Commentary on world events that relate to Bible prophecy and on Rapture Ready issues world events.

Nov 7, 2011

The Relationship Between Morality and Liberty

America is one of the most highly regulated nations on earth. We're a nation of a million rules. Our lives are controlled by meddling bureaucrats who think they know what is best for us.

The rapid growth of government has made Washington DC a boom town. Of all the top 50 urban areas, DC is the only city unaffected by the downturn in the housing market. The nation's capital also has the highest income. Federal employees have an average income of $126,000, edging out San Jose, the home of tech giants like Adobe, Cisco Systems, and eBay. The national median income for 2010 was $50,046.

The flood of new rules has been nonstop. Most amazing is how complacent the American people are about Big Brother's efforts to micromanage their lives. I said in an earlier commentary that we passed a very major milestone on the road to tyranny when we collectively consented to the TSA's plan to grope people at airports. Months later, this procedure has become standard practice, with zero controversy.

It didn't take long for the TSA to branch out into other areas. If you're driving on the highway, you may soon see its signature blue uniforms at various checkpoints. The Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security has been checking trucks at weigh stations with drug- and bomb-sniffing dogs during random inspections.

Even the local police are overstepping their bounds. You can be imprisoned these days for some of the most minor offenses. Samantha Zucker was visiting New York and found herself caught in the city's penal system for days. She was in a park past the 1 a.m. curfew when a patrol car spotted her. Rather than being fined or given a warning, she was handcuffed and forced to spend 36 hours in jail. In another incident, Emily Good was standing on her front lawn filming the police doing a traffic stop. An officer approached Good and told her she would be arrested if she didn't stop recording. She refused and was taken into custody. Despite the fact that Good had every right to film the traffic stop, she was still arrested.

All across the country, police and sheriff's departments have become more militarized. At one time, the equipment of an average law officer would include a vehicle, a radar gun, and a revolver. Today, the officer might have body armor, remote cameras, and weapons designed for crowd control. Larger cities have whole units to deal with situations that would result from civil unrest. The city of New York has its own rapid reaction force.

In the past few years, there has been an alarming rise in the number of government raids against business and individuals--raids that go beyond the standard drug raids. In the past year, there have been raids against people who sell unpasteurized milk and against distributors who have lobsters in the wrong type of packages. Even children's lemonade stands are being given the heavy-handed treatment. This summer, the Gibson guitar company was raided by the Department of Justice, which confiscated the wood the company uses to make fingerboards. In the past, in these types of situations, a business would just receive a letter in the mail explaining the offense. Today, the police are more likely to storm in with automatic weapons drawn.

The trend towards government control started with the 9/11 attacks. The creation of the Department of Homeland Security has resulted in the largest increase in the size of the federal government since World War II.

I think the driving force behind the encroachment on our freedom is the decline in morality. When society becomes more sinful, authorities ignore the rules of the land and become a law unto themselves. This is the reason the cops arrested the woman standing on her own front lawn. He didn't like what she was doing, so he granted himself the right to apprehend her.

People who care about liberty need to be mindful of how easy it is for a nation to slip into tyranny. The fact that you are not violating any laws doesn’t mean you can’t be arrested. Over the years, I’ve read of repeated cases in other nations where citizens were jailed for absolutely no valid reason. When they asked why they were being held, they received this typical reply: “Don’t worry, we’ll think of something.”

Christians need to be sensitive to the activity of a government that is out of control. The Bible predicts that someday the world will become intolerant of true believers. The shift we are seeing now is most likely setting the stage for the Antichrist's global rule.

"And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations. And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. If any man have an ear, let him hear. He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints" (Revelation 13:7-10).

-- Todd

History’s Most Important Q & A

Many ministries and other forums send me their newsletters/information during the course of any given day. Yesterday I received such an information piece. Its contents hammered home that a profound disconnect exists in the minds of mankind brought on by the original sin in the Garden of Eden. Sin disrupted understanding between God and man to such an extent that it took God coming to dwell among humanity as a flesh-and-blood Person to restore the relationship that was torn when Adam disobeyed and brought sin and death into the world.

The item in my inbox illustrated the problem of denial of heaven’s plan for restitution of the God-man relationship. The words of an emailer to the information forum demonstrate the disconnect wrought by the disruption in Eden.

Isn’t it time to let that poor guy Jesus alone? He lived, he died and he hasn’t been heard from since. He gave his 33 years and just let him rest in peace. Good grief, why try to rebirth him into this crazy world? He would be overwhelmed. He was a poor, illiterate carpenter for heaven sakes. He never traveled more than 50 miles from his home in the desert. He espoused simple truths that anyone and many have also espoused. He didn’t have the only patent on spiritual truths.

Let’s move toward a new spiritual understanding that humans are responsible for their own actions and that they cannot rely on mythical characters or real characters that have been made into perfect myths. The major religions are all desert religions by some very backward and illiterate tribes. For instance, I am from Sweden . I should bow down to Thor as my god because that’s my tribe. Instead, I think for myself and I stand as a beacon of spiritual energy for my own life. Thor had his time and I’ve got mine.

Now we come to the purpose of this commentary. The title, “History’s Most Important Q & A,” encapsulates the problem and the solution manifested in the above-quoted thoughts about Jesus, the God-Man sent from heaven to be the sacrificial Lamb that takes away the sin of the world. The question, the most important ever asked, and its answer are found in the account of the Lord Jesus Christ and His disciples as they engaged in a Q & A while traveling in ministry.

When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. (Matthew 16:12-18)

Jesus first asked His immediate followers who people in general said He was. They answered that people had various opinions about who this miracle-working, itinerate preacher might be. Jesus then asked the question of the ages: “Who do you say that I am?”

Peter, the burly fisherman who was always quick to assert his thoughts into any situation, for once spoke up with the most profound answer ever given and won the total approval of the Lord: “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God!”

The big, rough-hewn fisherman had breached the gap that had formed when Adam disobeyed in the Garden of Eden. God, the Father, had himself given Peter that understanding. Jesus is the very Son of the Living God!

It seems that at no time in human history has that disconnect been more front and center than today. Jesus Christ is blatantly misunderstood, and that is bad enough. But it is the fact that His Holy Name is dragged through the muck of this fallen cesspool of a world that stabs most painfully the spiritual heart of the true follower of Christ.

Today I was listening to Glenn Beck as he chatted with his radio partner and his audience. I’ve listened many times to the famous Mormon talk-show host use the name of Jesus to claim his being a Christian. I’ve recently covered the points of difference between what God’s Word says about Jesus and Mormonism’s view of Jesus. In brief, that cult holds Jesus to be the created brother of Lucifer. Yes, the same Lucifer (the serpent) who brought about the disconnect between God and man through seducing Eve and tempting Adam to disobey God.

Mr. Beck was intimating how Jesus had no interest in “rapturing” His “people” from this world; rather, He wants His people to make this world a wonderful place of freedom–a heaven on earth.

That is Mormonism. The Mormon Church will be the final authority in any such new world order, according to its eschatology. Beck, in his usual way, became increasingly sarcastic and chiding while he mocked the Rapture. He talked about how if the rapturists wanted to really make a statement, they should, rather than set dates for the Rapture, simply state that they are leaving, go to some spot, and let their clothes drop to the ground as if they had been taken. Then they should stay out of the picture so the world would perceive they were gone. Thus, Beck implied slyly that those who believe in such nonsense would get out of the way so real religionists–the Mormons—could bring about Utopia.

This, as much as anything, proves two things. First, it shows that Beck has no thought of Jesus being the same Jesus in whom I believe and who I follow. Second, it reaffirms that the Rapture is very close because of Beck and others like him mockingly fulfilling a most relevant prophecy for these troubling yet exciting times. Appropriately, it is the same Peter who gave the following prophecy who gave the most important answer to Christ’s all-important question of history: “Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation" (2 Peter 3:3-4).

My Jesus is God, who cannot lie. My Jesus says He, not the Mormon Church, will establish a glorious millennial reign. My Jesus keeps His promises, and He promises this: “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (John 14:1-3).

The question that is the most important in all of human history is the one posed by the Lord Jesus, himself. It is asked directly to you who are reading these words. Who is Jesus to you? Who do you say He is?

Glenn Beck, like so many others, believes Jesus is something other than who the Bible says He is. The Bible, through the words of Peter, whom Jesus said gave the God-inspired answer, said Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God.

Jesus is not a created being. He is God, who came to planet earth in the flesh to save you and me from sin that has all of lost mankind headed down the broad way to the lake of fire (Revelation 20:12-15).

Jesus said: “The Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10).

Jesus asks you: “Who do you say that I am?” How you answer this most important question of history will determine whether you go to heaven or to hell for all of eternity. Answer wisely.