In The Spotlight
The old Celtic church in Britain, though under a number of kings who ruled different areas of the land, was unified in its beliefs, albeit in a kind of rough-shod way. It arose well before the first Roman Catholic official tried to impose Rome’s beliefs on it (through Augustine of Canterbury), and began life as an independent order of Christians. Some claim they were the original ‘Protestants’. Sadly, it veered slowly towards Catholicism, but loosely. However, until well into the 600s, the indigenous church ran its own affairs and adhered to a more or less single set of doctrinal teachings, without having to pay allegiance to Rome.
Even earlier, the first churches, around the Mediterranean, were unified in their beliefs. This was helped in part by the writings of Paul, and also by the traveling nature of preachers, who all taught the same things, giving the Church immense unified authority.
The Beacon 308 December 2023
Are ‘Animal Rights’ Right?
Many Christians have pets, whom they say they ‘love’. Maybe they do love them, or maybe what they call ‘love’ is just an emotional play on words. I accept that they have a bond with them, and that this is their prerogative. But, what of instances where this bond appears to go too far and somehow raises the bond to the level of some kind of divine authority to say that animals have ‘rights’? Hm.
In ordinary biblical terms, people are made ABOVE animals, but below the angels. And Genesis tells us that mankind has dominion over not just animals, but absolutely everything in Creation. Thankfully, this dominion has only reached earth thus far, as humans feebly try to grasp everything in space!
I believe in looking after what God has given us and not mistreating it. I loathe killing anything for the sake of it, and find cruelty of animals despicable. Yet, I do not want pets. I like them, but don’t want to ‘own’ one. And most of them kept in captivity are, to me, victims of unwanted human possession ideas.
Anyway – back to animal rights. Do they have them? Or, are they only devices enforced by those who have gone overboard by elevating animals to above humans, or equal to them? Instinctively, I know that some readers have already made their minds up and emotionally consign me to an ‘animal hater’ basket! But, I don’t hate animals, so deal with it!
I have an automatic distrust for the term ‘Animal Rights’. Personally, I think we should talk about ‘Human Duty’ (towards animals) and NOT ‘Animal Rights’. I find hunting for non-food sake repugnant, especially illegal hunting resulting in an animal left to die just for the sake of its ivory or coat. I also think the same when pets are either abused or given lavish and sinful attention.
Prof Martha Nussbaum of Chicago university says the question of animal rights is non-existent, so she wrote about its lack. But, is her concern a paper tiger, or should Christians make more of an effort?
Some argue that certain animals should be treated the same as human beings, because they are ‘just like us’. Scientifically, this is untrue, even in the case of ‘close’ animals such as Chimps. Recent research shows they are far less than close! But, Nussbaum is an evolutionist, so we can place little store by her words. We do better by applying the Bible’s own hierarchy – Angels, Humans and Animals, in descending order. Thus, animals are at the ‘bottom of the pile’ in terms of god’s concern. It does not give animals a higher status but neither does it allow humans to use cruelty or ‘bad practice’.
Others say that if we stopped giving pain to animals, things would become better… an unlikely goal given the way humans mistreat other humans! And what about having plenty of room to move around, asks Nussbaum? I am not a fan of keeping pets couped up and I think almost all animals should be allowed to roam freely (except for cats that make a mess of my back yard, and dogs who bite my legs).
A clever woman, Nussbaum sadly fails in logic, because of her evolutionary thinking… she thinks that animals should take part in law-making about their existence, because they are able to articulate needs and wants. That’s a silly one! Some animals do show what they want (food, peaceful existence, and so on), but we cannot legislate based on what WE think they think – if they think in the human sense at all (which I reject). I look at, say, deer in the wild of Africa… when a lion bounds towards them they run fast to escape. If caught, well, they become dinner. But, if the lion fails, the deer simply carries on grazing as if nothing had happened. Is this proof of logical (human) thinking? I do not see it! There appears to be no fear as we define fear, only a natural instinct to run.
Overall, Nussbaum wants a heavy legal framework to reflect animal freedoms. Sounds good, but the poor cannot afford the resultant higher prices of basics. In my mind we must simply follow scripture, which states that Man rules everything in the world, including animals. He is given authority to do whatever he likes with what we call ‘nature’ and animals. Yes, some men love to destroy or make a profit from what they have authority over. But, if we treat what God created well, the rewards will be obvious. The authority given by God does not give us the right to destroy or wantonly kill. That is what I meant by ‘Human Duty’.
Animal rights go too far in treating animals like humans. They are distinct from humanity. Yet, they may not be unduly harmed for fun or any other reason. In the same way, angels are made higher than humans, and yet demons (fallen angels) harm mankind. So, harm can run both ways, up and down.
The Arminian Heresy
Some readers might already attend an Arminian church, but do you know that when Arminianism first started its campaign to be rid of Calvinism, its views were rejected by the majority of churches – and very vigorously? Even the English Parliament was involved. And some, such as Augustus Toplady, were none too polite about Arminianism! He and others called it a Roman Catholic plot, and a letter sent by a Jesuit appears to prove it. I am not surprised. Indeed, I have said in the past that Arminianism is from Roman Catholic stock, possibly a dupe sent to infiltrate the churches of God. Calling itself ‘Remonstrance’ in the early days, Arminianism was banned or rejected for quite some time. But, over time, it poisoned all the churches. We see plenty of evidence in today’s churches, as Christians (so-called?) adopt what was previously considered to be wicked… much as Charismaticism has infiltrated the churches worldwide.
In earlier days strong words were used to counter Arminian heresy. Today, it exists in a variety of denominations, including Methodism and Pentecostalism. But, anyone examining Arminian tenets of ‘faith’ cannot doubt that what they say is heresy. They fought, and continue to fight, against Calvinism, and can get very angry and spiteful. But, it is not Calvin they fight against – it is God’s own word. Calvin made errors of judgment at times, but he merely repeated what scripture says with reference to salvation. All Christians should read about this matter, because Arminius rejected plain scripture and instead gave his own false interpretations, most of which clearly despise what God says.
My book on this concentrates on what famed preachers have said in the past about Arminianism. Though I give my own view, I want readers to concentrate on what others have said in the past. Like the horrors unleashed by the Toronto Blessing (a charismatic heresy), Arminianism permeates the majority of churches today, often without realisation!
‘Baptism – voices from the past’. This is number three in the ‘voices from the past’ series. If you thought baptism was a straightforward activity with a fixed definition, then think again. You will be surprised by the variety of meanings given to this simple command of God.
‘Arminianism – voices from the past’. The fourth book in the series. Will be published after this Beacon goes out. Past preachers were far more concerned about this heresy than modern Christians. One voice says what I have always suspected – that Arminianism is linked strongly to Romanism. Yet, this heresy fills our churches! An important book.
‘Israel - Voices from the Past’ is the fifth book in the series, and is published. It will probably be available in January.
‘Romans. Bible Commentary’ will likely be published about February.
PODCASTS – 12 new Podcasts were produced in August, and were released one a week. The first batch (2022) continues to be available, too.
LATEST – Our Podcast producer, Charlotte (Charlie), feels that the Podcast should be issued once a week, every Sunday. So we began this new series on Sunday 10th December. Charlie is still studying for her law degree, so says this new arrangement is an experiment to see if she can cope with it. We hope it will continue, but cannot complain if it is too much for her. To facilitate this, I will do the Podcast immediately before we have our study meeting and release it after I get home. Let’s see how it goes! Meanwhile, Charlie is definitely a part of our small ‘team’, alongside her Dad, James. And both are also busy in their daily work.
Young Leaving Church?
I continue to read reports about the young leaving the Church, but oh how muddled the reports are! Yes, youth are leaving LOCAL churches. But, if they are saved, they CANNOT ‘leave the Church universal’. EVER!
Let me quote a few lines from Christian Today (2nd November, 2023). The writer was upset when her friend said she had finally seen the need to help ‘hurting LGBTQ individuals whom she loved’. The girl who said it has now hardened towards biblical and other perspectives and so ‘left the church’. The writer obliquely blames orthodox teaching for demonizing sexuality.
Let us be blunt – the reason for objecting to, AND shunning, hardened homosexuals, is not so much what they do (even though some of it is foul) but that God Himself condemns them outright BECAUSE they are homosexuals. What they do, say and believe, is in direct opposition to God’s laws, morality and biology, and so God bluntly says that any who are unrepentant will enter hell.
Furthermore, homosexuals (even women/lesbians) tend to get heinous diseases… and not just HIV-AIDS. Homosexuals are responsible for the majority of HIV deaths in the world, yet everyone talks about homosexuals almost as if they were cuddly toys! Yet, apart from HIV, homosexuals tend to get quite exotic diseases that are rarely seen in humans… because what they do is unnatural and unhealthy.
Another tendency is to hate Christians and biblical warnings. They do great harm to anyone who stands against their false claims… I was first attacked in 1985, and again in 2005, and I have known their evils for over fifty years! So, how can that girl side with homosexuals? Mostly she has seen the ‘nice’ side of them… but not the vicious side that emerges instantly when they are opposed. Leaders of homosexuality have always said that they will change society by showing the fun and nice side first. Then, they promise to ‘bring out the nasty stuff’.
They do this by entering influential careers such as TV, radio, magazines, films, politics, education, and other forms they can twist and deform with constant propaganda. They slowly change everything so it becomes fascist and completely godless. Read Romans 1 – it contains everything we can expect from sexual deviants. I can vouch for this, having been attacked by them many times throughout my life. If all this (and I have only mentioned the very obvious bits) sounds attractive to you, then your mind has been warped by propaganda. No Christian can possibly offer solace to rampant homosexuals! Unless their own minds are already twisted by continual denials and claims by homosexuals.
Of course, clever unchallenged homosexuals even claim to be ‘Christians’. This is impossible. Some isolated people might veer into homosexuality for a short while, but because what they do is hated by God, the Holy Spirit will call them back out again after repentance and rejection of what they did. Other than those few who fall foul of their desires, the majority are NOT Christians at all, and must NOT be allowed access to our local churches. Rather, they must be cast out (until and if they become true believers and turn against their former lusts).
Another thing that is VERY annoying is when Christian writers (like the writer I mentioned above) CONTINUE to refer to those ridiculous letters of the alphabet, which gives them credibility. As I always say STOP using their foul-mouthed versions of what they do and using their alphabetical letters – call them what they are – homosexuals… who live godless, corrupt and antisocial lives. TELL them what they are. And only offer friendship to those who wish to leave it all behind and want to change. But – the whole movement MUST be opposed publicly and within the churches.
The article I speak of rightly gives what was said by Jesuits many centuries ago – “those who capture the children own the future”. Which is why no child should be allowed anywhere near homosexuals, including those foul persons called ‘drag queens’! Indeed, no Christian should be friendly socially with homosexuals, unless it is to witness). Nor should we remain silent when schools try to brainwash kids with immoral material (usually hidden from parents). Homosexuals openly declare “We are coming for your children”. I will say no more at this time. I have said plenty over the past four decades, to little effect (except to be attacked and to lose my job!). But, to get back to the churches…
If kids leave the churches, they can do so because either they have been filled with lies, or, they were never saved in the first place (an error of so many Christian parents – they automatically think their children are saved). If they were saved, then God will guide them back again… but, they cannot ‘leave the church’ for ANY reason; it is simply not possible.
If unsaved, even the best background in Sunday School, etc., will not stop them from sadly tasting the rotten fruits of the devil. Churches must get it right and teach truth in everyday language, not with religiously coy terms. The homosexuals, socialists, and Islam will try their very best to lure kids to their sinful beliefs and practices. Until, like the wish emerging from Holland, we stop mosque-building and the open spread of the death-cult called Islam, we WILL lose children to the evil ones who, unfortunately have their minds trashed by socialist immoral school teachers as well. Satan is attacking from all sides now. BUT, he can never ruin a true-believer young person, even if the child goes off the rails at some point. Apart from that divine truth ALL readers need to recognise and understand their enemy, even if they appear to be reasonable and ‘nice’.
Keep in mind that homosexual leaders are only now bringing out the very worst attributes and intentions. They promised to do this once they had settled the law and propaganda. This is why we now have pride parades, vastly increasing sexual diseases, children committing suicide, mistakenly ‘changing genders’ (though it is impossible to do so), ‘teaching’ from clownish drag queens and ever-increasing ‘gay rights’ laws. I can tell you with authority – they are now circling their prey ready to pounce and destroy.
THEN comes the bad stuff, really bad. STOP giving any credit at all to homosexuals, STOP coming alongside them with friendship, STOP thinking that the funny gay comedian is only being a stage act, STOP seeing them as ‘nice’ and ‘kind’. They are enemies of God and us, and when we are numbed into such a captured state they will come at us with full force. In the meantime they and other demonic influences, will pull youngsters away from churches and morality. It is a sign of end time wickedness.
What About War?
Most Christians give approval to the works of John Bunyan. Yet, how many read past or ignore parts of his books where he mentions war and violence? Not an airy-fairy war, but real war. He speaks of actual warfare, and individual acts of violence – in his day using swords – and the physical killing of enemies. No dainty talk pretending it is just ‘spiritual’! And even Jesus warned His disciples to go out preaching whilst carrying a sword.
Most believers shun the idea of war or individual violence, but do so vaguely or with little true logic. So, I often ask - what if you were out for a walk, and you were attacked suddenly by wicked men? Would you physically fight back or ‘turn the other already crushed cheek’? What if wicked violent men attacked you and your wife, threatening death or even foul abuse of your wife? Would you defend yourself and wife/girlfriend/daughter then? What if an evil force suddenly turns to the UK and says it will kill and maim all who do not bow to its wishes (Hitler already tried that one; Islam is planning similar). Then, along come groups of blood-thirsty enemies to do just that? Would you defend yourself? Your wife? Your children? Your friends?
There is much nonsense spoken in the churches about ‘turning the other cheek’ etc., though the term is used outside of its actual meaning. Frankly, I don’t believe them! On many occasions, violence comes unexpectedly, giving no time to plead with God. There must be an instant response, or you could die, or your wife, etc.
In the Old Testament it is GOD Who demanded that the ancient Hebrews did not just defend themselves, but had to strike hard in military offensives, to kill all the enemy. What do you think of that?
What did you think of WW2? Do you think it was a ‘just’ war that HAD to be fought? Do you know what happened to genuine Christians at that time if they didn’t submit to Nazi tyranny? What do you think of a possible war initiated by Islamists?
Christians must know NOW what to think and do if such times come – and mostly today they come swiftly. Yes, a few will now hate me for bringing this up – but the times and enemies demand that we stay vigilant and ready. They will not simply go away because we wish to think sweetly?
Do not mistake what I am saying. I am NOT calling on readers to arm themselves or to think violently. I AM warning that times will come when every Christian might have to be clear-headed and resolute. Will some readers now decide to be angry and stop having anything to do with us? Even as hundreds of thousands of Christians are being murdered in Africa? And no-one defends them.
Then what of the work done by hard-working and vulnerable police officers. Many go out as single-crews, and face violent hostile criminals. Some are permanently injured, and some are killed. And some of them are Christians. What do you think about that?
As a psychiatric nurse who worked in a mental hospital locked violent ward, I often had to face violent inmates, most of whom were murderers, on my own. And every day on that ward I literally had to fight physically because of daily multiple attacks by those men. Sometimes, they joined with others as a gang. My church friends praised me for my bravery… but, I was not brave, nor did I enjoy violence. On the other hand, whilst they uttered superficial praise, they loathed the fact that I had to be physically violent, and they offered ridiculous ‘advice’, the kind given by ignorant people who know nothing of real life. It took a severe crippling illness to lose me my job, but, frankly, I was relieved! What would YOU have done? Accepted not just beatings, but death?
I think I said it some time ago – after I was almost killed by being strangled, I decided that no longer would I leave my life in the hands of criminal inmates. Up to that incident I was passive, but then, Instead, I would fight back. In no way was I going to leave my wife and children without me, because of a weird and unbiblical belief that I should do nothing! (This decision was made after absurd suggestions made by my peers and pastor/deacons).
I did not suddenly turn into a blood-crazed monster. I just decided not to be a victim for no good reason! And I fought back, without all the weaponry police carry nowadays. I even concluded that if an inmate was somehow killed by my fight-back, then that is what I would accept, without a blot on my conscience. (There is much more to say about that period).
What do you think of my decision? (Note; What I am talking about is extreme behaviour in an extreme environment, but what I refer to can easily occur in the streets right now in the West, because of hostile and murderous groups who threaten and use violence, allowed by police and government).
My query and comments are based on solid evidence in my own life, and the lives of every street police officer, and every front-line soldier, many of whom are Christians. This is your home-work, my friends – think hard about this matter. And be mentally and spiritually prepared for any conclusions you reach. I could give much more information on the issue, but the above is enough for now! Suffice to say that all believers must reach a conclusion that does not leave them dead and families bereft.
Why Jews Hate Christian Message
The hatred of Jews for the Gospel spills over in some parts of Israel, where strict Jews hate Christians. They give the following reasons:
- Christ is rejected as Messiah because He did not fulfil any prophecies..
- He advocated idolatry
- Told His followers to violate the Torah.
They quote Malachi 4:5,6:
“I will send the prophet Elijah …before for the Lord comes. So, before the Messiah shows up Elijah will return. And God, working through Him, will “turn the hearts of the parents to their children, and the heart of the Children to their parents”.
Did not fulfil any prophecies? Advocated idolatry? Violated the Torah? The above is quoted from the internet (Quora). Needless to say the quote was not accompanied by facts and biblical texts! Each point can be repudiated!! And Elijah DID return in the form of John the Baptist.
As I always warn – do not accept Jewish interpretations at face value – most of them are wrong.
(Please note, Bible Theology Ministries does not accept 'Replacement Theology' and strongly opposes anti-Semitisim and supports the divine given right of the people of Israel to defend their nation from Hamas, Islamists and others.)
I differ from a few things said by Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones, but I have general agreement. He once made a very apt comment against supposed authorities who claim that man’s ills come about because his environment is wrong. He responded:
“The terrible, tragic fallacy of the last hundred years has been to think that all man's troubles are due to his environment, and that to change the man you have nothing to do but change his environment. That is a tragic fallacy. It overlooks the fact that it was in Paradise that man fell.”
Much of psychiatry and politics uses this excuse to whitewash man’s sin (hence Jesus spoke of whitewashed graves). It is behind the really stupid idea of paying reparations to black people and rewriting history. It ‘explains’ why people become criminals or killers. But, as Dr Jones said, you can’t get more environmentally perfect than the Garden of Eden – yet Adam and Eve sinned in perfection! We sin because of a corrupt nature. (Lloyd-Jones . “Studies in the Sermon on the Mount”).
Something to Remember…
The fifth in the ‘Voices from the Past’ series, ISRAEL, will be published well before the next Beacon is written. It has been a worthwhile project for a very good reason – it shows famous preachers of the past as human beings, fallible and just as prone to sin and sometimes very odd behaviour!
They emphasise just how weak even men of God can be. No doubt, after my own demise, some will eagerly search for the same failures in my own life and work! I can say this with certainty, after so many decades being vilified by those who loathe my very existence. I fully expect it.
As I gathered (and will continue to do so if more titles are added to ‘Voices from the Past’) material for the books, I am often surprised by what past preachers and theologians said and did, that was not the usual holy emissions of good men. In the main, I have not repeat these failings, because they were not useful for the aim of the books. But, they reminded me of my own sinful nature, and urged me not to condemn other Christians even if they DO sin. As a qualified nobody I have no such right. Only God may condemn. I am of the same humble fabric so cannot claim immunity from sin or errors of judgment, even if I try my best not to fall.
I also know that Christians read popular books on past ‘big names’ and are shocked by revelations of their lives. But, why? They are just like us!! Having a ‘big name’ does not prevent one from being silly, or stupid, or even sinful. It is our sad nature, as our ‘old man’ tries always to cause us to stumble in any way possible… and if the fall is public, all the better! Yes, some falls have been stupendous, but we can expect this because Satan aims his darts, if not nuclear bombs, at those who preach the Gospel and teach God’s truths. So, thwart the devil – big names are NOT better than anyone else, nor are they necessarily more holy or less likely to sin: expect failure of mere men, so don’t react with shock-horror when they fall. You won’t find these truths in popular books and articles; you will need to delve deeply into research before such sins are found out. During my researches for the new series, I came across many hidden sins of the best of men. But, they were not found in the usual superficial internet searches! (Which is good).
Rather than tut-tut and feel complacent and smug, look to yourself and put your own selves right before Almighty God! I have no idea what sins (or supposed sins) my enemies will find in me when I leave this earth. But, until then, I will, with God’s grace, stick to the narrow path I should be on. I can, though, remind readers, that as a public figure whose ministry involves me in identifying evil and heresy, as well as in producing publications that put on show my inner self, it is possible I have committed a few sins without realising it. Those who sit in their armchairs all the time, away from controversy and the possibility of sinning, pontificating and doing nothing, are never going to be vilified! What I am saying applies to others in the past (and present) who have been ‘caught out’ in sins. It is a matter of logic – the ones who are likely to have a car accident are those who are on the road! Those who do not drive will be okay! The more public you are, the more likely someone, somewhere, will point spitefully at anything you say or do they consider to be wrong (and who disregard their own sins). Or, they will deliberately twist what has been said, or even invent things NOT said.
So, when coming to hear of this or that sin in good men of the past, remember your own sinful nature which, thankfully, has not been made public. And, search the truth – DID they sin? Even if they did, do not forget your own propensity to sin, often in secret.
God, Satan, or Self?
I had an interesting time over the Christmas period, doing some research on something in my past. It took many hours before I found the answer. The subject matter is not relevant to my question – How do we know a prompted activity is of God, of Satan, or even of one’s own mind? At first, I thought it was of God. Then, I wondered if it was a devilish ploy to take up all my time. Finally at the end of two weeks of research, I came to the conclusion it was neither, but was from my own mind.
Those two weeks reminded me to constantly check on my own motives and ideas, because the period has shown me that we should not assume a strong leading is from God OR from Satan. It can easily be a product of inner mulling-over of personal things. I concluded (after a week) that maybe my prompting was not of God, when I had no clear reason to do my research, and I was looking at a wide vague area, getting me nowhere. I then thought maybe Satan was hampering my ministry by searching – but I had continued with what I had to do, so this wasn’t the answer!
Then, I looked back at my emotional and inner thoughts before the episode, and concluded that my inner thoughts had led me to look at what I was researching. After this (end of second week) I got my queries answered, and it proved indeed that my inner thoughts led to my two weeks of uncertainty. We must all be certain of our beliefs and actions, and not be trapped by vague or uncertain actions! God is not vague!
“For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?” (1 Corinthians 14:8)
© December 2023
Published on www.christiandoctrine.com
Bible Theology Ministries - PO Box 415, Swansea, SA5 8YH
Is there a difference between Old Testament saints and New Testament saints? Were people saved differently in the two eras? According to scripture both are the same. Even before God made promises to Abraham, men and women were accepted by Him as righteous… people like Abel, Enoch, and Noah.
What made them righteous was their faith in God. As with Abraham, and as with us today, it was a faith given to them by God. When Jesus came, only the means of salvation changed, not the fact. The Christian church comprises only of those elect and saved. So, what does this mean for the Old Testament saints? Exactly the same. They may not be of the Christian church, but they are of the ‘Church’ nevertheless, being saved by faith under a different name.
Paul makes his case very plainly. No human being who has ever been born is worthy to enter Heaven. No-one wants to find the real God nor want to be sinless. This is because each of us is born as a sinner. The mere fact that we are ‘conceived in sin’ means we are bound for hell, before we are born.
This chapter also deals with the ‘order’ of salvation… we were chosen by God, individually, and this means we cannot humanly accept or reject our salvation once it is given. We must be ‘born again’ or regenerated in spirit before we can listen to, and obey, the call to salvation. Then we repent and we are saved, instantly… no lengthy period of middle-ground. After that we ‘work out’ our own salvation – that is, we prove we are saved by our behaviour, beliefs and words. Then, at the end of time, we will be able at last to enter Heaven. This is the Gospel and it is amazing!
So many Christians live as if their salvation was meaningless. They cannot be distinguished from the unsaved and, to their shame, they do the same things. In some way or another we are all guilty of this at some time in our lives, so none of us can think himself superior.