by Dr. D ~ October 1st, 2014
Following its defeat as the last Muslim caliphate in WWI the country of Turkey rose from the ashes as a ‘secular’ nation directed by the military rather than religious leaders. All that began to change when the current pro-Islamist government of Recep Erdogan came to power in 2003. Since then the country has been transitioning from a secular nation towards becoming an official Muslim nation once more with all the former vestiges of sharia law beginning to rise up from the dustbin of history.
Now Turkey is beginning to clamp down on Christian churches even to the point of shutting them down over questionable trumped up charges. The current Islamist government refuses to allow the establishment of seminaries to train Christian ministers to serve the millions of Christians in the country which forces churches to depend upon foreign ministers that are vulnerable to being arrested and deported by the current government.
Here’s an account of the most recent shuttering of a Protestant Church in the country from World Watch Monitor:
Turkish authorities have sealed a Protestant church in Southeast Turkey and ordered its American pastor fined and deported on charges of "working illegally."
Lawyers filed a court appeal Sept. 26 to postpone the deportation, protesting what Turkey’s Association of Protestant Churches called an "absolutely arbitrary" ruling against the Gaziantep congregation and its foreign pastor.
Local police officials sealed the premises of the New Life Church on Aug. 28. Just over two weeks later, on Sept. 14, they detained its pastor, Patrick Jensen, with order from Turkey’s Interior Ministry to deport him immediately.
<Read the whole article>
Response: Meanwhile most in America continue to think of Turkey as a NATO ally and one of the few moderate nations in the Middle East and far more ‘European’ than the rest. But this is increasingly not the case as Turkey under the leadership of President Erdogan and PM Ahmet Davuto?lu seems to be transitioning in a more Islamist direction towards their old historical position as the head of Muslim nations and the establishment of a new caliphate.
Meanwhile the modernity and the moderate more democratic secular government of the last 80 years is falling by the wayside while a more Islamist one rises up once more and begins to discriminate against Christians and other minority religions.
This is probably only the beginning. Turkey has a major role in a future attack upon Israel according to the prophetic Gog and Magog scenario of Ezekiel 38-39. *Top
by Dr. D ~ September 30th, 2014
The administrators at a public charter school in Temecula, California have removed all books suspected of being ‘Christian’ from the school library including Corrie ten Boom’s holocaust account, The Hiding Place.
Here’s the report from Pacific Justice Institute:
Pacific Justice Institute is warning a charter school in Southern California that it is violating the First Amendment by removing library books based on their perceived Christian content.
A parent of students enrolled at Springs Charter Schools was recently shocked to see some of the books being targeted for removal, including the well-known account of Holocaust survivor Corrie ten Boom, The Hiding Place. The parent contacted PJI after library personnel explained to her that they had been directed to remove Christian books, books by Christian authors, and books from Christian publishers. …
PJI President Brad Dacus commented, “It is alarming that a school library would attempt to purge books from religious authors. Indeed, some of the greatest literature of Western Civilization comes from people of faith. Are they going to ban the sermons or speeches of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.? What about the Declaration of Independence that invokes the laws of nature and nature’s God? We are calling on Springs Charter Schools to immediately reverse their ill-conceived and illegal book-banning policy.”
<Read the whole report>
Response: I am pretty sure that this may be happening all across the country. If not now then soon. The idea for this probably starts with discussions at national educational conferences attended by School librarians and administrators who then go home and censor the Christian books from their own libraries. The funny thing is that it is only Christian and Jewish literature that seems to be discriminated against while other religious material including Muslim literature seems to get a pass in the name of ‘multiculturalism.’
If you check the school libraries in your town you may find this has already happened at your public schools. We really don’t know where this is coming from except we suspect that it may have originated from the progressive agenda of the current administration’s Department of Education. *Top
by Dr. D ~ September 29th, 2014
There are very few political leaders right now in America that I whole heartedly agree with particularly the President and the Governor of the state I live in (California).
Nevertheless we should be praying for them regardless. This reminder is for me if no one else. Remember Paul counseled the early Christians to pray for the Roman leaders and as bad as some are in the USA none are in the category of a Nero or Caligula at least not yet.
Here’s a short article reminding us to pray anyway from Citizen Link President Tom Minnery:
“In the Old Testament, in the day of Daniel,” Minnery said, “through the means of directing Cyrus, Nebuchadnezzer and Darius, God handled those despots fairly well to effect His own desires for the Israelites. We saw that in the Old Testament time and time again.
“Obviously, God can, and does, direct the heart of any leader at any time He wills it – even those who don’t believe in Godly principles.”
“Pray for righteousness, pray for our leaders, pray for them to act,” he said. “Do not give up in expecting that God will maneuver human circumstances to accomplish His will.”
<Read the whole article>
Response: While we are at it remember to pray for our judges and judicial system. Our religious freedoms sometimes are hanging by a thread as cases make there way through the courts. We should particularly be praying for the current Supreme Court justices for their health and for them to receive and accept Godly wisdom. *Top
by Dr. D ~ September 26th, 2014
UPDATE: Nolan linked to radical Imam also linked to the Boston bombers.
In a story that was originally reported by the American press as just another case of workplace violence comes the updated information that the fired employee was a recent convert to Islam who tried to convert his co-workers and then ended up beheading one woman before he was stopped while trying to kill another. Here’s the story from the UK Daily Mail:
Alton Alexander Nolen, who converted to Islam during a recent stint in prison, was fired from Vaughan Foods, a food processing plant in Moore, Oklahoma, on Thursday before returning to his SUV and smashing it into another vehicle.
The 30-year-old then climbed out and entered the building, attacking the first two people he saw with a knife he had used at the plant, Moore Police Sergeant Jeremy Lewis said.
After beheading Colleen Hufford, 54, and stabbing Traci Johnson, 43, Nolen was shot and wounded by off-duty sheriff’s deputy and company CEO Mark Vaughan.
Nolen survived and was hospitalized. Johnson is in stable condition in hospital.
The FBI is now investigating Nolen’s recent conversion to Islam to determine whether it was connected to the attack.
<Read the whole article>
Response: The FBI is trying to determine whether the attack had anything to do with Islam? Most regular folks would say ‘yes’ since Nolan reportedly tried to convert his fellow workers to Islam and then chose to Kill a woman by beheading her. Obviously Nolan is unbalanced but his recent conversion to Islam and the publicized examples of violence by ISIS probably contributed to the unfortunate choice of beheading in this case.
However the same FBI concluded a few years ago that the murder of 13 soldiers at Fort Hood by Major Nidal Hasan was nothing more than ‘workplace violence.’ Plus the Obama administration reportedly would not let Hasan testify to his radical Muslim motives even at his own trial according to his lawyer. So rest assured that the administration will find that this killing also has nothing to do with Islam just like the Islamic State supposedly has nothing to do with Islam according to President Obama. *Top
by Dr. D ~ September 25th, 2014
The California Baptist congregation which earlier this year came out in support of homosexuality and same-sex marriage has been officially kicked out of the Southern Baptist Convention. Here’s the story from the World Mag:
The Southern Baptist Convention on Tuesday voted to remove a Los Angeles-area church from its membership after its pastor announced support for same-sex marriage and homosexual relationships.
The national organization’s action came 10 days after the California Southern Baptist Convention voted to remove New Heart Community Church from its fellowship
Posting on Twitter, Russell Moore, president of the convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC), described the move as “sad but necessary.”
<Read the whole article>
Response: The SBC denomination is the largest protestant group in the USA. Member churches are independent but required to subscribe to the basic theology and beliefs of the larger denomination and are free to leave at any time. In this case the congregation did not necessarily want to leave but had voted to depart from some of the core Biblical beliefs of the Convention.
The pastor in this case received all sorts of positive attention from religious progressives including an invitation to the White House during LGBT pride month. But the SBC has ruled that he has erred both “personally and publicly.”
This is not the first SBC congregation to go over this issue nor will it be the last. Earlier this year I wrote that all evangelical ministers and churches would soon be forced to make an official choice concerning homosexuality and same-sex marriage. Some in the evangelical community are supporting a so-called ‘Third Way’ approach, like New Heart Community Church, which opens the church body up to dodge the issue by agreeing to disagree over the issue. The SBC has made it clear to their member churches that this is not an acceptable option.
From my perspective what that really does is allow evangelical churches and ministries to agree to reject a part of the Bible. In the long run it will totally destroy American evangelicalism which was supposed to be all about the Bible and Biblical teaching. *Top
by Dr. D ~ September 24th, 2014
For 24 years the ‘See You At The Pole’ day has demonstrated to schools, parents, and the whole country that prayer is still allowed in public schools just not the official kind led by school officials or teachers. Hundreds of thousands of students participate each year by gathering around their school flag pole on campus the third Wednesday of September. The theme this year is taken from Ephesians 6:18a:
NEVER STOP PRAYING, ESPECIALLY FOR OTHERS.
Atheist groups continue to try to shut this down but the law is really on our side. Students have the right to pray in public schools and even teachers can join in as long as they don’t lead.
This year saw a huge disinformation campaign launched all around the country by atheist groups trying to stop prayer in the locker rooms before football games. Warning letters were sent out to nearly every public school district in America. As a result some football coaches have even been fired by their schools for allowing or encouraging the student lead prayers. This will eventually be played out in the courts. As it now stands students still have the right to pray in school and as I tell my grandchildren, there is absolutely no way anyone can ever stop anyone from giving silent prayers any place or any time.
Meanwhile, the ‘see you at the pole’ movement is demonstrating today that we still have freedom of religion in the public square and even in our schools. *Top
by Dr. D ~ September 23rd, 2014
A recent survey taken by the Pew Research Center shows that Americans are closely divided over whether wedding related businesses should be forced to participate in same-sex ceremonies or be allowed to opt out for religious reasons. Also in the same poll a large majority indicated that the role and influence of religion in the American culture was clearly in decline. Here’s the story from the Blaze:
When asked whether businesses should be permitted to refuse matrimonial service based on “religious reasons,” 47 percent of respondents agreed that they should, while 49 percent said owners should be required to serve gay couples; four percent didn’t know which side to take.
The study, which measures numerous facets pertaining to faith in American life, also found that the vast majority of respondents (72 percent) believe that religion is losing its influence in American society.
But most aren’t happy with this change, with 56 percent of the nation calling it a negative development.
<Read the whole article>
Response: The survey is discouraging for those of us who see it as an issue of religious freedom. Clearly the trend is against us and if it continues religious liberty may also decline in America. Already we are seeing the First Amendment interpreted in ways that limit religious participation rather than the original intent which was to preserve it without government interference.
In this generation there is a real trend among those coming out of Ivy league law schools to view freedom of religion as merely ‘freedom to worship’ within the four walls of an official place of worship. This is reflected in some of the more recent judicial decisions against Christian business owners. Particularly the one handed down by the New Mexico Supreme Court which basically ruled that religious convictions had to be left at home or church and had no place in the running of a business.
47% of those participating in the Pew survey would seem to agree which is far worse than I would have expected and indicates that our religious freedoms in America are clearly in jeopardy regardless of a Constitution that was originally written to secure them. *Top