Ministers of Justice from 30 different countries met in Rome for an International Conference, entitled “For A World Without The Death Penalty.”
Pope Francis is calling for an “international consensus,” arguing that the commandment “Thou Shalt Not Kill” has absolute value and includes both the innocent and the guilty.
I guess that settles it! The pope of Rome is considered the ‘Vicar of Christ’ on Earth. If he says it, that’s the end of discussion…right? He speaks for Jesus, on Earth. The only other person who might argue effectively against him would be The Donald, who claims ‘no one reads the Bible more than I do.”
The pope’s logic is impeccable. If God said it, that settles it! Of course, there is hardly anything the Roman Catholic Church teaches (regarding Bible doctrine) that is actually found in The Bible….even Their Bible!
Truth? The command: “Thou shalt not kill,” is actually a condemnation of murder, not the mere killing of someone. If you read the O.T. book of Leviticus, you will find at least 18 specific instances where people ARE to be executed…by stoning.
In some cases the parents are required to throw the first stone!
So, what’s going on? Why would the pope make such an obviously WRONG analysis, missing the clear instruction of God? Ans? Because this Church never lets God’s Word interfere with what they want to believe or teach!
After the Flood, God instituted Capital Punishment for those who would wantonly and with malice aforethought murder another human being! [Gen. 9:6] That Law has never been rescinded.
What the pope is referring to is the Law delivered to Moses on Mt. Sinai. That law was to guide / control the Nation of Israel. As I just pointed out, that Law did NOT change anything God said about Capital Punishment!
His command to Noah was BEFORE there was a Nation of Israel.
The commandments given to Moses were FOR the Nation of Israel.
The Purpose of Jesus, on Earth, was to ‘do away’ with THAT Law.
The casual argument is offered in the words of Jesus, when He said He did not come to do away with the Law, but to fulfill it [Mt 5:17]. That fulfillment occurred in His Death, Burial & Resurrection! Now? Now the message is to the whole world, Jew and Gentile alike: Repent and Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ!
The Law of Moses? Paul specifically said he did NOT preach that! Acts 15:24 …we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment:…
The Church is NOT Israel! The Church is NOT under Mosaic Law! “Law” kills!! [II Cor. 3:6] In Paul’s Epistle to the Romans, the concept of physical circumcision is used to sum up the totality of The Law (Rom.2 & 3). In this argument he clearly pits law against grace!
Is circumcision (keeping the law) profitable (spiritually), Paul asks? Yes! But only IF you keep the entirety of that law! If you don’t keep it, perfectly? That law rises up to condemn you! The very behaviors you prize will condemn you before God!
ALSO: When The Law speaks, is speaks only to those under that law! (3:19) Are you a Jew? A Jew under Law? Then listen to The Law! Are you a Christian? A Jew who has Repented and Believed on the Lord Jesus Christ? Then the law has no authority over you! Keep the ceremonial parts that speak of Jesus or of God’s forgiveness, etc., but not because you must!
Why? Because by the keeping of the law, no flesh shall be justified in the sight of God! (3:20) Why? Because ‘law’ brings the knowledge of sin, not the remedy! And where the Spirit of the Lord is? There is Liberty, not bondage to a set of rules [II Cor. 3:7)
This concept is Fundamental to biblical Christianity, which rises and falls on this principle!! If you reject or simply do not understand this principle, The Bible says you are not Saved!!!
Why? Because, in the keeping of the law (as a means of personal righteousness before God) you repudiate everything Jesus stands for! Who would do that? Certainly NOT someone who has been ‘enlightened’ by the Spirit of God, through The Word of God! Certainly not someone in whom dwells the Spirit of God ‘both to WILL and to DO according God’s good will!” (Phil. 2:13)
The pope? Any and all who argue, using God’s Word, against capital punishment, executed by God-ordained authority structures (civil government — which is also ordained of God) is either very, very ignorant of God’s Word, or arguing against what he knows, for some other purpose!
Just this week we learned of an American Muslim intent on expressing jihad in these United States (because he couldn’t get to the Middle East) and admitted his target of preference was Churches! Why? Because no one there is carrying a gun!
Remove The Ultimate [Earthly] Penalty for the Ultimate [Earthly] Crime and see how many of these types will begin to proliferate!
There are Nations — Western Nations (code for Christian nations) — that have already outlawed Capital Punishment! But they repudiated Christianity first! AND…they are struggling with control over crime…as are we…for the same reason!
Why? Because the human heart is fundamentally evil! Remove the controls — internal / external — and he will begin to express that evil. Remove the penalties? It’s the Barbary Coast all over again! [Note: The Barbary Coast was dominated by Islam, not Christianity]
January 5, 2016 marks the pope’s First Video Message regarding his ‘Monthly Prayer Intentions’….Ever! LINK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nq7us5Lf5IU
His purpose is to emphasize the importance of Interreligious Dialogue.
Highlighted are a Buddhist, A Jew, A Christian and A follower of Allah. These make up the majority of the peoples of this Earth and, according to the pope, are “all children of God,” “all sharing a common belief in love,” all of which … “may produce the fruits of peace and justice.”
It’s a warm and inviting sentiment sure to touch the hearts of all men of good will. But what does it mean? A heart-felt desire that each religious system will see growth? That each religious person would be encouraged and strengthened in their faith?
It’s interesting that the pope uses the word “faith,” to describe these several beliefs. In religious terms, Faith implies an intangible link to God, borne of our confidence and reliance upon God, without the aid of any required behaviors. In Christianity, faith is a gift from God [Eph. 2:8,9], without which no man / woman will see God.
Is Judaism a Faith System? Buddhism? Islam? Catholicism? Or, are there prescribed behaviors which MUST be observed in order to receive God’s blessings?
Are sacrifices required in Judaism? Is Right Thought, Speech, Action, Effort, Concentration, etc. required in Buddhism, in order to achieve understanding, peace, compassion, etc? Is Islam a faith-system or a works-system? “Islam” means ‘submission:’ to the revealed requirements, but also whatever Allah requires (or you think he requires).
Is Catholicism a Faith System? Can you skip baptism and be a Catholic? Can you skip Confession and still Receive Communion? Can you skip Communion and Receive ‘Last Rites?’ Can you skip the ‘Last Rites,’ and still get to heaven? Can you be something other than Catholic and be assured of Heaven? Or be a Christian?
The modernists and compromisers may say ‘yes,’ but the Catholic Catechism says NO! According to official Catholic doctrine, ONLY Catholics are Christians and ONLY practicing Catholics can hope for Heaven.
So…Is Catholicism a Faith System? If dialogue can win wars, then Catholicism is a Faith System, …and elephants can fly!
Can you see how people like me become cynical? Why educated or informed people pay no attention to what the majority of Christian Teachers say or do? Can you see how Christianity and indeed all organized religions get a bad reputation? They think we’re all stupid, or gullible — and many of us are.
Does anyone really believe Catholics and Muslims are going to make peace through dialogue? Does anyone, over the age of 10 years, really think Jews and Catholics are going to be friends….ever? By talking?
So what is the pope saying? Listen: “We may all think differently, but that shouldn’t stop us from ‘collaborating’ with one another.” What does that mean? It means to work together toward a common goal.
What’s The Common Goal? Peace on Earth? That’s not going to happen this side of Jesus’ Return! A Working Relationship? Toward what end? Islam wants to dominate the world! Roman Catholicism has the same goal, if different tactics. Buddhists don’t care…about anything but themselves. They just want a world where everyone is at peace. Dialogue about that?
It all sounds silly, or at least out of touch with reality! However, popes are not prone to either of these, so there’s something else going on.
Like? Like, lower the tensions between us and maybe stop the fighting? Then what? Then, maybe the Catholics will have a chance to accomplish their goals! There is no Catholic army any longer. If Islam wins…everyone’s a Muslim or dead! If the Jews keep holding onto their religious beliefs, there will be no compromise with Catholics, Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Animists, nor anyone!
The pope’s words are directed toward Jews and Muslims. He has the Evangelical Christian Community eating out of his hands and I’m certain the Buddhists are no threat! What he’s missing is the reality that what’s going on in the world is a War Against God! It’s not Jews v. Catholics or Moslems v. Everyone Else, it’s Man against God.
Men have always thought in terms of World Domination. Every one of them believed / believes if only…. If only I could run the world; If only this would happen or that would happen; If only people would pull together instead of pulling apart; etc. ALL efforts toward a Global Society is a Plan for World Domination by Someone or a group of Someones….all of which are human and therefore doomed to fail!
The Bible declares only One Hope! His name is Jesus! Why didn’t the pope emphasize Him?
His purpose is to rid the world of sin and establish His Kingdom on Earth. His return to Earth will be with a sword, not dialogue! His subjects will be those who love Him more than life itself. His subjects will be His spiritual children, men and women He suffered and died to redeem. Everyone else will perish! There will be no dialogue!!
There is only One Way To God and that’s Through The Lord Jesus Christ! Not a Church. Not a Religion. Not a Philosophy of Life. Only through the blood of the Lamb of God, which was shed for our sin — 2000 years ago!
Once Upon A Time….Men knew that human beings were “Dead In Trespasses And Sin”
Once Upon A Time….Men knew that this meant mans’ heart was “Desperately Wicked”
Once Upon A Time….Men knew that this condition was spiritually / eternally Terminal!
Today? Not So Much!
What happened? These concepts are no longer being preached in Evangelical Churches! I’m not saying they are never mentioned or that Evangelicals don’t believe them, only that you’d never know it by what they DO preach!
What Is The Gospel? Jesus said, “Ye must be born again!” [Jn. 3:5] A precise statement describing a new beginning, from the inside-out. He did not say, “You must clean up your act!” Nor did he say, “You must learn how to do better!” He pointed to something no human being can do: be born again.
What is our problem? We’re sinners. Okay, what does that mean? It means we’re spiritually cut off from God, due to our moral and spiritual depravity, so that we cannot see, hear or know God, even if we cared to! And we don’t!!!
How bad is it? To Nicodemus (a Pharisee and ‘Master of the Jews’) Jesus said: “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Jn 3:1-6
When was the last time you heard the phrase ‘you must be born again,’ in your church? Followed by ‘and, oh, you CAN’T DO THAT!’ Not in your own strength. Not simply by willing it so. In fact, unless God does a miracle in your life you WON’T! And it won’t bother you that you don’t!
This is essentially what Jesus was saying. “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” What ‘water?’ What ‘spirit?’ How? Why? If you pay attention to the words you should be struck by how one-sided this is. Here’s a man wanting to ‘see God,’ being told he can’t! Unless something completely out of his control happens, first!
Why? v.6 Because “that which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” The natural man is not ‘born of the Spirit.’ He is completely of ‘the flesh.’ Did I mention he’s ‘cut off!?’ He must be born again.
Nicodemus challenged Jesus on this issue, asking how a man could enter again into his mother’s womb and be born again. But Jesus assured him He was talking about something only God could do. “Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.” (3:7,8)
The solution Jesus gave was that God would have to send His Spirit, like the wind, to blow upon a man, conveying the requisite spiritual power necessary to accomplish this feat. The Spirit of God would come, not at the man’s bidding or pleading, but as the wind, coming from somewhere no man knew, and going somewhere no man knows. A transaction Jesus called being “born again.”
More than that a transaction Jesus said was absolutely essential: “Ye MUST Be Born Again” (of the Spirit of God)….if you want to see heaven. Did you see it? Being born again is NOT being saved! Not unless a man can be saved without ‘Hearing’ the Gospel, ‘Repenting’ of his sin and ‘Believing’ on the Lord Jesus Christ!
And therein lies the rub! Increasingly the Gospel Messages we’re hearing are devoid of these pre-requisites. Men and women are being told they simply have to pray the sinner’s prayer and they’re saved! There is a link at the end of this blog that illustrates my point.
Here is a Sr. Pastor (in his 50’s, at least) taking a vacation the last two weeks of the year — Christmas! Then bringing in a Special Speaker he says he knows the people will enjoy. And they did! Why? Because he’s a “Christian Comedian.”
This man tells jokes and makes some interesting comments, then invites folks to ‘come forward’ if they want to be saved. A bunch, do! So he leads them in a prayer. He told them they needed to come down to the front if they wanted to be saved. He then told them to repeat after him, as he then laid out a prayer of salvation.
Here was his ‘Prayer’ Now repeat after me…Dear God: Thank you for sending your Son to die for my sin. I Believe it! And I Receive it! Come into my heart, Lord….And have Your way. Thank you for forgiving my sins…..for everything… In Jesus’ Name.
Saved? From What? What sin did any of these acknowledge? What is it they ‘Believe?’ The facts of Jesus crucifixion? What does it mean to “Receive it?” And when he asked them to thank God for forgiving their sins, I wondered if they knew which one?
Sadly, this is the kind of thing you hear a lot, these days. Some preachers and evangelists take more time to describe sin and salvation, but rarely do they offer anything close to what Jesus did. It’s usually a ‘slap-shot’ across a broad range of issues, offered with pathos and sincerity, and covered in Bible lingo. But, in the end, I wonder how many were saved from their sin and how many simply went away relieved they weren’t going to hell?
Watch the Video and then read John 3:1-21 and see how they match up. This is how we know we are in the Last Days.