All posts tagged: Churches

Do we need the Issachar anointing today?

The men of Issachar, a small tribe of Israel, had a unique role in Israeli society. In 1 Chronicles, we are told that two hundred leaders of Issachar understood the times and seasons the nation was facing and knew what to do. “from Issachar, men who understood the times and knew what Israel should do—200 chiefs, with all their relatives under their command;” (1 Chronicles 12:32 NIV) There is some debate on what this was actually referring to. But most believe the verse was stating that these leaders had an astute awareness of the political climate, and understood what decisions Israel needed to make. They came to this conclusion, because this description of the men of Issachar was included in a listing of those in Israel who were standing with David as the future king of Israel during the dark days when King Saul was still on the throne and was pursing David in an effort to assassinate him. Aside from the men of Issachar, the list included men from several tribes who had thrown …

Using strip clubs to be as wise as serpents?

When Jesus was sending out His disciples to preach the Gospel, the Lord gave them some very strange advice, He said: 16 “Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. (Matthew 10:16 ESV) Many struggle to interpret what Jesus meant by this. Biblically, the serpent was portrayed as crafty and deceptive when it tempted Adam and Eve to fall into sin. Meanwhile, the dove was considered clean, a picture of innocence and the Holy Spirit. So how do these two conflicting metaphors work together? I think the glue that brings them together is that the disciples were being sent out as sheep among wolves. The church has enemies. We need to understand how this enemy works and be as crafty when it comes to dealing with them. But this craftiness needs to be balanced with the innocence of doves meaning we can’t use this craftiness to take personal advantage of others. A couple recent stories may portray this balance at work. As …

Did Chicago just threaten to bulldoze churches?

In an interview with Todd Starnes, Matt Staver, the founder of Liberty Counsel, a legal nonprofit dedicated to fighting for religious liberties, says that Chicago officials allegedly threatened to bulldoze two churches in that city because they are fighting the city’s coronavirus lockdown rules. Starnes explains: Matt Staver, the founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, said Wednesday that churches that he represents have received letters from the city’s Board of Health that declared them “public nuisances.” The term may not seem like much on the surface, but he said, legally, it opens up these churches to a lot of problems. Staver read the letter on air that said the department “has the power and duty to cause all nuisances affecting the health of the public to be abated.” Staver said the letter threatened a “summary abatement,” which is legalese for the destruction of the facility without any judicial process or further notice. Staver said the rule of law in the state is clear He said if there’s a summary abatement for an animal “you just take them …

3,500 California Churches will reopen on May 31st with or without permission

Churches in California are being impacted by government mandated lockdowns and 3,500 churches in that state announced they are reopening with or without government permission. Many are concerned that the lockdowns implemented by the state and municipal governments may go on for months, if not indefinitely. In an interview with Good Morning America, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said that the lock down in his city may never end. This announcement followed an order by LA County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer on Tuesday, May 12, 2020, that she was extending the city’s stay-at-home order another three months. Garcetti quickly contradicted Ferrer’s statement by adding the extension to the end of August will only include the use of face masks and social distancing. Garcetti did not address bans put on public gatherings that includes schools and churches. But then Garcetti added that “LA will never completely open until we have a cure.” Some believe the Democratic mayor plans to keep the city in some version of a lock down until a vaccine is found, that …

Credit: Landahlauts/Flickr/Creative Commons

Christians need to toughen up

It is one of the earliest references to Christianity from non Biblical sources. It involves graffiti on an ancient wall in Rome that was part of a home that originally belonged to the notorious Roman emperor Caligula. It was drawn sometime between the first and second century. Carved by soldiers in the Roman army, it involves an image of a man with a donkey’s head hanging on a cross. There is a Roman soldier standing at the side with a hand raised that is explained by the words written in Greek beneath:  “Alexamenos worships [his] God.” According to Christian apologist Tertullian (160 to 225 AD), depicting Jesus as a donkey was a popular way of insulting Christians at that time. He wrote of  a man living in Carthage who had an image of a Christian with ears and hooves of a donkey. In today’s equivalent of an editorial cartoon, it had the words: “The God of the Christians begotten of an ass” written beneath. And lately in North America we starting to see anti Christian …

Havana-based Eduardo Perez is promoting God through his successful photography business. He has taken to photographing Christian communities throughout Cuba. Photo: YouTube/CBN

The Cuban church thrives in difficult times

History has repeatedly shown when the Christian church undergoes persecution it thrives. We see this at the start of the early church in the Book of Acts where believers were martyred (Acts 7:54-60) and often thrown in prison (Acts 12). But as this was happening Luke says the church grew as people were added daily (Acts 2: 41-47). This happens because during times of persecution, God will pour out His Holy Spirit resulting in miracles, healings, salvations and rapid church growth. In a recent report on CBN.com, Heather Sells talks about the incredible growth in the Cuban church despite resistance and outright persecution by the Communist regime under the Castro brothers who have ruled Cuba for decades. Believers in Cuba go one step further and claim their suffering has directly contributed to the church’s growth on the island nation. According to the report, over 16,000 new evangelical churches have started in Cuba since 1995. There are two styles of churches in Cuba. On one hand there are churches that follow the traditional model of meeting …

Las Cruces, New Mexico, Photo: Flickr/Joseph j7uy5

Two New Mexico churches bombed

It hasn’t received much press. I guess if there is no blood or gore, most in the media are not that interested. Two churches in La Cruces, New Mexico had bombs explode outside their buildings a half an hour part on Sunday morning, August 2, 2015. With a population of 101,000, La Cruces also called the “City of the Crosses” is the second largest city in New Mexico. The first bomb exploded in the mail box of Calvary Baptist Church at about 8:20 am. The service hadn’t started yet and though there were 30 people inside, no one was injured. The second bomb exploded about a half an hour later at the nearby Holy Cross Catholic Church. This bomb detonated in front of the church’s heavy glass doors shattering the glass as a communion service was underway attended by Monseigneur John Anderson. Dennis Llewellyn who attends Calvary Baptist is a former member of the US Marine’s special forces. He knew immediately it was bomb stating, “it was a real bomb, I saw all the parts,” …