Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Against Elective ‘Bible in the Schools’ Program as Course Discontinued

Maybe this should come under more swamp news?

BLUEFIELD, W.V. — A federal judge appointed to the bench by then-President George H.W. Bush has dismissed a lawsuit against a more than 75-year-old elective Bible course offered in a school district in West Virginia after the district voted to discontinue the program.

U.S. District Judge David Faber said that because the Mercer County Board of Education voted in May to suspend its Bible in the Schools (BITS) course, there is currently no case. While the Board voted to halt the program at least for one year to allow a “thorough review of and modification to the [BITS] curriculum,” attorneys for the board, according to Faber, told the court that “the BITS curriculum of which plaintiffs are complaining does not exist and will not come back.”

However, Faber also noted that some statements in the media seemed to contrarily indicate that the board would like to revive the program at some point.

“Nevertheless, statements of defendants in the newspapers indicate defendants’ desire to resurrect the BITS program after a thorough review,” he wrote. “The defendant, Deborah Akers reportedly emphasized ‘Mercer County Schools is continuing its efforts to keep the Bible in the Schools program,’ although a timetable for a new BITS program has not been established.”


While it remains unclear as to whether or not the program will return, Faber concluded that he would accept “defendants’ representations as a binding commitment that the past BITS program no longer exists and that BITS has been altogether suspended for at least one year.”

Therefore, “[t]his court finds ‘it too speculative whether the problem [the Does] present will ever need solving; we find the legal issues [the Does] raise not fit for our consideration, and the hardship to [the Does] of biding [their] time insubstantial,” Faber stated.

Should the program return and present constitutional issues, the court would be willing to rehear the case, he said.

As previously reported, the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) filed suit on behalf of an atheist parent in January whose daughter Jamie attends an elementary school in Mercer County, and is in kindergarten.

She expressed concern that because most students choose to attend the elective Bible classes, her daughter could be ostracized by others if she decided not to join the program. She stated that her only choices were to expose her daughter to Christianity against her will or risk having her daughter looked down upon by others.

“Jamie will either be forced to attend Bible indoctrination classes against the wishes and conscience of Jane Doe, or Jamie will be the only or one of only a few children who do not participate. Jamie will therefore be made conspicuous by absence, and essentially be identified as a non-Christian or nonbeliever, subjecting Jamie to the risk of ostracism from peers and even school staff,” the suit claimed.

FFRF later amended its complaint, additional additional plaintiffs, including a woman who moved her daughter out of the school system because other students were allegedly taunting her about the matter.

The group says it plans to appeal the ruling.

As previously reported, until the program was halted in May, the Mercer County school system’s “Bible in the Schools” had been available on a weekly basis in over a dozen elementary schools and three middle schools. The elective course was paid for by a non-profit organization, and the district required schools to offer an alternative for students who preferred another option.

Seven Ways the Holy Spirit Transforms You

A minister was preaching in Canada and relates how that his hotel was only two miles from the host church. But it took almost 30 minutes to drive that short distance because road construction crews in Toronto had blocked all but one lane in a major intersection. Orange traffic cones were everywhere. Traffic was at a standstill.

It was especially frustrated because no workers were on site. I wanted to roll down my window and yell at the traffic cones. The lanes were blocked but nothing was happening! The delay was pointless!

When I finally got to church I was annoyed, and it took me a while to enter into worship. That’s when the Lord gently corrected me. He showed me I was as impatient with Him as I was with the road crews. I had to repent of my bad attitude. And I had to surrender my life afresh to God’s dealings.

Many times, God creates roadblocks in our lives because He’s working on us. We may not understand what He’s doing, but we must trust Him anyway and accept whatever delays He is causing. The delays are always for our good.

He may be widening our capacity to love others or removing a serious obstacle in our character. The Holy Spirit knows what we need. Our job is to surrender to His work in our lives. He is God. We are not!

The whole experience of sitting in that traffic in Canada made me ponder the work of the Holy Spirit in my life. He is working 24/7 to make me like Jesus. He is doing the same for you. I hope you appreciate the different ways He is transforming you:

  1. He is rebuilding you. Just as Nehemiah rebuilt the ruined city of Jerusalem, the Holy Spirit reconstructs your life. Nehemiah actually means “Comforter,” a name Jesus used to describe the Spirit. You are under construction, and He has strategically placed orange cones and roadblocks in areas of your life. Let Him rebuild all your broken places!
  1. He is teaching you. The Holy Spirit, who is called “the Spirit of truth” (John 16:13), knows how to bring us to maturity. He shines His supernatural light on the Bible and opens our minds to understand His truth. He allows us to hear His still, small voice inwardly. He reveals His mysteries so we can know Him intimately.
  1. He is refining you. The Holy Spirit is a fire, and He wants to burn up anything that does not resemble Christ. Like a smelter of gold, He melts us, skims off the toxic alloys and melts us again to remove all impurities. Don’t be afraid when the Spirit turns up the heat.
  1. He is testing you. One man builds with gold, silver, and precious gems; another builds with wood, hay, and stubble (see 1 Cor. 3:12-13). Both might look good on the outside, but the testing of the Lord proves what a man is made of. The Spirit’s relentless fire will test what you are building for God so that only He will get the glory for it.
  1. He is renewing you. Titus 3:5 mentions the “renewing of the Holy Spirit,” and we can be thankful that He offers such a blessing. He does not anoint us once and then leave us to live in one jar of oil. The Spirit sends fresh anointing when we are tired, poured out or discouraged. He opens up bottles of new wine and fills us with new joy. He pours the fresh oil of heaven on those who are desperate for more of His presence.
  1. He is subduing your flesh. We don’t have to grit our teeth or trust our own willpower to overcome sin in our lives. We have the indwelling power of the Spirit to help us live holy lives. Romans 8:13 says we can put to death the deeds of the body “by the Spirit.” He is like a warrior who plunders the enemy in our lives. We may feel weak in the face of temptation, but He has defeated the power of sin once and for all.
  1. He is revealing His glory in and through you. The apostle Paul reminded us that because we have the Spirit inside us, we are now beholding the glory of the Lord “as in a mirror.” And the result: We “are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory.” Don’t focus on your flaws. Fix your eyes on Jesus. When you focus on yourself you will be disappointed; when you focus on Him you will be transformed.

Ex-Witch: I Have Seen Lucifer In the Christian Church

Beth Eckert

An ex-witch who came out of occult, satanic ritual abuse and more says she had an encounter with Lucifer in the Christian church.

“This time, I just want to dig into things I’ve personally witnessed and experienced over the last couple of years as I’ve been navigating of learning this corruption in the Christian church,” Beth Eckert says in a new video.

“[I’ve been] learning about this already-established, antichrist, New-Age indoctrination and movement that’s already infiltrated the Christian church,” she says.

Watch the video to see more.

(Editor’s Note) In my book Guns to the Gospel, I point out how I had to fight many battles that involved people that were used by Satan to destroy the church. One person can tear down a church in one day what took many years to build. You will be able to purchase on Amazon my book by next week. 

We need help in pioneering a new Apostolic church in Yerington, Nevada. Please make a donation for this home missions venture.


How Islam progressively takes over countries

Riots in Pakistan, 2013

In Dr. Peter Hammond’s book, “Slavery, Terrorism and Islam,” he documents the way Muslims slowly develop a presence in various countries and as their population numbers build, become more aggressive and assertive about exercising Sharia law.

“Islam is not a religion, nor is it a cult. In its fullest form, it is a complete, total, 100% system of life,” Dr. Hammond notes in his book. “Islam has religious, legal, political, economic, social, and military components. The religious component is a beard for all of the other components.”

Their takeover of a country, what Dr. Hammond refers to as “Islamization,” begins when the population of Muslims reaches a critical mass, and they being to agitate for various privileges.

Open, free, democratic societies are particularly vulnerable. “When politically correct, tolerant, and culturally diverse societies agree to Muslim demands for their religious privileges, some of the other components tend to creep in as well,” he notes.

book cover
book cover

This is how it works, according to Dr. Hammond:

When the Muslim population remains under 2% in a country, they will be seen primarily as a peace-loving minority and not as a threat to other citizens. This is the current situation in:

United States — Muslim 0.6%

Australia — Muslim 1.5%

Canada — Muslim 1.9%

China — Muslim 1.8%

Italy — Muslim 1.5%

Norway — Muslim 1.8%

As the Muslim population reaches 2% to 5%, they begin to recruit from ethnic minorities and disaffected groups, within prisons and street gangs. This is happening in:

Denmark — Muslim 2%

Germany — Muslim 3.7%

United Kingdom — Muslim 2.7%

Spain — Muslim 4%

Thailand — Muslim 4.6%

“From 5% on, they exercise an inordinate influence in proportion to their percentage of the population,” Dr. Hammond notes. “For example, they will push for the introduction of halal (clean by Islamic standards) food” and increase pressure on supermarket chains to feature such food on their shelves — along with threats for failure to comply. This is happening in:

France — Muslim 8%

Philippines — 5%

Sweden — Muslim 5%

Switzerland — Muslim 4.3%

The Netherlands — Muslim 5.5%

Trinidad & Tobago — Muslim 5.8%

Soon they begin to apply pressure to allow Sharia law within their own communities (sometimes ghettos).

“When Muslims approach 10% of the population, they tend to increase lawlessness as a means of complaint about their conditions,” Dr. Hammond notes. “In Paris, we are already seeing car-burnings. Any non-Muslim action offends Islam, and results in uprisings and threats, such as in Amsterdam, with opposition to Mohammed cartoons and films about Islam.” These tensions are seen on a regular basis in:

Guyana — Muslim 10%

India — Muslim 13.4%

Israel — Muslim 16%

Kenya — Muslim 10%

Russia — Muslim 15%

The violence increases when the Muslim population reaches 20%. “After reaching 20%, nations can expect hair-trigger rioting, jihad militia formations, sporadic killings, and the burnings of Christian churches and Jewish synagogues,” such as in:

Ethiopia — Muslim 32.8%

“At 40%, nations experience widespread massacres, chronic terror attacks, and ongoing militia warfare,” such as in:

Bosnia — Muslim 40%

Chad — Muslim 53.1%

Lebanon — Muslim 59.7%

From 60%, persecution of non-believing “infidels” rises significantly, including sporadic ethnic cleansing (genocide), use of Sharia law as a weapon, and Jizya, a tax placed on infidels, such as in:

Albania — Muslim 70%

Malaysia — Muslim 60.4%

Qatar — Muslim 77.5%

Sudan — Muslim 70%

After 80%, expect daily intimidation and violent jihad, some State-run ethnic cleansing, and even some genocide, as these nations drive out “infidels,” and move toward a 100% Muslim society, which has been experienced to some degree in:

Bangladesh — Muslim 83%

Egypt — Muslim 90%

Gaza — Muslim 98.7%

Indonesia — Muslim 86.1%

Iran — Muslim 98%

Iraq — Muslim 97%

Jordan — Muslim 92%

Morocco — Muslim 98.7%

Pakistan — Muslim 97%

Palestine — Muslim 99%

Syria — Muslim 90%

Tajikistan — Muslim 90%

Turkey — Muslim 99.8%

United Arab Emirates — Muslim 96%

A 100% Muslim society will theoretically usher in their version of peace — the peace of ‘Dar-es-Salaam’ — the Islamic House of Peace. “Here there’s supposed to be peace, because everybody is a Muslim, the Madrassas are the only schools, and the Koran is the only word,” such as in:

Afghanistan — Muslim 100%

Saudi Arabia — Muslim 100%

Somalia — Muslim 100%

Yemen — Muslim 100%

Dr. Hammond observes this Islamic ideal is seldom realized. “Unfortunately, peace is never achieved, as in these 100% states the most radical Muslims intimidate and spew hatred, and satisfy their blood lust by killing less radical Muslims, for a variety of reasons.”

“It is important to understand that in some countries, with well under 100% Muslim populations, such as France, the minority Muslim populations live in ghettos, within which they are 100% Muslim, and within which they live by Sharia law,” he states.

Dr. Hammond is also concerned by demographic trends. “Today’s 1.5 billion Muslims make up 22% of the world’s population,” he observes. “But their birth rates dwarf the birth rates of Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Jews, and all other believers. Muslims will exceed 50% of the world’s population by the end of this century.”

 

Dr. Peter Hammond is a missionary who has pioneered evangelistic outreaches in the war zones of Mozambique, Angola and Sudan. Peter has travelled hundreds of thousands of miles to deliver Bibles to persecuted Christians in Africa and Eastern Europe.

 He is the Founder and Director of Frontline Fellowship, the Founder and Chairman of Africa Christian Action, the Director of the Christian Action Network and the Chairman of The Reformation Society and the author of numerous missions-related books. He is the Editor of both Frontline Fellowship News and Christian Action.

 Peter has developed the Biblical Worldview Seminar and Great Commission Course to mobilize churches to comprehensively apply the Lordship of Christ to all areas of life and to fulfill the Great Commission.

 Peter was born in Cape Town and brought up in Rhodesia – now Zimbabwe. He converted to Christ in 1977, worked in Scripture Union and Hospital Christian Fellowship, served in the South African Defense Force and studied at Baptist Theological College, Cape Town. He also earned a Doctorate in Missiology. For more information about his book, go here.

How to Delete Porn from Your Brain

In a society bent towards the microwave mentality of “gotta have it now”, it would be convenient if God armed our brain with a porn “delete” button that would instantly delete the images from our mind. In a sense, He has, but not in a New York minute sort of way. Instead, He has provided a superhighway for sanctification that science is now helping us discover.

In Romans 12:2, Paul urges us to not conform to the pattern of this world, but to be transformed by the renewing of our mind. For a person struggling with porn, the process of successfully renewing the mind is a two to five-year process of breaking free.

The Conquer Series, a cinematic teaching series that helps men get free from porn, examines why porn addiction isn’t mainly a moral problem. It starts off as a moral issue, but quickly becomes a brain problem. As the saying goes “neurons that fire together wire together.” So, the more you practice speaking a language, positive self-talk, or watching porn, the stronger those circuits become. This is how men end up in bondage.

New research shows the ability to learn is more than building and strengthening connections. Even more important is a process called “synaptic pruning” – the purging of old neural connections or thoughts that aren’t being used. Authors, Judah Pollack and Olivia Fox Cabane use a garden analogy to explain this.

Your Brain Is Like a Garden

“Imagine your brain is a garden, except instead of growing flowers, fruits, and vegetables, you grow synaptic connections between neurons…Glial cells are the gardeners of your brain…other glial cells are the waste removers, pulling up weeds, killing pests, raking up dead leaves…the synaptic connections that get used less get marked by a protein, C1q (as well as others). When the microglial cells detect that mark, they bond to the protein and destroy—or prune—the synapse.”
In other words, your glial cells wash your brain, removing thoughts that are not being accessed. It’s like your brain’s recycling bin. It certainly gives the verse in Ephesians 5:26, “the washing with water through the word” a whole new significance. Two thousand years ago Paul was telling us that Scripture had the power to wash our brains – literally!

Nightly Brain Cleanse

According to Pollack and Cabane: “Your brain cleans itself out when you sleep—your brain cells shrink by up to 60% to create space for your glial gardeners to remove the waste and prune the synapses.”

What’s fascinating is 10% of your brain works when you’re awake, and 90% works when you’re not. That’s why sleep matters. Have you ever woken up thinking sharper than the night before? Your glial cells have been at work – clearing out all the trash. That’s when we get most of our ‘aha’ moments.

What’s fascinating is 10% of your brain works when you’re awake, and 90% works when you’re not.

Renewing of The Mind

The host of the Conquer Series, Dr. Ted Roberts, advises those who struggle with porn to turn off all media thirty minutes before bed and, instead, prepare for the battle each night by meditating on Scripture.Brain

“Understanding the brain is so important in this battle. Men in sexual bondage go through a cycle of triggering, ritual and acting out. They can break this pattern by following the principles laid out in the Conquer Series. One of the things we tell men to do to prepare for the battle each night is: meditate on Scripture before bed. Why? Because God’s word has the power to physically restructure our brain. Most of the conscious decisions we make will continue to operate on an unconscious level.” – Dr. Ted Roberts

When we devote our time in Scripture before bed it empowers us to take every thought into captivity to Christ. And this new study proves this because you actually have some control over what your brain decides to delete while you sleep. According to Pollack and Cabane: “It’s the synaptic connections you don’t use that get marked for recycling. The ones you do use are the ones that get watered and oxygenated. So be mindful of what you’re thinking about.”

Neuroscientist, Dr. Tim Jennings, in the Conquer Series, takes the notion of mindfulness even further: “Incredibly, our beliefs, thoughts, behaviors…change our brain structure, ultimately changing who we are.” This new research on neurogenesis not only corroborates Scripture, but is helping us understand the sanctification process that takes place in the brain. And this revelation can revolutionize the way we approach Romans 12:2 on renewing our mind.

“Incredibly, our beliefs, thoughts, behaviors…change our brain structure, ultimately changing who we are.”


City of Malibu, CA Tells Church to Stop Feeding Homeless

City of Malibu, CA Tells Church to Stop Feeding Homeless

A California city is facing criticism after the town reportedly decided to stop a church from feeding the homeless.

City officials reportedly contacted the Malibu United Methodist Church via email and asked the church to cease its food service ministry after Thanksgiving. The ministry feeds 60 to 100 homeless individuals once a week in the Southern California city.

The church also hosts an annual Thanksgiving dinner in partnership with the Malibu Labor Exchange.

But the city of Malibu has denied that it told the church to stop the meal service and agreed to meet with the church after Thanksgiving.

“All parties agreed to gather more information and come back to continue the constructive dialogue after the Thanksgiving holiday,” the city said in a press release.

The ministry launched in 2014, and from 2013 to 2015, the homeless population jumped from 8,371 to 8,688, according to The Malibu Times.

The Malibu City Council is expected to discuss the meal program at its next meeting.

“I think many of them eat out of dumpsters and trash cans when they aren’t eating with us,” said Kay Gabbard, who also works with the church. “We can’t pretend like (homelessness) doesn’t exist in our backyard. We can’t pretend that it only exists outside Malibu.”

Mommies Matter: Being Present in the First Three Years

Why Mommies Matter: Being Present in the First Three Years

Erica Komisar, a New York psychoanalyst, says she is in the business of making people uncomfortable. She succeeded brilliantly with the publication of her new book—which has made a lot of people not just uncomfortable, but downright angry.

The book is titled “Being There: Why Prioritizing Motherhood in the First Three Years Matters.” Komisar wrote it after noticing a disturbing trend: A huge increase in the number of kids being diagnosed at an earlier age with mental disorders and emotional problems.

For instance, Komisar writes, in just one year—from 2011 to 2012—the number of children “diagnosed with psychiatric disorders rose to a staggering 19 percent”—nearly a fifth of all children. And the number of kids hospitalized for eating disorders “has increased 119 percent in the last decade,” she notes.

Komisar points to the shocking prediction of the U.S. Census from 2015: Approximately one fourth of all American kids “will be diagnosed with a mental disorder before the age of 18.”

Komisar’s 27 years of practice and research led her to an inescapable conclusion: Children are at a higher risk for these problems when, she says, “the essential presence of a mother is missing.”

Komisar massively documents her assertions: Decades of research “confirms the more time a woman can devote to the joy and job of mothering a child in the first three years,” she says, “the better the chance her child will be emotionally secure and healthy throughout his life.”

And now you know why the heads of feminists and liberals are exploding. They think Komisar (who, by the way is a feminist and a liberal herself) is attempting to take women at warp speed back to the 1950s.

It’s not surprising that today’s mothers think their babies won’t miss them if they grab their briefcases and go back to a full-time job six weeks after giving birth. They believe what our culture taught them—that they can easily juggle career and motherhood; that babies thrive just as well in daycare as at home with their moms; that mothers and fathers are fungible; that when it comes to motherhood, it’s all about “quality time”—even if it comes at the end of a long workday when mothers are exhausted.

Stay-at-home moms can also fail to be “present” for their babies if they ignore them while talking on the phone, checking emails-or volunteering for too many church events.

In short, women all too often careen into motherhood with absolutely no idea of how much their babies need them.

This is why young people should consider the research about the needs of babies if they expect to have children one day, and begin planning for parenthood even before they’ve met a future spouse. For instance, are wives prepared to make career sacrifices, if necessary, to care for the kids for a few years? Are couples willing to settle for a smaller home, fewer vacations and less income during the years mom is nurturing the babies?

Thinking about those awful mental health statistics, I hope and pray they will be. As Komisar points out, “Your baby does not care if she has a bigger room or a Florida vacation; what she wants is you and the safety and security of being in your presence.”

Of course, many moms MUST work for economic reasons, and we should support them all we can. And if you read “Being There,” you’ll find advice on how working moms can maximize their time with their kids.

So, I suggest we ignore the angry catcalls from the left (which I always do anyway), and embrace Komisar’s arguments. If enough people do, America will end up with happier, healthier children.


LAWMAKER ATTACKS HOMESCHOOLING AS ‘CHILD ABUSE’

Classroom32

About five years ago, lawmakers in New Hampshire approved a series of changes to improve their citizens’ access to homeschooling, but they now appear to be preparing to roll back those improvements.

And it’s generated considerable controversy, since one legislator opposing homeschooling called it “child abuse.”

Which wasn’t received well by another lawmaker whose children mostly have graduated from the family’s homeschool, and have gone to top-tier colleges.

The Home School Legal Defense Association is reporting on the situation, as it was involved in the improvements back in 2012.

Besides “child abuse,” homeschooling there also has been condemned with comments like, “Half the kids are failing to learn,” and “it’s a floodgate for dropouts,” HSLDA reported.

See what American education has become, in “Crimes of the Educators: How Utopians Are Using Government Schools to Destroy America’s Children.”

“Recent comments like these reveal antagonism toward homeschool among certain factions in the New Hampshire legislature, explaining why we appear headed toward a legislative battle over homeschool freedoms,” the group revealed Friday.

It said reports are that three lawmakers are preparing plans to “roll back improvements,” and discussion already has begun.

“Witnesses tell us that in an executive session on a controversial bill relating to banning ‘conversion therapy’ for children experiencing gender confusion, senior Democratic lawmaker Marjorie Porter categorically compared homeschooling to child abuse,” the HSLDA said.

“Although the executive session in the New Hampshire House of Representatives Committee on Health and Human Services on October 26 was not recorded, sources who were present told Home School Legal Defense Association that they were shocked to hear the legislator’s comments, especially in that context.

“Others told HSLDA that Rep. William Marsh, a Republican member of the committee whose four oldest children graduated from the family’s homeschool and went on to top-tier colleges, and whose youngest is homeschooling through high school, told Rep. Porter that he considered her comments equating homeschooling with child abuse as a personal affront. He subsequently received a public apology from Rep. Porter, who is assistant minority floor leader in the House,” the report said.

The organization explained before 2012, homeschooling families had to file annual notices as well as assessments, but since then have been required to do only a one-time notice.

Those steps forward were part of a nationwide move to reduce extraneous rules for homeschoolers, and the HSLDA reported there have been no reports of problems as a result.

The Union Leader reports that it sees “another battle” brewing over homeschooling.

The legislative plan it sees as sparking the trouble is one that, again, would require a third-party review of student progress.

Michelle Levell, director of the private nonprofit School Choice for New Hampshire, says group members are already up in arms, and the bill has yet to be printed.

The crackdown is being pushed by Rep. Robert Theberge, R-Berlin.

The newspaper, and the HSLDA, both reported he has been “declining” to return calls or emails for weeks already.

However, two cosponsors say the bill was prompted by Berlin School District Supt. Corinne Cascadden, who has, according to Democrat Edith Tucker, “very grave doubts about whether half of Berlin’s homeschooled students are getting educated.”

“She (Cascadden) believes that there are some 45 youngsters who are not enrolled in public or private or church schools, whose parents do not make any effort to educate them at all,” Tucker told the newspaper in an email. “Not only are these neglected youngsters not getting the education they deserve, but they are also missing out on free and reduced breakfast and lunches and other social services.”

Levell, however, said there’s simply no evidence, which means the law, “is a solution in search of a problem.”

Cascadden reportedly told a homeschooling parent that she, as superintendent, wants access to information required to determine a “child’s welfare.”

George D’Orazio, chairman of the state’s Home Education Advisory Council, says that though he understands the concerns raised by Cascadden and others, changing the law won’t address the problem.

“Basically what’s going to happen if this passes is that the changes in the law that were made in 2012 will be undone, and I’m absolutely opposed to that,” he said. “I can’t take a position as chairman of HEAC, but as a homeschooler and member of Catholics United for Home Education I’m absolutely opposed because I think it’s unnecessary.”


New Bill Would Provide Veterans with Better Healthcare Options

HAPPY VETERANS DAY FROM EDITOR GEORGE DUKE (A VET)

Today  Saturday, November 11, is Veterans Day, a day to honor those who have served their country. This Veterans Day, legislators have an opportunity to improve the lives of America’s Veterans via a new bill.

According to Hotair.com, the new bill will replace the Veterans Choice Program with a more effective program for Veterans who need healthcare. The current bill would reportedly allow Veterans to receive treatment at private medical providers if the VA is not able to treat them in a timely manner.

This new bill to help Veterans is being hailed as a bipartisan measure. It was introduced by Rep. Phil Roe (R-TN), according to the Washington Free Beacon. The vote on the bill will take place once the Congressional Budget Office releases figures on how much the program will cost.

Reforms to the VA have been discussed for some time, and although this bill wouldn’t necessarily reform the VA itself, it would at least allow Veterans to receive the care they need, even if they have to go elsewhere to get it.

The presentation of the bill near Veterans Day itself will perhaps help to gain support for the measure.

The Washington Times notes that Veterans Day was officially instituted as a day of remembrance and an official holiday in 1938. It initially was associated with Armistice Day, which commemorated the end of World War I. In 1954, it was instituted as a day to honor American Veterans of all wars.


Why ‘God loves you just the way you are’ might not actually be true

God wants us clean and spotless, washed by the blood of Christ.

Many people fall prey to the wrong idea that since “God loves them the way they are,” they don’t strive to repent of their sin and turn back from the things that God actually hates. While it’s true that God loves us unconditionally, there are some things we need to understand about it.

And one of that is the fact that while God loved us even while we were sinners, He will never want us to stay sinners.

A Big, Fat Lie

Did you know that the statement “God loves you just the way you are” can be very misleading, even dangerous? This might sound shocking to many out there, but this statement isn’t entirely true.

The Bible tells us that God loves us so much alright, but His love for us is a life-changing one. God saw the pitiful state that we are in, and because He loved us He gave His one and only begotten Son to save us from sin and death and redeem us for Himself.  Simply put, there should be a change in us after coming to know Christ.

To help you understand, here are some key truths to remember:

1) Everyone falls short of God’s standards

The Bible tells us that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (see Romans 3:23). We all do not measure up to God’s standards, no matter how good we think we are. And yes, on that note, the Bible also tells us,

“For there is not a just man on earth who does good and does not sin.” (Ecclesiastes 7:20)

No human measures up to God’s standards.

2) Without Christ, we are far away from God’s original design for us

Did you know that God created man to be so much more than what we are today? The Bible tells us,

“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.” (Genesis 1:26-27)

God created us with such purpose. We were made in His image and likeness, were made to be in relationship with Him, and we were meant to do His will on earth. But what happened? We sinned and fell away from our relationship with Him and from what we were supposed to do.

We ended up trying to make names for ourselves apart from Him. We ended up trying to earn His forgiveness by our own futile means. We ended up a people not knowing right from wrong. We ended up separated from Him.

Is there something there that God would like?

3) God’s love lifts us up from the muck we are in

Now here’s the best of all truths: God loved us so much that He sent His one and only begotten Son to save us from sin and death, undo the works of Satan in our lives, and make us conform to the image of His Son. (Read John 3:16-17; 1 John 3:8; Romans 8:29)

If Christ came to save us from the sorry state we are in, who are we to say that God loves us just as we are? God loves us alright, but He doesn’t want us remaining in the same sinful and unrepentant state that He found us in!  Telling ourselves God loves us just the way we are can end up being an excuse not to put in the effort and hard work necessary to overcome our weaknesses or temptations, like that short temper you’ve hard for a while or laziness with morning devotionals.

Whatever it may be, God does not love those things.  He loves us in spite of those things.  And while God has done His utmost to free us from the bondages of sin, we must do our part in walking out God’s Word and living upright as the people of God.  That requires effort, self-denial and sacrifice.

Read what Jesus Himself has to say to everyone who calls himself a Christian:

“Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.”” (Matthew 16:24-25)

Christ Himself said that if we want to follow Him, we have to deny ourselves – the very self we declare that “God loves.” God loves us so much that He wants to change us and mold us into what He wants us to become, and that requires that we submit to Him, repent of our sins, and strive to live holy lives.

Remember this verse:

“…but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”” (1 Peter 1:15-16)

So, does God love you just the way you are?

No.

He loves you enough to change you so that you will never ever be the same person you were when He saved you through Christ. He loves you and wants you to be like Christ.

“For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.” (Romans 8:29)

(Editors Note- For power from God to help you overcome he gives you his Spirit, the new birth to change you. Follow the instructions given by Peter in Acts 2:38 and you will never regret it. )