When you attend your church meetings (assuming you attend freely and not just out of duty), do you go there full of regrets, fears, anxieties, with misery in your heart? Do you not think it is impious, or even impudent, to attend at all, when it is God’s day and you should worship? I’ve done it!
Scripture tells us that anxiety is worthless, if not a sin. So, why bring it to the Lord like an offering, an offering that spells lack of faith and not worship?
A W Tozer (I quote this text as it stands, not because I accept everything he wrote) said this about the matter (in his 1978 book, ‘Tragedy in the Church: the missing gifts’):
“How many of you bring family and domestic problems right along with you, in thought and mind, when you come to worship? How many businessmen bring their weekly troubles home on Friday night and carry them along to church on Sunday? When income tax time rolls around, how many of you react by getting down in the dumps? And what about the family’s health? The worries about the children? How many of God’s people continue to lug these worries and problems around on a full-time basis? We ought not to do it, and we cannot be a joyful people if we do!
Why should the children of the King go mourning all the day? Why should the children of the King hang their heads and tote their own burdens? Brethren, we are missing the mark about Christian victory and the life of joy in our Saviour. We ought to be standing straight and praising our God!”
Does your happiness depend on how fruitful your income or job is, or how well your family is, or how on-track your children are? Or, if nothing goes wrong, or, if God answers your pleas immediately? Or, if the ways of God coincide with what you think?
There is a holy balance, in which our woes are beautifully taken care of in Heaven, even though we might not know it or feel it. Knowing this is vital to our well-being, for, as Tozer adds: “Every one of us should be keenly aware of the fact that if the Lord should take His hand from under us, we would all plunge down and be gone forever. We thank God for His goodness, which He continues to reveal to us in spite of our many weaknesses and faults.”
Listen to most brethren and you’d get the impression everything is hunky-dory in their lives! Oh yes? I think maybe they are either deceiving themselves or lying! Life can be a daily grind and, for some, filled with devastation for a time. Even so, we are all in the same spiritual boat, and each of us is dealt circumstances meet for our soul’s good. Just accept the fact and live for His glory. That is when all our woes will become vapour. And when we allow that, God moves in with power.
Calvin is Innocent!
I still see pastors and theologians condemn Calvin for his ‘five points’. This is absurd, because he did not write them, nor did his followers. They were written by the followers of Arminius, in an attempt to discredit the work of Calvin. It is true that the five points (known as TULIP) can be found in various parts of Calvin’s work, but it is simplistic to say the five-points are ‘his’, or that they represent all of Calvin’s theology! If people have to dislike Calvin or his work, at least they ought to read what he taught. Rather basic, really.
For those who ask... here’s one more clue concerning my approach to writing...
I have been interested in linguistics since about age 16. At that age I was asked, as part of my student engineer’s course, to write an essay on the use of English language. Of course, as you might have guessed, I was pounced on for my conclusions! Interestingly, my conclusions did not change all through my extensive further and higher education studies, including my teaching degree and subsequent Masters and PhD. They did not change because they are observable truths, not because I deem myself more clever.
I argued that English grammar is what one wishes to make of it. Bear in mind that standard English was unknown until relatively recently in human history. Despite protestations from sticklers, there is no hard and fast rule concerning grammar, spelling, etc., except for those adopted as ‘correct’ by sticklers! No-one will die for not using standard English! There are times when even I will require a standardised English format. For example, when a single word misplaced can alter the meaning of a whole paragraph, or will mislead. But, I also allow leeway.
In linguistics two French words are used to describe two basic approaches to language. One is ‘langue’ and the other is ‘parole’. The former refers to the formal rules and grammars, etc., of any set of language, usually in written form. In general, grammarians tend to prefer this form, ignoring the other form, ‘parole’, which is the more informal form, relating to everyday speech and writing.
When I write in journalistic style I often breach the supposed ‘rules’... such as starting a sentence with ‘And’, or ‘But’, etc. Or, using a phrase instead of a sentence. Or, using ‘Or’ to start a sentence! I will also be naughty and use commas, full-stops, etc., in a less than grammatical way, if it helps me to make my point more forcefully, or if I know most readers will understand. Indeed, I use a lot of unconventional ‘grammatica’ if I think it will make reading and understanding easier. In other words, I will often use the ‘parole’ form of language when aiming at general readers. Hence use of underlining, italics, exclamation marks, and other devices that cause grammarians to have the vapours!
I use many literary devices when writing journalistically (as in this newsletter). The aim is NOT to be PC and strictly grammatically correct, etc., but to have impact on the reader, whether or not each reader is acquainted with ‘correct’ grammar and style. If the message gets across, then that’s fine! And I try to avoid the sign of the amateur... use of the word ‘that’ everywhere! Unnecessary most of the time, and makes the text sound more like a school essay! It has its place, but not everywhere. After writing and editing for so many decades I can say that I usually delete ‘that’ in most cases, because it irks me and is an unnecessary barrier to fluidity! It’s use also shows me that the writer is trying to be an author but cannot get out of his or her schooldays and formality, and so the writing is stilted and wooden.
Yet, if I receive notes or articles for publication (we rarely publish anything other than our own work), I WILL alter the piece so that it suits our BTM style, and I will correct grammar, syntax, and so on to a certain point... but only if I perceive parts of the article will otherwise confuse readers, bearing in mind that readers use many languages.
When it comes to academic work I will stick more closely to grammatical mores (‘langue’). The reason is that many readers are not English, and I need to explain my arguments precisely. In other words, horses for courses! However, it takes many years to hone one’s writing so it is suitable for most readers most of the time.
For similar reasons, many decades ago, I felt it necessary to subdue my strong Welsh dialect in favour of a more ‘universal’ sound, which was also much slower in delivery, so that foreigners (including those pesky English) I met would more easily understand me. As a result many think I am ‘English’, though I still have a Welsh accent (‘accent’ is not the same as ‘dialect’)! But, at least they understand me. For the same reason, I rarely, if ever, use currently-popular slang words (except now and then in journalistic pieces). It took me a long time to work out what ‘wicked’ and ‘random’ meant in younger circles!!
I could not care less about appearing to be a grammar-expert; I merely want to pass on important information in the best way possible. For this reason I look at an offered manuscript not as a grammarian fanatic, but as one asking the question, “Does this excite the senses and spirit? Is it telling the truth? Does it explain the subject well?” Grammar and style are secondary to these vital requirements.
I appreciate that some devote their lives to correct grammar and other technicalia within the English language. Nothing wrong with that. But, please don’t think that an error in linguistics amounts to a justification for castigation, or for a sense of superiority. Is the writer or speaker sincere in heart? Is his aim to tell us of the glories of God? Then give him a break. For myself, readers can castigate me as much as they like. I really don’t care, if what I say is meant for God’s glory, is true to God’s word, and guides folk in their faith. Ultimately, my responses depend on how the Holy Spirit leads through discernment.
Sunday’s a Special Day...
I was talking with a young man, a church member, and as an aside I asked him if he noticed how many times things occurred that took people away from attending a meeting. It always seemed to be on a Sunday! Yet, relatively little happened to them the rest of the week. Then I said, watch out for it happening again... and it did!
Lo and behold, a few days later, on Sunday, about 3-4 people did not attend because of sickness... because the main person was sick it prevented two to three from the same family attending, too. Then, another member called to say she had a bad migraine, and her mother felt she should go home again to look after her. So, in mock fashion, I asked if anyone else wished to leave! On that one Sunday six folks were missing! And I am willing to say that whatever problems there were evaporated on the Monday or soon after.
Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying any of this was deliberate or feigned; the various reasons were legitimate and the illnesses were real – I was merely commenting on an observable fact that I have noted over the years, not just in our church but in many others. Very often ‘problems’ on a Sunday simply don’t occur on any other day! People can still get to work or school; they can still carry on as normal... except on a Sunday.
Why is this? I believe Satan wants to disrupt Christians meeting together to hear God’s word. He will use many and various means to do so, including legitimate one-day illnesses. The illnesses and happenings are genuine, but they appear to be caused by God-hating Satan. Are you aware that if you decide to walk with God, Satan and his minions will do everything in their power to divert your attention? Did you know he can cause physical illnesses? He can even arrange an accident or two, such is his hatred for Christians. He threw a mighty ‘curved ball’ into my own court when Diane was diagnosed with dementia. Most mornings we get up late because of disturbed sleep, but on Sundays I always attempt to get up early enough to make sure the meeting goes ahead. It is also why, if ever we get away, I do so from Monday to Friday, so that Sunday meetings are kept alive. Believe me, there are times when I want to just sleep, but I know this would be giving in to the ‘Sunday Dampener’! And, when a precedent is set, it would be hard to get rid of.
Well – don’t you notice the same thing in your area? Is the sickness on a Sunday somehow relieved by Monday, especially if the person is working? Is the sick dog okay once the weekend is over? Does this or that crisis somehow start late Saturday, come to fruition on Sunday, and disappear again next day?
What’s the answer? Reject whatever is the problem, put it aside, call on God to deal with it, and get on with the day! When these things occur regularly on Sundays, does it not make you take notice? I do.
Completed Course Forensic Linguistics
Since early last year I have studied Forensic Linguistics as an external student of the Forensic Linguistics Institute (which runs courses in universities worldwide). The course director, Dr Olsson, world-known in his field, rarely takes on personal students, but made an exception in my case, which is an honour. Earlier this year I earned the Certificate, and only a few days ago I passed the Advanced Certificate with Distinction.
The course, taken by senior police, lawyers, and criminologists, looks at the legal and criminal background to use of language, written and spoken, in police interrogations, courtroom battles, suicide, threats, murder, and many other legal and criminal situations, to discover the truth about what is said or written, and the theories of language used in law. What interested me, is that the use of forensics is very closely linked to the way I have looked at language in the past. It has helped when examining heresies and ordinary language. Indeed, some experts suggest that the science has its roots in biblical scholarship.
Inadvertently (and sometimes intuitively) I have used similar techniques when ‘joining the dots’ (some will recognise my statements about this in a variety of arguments) to discover truth, or not, in the arguments of others, seeing underlying aims and processes. And I have not been wrong thus far. (This is a fact, not a boast). When studying police transcripts, etc., I have examined some reports containing evidence of poor language skills. But, as I have argued above, it does not really matter – what matters is the content and the gist. Can I understand them? In reality, I look at both forms of linguistics, langue AND parole... because it is real life.
It is unfortunate that many pastors find it hard to speak in ‘parole’ form, even though most folks speak that way. Thus, they can divide a congregation unnecessarily, with some understanding what is being said, and some not. Like the pastor who earnestly went after university students, using ‘high’ language and concepts most of his older and less-educated, congregation did not understand. Needless to say, not a few left that church.
Experts now reveal we are on the very edge of another AIDS pandemic. Way back in 1985, when I presented my researched assessment of AIDS (then an unnamed disease), there was uproar and I was sacked not only from my job as lecturer but also as the future Research Director of its Health department. My mistake was to place actual blame where it should have been put – on homosexuals and what they do. This was counter to ‘official’ advice... advice I proved was just invented by homosexuals to keep the lid on their foul lifestyles and sin. At all costs, the public had to be deceived.
At that time I warned that to hide these facts would result in many millions of deaths. I also warned that the worst thing to have would be a medical ‘breakthrough’. I said this because once you have a tablet to get rid of symptoms, those who commit sin will just carry on as if all was okay. I gave many other warnings, and all my predictions came true. Not something based on intellectual brilliance – I just used common sense and observation.
Likewise, I predicted a future pandemic based on the virus becoming immune to medication. Now, thirty years on, the prediction is coming true! It HAD to, because homosexuals live disgusting lives and don’t care about infecting each other, or others not involved in homosexual sin.
Some are weary of repeated warnings about AIDS and homosexuality and wish people like me would just shut up. This is because they have not seen what I saw! I saw destruction on a worldwide scale, and governments intent on helping us to die via homosexualised diseases. It is satanic at its core, but few understand this fact. For this reason what comes next, unless God intervenes (and why should He when Christians are so lax?), will be far worse.
The Illusion that is UKIP
When Christians look at life only on an earthly level, they fail to see things from God’s perspective. This is certainly true of UKIP and Farage. And it was true of myself until about six months ago, when I discerned what was happening with this misty group.
Farage has gained enormous ground. But, as European commentators have observed, so have many nationalistic parties throughout the EU. They can see a grouping of nationalistic parties in the near future. At this point I should advise, for those who do not know the difference between ‘communist’ and ‘fascist’, that communistic ideals generally aim for worldwide domination, while fascism aims for national dominance, but both sides of the coin are socialist.
The big example of the former is Marxist Russia or China, and the big example of the latter was Nazi Germany. If we are not careful we will head towards the latter – lots of nationalistic parties singing from the same song-sheet. In other words, even if the EU was abandoned, it would be rebuilt by smaller units using another name! Marxist and fascist will march together to push us all into Socialism and a ‘One World’ ethos.
UKIP’s inner core of leaders want us out of the EU... but this will not mean they will then fall into the arms of Christians and moral peoples, if they win the battle. No, as libertarians (humanists) they will just carry on as normal but within Britain and not the EU. This is why a number of nationalistic parties in Europe have approached UKIP to see if they can be stable buddies.
UKIP has thus far rejected their approaches, but don’t you think there might not be smoke without fire? Farage does not care about Christians as such and has shown this in a number of statements.
It has been my view for several years that Christians should step outside the normal political arena and start to seek God’s face about HIS way forward. I honestly believe that Christians who are ardently supporting UKIP (and some who contact us do so harshly) are deluded if they think a libertarian group will somehow come to their side after they gain power. This is not how politicians work! But, enough of the world for now. (I am preparing an article on politics and Christians. I will advise when it is completed).
Ever since the great (designed) ‘fall’ of the economies of the world, UK officials have assured us we are on the mend. They have done so many times in the past several years, and, each time I (and others) have warned it is all a big scam. Not convinced? Well, did you know that the UK economy is now boosted not by industry, but by sexual sin? (No, I don’t mean homosexuality, which damages our economy through years of sickness caused by AIDS etc).
Over £10 BILLION is ‘earned’ in the UK by illegal drugs and prostitution, a lot of it enhanced by our migrant friends from the former Eastern Bloc! And this figure is used by our devious government as part of the ‘growth’ figures it predicts! So, exactly what about that figure is good, or something to boast about?
EU rules (and this one at least is useful) demands that government now includes reference to illegal activities that bring in money to a country. Are you filled with pride about this latest information? Will you now look at the Gross Domestic Product in a new light? Our political bosses don’t like this ruling... but it puts our ‘growth’ on a different footing. Don’t be fooled by claims of ‘growth’ or an upturn. We may never actually get back to normal financial soundness. Especially not when we pay billions to the EU just to belong as members to its sick club, and pay many more billions every day just to keep the immigrants who come here without work or places to stay (many of them illegal; the only way they can survive is to continue to be illegal – and THAT has its own high cost to the economy).
Note: “Flood of immigrants boosts population by 1000 a day”! (Daily Express, 30th May). Comforting, eh? It is why our Green Field areas are being ravaged for new housing. It is why the elderly, who paid for help through their taxes, are treated so shabbily. It is why the NHS and schools are on the point of collapse... want a much bigger list?
Meanwhile our horrific Cameron insists on seeking a ‘reformed EU’, while UKIP wants us out completely (I can at least agree with that), thus keeping us locked-in to paying billions EVERY DAY to the fascism known as the EU.
Asylum? Yeah, Right!
In France, at the ports used by illegal immigrants, there are illegal (what else) shanty camps and even official ones. Remember – we are talking about illegal immigrants.
ALL the immigrants are intent on stowing away on lorries and other vehicles to get to the UK. They know they will have to gain money by illegal means, and are often doing dangerous things to get here.
My query is this – WHY are they kept in France? To be an asylum seeker a person has to apply for the status in the FIRST ‘free’ country across their own border! How come they can get from, say, Pakistan or Afghanistan or Africa, by going through MANY countries on the way, and STILL be allowed to stay in France, ready to grace us with their illegal presence? It is up to EVERY country on the route to kick them back home again!
Why should we, as legal tax-payers, pay for their stay in Britain and suffer the downturn in our own wellbeing because almost a million illegals are still in the country? This has nothing to do with racism – it is common sense, and an anger that the legal system is the criminal’s best friend.
As if to rub it in, a TV program was on last night, looking at illegal immigrants who BOAST of their illegality in this country and how they get their money illegally! One even told us that he earned £100 in just ten minutes! That is, proceeds of crime!
How should Christians view sin? We should declare it to be sin ALWAYS. How should we respond to sin? By seeing it through God’s eyes, and not our own. Human judges always apply the law, but can also offer compassion. God is the same – but only He can do that with impunity. We can’t.
Truth Starting to Emerge?
The British Royal College of Psychiatrists have at last recognised that ‘being born that way’ is an error. They have done so after criticism from the Christian Medical Fellowship and the Core Issues Trust – proof that strong, reasoned opposition from Christians CAN effect changes. If only ALL Christians learned the facts about homosexuality and then argued their case, we would see bigger changes.
The RCP said "sexual orientation is determined by a combination of biological and postnatal environmental factors" and goes on to say that "[it] is not the case that sexual orientation is immutable or might not vary to some extent in a person's life"
This is the closest an atheistic organisation will come to calling it ‘sin’, but it is a good start. The changes about homosexuality originally began with deceptive statements put out by USA psychiatrists in the 1970s, so it is apt that a UK group of psychiatrists put the record straight (yes, that’s a pun). (NARTH News, May 2014).
In my mental hospital days I entered into vigorous debate with consultant psychiatrists, who simply could not uphold their position (defending homosexuality). They even tried to dismember my character in local newspapers. But, they never won!
Those who recently opposed the RCP pointed to very bad research methods and misuse of evidence. However, the RCP still maintains that therapy to turn away from homosexuality is ‘potentially harmful’. To my mind this kind of mini-statement is meaningless, because almost anything is ‘potentially’ harmful! It is a ‘just-in-case’ view, not a scientific judgment based on facts and proper evidence.
Homosexuals will now scramble like rats in a trap to provide ‘evidences’ they are ‘born that way’, even though no-one can possibly prove such a position. It does not matter how many ‘evidences’ there are – evidence alone never proves anything! That is a scientific fact!
So, friends, NEVER accept the homosexual explanation for their gross sins. They cannot ever prove their case, but they will always lie and cheat about the evidences. We must keep pushing the facts onto professional bodies and insist they examine their position. Don’t let it slide away... we CAN make a huge difference if we only press forward with godly intent... this includes a sword in the hand, a mind honed sharply, and the support of divine truth.
As I started preparing our evening dinner, I noticed a TV program about haunted buildings. Before I switched it off (they are never useful or even close to truth), I noted the parapsychologists were using electronic devices to sense ‘spirits’!! This use of machines to detect ‘ghosts’ is commonplace.
But, what fools! Do they think they can detect demons (which is what ghosts etc., are) with man-made tools and equipment?
Of course, these folks are worse off than that, because they don’t recognise hauntings to be demonic at all. They give all manner of excuses, from walls containing ‘imprints’ of historical events such as deaths, to ordinary earthly reasons such as vibrations from traffic (which some effects are).
Parapsychologists BEGIN their studies NOT with the actual evidences of spiritual phenomena, but with the assumption that the spiritual world does not exist! Thus, they begin with a handicap and ignore very real evidences that would point them towards a spiritual world.
No number of man-made devices can ever detect demons! This is because their presence is outside the human and earthly experience. Demons impose themselves on our world, but leave no electronically-detectable trace. How can they, when they are fallen beings from Heaven, with spiritual bodies?
Do not be duped by these TV offerings, which are numerous. In snippets I have seen fools staying all night in ‘haunted’ castles etc. They are fools because they have no idea of the forces they are tampering with. Demons will play along with their fantasies, but they will also impress their minds and hearts with deception, causing cold indifference to God and His gospel.
Indeed, don’t watch this kind of thing in the first place, for Christians who do so for ‘entertainment’ value will be slowly misled and made colder towards truth, God, and spiritual growth.
Blessings Come from Obedience
And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the LORD thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth:
And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God.
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