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Freedom Versus Freedom

 

2 Timothy 3:12-13 

Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.
But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

 

In our previous article we noted that Christians are working directly with and for the United Nations. The goal for the many is to ensure that Christians internationally are guaranteed the protection of the rights of believers to worship and share the message of Jesus Christ without fear of persecution or discrimination, alongside that same goal of religious rights for all other religious beliefs.  

Perhaps to some this a valid Biblical undertaking. The actions  and associations of many promoting these rights should make each consider carefully, whether God promised that Christians would have religious or political freedom, and whether it is Biblical to deem that Christians will not face persecution through that political or religious law. 

One must consider if the "freedom" desired by the many is the freedom that we as Christians are to expect and in fact 'have a right to," in order to serve Jesus Christ.

When Jim Nicholls and others endorsed the Church of Scientology, it was because of their legal battles. Nicholls stated,

"There are many Bible-believing Evangelicals and others in the established Christian community who have not yet accepted the Church of Scientology. Nevertheless, they should thank the Lord for them, because the Scientologists have fought a lot of battles that have helped protect and safeguard freedom for us all.

Because of these efforts, Scientology is continuing to gain more and more acceptability among leaders in the religious community, and the Church has won most of its battles..."

That Scientologists have fought for anything other than safeguarding their own freedom could be long debated. The runoff of their legal battles has indeed allowed the floodgates of cults, and every manner of belief contrary to the Word of God to be accepted and endorsed. However, that very  'freedom' allows for evil to be called good.

Isaiah 5:20 Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!

The implication of Pastor Nicholls' statements are that Christians are indebted to their actions, because now we won't face persecution and Christianity will be just as fashionable and as acceptable as Scientology, Witchcraft, Satanism, Hinduism, Buddhism and so on.

Since the tragedies of September 11, many recording artists have assailed their public with cries of 'freedom.'  The battle cry of freedom of democracy which allows for all to be endorsed is the freedom viewed as worth protecting and even dying for.

However, a quick media perusal shows less than the desired religious equality and tolerance in the United States, and which is really no different world wide. For example:

http://www.newsmax.com/archive/print.shtml?a=2001/11/15/74852

NewsMax.com

Thursday, Nov. 15, 2001 8:48 a.m. EST

NYC OKs Prayer in School - for Muslims

"...the New York City public school system, has quietly sanctioned prayer in schools - but only of you're a Muslim who wants to worship during Ramadan.

In a talk radio exclusive, New York's WABC Radio has been airing reports for weeks on the school system's special program for Muslims. Late Wednesday, Schools Chancellor Harold Levy finally confirmed that the religious double standard indeed exists.

"Christian parents would probably love to have a place where their children could pray during school hours," WABC newsman George Weber said Thursday. "They don't ... but the Muslim kids are getting their very own prayer room in New York City public schools."

"The New York City public school system is going to accommodate Muslim students, allowing them space for prayer" during the five-week Muslim holy season of Ramadan, reported Weber's partner, Babita Hariani.

"In a statement, though, Chancellor Levy adds the prayer 'cannot interfere with classes or infringe on other students,'" she explained.

That's not exactly what the chancellor's office told the New York Post, which reported Thursday that Levy spokeswoman Margie Feinberg told them Muslim students will be allowed to cut classes in order to pray and then reschedule them later."

Many Christians are afraid to speak publicly about their beliefs for fear of being tagged as intolerant towards others. We need to speak regardless of the response.

Matthew 10:32 Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. 33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.

A prime example of denial took place in the National Cathedral, with Billy Graham and then when President Bush chose to eliminate Scripture, having quoted Romans 8: 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, --and eliminated-- which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. That is denying Christ before men. 

Another more recent example took place December 10th. "....A month after the terrorist attacks, Rev. Franklin Graham, the son of evangelist Billy Graham, said the God of Islam is different than the God of the Christian or Judeo-Christian faith and that Islam is "a very evil and wicked religion." He later recanted the remark...." [Crusading for a Christian nation; By Dahleen Glanton, Tribune national correspondent, Published December 10, 2001, Chicago Tribune >chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-0112100207dec10.story?coll=chi%2Dnewsnationworld%2Dhed]

Which is the truth? The denial before men or the statement before men? If we as Beleivers deny the Biblical truth of anything before men, are we not denying Jesus Christ? 

Is this the tolerance and religious freedom being fought for legally and now as a symbol of democracy, by "Christians" and non-Christians alike? Where one's beliefs are only tolerable or acceptable if one states that all other religions are equally tolerable, acceptable or right before God? 

The desired democratic freedom has the expectation that Scriptural truth and obedience to Jesus Christ be set aside in favor of 'diversity,' 'tolerance' and 'unity' of beliefs.

1 Peter 3:14 But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; 15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

The 'freedom' desired under the theology of democracy does not allow for Biblical truth to be stated without some form of repercussion, legal or otherwise. And this is what is being esteemed and supported by nation after nation. It is what the United Nations has written into their documents that have been ratified by nations worldwide. 

Perhaps the democracy and freedom advocated by many nations can be summed up by an email circulated as being written by an Arizona youth.   The message came under the header of  THE LORD'S PRAYER..........

Since the Pledge of Allegiance and The Lord's Prayer are not allowed in most public schools anymore because the word "God" is mentioned....a kid in Arizona wrote the attached NEW School prayer.

  Now I sit me down in school

  Where praying is against the rule

 For this great nation under God

 Finds mention of Him very odd.

 If Scripture now the class recites,

 It violates the Bill of Rights.

 And anytime my head I bow

 Becomes a Federal matter now.

 Our hair can be purple, orange or green,

 That's no offense; it's a freedom scene.

 The law is specific, the law is precise.

 Prayers spoken aloud are a serious vice.

 For praying in a public hall

  Might offend someone with no faith at all.

 In silence alone we must meditate,

 God's name is prohibited by the state.

 We're allowed to cuss and dress like freaks,

 And pierce our noses, tongues and cheeks.

 They've outlawed guns, but FIRST the Bible.

 To quote the Good Book makes me liable.

 We can elect a pregnant Senior Queen,

 And the 'unwed daddy,' our Senior King.

 It's "inappropriate" to teach right from wrong,

 We're taught that such "judgments" do not belong.

  We can get our condoms and birth controls,

 Study witchcraft, vampires and totem poles.

 But the Ten Commandments are not allowed,

 No word of God must reach this crowd.

 It's scary here I must confess,

 When chaos reigns the school's a mess.

 So, Lord, this silent plea I make:

 Should I be shot; My soul please take!

Amen

And the question remains. Did God promise that those who love Jesus Christ would be accepted, tolerated or approved of? Will any laws change what God said will be?

 

Fear & Terror

Luke 12:4 And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. 5 But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.

Luke 21:9 But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by.

Many people have become terrified, gripped by fear due to the attacks of September 11, as well as the fear of biological attacks such as anthrax. Many have become rooted to that fear, afraid to continue in what was their routine. Not that most have turned their fear over to Jesus Christ, who promises peace, but rather, have turned to self-help, peer groups to help them deal with these overwhelming and paralyzing fears. Others are taking prescription drugs to counter this overwhelming anxiety and fear, which is being labeled as a disorder. 

Through Halloween and Thanksgiving, many were the public messages urging people to not allow the 'terrorists to win.' Many political figures urged parents to encourage their children to partake of the paganism of Halloween, to show that everything was alright. Things are not alright.  Things will continue to get worse. 

The United State's response to the terrorist attacks of September 11 have included The Office of Homeland Security, headed by Tom Ridge, and also the design of a model states health emergency act that is being considered in almost all US states.  It would allow for forced vaccinations, quarantine of complete cities, the federal take-over of health facilities, monitoring of prescriptions and all health records, etc. The National Guard has been utilized repeatedly.

BY October 26, the US passed into law it's anti-terrorist campaign which, "expands federal agencies' authority to conduct surveillance and wiretapping operations and secret searches against terrorist suspects while reducing judicial oversight....Other controversial measures include giving the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) director authority to identify priority targets for intelligence surveillance within the United States, a function from which the CIA previously was barred, and broadening the definition of ''domestic terrorism'' in a way that could subject people engaged in political protest to wiretapping and even criminal prosecution..." [Bill>http://www.commondreams.org/headlines01/1026-04.htm]

Canada and other countries have likewise implemented anti-terrorist laws. [http://www.dfait-maeci.gc.ca/Anti-Terrorism/Anti-Terrorism-e.asp] 

Question. Wasn't terrorism, bombing, murder and so on illegal before 9-11?

On November 28, the House of Commons passed the Government of Canada's Anti-Terrorism Act (Bill C-36).  >http://canada.justice.gc.ca/en/news/nr/2001/doc_27787.html> 

It include such articles  which "ensure that Canadian values of respect and fairness are preserved through stronger laws against hate crimes and propaganda..." Like the US, the bill would allow police to bug telephones and monitor e-mail and would even allow police to make "preventative" arrests. It also included the "ratifying two UN anti-terrorism conventions, the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism and the International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings, as well as the Safety of United Nations and Associated Personnel Convention".  

According to the Department of Justice, the Law allows for "making it easier to use electronic surveillance against terrorist groups...

These necessary measures target people and activities that pose a threat to the security and well being of Canadians. This is a struggle against terrorism, and not against any one community, group or faith. Diversity is one of Canada's greatest strengths, and the Government of Canada is taking steps to protect it. Measures will be included in the bill to address the root causes of hatred and to ensure Canadian values of equality, tolerance and fairness are affirmed in the wake of the September 11 attacks. These include:..amending the Criminal Code to eliminate online hate propaganda and create a new offence of mischief against places of religious worship or religious property; and....amending the Canadian Human Rights Act to clarify that the prohibition against spreading repeated hate messages by telephonic communications includes all telecommunications technologies. [Ottawa, Oct 15 >http://canada.justice.gc.ca/en/news/nr/2001/doc_27785.html]

The Final Call website  analysis of the Law states, "..Critics maintain the complex legislation would suspend several civil liberties, including protection against self-incrimination and arrest without charges. They fear it would give the government too much power—not only to strip legal protection from anyone suspected of terrorism, but to define who terrorists are in the first place.

On one hand, critics say this power is so sweeping that anti-globalization protesters and Native activists could be labeled as "terrorists."....It allows for suspects to be brought before a judge in secret for interrogation....The bill defines acts of terrorism as those threatening Canadian lives or property, that instill fear in society, damage the economy, or that are targeted against political institutions and the general welfare of the country. Justice Minister McLellan says it has three main objectives: suppress existing terrorist groups, provide police with new investigative tools, and toughen prison sentences for terrorists....the new measures would grant police wide powers of arrest without warrants; impose long consecutive sentences for terrorist crimes; and make it easier for police to obtain warrants for wiretaps, which they could maintain for as long as three years.

It also would allow for the assets of alleged terrorists and their supporters to be frozen or seized; increase the power of Canadian intelligence agencies to intercept electronic communications from abroad; and expand the government’s powers to keep information secret.

New categories of crimes would be created to counter espionage and also to deter vandalism of religious property and other hate crimes. 

[Canada's anti-terrorism law called repressive> http://www.finalcall.com/international/canada10-30-2001.htm]


In both the US and Canada, 'sunset clauses' were rejected in the Anti-Terrorist Laws. [http://www.butterworths.com.au/legalwords/html/001561.htm] Some of the concerns in Canada revolved around the concept of detention and forced confessions. A CBC documentary revealed that coercion can bring about confessions of crimes from those who have not committed a crime. The example was shown of a young prostitute who was worn down to the extent that she admitted to stabbing a man and then, after confessing how she did it, said, "Can we go now." There was no such crime. 

In 1998 the US passed The International Religious Freedom Act (S-1868), which was formerly the Freedom from Religious Persecution Act (HR 2431>ea.usa.or.th/mirror/usinfo.state.gov/usa/infousa/laws/majorlaw/intlrel.htm), 

"A Bill to Provide For The Office Of Religious Persecution Monitoring and to Provide for the Imposition of Sanctions against Countries Engaged in patterns of Religious Persecution and for Other Purposes." www.usis-israel.org.il/publish/press/whouse/archive/1998/october/wh51028.htm

It is based on and in support of the UN's Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Appendix B on the official US State Department site states that it is an enforcement of the, "International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and The Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Intolerance and of Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief." www.state.gov/www/global/human_rights/irf/irf_rpt/1999/irf_appendixb99.html

On October 2, 1998...The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) urged Senate passage of the International Religious Freedom Act (S.1868). The Act, cosponsored by CNP's Senator Don Nickles (R-OK) and Joseph Lieberman (D-CT), creates a framework to promote religious freedom internationally and provides a menu of options for US action against nations that persecute worshippers. [ADL>http://www.adl.org/presrele/mise_00/3246_00.html

"The International Religious Freedom Act is a necessary step to ensure that religious persecution will not be tolerated in our conduct of foreign policy. S. 1868 seeks to promote religious freedom by establishing an Ambassador-at-Large for Religious Liberty, a Special Advisor within the White House on Religious Persecution, and a bipartisan Commission on International Religious Liberty" [Hawaii>http://akaka.senate.gov/speeches/981002-a.html]

On October 27, 1998, a Press release showed that Bill Clinton had signed the Act into Law, stating, "...This Act is not directed against any one country or religious faith. Indeed, this Act will serve to promote the religious freedom of people of all backgrounds, whether Muslim, Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu, Taoist, or any other faith. I intend to nominate Dr. Robert Seiple, the Special Representative of the Secretary of State for International Religious Freedom, for the position of Ambassador at Large created under the Act. It is my understanding that he will act as an ex-officio officer of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, an organization that is advisory in nature and does not have the authority to make specific findings concerning violations of religious freedom..."

The International Religious Freedom Act >www.state.gov/www/global/human_rights/irf/irf_rpt/1999/index.html >   created the federal commission to monitor religion chaired by former World Vision President, Robert Seiple [http://www.usis.uz/news/000522.htm], as presidentially- appointed Ambassador at Large on International Religious Freedom and Special Adviser to the President on Religious Persecution. Robert Seiple was confirmed in May, 1999 as the State Department's first Ambassador-At -Large for International Religious Freedom. This position was created through passage by the U.S. Congress of the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998. In determining violations, the commission will rely on the United Nations' covenants and recognize the authority of the International Criminal Court. Seiple also founded the Institute for Global Engagement, a strategic think tank within the organization for global advocacy. [Ambassador Bio >http://www.usis.uz/news/seiple.htm]

For Bob Seiple See: World Vision: A UN Global Vision; World Vision: Institute for Global Engagement & Eastern College ; Hon. Trent Lott ; Senator Don Nickles

For Joseph Lieberman See also:  Apostles, Prophets & The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews

For More on Religious Freedom See: CNP's Coalition for Religious Freedom: CNP Joint Projects >Dr. Timothy LaHaye, Dr. Jerry Falwell, James Robison, Dr. D. James Kennedy, Robert GrantMarlin Maddoux, Rev. Donald WildmonConnaught (Connie) Marshner, Ben Armstrong, Richard Shoff 

The United Religions Initiative Charter > http://www.united-religions.org/> signed on June 26, 2000, officially launched the United Religions Initiative. San Francisco's Episcopal Bishop William E. Swing founded URI in 1995,  to bring together people of different religions and traditions to "stop killing in the name of God" and start learning to live together." [URI Press >http://www.uri.org/urinews/prrelease/jun00pr.pdf

The Charter signing Summit took place three months after the UN's Earth Charter was signed, and June 26 is the anniversary of the signing of the constitution for the United Nations. [http://www.earthcharter.org/draft/charter.htm] URI has held at least 5 Global summit conferences, with the June 2000 conference marking the birth of a truly global organization. [PR>http://www.uri.org/urinews/prrelease/jun00pr.pdf

The URI Charter was signed at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA, USA, by delegates to the Global Summit Conference from 44 countries and 39 religions, in an "elegant multi-faith ceremony," followed by a week of "work deepening commitment to ending religious violence." Faiths represented at the Global Summit included Hindu, Zoroastrian, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hoa Hao, Buddhist, Taoist, Wiccan, Cao Dai, Baha’ I, Sikh, and Indigenous Peoples.

The leadership of the URI hope to "create cultures of peace, justice and healing for the Earth and all living beings'.  The URI Charter states that the organization's purpose is "to promote enduring, daily interfaith cooperation" and to "end religiously motivated violence." 

While the whole emphasis of URI is “spiritual,” it is spiritual by use of legal enforcement. That is, although politics are based in spiritual belief or unbelief, what is acceptable and right according to God's Word is legally allowed or disallowed politically. For example, according to the Preamble to the Charter, the URI initiated a Worldwide Movement “...to support freedom of religion and spiritual expression, and the rights of all individuals and peoples as set forth in international law.   

URI does not view itself as a religion, but, "According to our first Principle, "We are a bridge-building organization, not a religion." In March 2001 URI became a NGO associated with the United Nations."  http://www.uri.org/charter/ppp.htm

However, Biblically, if one views all religious beliefs as acceptable before God, and hence, all paths lead to God,  that goes against such Scriptures as: 

John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. 7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.

1 John 5:12 He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. 13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

2 Corinthians 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? 15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? 16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,

2 Corinthians 11:4 For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.

1 Corinthians 16:22 If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha.

Past achievements of the ecumenical United Religions Initiative movement have been:: 

"One of its founding principles says, http://www.uri.org/ppp/index.htm "We seek and offer cooperation with other interfaith efforts.". As an example of this principle in action, at the URI's 1998 global summit, a group of young people offered the vision of a global interfaith, intercultural youth service corps which would be a cooperative project supported by several interfaith organizations. At the URI's 1999 global summit this group presented plans for the development of the Interfaith Youth Corps - IFYC  [http://www.ifyc.org/] , sponsored jointly by the Council for the Parliament of the World's Religions >http://www.cpwr.org/, the Interfaith Center of New York >http://www.interfaithcenter.org/home.htm, and the URI. This project will be offered as a gift to the world at the Parliament of the World's Religions meeting in December 1999 in Cape Town >http://www.cpwr.org/iii/parliament1999sa/index.html, South Africa. http://www.uri.org/faq/index.htm

The United Nations is not only headquartered in the United States, but, is one of many Interfaith, ecumenical, global organizations all committed to the same unity of spiritual and political thought.  One of the ecumenical symposiums for the United Religions Initiative states: 

Symposium, 19 November 2000, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris Unity in Diversity - Ethical and Spiritual Visions for the World

The organizations which initiated the symposium are the European Buddhist Union and the United Religions Initiative in Europe. Both organizations are partners of the United Nations International Year for the Culture of Peace (2000).

The theme of the event was Unity in Diversity Ethical and Spiritual Visions for the World. The event explored, from an ethical and spiritual perspective, how Unity in Diversity contributes to a Culture of Peace. A particular focus was the contribution of interreligious organizations, religious communities and spirituality. The coming Decade for a Culture of Peace and Non-violence for the Children of the World (2001-2010) provides a context for an outlook for our shared future. [URI: Unesco >http://www.uri.org/unesco/index.htm

In a press release September 13, 2001, in response to the US terrorist attacks, URI stated, "....We, members of the United Religions Initiative’s Interim Global Council, express our deep sorrow and grief at the acts of terrorism against the United States and all humanity on Tuesday, September 11, 2001. As people of diverse religions, spiritual expressions and indigenous traditions throughout the world, we unite in mourning...we give thanks for our existing interreligious relationships dedicated to peace, justice and healing. We – Buddhists, Bahai’s, Christians, Hindus, Indigenous peoples, Jews, Muslims, Sikhs, Taoists, and many other faiths – declare our intention to grieve together and to support all others who grieve...." [PR>http://www.uri.org/urinews/prrelease/sep01pr.htm]

The Ecumenical thought, promotion and acceptance is becoming more pronounced as shown in the Ecumenical News. For example:

Ecumenical News International

News Highlights

21 November 2001

Christian churches send good wishes to Muslims at Ramadan

Amsterdam (ENI). As the observance of Ramadan begins in many parts of the Islamic world this week, world and national ecumenical bodies are sending greetings to the Muslim faithful. The Council of Churches in the Netherlands has prepared a short text of seasonal greetings that Christians can offer Muslim friends and neighbours to acknowledge the holy month-long period of fasting.

Trauma of New York attacks 'profound and disturbing', WCC group hears

New York, 21 November (ENI )--New York City clergy say the recent visit of an ecumenical delegation to show solidarity with US churches in the wake of the 11 September terrorist attacks proved to be an important and necessary moment in their struggle to offer pastoral care. "It was therapeutic," said the Rev Elias Villis, priest at the Greek Orthodox Church of Our Savior in Rye,

a New York City suburb. Villis was one of more than a dozen clergy who met the ecumenical delegation of the World Council of Churches on 8 November at the national headquarters of the Episcopal (Anglican) Church. In an interview with ENI, Villis - who ministered to fire-fighters, police and other emergency

personnel in the days immediately following the attack at the "Ground Zero" site of the fallen twin towers of the World Trade Center - said it was something of a new experience for US churches and clergy to be receiving such pastoral attention from fellow clergy elsewhere in the world. [658 words, ENI-01-0385]

As far as the International implications of the cry for freedom, the war against terrorism, and all the initiatives that have been enacted to further the goals of ushering in the anti-Christ, a November 16, 2001 story reveals that the religious freedom declared to be a universal right, is not applicable to Christians, who have a Biblical mandate to share Jesus Christ. 

Ecumenical News International

News Highlights

16 November 2001

Afghan diplomat outlines plans for government even as events unfold

Geneva (ENI). The Afghan official representative to the United Nations in Geneva has said that Christian as well as other aid organisations could have a role to play in a new Afghanistan - as long as they don't promote Christianity. Afghan diplomat Humayun Tandar told ENI that Christian and other humanitarian agencies could help a post-war Afghanistan to rebuild community schools and health clinics. But "proselytism creates tension", warned Tandar, a representative of the government of former Afghan President Burhanuddin Rabbani, who is still recognised by the United Nations. [915 words, ENI-01-0382]

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

ENI News Highlights contain summaries of ENI articles published today. This summary may be copied or re-posted provided the information printed below is retained. Individual paragraphs may be reproduced provided ENI is acknowledged as the source. For details of subscriptions to the full ENI News Service, which contains full text articles, contact ENI at the address below. If you no longer wish to receive these ENI News Highlights please send an e-mail to majordomo@info.wcc-coe.org  with the message unsubscribe eni-summary <your email address>   Your name will then be removed from our mailing list. ENI Online - www.eni.ch

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Ecumenical News International

News Highlights

19 November 2001

Christians that are told they can be involved in something as long as they don't share Jesus Christ, need to consider carefully their Biblical response. If helping means not being allowed to share Jesus Christ, what exactly is being accomplished? Are we bound to listen to men or are we bound to obey God? Did God promise that those who love Jesus Christ would be accepted, tolerated or approved of? Will any laws change what God said will be?

God said very clearly, 

2 Timothy 3:12-13 

Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.
But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

Those who are not living  'godly in Christ Jesus, will not face persecution. We are warned and commanded in Luke 6:26 Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets. 27 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, 28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.

Persecution, 'unfair' treatment, hatred and other similar occurrences are to be expected for those who love the Lord Jesus Christ. It is not an option. It cannot be legally dismissed. It cannot be overridden by saying we have a right to believe without persecution or hatred. That simply goes against what God has said, and is a deception. 

1 Peter 4:12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:
13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
14 If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.

If we remain silent because of fear of persecution or because someone said it wouldn't be welcomed or liked, what Biblical truth are we obeying? For further treatment of the expectation of persecution, see Persecution Free Christianity. Christianity is unique. Jesus Christ is the only way to the Father. We are commanded to share the truth of Jesus Christ knowing it and we, will be rejected because of Christ in us.

 John 7:7 The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil.

John 15:18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you.
19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.
20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also.
21 But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me.
22 If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin.
23 He that hateth me hateth my Father also.
24 If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father.
25 But this cometh to pass, that the word might be fulfilled that is written in their law, They hated me without a cause.

Romans 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
2 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
4 And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.

Copyright . All articles are the sole property of SeekGod.ca and Vicky Dillen. All Scripture King James Version unless otherwise stated.

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