Wednesday, November 22, 2017

ON TITHES AND “BEERING” IN THE CHURCH



Never heard of the fella called “Daddy Freeze” (Mr Ifedapo Olarinde) before. I guess he must be some sort of clown, especially reading his half-baked teaching on tithes, and his announced crusade against Pentecostal preachers who ride personal jets to do their jobs, or establish high-quality universities which not all members of their congregations can afford.
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Don’t know if he is claiming to be a teacher of the word of God, but a good number of folks seem to be taking seriously his suggestions that rather than pay their tithes to worship God and take care of needs in the Church, people should use their tithes to buy beer or some other alcoholic drink of their choice and take these to drink at Church!

When the revered Pastor Enoch Adeboye observed that “even mad people know you don’t go to Church to drink beer,”  Mr Olarinde sneeringly suggested the statement is based merely on “sentiments” and does not square up with the teachings of the Scriptures.  Obviously, Pastor Adeboye is not likely to have the time to oblige Mr Olarinde of the response he was demanding for. We therefore offer the man and those insisting on a response the following comments.

Yes it is true that the Mosaic Law prescribes, in addition to the regular tithes payable to the Levites,(Numbers 18:21,24) additional tithes (every three years) for the poor and needy (Deut 14:28-29; 26:12-13), and also for the family to eat with rejoicing in the presence of the LORD in the “place” He prescribes.(Deut.14:22-27)

All the extensive preaching by Mr Ifedapo “Freeze” Olarinde on permissibility of wine and beer in the Christian culinary is absolutely unnecessary.   Most folks are very familiar with the basic difference between getting drunk and having a sip of wine recreationally. And that the latter does not constitute a “sin”. Of course, the Freezes of this world are not likely to see the multitude of Bible verses that additionally teach that not all that is allowed is expedient or beneficial.(1 Cor. 6:12, 10:23)  Even in the Old Testament, there are scriptures that aver that wine and beer are not for “Kings and Priests” who need to be sober at all times.(Prov. 31:4-5)  Why, there is even the well-known story of an old testament Priest, Jonadab of the Rechab lineage who actually forbidded his children from ever tasting alcohol (Jer 35).

But as earlier said, the issue here is not about the permissibility or otherwise of drinking alcohol; but the reasonableness of going to Church to do so. The golden passage latched onto by Freeze is Deut. 14:22-26.  It is actually interesting to see at least for once, minions of the antichrist rooting for a text in the Old Testament, which ordinarily they insist is no longer relevant. In Deut 14, the Law permittted people to take whatever they considered as delicacy, including alcohol or beer, and consume these with rejoicing before the Lord at “the place” He so designates.

The “place” is obviously the Temple at Jerusalem.  But the primary reason for the trip is not just to go there and feast on the tithes before the Lord.  Actually there are specified Feasts during which a Jew is required to go up to Jerusalem to worship and celebrate. This third type of tithes is provision set aside for the family feeding during these Feasts.(see details at https://www.ministrymagazine.org/archive/1958/09/the-three-tithes-of-the-old-testament)

Furthermore, and more importantly, the Temple was never a one-compartment building.  Most Israelites never make it beyond the Outer Courts.  That’s where they may eat their family tithes, which might include drinking their beer and alcohol in moderation.(see details at http://www.biblestudy.org/biblepic/interior-diagram-of-temple-in-jerusalem.html).  But where the Levites/priests operate and eat their own tithes is the Holy Place which they never approach until they have washed at the Laver, and are garbed in special consecrated robes for service. The Holy Place in the Inner Court is certainly no place for beering or frivolities! Even up till today (without a standing Temple), priests in Judaism are not allowed to as much as pronounce blessing on people even after a single cup of wine (see http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/581082/jewish/What-is-Judaisms-take-on-alcohol-consumption.htm).  For Levites who wish to consume alcohol, there are myriads of side chambers (really like their private living quarters) where they may do so – still in the Temple (see for example Jer 35:1-5).  In other words, if they so desire, they may drink wine recreationally in their chambers, but not “at work” in the Holy Place.

But in the Old Testament Temple, the real place of the presence of the LORD is the Holy of Holies.  The New Testament anti-type of the Holy Place is the Church.  Even Freeze and his disciples seem to recognize that the Church is more than the building (although they at the same time refuse to recognize that Christians are Priests! – 1 Pet. 2:9, Rev. 5:10, etc). The Church is indeed the coming together of the saints in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ – with the assured presence of the Lord guaranteed (Mat. 18:20).  When the veil was torn from the Temple as the Lord Jesus concluded the ultimate sacrifice at Calvary, the Holy of Holies and the Holy Place merged to become a single compartment (Mat. 27:50-51).  Going to “Church” today is therefore to be likened to entering into the Holy of Holies in Judaism.

 It certainly will take more than a mad fellow to contemplate going into the Holy of Holies to consume beer!

As for all the howlers that Pentecostal preachers are threating to curse those who refuse to pay tithes, the reality is that it is God who Himself warned that those who fail to discern between the “holy and the profane,”  and robbing Him of His due tithes, are indeed opening themselves up for curses from Him. No raving pastor here!  (Mal 3:8-9)

One wonders what Freeze and his media flock would have said of the Apostle Peter in the early Church.  In Acts 5:1-10 is recorded the story of a couple who were physically instantaneous slain at the pronouncements of the Apostle.  The Freezes of this world would certainly have had much to pontificate about prestigious pastors who go about killing people who offered only half of the price of their properties just for the offence of putting such forth as the full price.  And by the way, do you talk about giving tithes in a culture where people brought ALL they have to the feet of the Apostles?  If only the 21st Century Church will retrace her steps back to the ways of the early Church.  But certainly NOT by keeping away tithes from the Church and diverting them for “beering” in the assembly of the saints!

As the African proverb goes, “Half education is more dangerous than no education.”  It is half-baked education that makes people insist that the universe came into existence on its own without a creator (Evolution Theory). Likewise, it is half-baked education that makes wanna-be scholars go around viciously teaching that it is okay for a Christian to commit sins; and that confessing, repenting or asking forgiveness of such sins is the only “sin” that God would not tolerate or overlook! That is the core tenet in the Once-saved-always-saved doctrine.  It is exactly the same half-baked bible education that makes people like Mr Ifedapo Olarinde, aka Freeze not see what even a regular mad man on the street would instinctively recognize: you just don’t go to Church to consume alcohol!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Planned Parenthood Teams up with Satanists to Promote Abortion in Missouri (USA)

Missouri has reportedly doubled its abortion capacity this year “thanks to the Satanic Temple and Planned Parenthood,” who have worked in tandem to fight the state’s restrictions on abortion.

(From http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/09/13/planned-parenthood-teams-up-with-satanists-to-promote-abortion-in-missouri/)

With some of the most clearly defined regulations on abortion in the nation, Missouri had managed to lower the number of abortion facilities to a single clinic, but a second Missouri clinic opened its doors recently and two others plan on following soon.

Planned Parenthood has battled against state regulations requiring abortion clinics to meet the same surgical center standards as full hospitals and for their doctors to have hospital privileges, and in April a federal court sided with the abortion giant.

U.S. District Judge Howard Sachs granted a preliminary injunction invalidating requirements for the state’s abortion clinics to meet standards for surgical centers and for their doctors to have hospital privileges, citing a U.S. Supreme Court ruling striking down similar restrictions in Texas, which deemed those laws unnecessary and unconstitutional.

“Missouri has not complied with that decision,” Sachs, of the Western District of Missouri in Kansas City, wrote.

Shortly afterward, Planned Parenthood expressed its intention to expand its abortion services in the state. On Monday, Planned Parenthood Great Plains announced plans to offer abortion services at two more clinics in Missouri, including its midtown Kansas City clinic, which now offers medication abortion services.

The Satanic Temple has often lent its muscle to pro-abortion efforts alongside Planned Parenthood, and in this case has pressured Missouri legislators and worked through the courts to bring about a relaxing of abortion restrictions, according to reports. One of the Temple’s fundamental tenets is that “One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.”

On Monday, the Satanic Temple argued in a Missouri court that the state’s abortion restrictions violate members’ rights to free religious practice. The organization challenged two Missouri laws: one that requires patients to look at anti-abortion literature and another that obliges them to wait 72 hours between their initial consultations and second appointments for their abortions.

Satanic Temple members have argued that their religion prizes rational, independent thought and that forcing Satanists to read anti-abortion pamphlets and “consider a religious proposition with which they do not agree” during the 72-hour waiting period constitutes a violation of their beliefs.

read more at http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/09/13/planned-parenthood-teams-up-with-satanists-to-promote-abortion-in-missouri/ 

Friday, October 6, 2017

Building the Church is the first stage in building the Kingdom of God



      Anyone who is an observer of things would certainly tell that we are definitely coming close to the end of the ages. There is an unprecedented battle that is underway for the souls of nations.
    In the UK, we have seen the move of an aggressive secularism that wants to take the worship of God out of public life. We have seen our leaders embarrassed and forced to resign simply because of their faith. We have seen and see an attempt by another faith to wrest control of the nation, to seize the soul of the nation. We have seen churches closed: on the last account 500 churches in and around London closed and 480 mosques were planted in their stead. We have seen laws that are so ungodly passed. Policies that we know are so ungodly passed. It is impossible to imagine that such things can happen. We are now dealing with the issue of genders and transgenders. It’s being taken out of a lot of our literature the reference to male and female, because it is assumed that there is some middle ground that is neither male nor female. And that is official. Things are dark in the UK.
         But then, I wouldn’t say it’s any different from here. It might not be the same expression, but when we look round at the state of things here in Nigeria, we see the rabid corruption. We see the blatant use of the government’s machinery in some places to advance the agenda of one faith over another.  We read about how our curriculum for our children has been hijacked so that any reference to the deity of Christ has been removed. We look around at some parts of the Church and we marvel that this is the Church of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We hear about the killing that is taking place in some parts of the country. The persecution of Christians. The kidnapping of young girls and them being forced to convert to other faith.
        And I can go on and on and on, but you get the picture. What I’m trying to say is that it’s no different here.  It’s no different in the Middle East.  It’s no different in North America. It is no different in South America.  It is clear that the kingdom of darkness is marching on and has an agenda, and the agenda is to push back the Church, and to seize the high ground.
        How did we find ourselves in this state? We find ourselves in this place because while men slept, the enemy came and sowed tares. We ended up here because we played Church. We became politicians of an ecclesiastical nature. We specialized and majored in pettiness and distractions.  We built empires, we said we were building churches. And maybe we did, but we didn’t understand that to build a church is the first stage in building the Kingdom of God.
    If we stay in our churches and clap hands, and sing songs, the enemy will arrive at the door of our churches.  The whole essence of Church is to equip the saints for the work of the ministry.  The work of the ministry is not just the pulpit. Of course the Pastor can be President. A Pastor can be President of the Senate. Why shouldn’t ministers be heads of banks? Of course, they can!     Agu  Irukwu

Egypt Sentences ISIS members to Death for the Beheading of 21 Coptic Christians in Libya




Remember this chilling picture? Justice has caught up with seven members of the ISIS terror group responsible for the beheading of 21 Egyptian Christians in Libya in February 2015. (see Vol 18 Qtr 3).  An Egyptian court on 16th September sentenced them to death, three of them in absentia. Thirteen others are on trial in the same case, and rulings for them are scheduled to be delivered on Nov. 25.  During the two-year anniversary of the beheadings earlier in the year, a widow of one of the martyrs told the International Christian Concern that she was proud of his husband for having kept the faith.  “He has lifted our heads up and honoured us and all the Christians."  Similarly the children of the martyrs praised the courage their fathers showed the world by refusing to renounce their faith, even in the face of certain death. For details, see  http://www.christianpost.com/news/egypt-sentences-isis-killers-to-death-for-beheading-of-21-coptic-christians-in-libya-199575/

Islamic-inspired terror no longer news material



     Islamic-inspired terror has reached such a proportion that unless they happen in locations such as Europe or United States, they hardly get reported anymore. The world owes Robert Spencer and his team a ton of gratitude for helping us to a least keep track of these virtually countless atrocities visited on fellow humans by people claiming to be full of zeal for the cause of Islam.  Citing location and date, The Religion of Peace (TROP) website lists cases of Islam-inspired killing and maiming since 11th September 2001.  So far, in the year 2017, (as at 3rd October) TROP has catalogued 1,600 Islamic attacks in 55 countries, in which 10,904 people were killed and 11,225 injured. Most of these incidents are terror attacks.  A handful are honor killings or Sharia executions.  
      TROP is a non-partisan, fact-based site which examines the ideological threat that Islam poses to human dignity and freedom.   In the month of September, 806 people were killed and 688 injured in 131 attacks carried out across 20 countries. 14 of these occurred in Nigeria and are listed in the Table below.

Date
Location
Details
30-Sept
Bama
One person is killed during a Boko Haram attack.
27-Sept
Guzamala
Islamists kill three villagers and burn over 100 homes.
27-Sept
Dikwa
At least two people along a highway die from a Boko Haram bomb blast.
26-Sept
Dikwa
A female suicide bomber storms a rival mosque and sends five souls to Allah.
20-Sept
Daima
At least nine innocents are slaughtered when Boko Haram attack a peaceful farming community.
18-Sept
Mashalari
Two female suicide bombers attack an aid distribution station, slaughtering over fifteen needy people.

17-Sept
Kurmiri
Five villagers are murdered by Boko Haram
8-Sept
Ancha
Six women and six children are among nineteen Christian villagers butchered by Fulani terrorists.
8-Sept
Ngala
Islamists pour machine-gun fire into a displaced person camp, picking apart seven refugees.
8-Sept
Muna Garage
Two refugees are blown to bits in the camp by a Boko Haram suicide blast.
8-Sept
Mallan
Two farmers are gunned down by Islamists.
6-Sept
Mallan
Three young people are shot to death by Boko Haram.
6-Sept
Kesa Kura
Advocates for a Sharia state murder three villagers.
5-Sept
Bulamari
Boko Haram murder four farmers in a drive-by shooting
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Meanwhile, a new groundbreaking regulation proscribing full-face Muslim veils in public spaces became effective in Austria as from October 1.  Similar laws requiring the face to be completely visible in all public spaces , including bus, rail, air and sea transport  are already in operation in Belgium, France, and the Netherlands.  The Austrian version also prohibits Islamic radicals from distributing the Koran