-followers in this city would so shine forth with love and truth that others would have to take notice. And should persecution ensue, that we would present ourselves worthy of Your Great Name.

I love this city, but my citizenship is in heaven, and I look forward to the day when I meet You face-to-face and enter into your rest, in a place where there is no more death, no more injustice, no more rioting, no more uncertainty, a place of incredible and unshakeable peace. But in the meantime, enable me to be the best citizen of this city, and this country, that I possibly can, and make me a beacon of justice and peace.

In Jesus Precious and Holy Name. Amen.

Today, things are unstable in Louisville, and in many places. We are not guaranteed justice or peace in this world; in fact, we are assured that we will have trials. We need to put our hope in Christ, and in His kingdom, because He is the one who gives lasting, real justice and peace.

If you are not yet a Christ-follower, please consider making that decision today. Simply acknowledge that you are a sinner, meaning you agree with God that you’ve done bad things, and that you have offended Him with those actions. Because of this, you don’t deserve to spend eternity in His presence. However, God sent His Son, Jesus, to live as a man, to identify with our weaknesses, to live a perfect life, and to die an atoning death, not for His own sins, because He was sinless, but for our sins. Accept that payment for your sins and transfer your allegiance from this world and your flesh to Him. Commit to allowing Him to be in charge of your life from here on out. Confess Him as your Lord, knowing that He died for your sins and rose from the dead, confirming that He is God and that He has authority to forgive sins and power to give you eternal life. When you do, He will save you and begin the process of sanctifying you, which means making you a more Christlike person. Your eternity will be secure, and you will be reconciled to Him. This will give you peace, joy, and comfort, no matter what circumstances come your way. Out of response for what He has done, get plugged into a local congregation, get baptized, read the Bible, pray, and serve others, all in order to know Him better and to glorify God to others, all because you’re grateful for His free gift. We can’t earn any of this; we simply accept it and it’s ours.

Cure for The Fear Pandemic

By Heather Walton

About 20 years ago, shortly after I became a Christian, I was participating in some job training. One day we took a lunch break at a local outdoor food court. As we ate, a bee took an interest in my food and wouldn’t leave me alone. I was terrified of insects, especially the stinging type, so I began panicking like a 3-year-old. One of my fellow trainees, a middle-aged Jewish woman, looked at me pointedly and said, “You know, I’m really surprised that someone with your great faith would be so scared of a little bee.”

At that moment, I was stung with such conviction that I determined that I would no longer fear insects, and to this day, I have succeeded. My fear had ruined my ability to enjoy lunch, but more than that, it had marred my testimony to an unbelieving friend.

A pastor told a story of a family taking a car trip in which a bee decided to ride along. One of the children was shrieking in terror, when his father decided to intervene. The father caught the bee in his hand, took the sting, and then let the bee continue to fly around the car. He assured his child that there was nothing more to fear, since he had already taken the stinger. The pastor likened this father to our Lord, who took the sting of death for those who trust in Him, that we might not fear the sting of death.

How many of us are doing just that, though? We are living in fear of so many things today:

  • a microscopic virus that could make us sick and has less than 1% chance of killing us
  • violent crime
  • losing our livelihood
  • losing our savings
  • being shamed for wearing/not wearing a mask
  • losing our civil liberties
  • who will win the election
  • being forced to take a vaccine
  • what the next big development of 2020 will be

Add to the list any personal fears we each carry, and it can be really overwhelming.

I’ve been considering a few questions lately:

What’s more important — surviving or living?

First, what’s more important — surviving or living? If I have to live in a bubble in order to stay alive, is that really living? If I have to fear every little thing when I walk out of my house and every little thing that comes into my house, is that really living? If I am missing out on relationships, is that really living? Would I rather live long or would I rather live well?

I’ve also pondered why this particular illness is the ONE that has us all paralyzed and isolated. We’ve never done anything like this before, as far as shutting down so systematically and for so long. Other illnesses and activities have killed far more people, but went virtually unnoticed. What’s the difference?

Part of the problem today, I think, is that we are so entitled as Americans. We believe that we simply should live to be very old and that we should have our needs provided for us. We expect life to be safe and sterile, and current events don’t fit our expectations.

I look at America today and, technological advances aside, I doubt our ancestors would recognize us. Think about it: People boarded ships, risking illness, starvation, and death, to come to America. Pioneers trekked across the country on foot and in wagons, risking life and limb, to make a better life for themselves and their posterity. America has been known for its independent spirit. Americans have historically been leaders who took risks to advance and rise above circumstances. Yet, here we are, allowing our country to be brought to a screeching halt by a microscopic organism that is not nearly as likely to affect us as the dangers our patriot predecessors faced.

At the turn of the 20th century, the average life expectancy was mid-forties, meaning I personally probably would have gone onto glory by my age if I had lived during that time. Today, we expect — even demand — to live twice that long. The average coronavirus death happens to those over the average life expectancy, and though every death is sad, it seems presumptuous for us to expect to cheat death. With the exception of two people in history (Enoch and Elijah), every single person has died or will die, barring the rapture. God has determined every one of our days before even one of them came to be, so for us to think we can come up with a humanistic solution to the problem of death is utterly prideful and foolish.

We are creating a generation of germaphobes and hypochondriacs. We need to remember that we shouldn’t fear death so much as we should fear and revere the One who determines how we spend eternity.

Another area of fear relates to our liberty. There are people threatening America’s freedoms, people who violate the Constitution in the name of peace and safety and people who push a Marxist agenda. Many of us know we need to stand against this, yet we are afraid to do so. We fear legal penalties, social stigma, family safety, and more. We would do well to look at the example of our nation’s founders. They put it all on the line for their families and their descendants. They risked all of this for us, people who were not yet born, but would benefit from their willingness to sacrifice. How would they feel, knowing we have taken this freedom so for granted that we don’t mind giving it up?

Let’s take it a step further: How must God feel toward us, knowing that He created our bodies to be resilient and our brains to be wise, yet we are so fearful? How must He feel, knowing that He sent His precious Son to die for us, that we may have the abundant, eternal life, yet we are so caught up in the physical existence? How must he feel, knowing that He died to set us free, never again to be enslaved, yet we willingly submit ourselves to multiple yokes of slavery? How must He feel, seeing us shaking our fists, kicking our legs, writhing in anger and fear, and demanding long life, prosperity, and security, when He has all of those things laid up for us, just not in the form we demand?

There are at least 100 verses that tell us not to fear. Why?

  1. God is on His throne.
  2. He is never taken by surprise.
  3. He has promised never to leave or forsake us.
  4. He has our best interest in mind.
  5. He takes care of the lilies and the birds, and will certainly take care of us.
  6. He loves us.
  7. He is our father and we are His children.
  8. He determined our times and places, and knew all of our days before even one came to be.
  9. He gave us a spirit of power and a sound mind.
  10. He has promised us the abundant life.
  11. Our eternal life is secure if we trust in Him.
  12. He delights to take care of us.
  13. He will provide for us in the midst of our enemies.
  14. He will not allow evil to triumph.
  15. Nothing can separate us from His love.
  16. He is the One with the power over life and death.
  17. Greater is He that is in us than He that is in the world.
  18. He will uphold us with His righteous right hand.
  19. He has already told us how it ends. Spoiler: He wins and we get the spoils.
  20. He has prepared a place for us.
  21. We are already seated with Him in heaven.
  22. He has freed us from slavery.
  23. He has taken away the sting of death.
  24. He will not allow us to be tempted beyond what we can bear.
  25. He is in control!

I could go on forever …

If you’re a Christ follower and you’re fearful or anxious, this is understandable, especially given the uncertainty we currently face, yet the Lord has given us the remedy:

… do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7 ESV

This is the believer’s prescription for peace. It’s not necessarily easy, but it is attainable.

If you don’t yet know the Lord, then no wonder you are anxious or concerned; not only is this life precarious, but your eternity is unsettled. I have good news: That can change today!

Simply acknowledge that you are a sinner, meaning you agree with God that you’ve done bad things, and that you have offended Him with those actions. Because of this, you don’t deserve to spend eternity in His presence. However, God sent His Son, Jesus, to live as a man, to identify with our weaknesses, to live a perfect life, and to die an atoning death, not for His own sins, because He was sinless, but for our sins. Accept that payment for your sins and transfer your allegiance from this world and your flesh to Him. Commit to allowing Him to be in charge of your life from here on out. Confess Him as your Lord, knowing that He died for your sins and rose from the dead, confirming that He is God and that He has authority to forgive sins and power to give you eternal life. When you do, He will save you and begin the process of sanctifying you, which means making you a more Christlike person. Your eternity will be secure, and you will be reconciled to Him. This will give you peace, joy, and comfort, no matter what circumstances come your way. Out of response for what He has done, get plugged into a local congregation, get baptized, read the Bible, pray, and serve others, all in order to know Him better and to glorify God to others, all because you’re grateful for His free gift. We can’t earn any of this; we simply accept it and it’s ours.

A right relationship with God, one in which we believe His promises are true and that He has our best interest in mind, is the cure for the fear pandemic.

The Great Awakening: Is Donald Trump our only hope?

By Heather Walton

Donald Trump. Few presidents have polarized the people to the extent that our current president does. People seem to either despise or worship him. I have seen people from diverse views sing the president’s praises and laud him as the best president ever. I’ve seen churchgoers, nonbelievers, good ‘ol boys and professionals alike, unite under the MAGA banner. Though many claim he is racist and sexist, I’ve seen men and women of every shade, and I’ve even seen LGBTQ Trump supporters. Despite his nationalistic line, Trump seems to even have a global following.

#WWG1WGA: Where We Go 1, We Go All: You may have seen this hashtag or heard prominent political figures recite it, along with an oath to protect the U.S. against all enemies, foreign and domestic. This sounds compelling, but it’s important to examine where those who take the oath think they are going. The oath is the motto of a group called QAnon, a loose organization of supposed patriots who gather and disseminate intel to aid Trump in the righteous cause of “draining the swamp.” This secret group creates coded Q Drops online, alerting devotees of upcoming significant events and exposures of evil. At first, this group seems innocuous, even noble, as they strive to expose the “deep state,” and prohibit the New World Order. But as I began following the Q crowd on Twitter, I sensed that something unsettling. Scratching a bit below the surface, I realized that these are more than patriots gleaning information from some elite government intelligence operation. QAnon actually is a new age movement, whose followers analyze vibrations and light waves to foretell a coming “Great Awakening,” in which the “Deep State” is exposed, the New World Order thwarted, and the human race will evolve into a higher collective consciousness. Along the way, many “sheep,” who aren’t fit for Q’s rebranded New World Order, will perish, vanishing from the earth, absorbed by the universe’s groaning evolutionary process, or perhaps abducted by aliens (This is a fantastic cover for the coming rapture of the church). If you haven’t researched Q for yourself, you probably think this sounds crazy, but I’m not making this up!

Trump, who at times has retweeted Q Drops, is theoretically leading this charge, so how do Q followers see him? When you read their tweets, you see that they see him as a messiah. This is clearly dangerous.

Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. See, I have told you beforehand. 

Matthew 24:23-25 ESV

The Q Crowd sees Trump as a savior. But they’re not the only ones. Ever since Trump got elected, it has baffled me that evangelicals seem to be drawn to him like the proverbial moth to the flame. Many say he is a great Christian. Yet, Trump personally said that he never asked God for forgiveness. He said he tries not to do things that he needs to be forgiven for. He speaks generically about his Protestant/Presbyterian faith, but not about a personal relationship with Jesus. While the president has initiated and enacted policies that Christians support, that does not make him a Christian. He has used his relationship with his former pastor, Norman Vincent Peale, as evidence of his faith, but this is hollow support, given Peale’s new age views and his leadership in the Freemasons. Take a look at this quote:

“Personally, I believe that prayer is a sending out of vibrations from one person to another and to God. All of the universe is in vibration. There are vibrations in the molecules of a table. The air is filled with vibrations. The reaction between human beings is also in vibration. When you send out a prayer for another person, you employ the force inherent in a spiritual universe. You transport from yourself to the other person a sense of love, helpfulness, support—a sympathetic, powerful understanding—and in this process you awaken vibrations in the universe through which God brings to pass the good objectives prayed for.”

Norman Vincent Peale, The Power of Positive Thinking

This sounds like the philosophy of many in the QAnon movement. Trump, Q, and others are doing some things that look good, but it’s likely a bait and switch, because this Great Awakening is actually a false gospel, involving human achievement and new age philosophy. There is a lot of talk of “darkness to light,” but let’s look at what the Apostle Paul had to say:

And what I am doing I will continue to do, in order to undermine the claim of those who would like to claim that in their boasted mission they work on the same terms as we do. For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds.

2 Corinthians 11:12-15 ESV

I urge my brothers and sisters in Christ to follow Jesus, not Q, not Trump, not any leader, unless that leader can say, like Paul, “Follow me, as I follow Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1). It’s dangerous to exalt someone who clearly exalts himself, and who does not speak or act like a believer. Christ alone is worthy of our complete trust, and Christ alone can save us from the ills of this world and transfer us to an everlasting kingdom.

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.

1 Peter 2:9 ESV

Jesus is the real light of the world, and He calls us to accept Him as Lord and to shine forth His light into the darkness. The greatest awakening occurs when we understand that we are sinners in need of a savior, that Jesus is God, and that He, being perfect, paid our sin debt on the cross, and rose again, proving that He is God and has power over the grave, and in response, we accept Christ’s Lordship over our lives. Then we receive the Holy Spirit and have the power to live a godly life, a power we would not have outside of His provision. This gives us assurance of eternal life, spent in heaven with God, for eternity. If you have not made this decision yet, I would urge you to do so today.

Jesus is the only one who can take us from darkness to light, the only one who can awaken us. Jesus Christ is our only hope. Time is short. Choose wisely whom to follow.

Militias, Marxism, and Mayhem: What’s really going on in Louisville?

Louisville, Kentucky, USA skyline on the river.

As a Louisvillian, I’d like to share my perspective on the fact that the NFAC is coming tomorrow. I’ve been doing a ton of research on what’s going on in the world ever since March 14, when everything got locked down. There is much going on behind the scenes. As a Christian, I believe we are in the last days. I realize you may not agree, and that’s your right, of course. Regardless, it is clear to me that there is a behind-the-scenes agenda in play. 

Last night I saw a picture of Master Jay using the “triple six” illuminati symbol. When you look at his logo, it’s clearly linked to illuminati/occult. His theology is mystical, along the lines of evolving to a higher plane. Grandmaster is an illuminati term, but it’s also a chess term. He has said that the government has engineered the COVID crisis and civil unrest to distract us from the fact that there are asteroids on an orbital path to crash into the earth.

Regarding chess, he also has said that there are forces trying to incite a race war, which is something I’ve heard elsewhere, and seems legit, as it’s the perfect way to implode America for the purpose of installing Marxism and a New World Order. The NFAC leader said he knows that they are trying to create a race war but that he will beat them at their own game, and likened it to playing chess. 

Here are some things that don’t add up:

1. The governor has issued a travel advisory, saying anyone coming in from out of state needs to self quarantine for 14 days, and he told us, “Change your plans,” regarding vacation travels. However, when asked about this group coming in, he said that he believes they’ll be peaceful and that his biggest concern is whether they wear masks and socially distance. He says COVID is our biggest threat. When asked if he planned to send the National Guard, he said he hadn’t been asked.

2. The mayor and the police are acting like this is going to be fine. The police spokesman said they’re more concerned about the counter-protest groups. (I am concerned too, because it would be easy to plant someone on the other side to start something. However, I’m not “more” concerned.)

3. The LMPD has allegedly asked Grandmaster Jay to advise them on what community policing might look like. 

4. The president is sending federal troops to four other cities this weekend, but as far as I can tell, nobody on the national scene is talking about the NFAC or Louisville. GM Jay previously said that if he came to Louisville, it would be the “shot heard round the world,” and that it would make Stone Mountain look like nothing. Now he says it’s all going to be good, and he is talking more like a kitten.

But seriously, there are opposing militias coming to Louisville, a city that is within 6 hours of 2/3 of the U.S. population, a city that has had two months straight of protesting, a city where reportedly there is going to be some earth shattering announcement in the Breonna Taylor case, and nobody thinks this is cause for concern (except maybe if some of the “far-right” militias do something “stupid”). WHAT???

Something is up. I believe:

1. This could be a trap. 

2. GM Jay doesn’t care about moving to Africa, but likely wants to fire “the shot heard round the world,” that ushers in the fall of America and gives rise to a Marxist “Utopia.”

3. Either those in power have something planned that they aren’t revealing, or perhaps GM Jay and the government somehow have a similar agenda. I’m not saying they’re consciously working together, but something is just off here. 

4. The federal government either doesn’t see this, doesn’t care about sacrificing a smaller major city, or is complicit. 

Again, these are just ideas, and time will tell whether there is any truth to them. Whether government officials acknowledge it or not, what happens in Louisville isn’t likely to stay here. We will know soon. 

Does the NFAC really want justice for Breonna Taylor?

There are so many things going on in the world right now that it’s easy to get lost in it all, not knowing what to think, how to address the various issues, or even how to pray. Most of these issues have value, and many are complex. As a Christian, I earnestly want to express the right thoughts, feelings, and actions regarding each and every one of them, However, there are many unknowns and few clearcut or perfect solutions.

I want to share one such issue with you:

I live in Louisville, KY. Right now this is not on the top ten list of greatest places to live. (Okay, so it may not ever be, but I have lived here most of my life, so I’m partial.) If you don’t live here, there is a possibility you know why I say it’s not prime real estate right now.

We have had nearly two straight months of protest because of the police shooting of Breonna Taylor. Twitter has been off-and-on abuzz with calls to burn Louisville to the ground. There has been looting. Protestors and journalists have been shot, shot at, jailed, run over, mobbed, gassed, and on and on. I have to hand it to the protestors; many have remained steadfast even though they have not gotten much of a response from the local government or the police department.

The police have softened considerably, so much so that I wonder if I would even get a response if I were to call them to report a crime. More than that, I wonder why.

The mayor has been asked to resign by just about everyone, regardless of political affiliation, and he’s refused to turn over evidence to the Metro Council regarding the Taylor investigation.

A few days ago, a group that includes the mothers of Breonna Taylor and Ahmad Arbury, as well as several celebrities, was protesting at the Attorney General’s house. Nearly 100 were jailed and felonies were charged. Those charges were later dropped.

And now Grandmaster Jay, the leader of this black militia called NFAC, has mobilized his followers from all over the Western Hemisphere to come to Louisville because nobody in leadership can tell him when the case will be resolved. If you’re not familiar with the NFAC, they marched on Stone Mountain, GA, and in Arizona, on July 4, with automatic weapons, and got things shut down.

Grandmaster Jay (John Fitzgerald Johnson) met online with Louisville community leaders yesterday, demanding to know when there would the investigation would be complete and an outcome announced. They informed him that this is in Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s power. The NFAC leader asked who the AG reports to, and they told him he reports to the people directly. Grandmaster Jay replied that the people want justice for Breonna Taylor and that he needs to carry it out. He adjourned the meeting, saying that the man he needs to talk with wasn’t on the call, and asking him to get Cameron to join them for a call as soon as possible. According to Johnson, Cameron instead responded with a statement that it is not 100 percent in his hands since the Louisville Metro Police Department still holds information and the FBI is investigating the case.

In a previous segment, Johnson gave his reasoning for the outrage: There are allegations that Taylor was targeted because she was “in the way” of a gentrification program, which has something to do with redlining for the purpose of negating the effectiveness of black votes, and making real estate developments “better” by getting rid of black people that live there.

On the other hand, I’ve heard derogatory comments about Taylor, saying she’s been made a martyr when, in reality, she was no angel.

Can I just say that I have no idea what to believe in this case, and as an ordinary citizen, I have no clue what I can do to make this better. There is so much deception going on behind the scenes and so little truth being shared with the public that it would be hard for me to weigh in.

I think the gentrification angle is completely possible, and the fact that I can even entertain this possibility is horrifying. Yes, I believe racism is real. I also believe greed is real. The human heart, apart from God, is capable of the greatest of atrocities. I hope the truth comes to light and that justice is served to those involved. I want to see a world where racial injustice and all injustice is nonexistent.

Truly, I do not expect justice to be served in this case, no matter what the truth is.

I do not think the NFAC expects justice; neither do the practice justice. They threaten our city, saying that those in power must acquiesce to their demands or ELSE. They want to start a revolution that leads to their exodus from the United States with all black citizens who want to join, including those currently incarcerated. According to Johnson, they want reparations in the trillions from the government and to take all of their property with them, so they can start a United States of Africa, pushing all white people out of Africa and building their own Wakonda. Johnson claims to have a special connection with the “Most High,” and that black people are the true Hebrews. He uses scriptures from outside of biblical cannon, including the Book of Enoch and some other writings that he claims are only available to the truly wise. He alleges to be a holy man, yet his language alone defies that. He claims to get his power from the “Most High,” whom he also refers to as Yah or Yahweh. He says he gets his power and insight from the Most High and that he is not the same man he used to be because of it. Who is this Most High to whom he refers?

How you have fallen from heaven, morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations!  You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” 

Isaiah 14:12-14 ESV

Lucifer was an angel of light; he was God’s top angel, and it made him proud, so he decided he would rebel against God. In doing so, he took a third of the angels with him and eventually incited the fall of man. We know that Yahweh is the name for the true God of the Jews and the Christians, but this man is not referring to the true God. He is referring to one who masquerades as an angel of light, the deceiver of old, the devil. He is calling a false God by God’s Holy Name, and that is a dangerous, blasphemous thing to do.

Today we have the potential for an armed black militia of thousands getting ready to invade our city. This group is not interested in equality or racial reconciliation; they are black supremicists who want their way, and are willing to fight to get it. They are willing to kill and to die, and they have vowed to take no prisoners. Johnson says if they come, it will be like the “shot heard round the world.” Will they come, and what will meet them when they get here? Will this begin a declared civil war?

There are scoffers who think this group is crazy, disillusioned, or ridiculous. Their leader isn’t crazy. He is brilliant, charismatic, connected, and dead serious. His “Most High” is none other than the serpent of old, the devil. I can see people getting behind this movement, and if they do, it will be a force to be reckoned with.

How then should we respond? First, I’m asking every Christian who reads this to pray. If police or leaders are hiding anything, I pray it is exposed, that they repent, go public, and take whatever consequences come. I pray that justice is established for Breonna Taylor, but I also submit that she already has received justice. If she put her trust in Christ, she is justly in heaven with Him because of His shed blood on her behalf.

There needs to be justice for anyone involved in this terrible act, so I pray that it is served. If leaders are hiding things, bring it to the light. If they are not, I pray that will be accepted. Either way, I pray for racial reconciliation and that our community, our country, and our world will find healing.

I pray that Gov. Beshear, Mayor Fischer, Attorney General Cameron, the police chief, the city council, the officers involved, and every other leader will recognize the need to repent and to publicly call out to the Lord for forgiveness and healing.

I fully believe that, as a nation, we are reaping what we have sewn. Our founding fathers never should have allowed slavery. That was a catalyst for all sorts of corruption, leading right down to today when we reject God, murder the unborn, and still allow racism to exist. We have turned our heads to atrocities the world over and we have aided and abetted nations that practice persecution and ethnic cleansing.

I do not support the NFAC or its disillusioned leader. Yet I concede that he has some valid points. I do not support violence as a resolution to violence, not in this way. However, I firmly believe that God has removed His hand of protection from the United States of America and that the world as we know it is about to change more than most of us could have ever seen coming.

As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.

“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

Matthew 24:3-14 ESV

This passage of Scripture reads like today’s news. Brothers and sisters in Christ, we need to be ready for whatever comes, continuing in the assurance that the Lord is on His throne and that He will complete what He has begun. We may be the terminal generation. We need to persevere, that we may hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant!” We need to remain courageous, “for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:7 ESV).

And if you have not yet placed your trust in Christ, it’s time to do so. Don’t put it off one more day! No matter what is going on in the world, not one of us is assured our next breath. There are many false messiahs in the world today, whether they be causes or individuals. But there is only One legitimate Savior, and that’s Jesus Christ.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”

John 14:6-7 ESV

All who trust Jesus as Lord will be saved, but those who don’t will perish. Our Lord is no respecter of persons. He shows no favoritism. There are only two categories, the righteous and the wicked, and the only way to be righteous is to accept the payment Jesus gave for our sins. There is no room for pride.

The enemy seeks to divide and destroy us. Let’s not let him win any battle. Thankfully, we know he doesn’t win the war. Hate can conquer a nation, but love conquers all.

July 4, 2020 … The Last Birthday?

My basic training picture from the summer of 1989. I was 17 years old.

I was an oddly patriotic kid. Growing up in the 1970s and 80s, under the continual threat of the Soviet Union launching a nuclear attack or invading our land. Movies like Red Dawn and The Day After made a strong impression on me, and I wondered if someday we would face an attempted totalitarian takeover or a nuclear holocaust.

During my senior year of high school, my oddly patriotic spirit was intrigued by the opportunity to serve my country. While I was still in high school, I raised my right hand and vowed to defend the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic. I began going to weekend drills in January 1989, and left for basic training at Fort Dix, NJ, in June. The following February, I graduated from Defense Information School as a photojournalist. I returned to my reserve unit, the 100th Division, in Louisville, KY, and started college, only to be activated for Operation Desert Storm a few weeks into the semester. When my service was up in 1995, I didn’t leave my patriotism behind.

Though I grew up during the Cold War and served my country during an era governed by a different threat, I never actually feared that America would cease to be a nation. In the past few years, though, I started to wonder if the sun was getting ready to set on the American era. It seemed plausible, given that we have, in so many ways, descended headlong into depravity.

Yet there was always hope. I was never truly concerned that I’d live to see the end of the United States of America …

until now.

Tomorrow we “celebrate” our 244th birthday as a nation, and I wonder if it will be our last. We are fighting an unseen microscopic organism, with threats of other micro-enemies almost surely promised. We are witnessing our leaders trampling the Constitution, that same almost sacred document I swore to protect from all enemies, foreign and domestic. And, I believe worst of all, we are living through an undeclared civil war. We are literally destroying ourselves from within.

How do you celebrate a birthday under these conditions?

There’s a part of me that wants to petition the Lord of the universe to spare our nation, but I’m going to be honest: I don’t think He will. I think we’re getting what we deserve, as we have spent our entire history stained with the blood of innocent lives, whether through slavery, prejudice, senseless violence, or abortion. Whenever people decide that some human lives are worth less than others, God is not pleased.

I also believe the world is gearing up for the Great Tribulation, and that our days are numbered.

Recently I read Daniel 5. King Belshazzar received a supernatural message, directly from the hand of God:

MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN

Daniel 5:25

What did this mean? Perhaps America is being given the same message now:

MENE: God has numbered your kingdom, and finished it; TEKEL: You have been weighed in the balances, and found wanting; PERES: Your kingdom has been divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.

Daniel 5:26-28 NKJV

God has numbered the days of every kingdom and every person in that kingdom. Though we began, in many ways, as a God-honoring nation, we had some fatal foundational flaws. For the past 150 years, we have been on a downward moral slide in many other areas, and that has accelerated exponentially since the Bible and prayer were removed from schools and public life. Our days may be drawing to a close.

Is the handwriting on America’s proverbial wall?

We have been weighed in the balance. We have not practiced justice. We have not acted rightly. We deserve to be judged.

And we have been divided across most any imaginable or man-made division. We now have no idea who we are, or who the real enemy is.

Those of us who follow Christ know that Satan came to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). He is a deceiver, a murderer, and a liar (Genesis 3:4-5; John 8:44; 1 Corinthians 5:5; 2 Corinthians 2:11; 2 Corinthians 4:4; 2 Timothy 2:26; 1 Peter 5:8). Right now he is getting us to destroy ourselves from within.

If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand.

Mark 3:24-25 ESV

We are likely more divided than ever, because we are divided over every conceivable issue. We are not divided on geographical lines and in danger of splitting the country in two parts; instead, we are divided in every state, in every city, and perhaps in every church and every family, and therefore in danger of destroying ourselves in our quest for justice and peace.

If we do celebrate another Independence Day, the likelihood that we will celebrate the birth of the country that our founding fathers fought for, that our grandparents fought for, or even that my generation fought for, is very unlikely. As an oddly patriotic American, I mourn that.

Yet there is cause to celebrate, though in a bittersweet way. As a Christian, I have put my trust in Christ alone, not in this country or this world. All of this will pass away, and maybe it will be sooner than any of us can imagine. Perhaps, for those of us who follow Christ, we will soon celebrate a true Independence Day in heaven, where we will be free from sin and death, where our mourning will be turned to dancing, where there is no more fear, no more deception, and no more unrest. The more I see what’s going on today, the more I long for my heavenly home, because my true citizenship is in heaven.

Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us. For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.

Phillippians 3:17-21 ESV

If you don’t yet know Christ, I urge you to repent, to put your trust in Christ alone, that you may have assurance of salvation through a relationship with the Living God. If you have never accepted Jesus as Lord, you can do that right now. This takes an honest and genuine acknowledgement that you are a sinner, that you can’t do enough good deeds to be right with God because He is holy and we are unholy, that you need Him to save you, and that you are willing to follow Him and allow Him to govern your life. Baptism is the outward expression of this inward decision and should be done publicly and by immersion, in an act of obedience, submission, and testimonial to others. You also should read the Bible, pray, gather with other believers, and obey God’s commands, not to be saved, but out of gratitude for salvation, a desire to grow in your relationship with God, and in hopes of winning others to the Lord. Taking this step will provide a freedom that cannot ever be taken from you, no matter how bad things get in this world.

A Message to the Church in America

The Biblical book of Judges has much to speak into our culture today. Here are some thoughts the Lord impressed upon me as I studied this book.

Is the U.S. in End Times Prophecy? (Part 1)

By Heather Walton

I’ve heard many Biblical scholars say that the United States isn’t in End Times prophecy, but I’ve always questioned it. Recently I began to study Revelation more closely, and I believe it’s possible that they’re overlooking something significant. What I’m about to share, I hadn’t previously considered, but it seems to fit well, so please consider this perspective with an open mind, keeping in mind that this prophecy could have many interpretations. Regardless whether the U.S. fulfills this prophecy literally, the parallels are strong enough to motivate us to consider where to place our trust and how to respond to the present situation.

Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the judgment of the great prostitute who is seated on many waters, with whom the kings of the earth have committed sexual immorality, and with the wine of whose sexual immorality the dwellers on earth have become drunk.” And he carried me away in the Spirit into a wilderness, and I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast that was full of blasphemous names, and it had seven heads and ten horns. The woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet, and adorned with gold and jewels and pearls, holding in her hand a golden cup full of abominations and the impurities of her sexual immorality. And on her forehead was written a name of mystery: “Babylon the great, mother of prostitutes and of earth’s abominations.” And I saw the woman, drunk with the blood of the saints, the blood of the martyrs of Jesus.

Revelation 17:1-5 ESV

Here we are introduced to a beast and its rider, a great prostitute, who is wearing purple and scarlet, wearing gold and precious stones, seated on many waters, and full of immorality. This immoral woman has influenced the kings of the world and has become drunk with the blood of Christians.

When people think of America, what symbols come to mind: undoubtedly two of the top contenders are the Statue of Liberty and the American Flag. Lady Liberty sits on a major seaport, and New York itself is home to many waterways and American itself is surrounded by many waters, including the Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and the Arctic Ocean.

The Statue of Liberty is The New Colossus, and Emma Lazarus wrote the poem by that name that adorns the statue’s pedestal. The last line is, “I lift my lamp beside the golden door.” This country is supposed to be a land of golden opportunity, and there even was a good deal of gold discovered here. As a result, many came seeking their fortunes.

America is among the richest nations in the world, its decadence is apparent, and its immoral influence is global. Consider that the U.S. supplies the majority of movies, and a supermajority of online pornography content to the world. There is a good deal of evidence that many of our national leaders have been involved in deep corruption, and that these leaders have shared that corruption with the most influential people in the world.

This part about being drunk with the blood of the saints might throw those off who see America as a Christian nation. Many argue that Christians aren’t persecuted in America. However, I wonder how many Christians have been oppressed, brutalized, and killed in America. Just think of the multitudes of slaves, civil rights activists, and black Americans who have been killed due to racism. Many of those people were Christians. Additionally, America sends aid to scores of countries that persecute Christians.

It’s interesting that this harlot depicted in Revelation is clothed in purple and scarlet. We know scarlet means red, but typically I think of purple as a pretty straightforward color. There are shades, of course, but purple is purple. However, a look at the Greek (“porphyry” — Strongs 4209) shows that this color can actually be translated “deep violet, deep scarlet, or deep blue.” Consequently, this immoral lady could be clothed in red and blue, which, of course, are two of our national colors.

When I saw her, I marveled greatly. But the angel said to me, “Why do you marvel? I will tell you the mystery of the woman, and of the beast with seven heads and ten horns that carries her. The beast that you saw was, and is not, and is about to rise from the bottomless pit and go to destruction. And the dwellers on earth whose names have not been written in the book of life from the foundation of the world will marvel to see the beast, because it was and is not and is to come. This calls for a mind with wisdom: the seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman is seated; they are also seven kings, five of whom have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come, and when he does come he must remain only a little while. As for the beast that was and is not, it is an eighth but it belongs to the seven, and it goes to destruction.

Revelation 17:6-11 ESV

I believe this beast represents a kingdom that has been, ceased to be, and is revived in the last days, such as the Roman Empire or Babylon, but a newer version, because it is one of the seven, but also an eighth. Unbelievers will be enamored with the beast.

And the ten horns that you saw are ten kings who have not yet received royal power, but they are to receive authority as kings for one hour, together with the beast. These are of one mind, and they hand over their power and authority to the beast. They will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.”

Revelation 17:12-14 ESV

I believe these ten kings could be national leaders or organizational leaders of world organizations, as I stated in my article Are We in the End Times? (Part 2). These leaders will give their authority to the beast, this revived kingdom, and form one world government. Ultimately Jesus will prevail over this beast system.

And the angel said to me, “The waters that you saw, where the prostitute is seated, are peoples and multitudes and nations and languages. And the ten horns that you saw, they and the beast will hate the prostitute. They will make her desolate and naked, and devour her flesh and burn her up with fire, for God has put it into their hearts to carry out his purpose by being of one mind and handing over their royal power to the beast, until the words of God are fulfilled.  And the woman that you saw is the great city that has dominion over the kings of the earth.”

Revelation 17:15-18 ESV

Mystery Babylon, the prostitute, sits where there are many nations, ethnicities, and languages. America has long been called a “melting pot,” because of all of the ethnic backgrounds coming together on our soil. Not only that, but the Statue of Liberty sits in New York, where there are people of many backgrounds; furthermore, there the United Nations is headquartered there.

America has long been known for independence, nationalism, and self-sufficiency. Though these characteristics are declining, especially among the younger generation and liberals, there are many who still hold these ideals. I’ve heard quite a few people say that Americans will never allow anarchy, socialism, or an overthrow of our general liberties. But look at how many liberties have been given over in the past three months. Many churches remain closed, even though there is rioting in the streets and a lawless zone in Seattle. We are seeing the Marxist agenda unfold before our eyes, as division is incited by unseen powers who are under Satan’s control.

In order for one world government to emerge, American ideals, and America itself, must be destroyed. Right now we are seeing the beginnings of this unfold, as Americans are divided in multiple spheres: liberals vs. conservatives, Democrats vs. Republicans, pro-life vs. pro-abortion, black vs. white, mask wearer vs. non-mask wearer, Trump-groupie vs. Trump-hater, and yes, even Christian vs. Christian. These demonic forces are using Satan’s followers to incite discord, in order to bring about the demise of America, with the ultimate goal of one world government, which will be led by the antichrist. This Babylonian harlot, which could possibly be the United States, actually brings about her own demise by feeding immorality to the world, and experiencing the wrath of the world as a result.

How should we then live? Shouldn’t we be wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil (Ephesians 5:15-16)? We don’t know how many opportunities are left. For those of us who already have placed our trust in Jesus Christ as Lord, current events should motivate us more than ever to fulfill the Great Commission, inviting as many as possible to spend eternity in heaven. Realizing that, whether or not the U.S. is in end times prophesy, whether or not America is “Mystery Babylon,” our hope is not in this nation, or in this world, but in Christ alone, we need to do whatever it takes to rescue the perishing, to shed light on the darkness, to expose evil, and to glorify God.

For those who don’t yet know Christ, I urge you to repent, to put your trust in Christ alone, that you may have assurance of salvation through a relationship with the Living God. If you have never accepted Jesus as Lord, you can do that right now. This takes an honest and genuine acknowledgement that you are a sinner, that you can’t do enough good deeds to be right with God because He is holy and we are unholy, that you need Him to save you, and that you are willing to follow Him and allow Him to govern your life. Baptism is the outward expression of this inward decision and should be done publicly and by immersion, in an act of obedience, submission, and testimonial to others. You also should read the Bible, pray, gather with other believers, and obey God’s commands, not to be saved, but out of gratitude for salvation, a desire to grow in your relationship with God, and in hopes of winning others to the Lord.

Whatever decision God would have you make, whether it’s to enter a relationship with Him, to go deeper, or to evangelize and disciple others, please don’t put it off. It’s time to take our faith seriously. And if you happen to be reading this after the rapture of the church, know that, if you haven’t taken the Mark of the Beast, it’s not too late for you. You may be going through exceptionally hard times, but God is still on His throne, and He can sustain you. Simply trust Him. He alone is worthy of our trust!

Are We in the End Times? (Part 2)

By Heather Walton

This is the second article in a series about the End Times. I highly recommend reading this article first.

I enjoy studying prophesy because I love to see God’s plan unfold, and it’s exciting to think that Jesus Christ could come for the church in my lifetime, that I may not actually have to die in order to go to heaven. To think the God may have chosen me to live in this particular time in history is thrilling. In Acts 17:26, we learn that God determines when and where each of us fits into His eternal tapestry. I trust that He has placed me exactly in this time and place for a purpose, and I’ll consider it a bonus if I get to be one of the ones who gets to be taken to heaven while still alive.

Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,  in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.

1 Corinthians 15:51-52 ESV

I have long wondered if I might be part of the generation that gets to be on the earth when the Rapture takes place, but recent world events have brought me to a greater degree of anticipation. Signs of the times have been appearing a long time, and we have been in the “last days,” since Jesus ascended into heaven. But I’m specifically referring to the very last days, the end times.

In Matthew 24, we are told that many people will be taken by surprise, simply living life, marrying, eating, drinking, working, going on with business as usual. And suddenly two people will be working together or lying down together and one will suddenly be gone. Jesus says that the hour he comes will be unexpected, but, like in the Jewish wedding custom, we should be able to tell when the time is getting close for the groom, Jesus, to come get His bride, the church.

Many people are looking hard for certain signs that will only be fully revealed after the rapture takes place, such as the identity of the antichrist or the mark of the beast. While there are some people and things that strongly appear to have the potential to fulfill these prophesies, I don’t believe we will be able to know for sure before the one who holds the man of lawlessness back, the Holy Spirit, is taken out of the world via the church’s disappearance from the earth in the rapture (2 Thessalonians 2:6-7).

The spirit of the antichrist has been at work since the Garden of Eden, when Satan said to Eve, “Did God really say that you can’t eat from any tree in the garden” (Genesis 3:1)? There are some noteworthy elements of this question. First, he got her to question God. Second, he subtly twisted God’s words, so that there was an element of truth, yet it was mixed with a lie. A truth mixed with a lie is a lie, because partial truth is no truth at all. Third, he took his question to Eve, rather than Adam, probably in part because she hadn’t heard directly from God; this was a way to get her to question God, as well as her husband. Fourth, this question was designed to get Eve to doubt God’s goodness, and to make her feel oppressed.

Satan followed up with, “He knows if you eat of it, you won’t surely die, but you will become like Him, knowing good and evil” (Genesis 3:4). In other words, Eve, honey, He’s holding out on you. He’s oppressing you. In fact, he’s lying to you. He wants to keep all the power for Himself. But you deserve better, don’t you? You know, I have a solution: if you eat this fruit, you won’t die; on the contrary, you’ll be like God, and you can get out from under His oppressive yoke and get what’s due you. Doesn’t that sound good? Come on, darling, just one bite and you can be your own god.

He appealed to her emotions, he lied to her, and he created discontent in her, in order to compel her to action. He created a false gospel that we see alive and well today; he tempted her to believe that she could solve her own problems, in her own power, that she didn’t need God, and that she would not only escape the consequences God had laid out, but would instead be rewarded for going against God’s design. Not all who buy into these humanistic lies are atheists, but they operate in various degrees of functional atheism, depending on human solutions and achievements to solve the world’s problems. This, I believe, is the spirit of the antichrist that is in the world.

The mark of the beast is symbolized by the number 666 (Revelation 13:18). Since perfection in Scripture is symbolized by the number seven, six falls just short of that. Notice that Satan’s lies in the garden were close to the truth, but had a subtle difference, one you would have to be very attentive to notice. The devil is clever, “masquerading as an angel of light” (2 Thessalonians 11:14), and his tactics have an appearance of godliness, yet deny its power (2 Timothy 3:5). The doctrine of humanism fits this description well.

While humanism fits the principles of the spirit of the antichrist and the mark of the beast, I also believe there will be a literal man who culminates history by embodying the spirit of the antichrist, being possessed by Satan himself (Daniel 7:25; 2 Thessalonians 2:3-12; 1 John 2:18). I also believe that there will be a literal mark of the beast, which people will be required to have in order to buy and sell (Revelation 13:16-18; Revelation 19:20). I believe the antichrist is alive today and ready to step onto the world stage, and the technology to implement the mark of the beast is in development. I don’t know exactly who the antichrist is, or what the mark will be, but I can see several players emerging and multiple technological possibilities.

The books of Daniel and Revelation (Daniel 7:24; Revelation 13:1-18) tell us of 10 kingdoms, with 3 dominant kingdoms, and 1 leader emerging. People have long thought these 10 kingdoms are 10 countries, but I would like to propose a different possibility. I believe these 10 kingdoms may be 10 global organizations, committed to bringing about a unified governing body that will solve the world’s problems. There are multiple global organizations working toward a common goal of ushering in world peace, ending hunger and poverty, bringing about health reforms, lowering the population, creating imposed equality, reversing climate change, and creating a united human community. While these may sound like excellent goals, they propose humanistic means to meet humanistic ends.

The United Nations’ 2030 sustainable development goals, the pope’s Human Fraternity initiative, the World Economic Forum’s “Great Reset,” the World Health Organization’s Constitution, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s core beliefs, Babylon Health’s “accessible and affordable health care,” the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board, the World Bank, the Open Society Foundation and the World Trade Organization are among the global players with a humanistic agenda. Many, if not all, see needs for global unity and collaboration in order to usher in an era of peace, equity, and health for all people.

The current worldwide health crisis provides an opportunity to advance the agenda of these and other likeminded organizations. The World Economic Forum published an article this week that detailed how the COVID-19 crisis can facilitate a “global reset.”

“We set up a new world order after World War II. We’re now in a different world than we were then. We need to ask, what can we be doing differently? The World Economic Forum has a big responsibility in that as well – to be pushing the reset button and looking at how to create well-being for people and for the Earth.”

Jennifer Morgan, Executive Director of Greenpeace International https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/06/covid19-great-reset-gita-gopinath-jennifer-morgan-sharan-burrow-climate/

The global health situation has not actually changed the world, but has revealed what was already going on behind the scenes. Many refuse to see what’s taking place, or they see these initiatives as good. Again, there is an appearance of godliness. The problem is that humanistic solutions provide a false gospel, one that says we can save ourselves. They don’t require that we denounce faith in the god of our choice, even the true God, as long as that faith leaves room for us to also bow down to the gods of human achievement, personal entitlement, and political correctness, to name a few. The problem is that God refuses to share His glory with another. He is a jealous God, requiring our complete allegiance. Just as a loving parent doesn’t consider partial obedience to be true obedience, neither does our Creator consider partial allegiance to be acceptable worship.

Jesus said we are either for Him or against Him (Matthew 12:30). Those who are with Him, who truly follow Him, will spend eternity with Him, but those who deny Him or are lukewarm in their devotion will spend eternity separated from Him (Matthew 7:21; Matthew 10:33; John 3:16-18; Revelation 3:14-22). In light of this, we should examine ourselves. The time is short. Even if the rapture doesn’t take place anytime soon, though I believe it will, any of us could die at any time. That’s why those of us who know the Lord need to be intentional and passionate about sharing the Gospel and discipling others (Matthew 28:16-20; Ephesians 5:16; Colossians 4:5) and who those who don’t yet know Him need to confess their sin, turn from their wicked ways (even though they may seem like “good” people), confess Jesus as Lord, and allow Him to guide their thoughts and decisions from now on (Acts 2:38; Acts 4:12; John 14:6; Acts 16:31; Titus 3:5; Romans 3:23; Romans 10:9-10).

Whether you’re reading this before or after the rapture of the church, it’s important to recognize that humanism doesn’t solve our problems because we don’t have the control we think we do. If there’s anything these times should teach us, it’s that we are not as powerful as we think we are. The only wise way to deal with this truth is to humbly accept it, and then to accept the grace God freely gives, to worship Him, and to serve others for their good and His glory.

The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.

Revelation 22:17 ESV

Are We in the End Times? (Part 1)

By Heather Walton

Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you.  For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. (1 Thessalonians 5:1-3 ESV)

For many years, even centuries, people have been hypothesizing about the Lord’s return and other end times events. Some people living in the decades following Christ’s ascension had to be admonished to work and live their lives, rather than sitting on their roof tops, searching the skies for Jesus. But with recent world events, it’s natural to wonder if we truly are living in the last days.

No matter whether Christ returns in five minutes or 5 millennia, we should live as if his return is imminent, trying to win the lost and engaging in conduct worthy of the Gospel (Matthew 28:16-20; Philippians 1:27). In some ways, though, we should live as if he will not return in our lifetime: We need to contribute meaningfully to our families, communities, and society in whatever way he has gifted us (Romans 12:6-8; 1 Corinthians 12:7; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-15; Hebrews 6:11-12; 1 Peter 4:10-11). We need to expend all our energies for God’s glory and purpose with all the zeal and talent we possess, being alert for every opportunity to better the world, to win the lost, and disciple those in our sphere of influence, while also being cognizant that this world is not our home, and eager for our Lord to return and take us to our eternal residence (Colossians 4:2-6; Ephesians 5:15-17).

In 1 Thessalonians 5, we are told both that the Lord will return like a thief in the night, and that believers are not in darkness, and therefore that day should not overtake us like a thief. While we won’t know the day and the hour of Christ’s return, we should recognize the season (Matthew 24; 1 Thessalonians 5:4). Therefore, it is important to know what the Bible says about the end times. Scholars have debated various eschatological positions for centuries, and most of them were much smarter than me; however, I believe God has made Scripture understandable to the simple. Each Christian has the Holy Spirit living within, and therefore is fully equipped to understand God’s Word (John 14:26; John 16:7-11; 1 Corinthians 2:7-13).

I interpret Scripture literally, unless it is obviously figurative. For example, when Jesus said, “This is my body (Matthew 26:26; Luke 22:19),” or “I am the door (John 10:9),” I believe that to be figurative. When he said, “Nobody comes to the Father, except through me (John 14:6),” I believe that’s literal. So, while some Christians disagree, I believe in a premillennial interpretation of end-times events. My approach to answering the question, “Are we in the End Times?” is to examine current events in light of Biblical prophecy. I realize that we have the propensity to fit things in to fit our own preconceptions, so it is important both to recognize that and to seek out primary sources as often as possible.

“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5 ESV)

Without hesitation or qualification, I can say all of these things are true of our present culture. It is important to understand this idea of having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. I believe this is evidenced myriad ways in the world today, but likely the prominent manifestation is secular humanism, which has evolved from centuries past.

Humanism — an outlook or system of thought attaching prime importance to human rather than divine or supernatural matters. Humanist beliefs stress the potential value and goodness of human beings, emphasize common human needs, and seek solely rational ways of solving human problems.

Oxford Dictionaries

Humanism, which the signers of the Humanist Manifesto I referred to as “religious humanism,” has some fine-sounding ideals and lofty goals, but denies the existence of God, and therefore has the appearance of godliness, while denying its power. Humanism puts us in God’s position, giving us the responsibility for our destiny and the glory for our accomplishments. Humanism has infiltrated every corner of our culture, including the church. We are so indoctrinated in it that we would be hard-pressed to recognize its pervasive influence on our minds.

There are various manifestations of humanism throughout the globe, including the agendas of a number of worldwide organizations, such as the United Nations, the World Health Organization, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Economic Forum, ID2020, the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board, Gavi (The Vaccine Alliance), UNICEF, the World Bank, and more. Each of these organizations has visions and missions that sound reasonable and desirable, yet they create and try to accomplish those goals without considering God. They have a form of godliness but deny its power.

There are more religious forms of humanism in the world today, such as Pope Francis’ interpretation of Catholic theology, which some Catholics fear is leading away from traditional Catholicism and toward one world religion. The pope seems to support much of the U.N.’s ideology, while being silent on theological issues long settled in the Catholic Church, such as abortion and contraception. The pope is a proponent of the Human Fraternity, a document “for world peace and living together,” which he co-signed with Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Ahmed el-Tayeb. Part of this collaboration includes the Abrahamic Family House, “a beacon of mutual understanding, harmonious coexistence and peace among people of faith and goodwill,” consisting of a mosque, synagogue, church, and an educational building.

Pope Francis signs Human Fraternity Document

Organizations such as the Human Fraternity, the U.N., and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have an objective of world peace. While that is a noble-sounding goal, it’s important to define what they mean. The various organizations mentioned in this article have themes, including population control, climate control, vaccination, digital identification, elimination of poverty, equity, and unity. Again, these have the appearance of morality, and some of them are valid goals. However, the general perspective of the leaders of these organizations is humanistic, meaning they do not acknowledge God, but see humans as bearing total responsibility and possessing full power to carry out their self-made agendas.

In 1 Thessalonians 5:3, the Apostle Paul told us that when people say, “There is peace and security, then sudden destruction will come upon them … ” It is interesting to look at the objectives of these organizations in their own words. For example, the Document on Human Fraternity For World Peace and Living Together, penned by Pope Francis in February 2019, states the following:

We, who believe in God and in the final meeting with Him and His judgment, on the basis of our religious and moral responsibility, and through this Document, call upon ourselves, upon the leaders of the world as well as the architects of international policy and world economy, to work strenuously to spread the culture of tolerance and of living together in peace; to intervene at the earliest opportunity to stop the shedding of innocent blood and bring an end to wars, conflicts, environmental decay and the moral and cultural decline that the world is presently experiencing.

Pope Francis (Italics mine)

The United Nations has a similar mission:

The United Nations came into being in 1945, following the devastation of the Second World War, with one central mission: the maintenance of international peace and security

United Nations — What WE Do (Italics Mine)

In 2015, the U.N. launched an initiative called Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development . This reads like a blueprint for the New World Order, a utopian society where there is no more poverty or inequality, where everyone’s needs are met, where there are no more wars, where the planet’s resources are perfectly used and cared for, and where the nations are interconnected. Of course this sounds wonderful, and who could argue against these goals? However, the Lord told us:

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,

    neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.

For as the heavens are higher than the earth,

    so are my ways higher than your ways

    and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

Isaiah 55:8-9 (ESV)

The problem with the U.N.’s plans and the Pope’s plans is that they intend to reach these goals by humanistic means, rather than through an acknowledgement of God’s will and His power. They are trying to bring about things that God told us would not exist this side of heaven. Jesus told us that we would always have the poor with us (Matthew 26:11); therefore, though we should definitely work to alleviate poverty wherever we can, we know we cannot eradicate it. God told us that we would have wars and rumors of wars up until the end times, and that when we hear “peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come. Jesus told us that He is the only way to heaven (John 14:6; Acts 4:12; 1 Timothy 2:5-6) and that we are not to be unequally yoked with unbelievers (2 Corinthians 6:14-16), so joining together with them in an attempt to bring about world peace will not work.

People have been speculating for two millennia that Christ would be back soon, but now everything is in place for that to be fulfilled, and I believe we are in the very last days. I don’t presume to know the day or the hour, but we are told, as believers, we should recognize the season, that we should not be caught unaware. the Bible tells us of a day when two people will be together and one will suddenly be gone. This is often referred to as the Rapture of the Church, which many people believe precedes the Great Tribulation (Daniel 9; Daniel 12; Matthew 24; Revelation 13). Some interpret the Rapture as happening in the middle of the Great Tribulation. Either way, there appears to be no prophesy that remains to be fulfilled before the Rapture and the Tribulation take place, and the global powers seem to be working toward a manmade world peace as we speak. They have either manufactured or taken advantage of world events to bring about the perception of a need for us to unite against a common enemy. If that doesn’t work, they may have a backup plan of causing such strife that they need to institute martial law, and there may be other factors at play in the very near future.

There is much evil going on behind the scenes. We are told to expose the deeds of darkness (Ephesians 5:11). I have done a good deal of research about the world situation, and I intend to continue writing about it on this blog.

If you’re a believer, I encourage you not to be afraid. The Lord has wonderful things in store for His children.

But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”—

1 Corinthians 2:9 ESV

God challenges us to share the Gospel, in season and out, as we see the day approaching, and we are to sober minded, fulfilling the ministry God has given us (2 Timothy 4:2-5). We are to serve God with everything in us, presenting our lives as an offering, and we will be rewarded when we enter His presence (2 Timothy 4:6-8).

If you’re not yet a believer, I urge you to repent, to put your trust in Christ alone, that you may have assurance of salvation through a relationship with the Living God. If you have never accepted Jesus as Lord, you can do that right now. This takes an honest and genuine acknowledgement that you are a sinner, that you can’t do enough good deeds to be right with God because He is holy and we are unholy, that you need Him to save you, and that you are willing to follow Him and allow Him to govern your life. Baptism is the outward expression of this inward decision and should be done publicly and by immersion, in an act of obedience, submission, and testimonial to others. You also should read the Bible, pray, gather with other believers, and obey God’s commands, not to be saved, but out of gratitude for salvation, a desire to grow in your relationship with God, and in hopes of winning others to the Lord.

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