September 15, 2014 (KAMPALA) – At least 40 people have died and many others injured when an unfinished building belonging to the famous Nigerian preacher, TB Joshua, collapsed in Lagos.
The two-storey building, located in the sprawling compound of the vast church complex came down on Friday afternoon.
“It’s now 40 dead,” said Ibrahim Farinloye, southwest coordinator of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), with officials expressing fears the death toll could rise as rescue efforts continue.
About 124 survivors were reportedly rescued alive from the rubbles of the building, which served as the guesthouse for foreign dignitaries and followers of TB Joshua, who leads the Synagogue Church of All Nations (SCOAN)
TB Joshua, dubbed “The Prophet”, has an almost fanatical following among Nigerians and across the world, Continue reading →
On 16 December 1949, the majority of Afrikaners and a few others in South Africa inaugurated the Voortrekker Monument on a hill overlooking the city of Pretoria. A group of these South Africans continue to gather there annually, in a large constructed amphitheatre, to hold a secular ceremony in celebration of a day of remembrance, which they call the Day of the Covenant or Day of the Vow. They hold the belief that, years before, on 16 December 1838, a group of Voortrekkers had made an Old Testamental type of covenant with Almighty God. They believe that this covenant had moved God to empower them to defeat a large army of black Zulu warriors at the Battle of Blood River, in what is today, Kwa-Zulu Natal.
To the contrary, man does not have the ability to influence God’s plan for history. The Voortrekkers won the battle against the odds, not as a result of the covenant they thought they had made with God, but according to the eternal will of God. God was not taken by surprise by the events of that day, He was not waiting to see what the Boers or the Zulu Impi would do, He caused the events to happen exactly as they played out, from eternity.
The 40m wide, 40m long and 40m high construction of the Voortrekker monument, which is modeled on and resembles an Egyptian monument, has a cenotaph as central focal point. Continue reading →
“The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness . . . that they may teach the young women to be sober . . . to be discreet, chaste . . . that the word of God be not blasphemed” —Titus 2:3-5.
In the fifth verse of the second chapter of Titus the aged women are to teach young women “to be discreet.” What does it mean to be discreet? It means to be prudent, judicious, cautious; wise in conduct and management, especially as to matters of propriety and self-control.
A young woman who measures up to these qualities in mind, heart, soul, spirit, and life certainly rises above the degrading principles of sin and wickedness. Her life is one of nobility, beauty, usefulness, and sublimity. She sets examples before her husband, children, and neighbors that areworthy of emulation. They know her life is hid with Christ in God. She possesses the Spirit of our Lord, and this enables her to discern between the evil and the good, and to avoid evil, error, and anything and all things that would mislead her. She likewise shields her husband and children from evils and errors, sins and wickedness, that they are environed with. At least she warns and cautions them against such, and shows them the higher, better, holier, and more beautiful and worthwhile things in life.
The discreet woman is possessed with the spirit and ability to adopt “means to an end,” and of course this means that which brings her and the family to a good end. She avoids the means that would injure her life, character, soul, and influence, and that would likewise injure her family and those about her. She must realize that what she takes into her life will have its effect, through the years—and will bring her to a good end, only as the means are good. She knows that the good will work out right, while the bad will work out wrong. She realizes that the good is a means to a good end, but the bad is a means to a bad end. Therefore she takes into her very soul the good and rejects the bad. She is discreet. Those who know her realize that she is a woman of great and commendable discretion. Continue reading →
This is the second installment of “Why Discernment Ministries Fail (and Succeed)”, Part 1 of which I published a year ago, almost to the day. Rather than repeating much of that which I wrote before, may I suggest that you refer to Part 1 here: Why Discernment Ministries Fail (and Succeed) (1), if you are interested in this subject, and have not previously done so. In Part 1 I attempted to establish the groundwork for bringing this installment into perspective, and it should provide an evenhanded and fair approach to the subject. A modern phenomenon, few ministries which place themselves under the banner of “discernment” have Biblically principled intent or calling, and the trend has in a very short period of time, drifted completely out of alignment with Christianity.
Regrettable and diverse are the failures of an overabundance of internet based “discernment” ministries, websites and blogspots, radio and television programs, publications, documentary films, etc. Frequently, these self-appointed and so-called discernment ministries are highly visible, easily accessible and present themselves as representatives of the truth. Often they regard themselves as whistle-blowers tasked with identifying threats to their specific brand of religion, “exposing” perceived falsehoods and acting as guardians of the Christian faith. Many of these “ministries” are the creations of self-appointed “watchmen” who claim to possess divine inspiration for their fake discernment abilities, which purportedly surpass those of the average Christian. In addition, these “watchmen” defend their position, which by the very nature of their ministries cannot be regarded as biblical, with an aggressive fervour which resembles religious and occult fanaticism.
The all too evident failure of the vast majority of these so-called “discernment” ministries, is in no small measure due to the fact that they are not founded on biblical prescripts, neither do they consistently accept or proclaim biblical doctrines. The reason for the rare success of a small minority of others is simple: they are not “discernment” ministries per se, they are truly Christian ministries in as much as they are led by heaven sent shepherds, true servants of the church, watchmen who have been appointed by God. (link here to Heaven Sent Preachers and Man Made Preachers – There is a Difference )
Isa 52:7-8 How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns.” The voice of your watchmen–they lift up their voice; together they sing for joy; for eye to eye they see the return of the LORD to Zion.
From this passage in Isaiah, read in conjunction with Romans 10:15, we understand that it speaks of true Gospel preachers and teachers. The Spirit of God describes all true Gospel preachers as watchmen. Continue reading →
To argue that God is “trying His best” to save all mankind, but that the majority of men will not let Him save them, is to insist that the will of the Creator is impotent, and that the will of the creature is omnipotent.” -A.W. Pink
Pastor Don Fortner
The prophecy made by the Apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 4:1-5 has come to pass in our day. All over the world men, and women, and boys, and girls gather in religious assemblies. Some are very solemn. Others can barely be distinguished from dance hall revelry. But they gather in the name of Christ to worship God. They read the Bible, say their prayers, invoke God’s blessing, and give their money. They are devoted. They are sincere. But they are lost! They have faith; but theirs is a false faith. They have hope; but their hope is a delusion. Having been led and taught by blind and ignorant men, “They will not endure sought doctrine; but after their own lusts…they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears…They turn away their ears from the truth and (have been) turned into fables.”
I am not talking about Hindus, Buddhist, and Muslims. I am talking about men and women who profess to know, worship, trust, and serve the living God by faith in his Son Jesus Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit. I am talking about our friends, relatives, and neighbors. I am talking about many of you. You have turned away from the truth have been turned unto fables. Do I have your attention? If you will pay attention to the Word of God, God just might teach you something. Continue reading →
As Spurgeon cried with deep insight: “Once a church or individual Christian gets on the downgrade, momentum takes over, recovery is unusual.” And there our modern church is found falling away in profound decadency with most churches having “ICHABOD” written on their doors.
The issue of Women Preachers is just one of the symptoms of this malaise of the church and so from all sides the word now used is “Post Christian Era”. But here we are dealing with this “cancer” of women preachers in the church. The Bible speaks too clearly on this subject for there to be any confusion. The problem is that churches too often are looking to sources other than the Bible for guidance; indeed they are fully steeped in the tenets of secularism. God loves women as much as He does men. Women are as important to the home, church, and society as men are. In Jesus Christ, women enjoy the same access to salvation and blessings before God as men do. This does not mean, though, there is no difference in men and women in their appearance and roles. There is a basic truth, which needs to be restated in the church and society today: Men and women are different and are not interchangeable!Continue reading →
One of the trademarks of Pentecostalism is that women usurp their God ordained place of submission in the church! Pentecostalism: The only religion often founded by women who usurp their place! Dominated by emotionalism!
Teaching or exercising authority over a man in the church. This includes pulpit preaching and administration.
1 Tim 2:12 But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. 13 For it was Adam who was first created, andthen Eve. 14 And it was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being quite deceived, fell into transgression. 15 But women shall be preserved through the bearing of children if they continue in faith and love and sanctity with self-restraint.
Being a pastor/elder/overseer. 1 Tim 3 and Titus 1 explicitly identify that pastors MUST BE MEN.
1 Timothy 3:1 It is a trustworthy statement: if any man aspires to the office of overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do. 2 An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, uncontentious, free from the love of money. 4 He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity 5 (but if a man does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of the church of God?); 6 and not a new convert, lest he become conceited and fall into the condemnation incurred by the devil. 7 And he must have a good reputation with those outside the church, so that he may not fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
Notice that the prohibition against women teaching or exercising authority over men in the church is IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWED BY THE CLEAR STATEMENT THAT ONLY MEN CAN BE OVERSEERS/PASTORS! One continuous text!
Another year is coming to an end, and for me personally, another dreaded “festive” season is fast closing in. As a child, Christmas time was by far my favourite part of the year; school holidays, presents, friends, feasting and families. Even while our children were growing up and lived at our home, Christmas always had a very special place in our calendar, for all the traditional reasons and some of our own.
Those comforting, warm (Southern hemisphere) and fuzzy days of simple togetherness and caring have long gone and have been replaced with over-priced consumer goods, mad shopping frenzies, enormous traffic congestion, escalating crime rates and death on the roads. It is all very sad. Quite frankly, I would probably be safer, more comfortable and my normality would be less disrupted if I found myself evangelizing on some Far-Eastern quiet Bhuddist island on December 25 this year.
As the years have passed, the “festive” or holiday season, which includes Christmas time, has become a commercialized farce, along with other similar festivals such as Mothers Day and Valentines Day. The original meaning and “reason for the season” has been replaced with lavish parties, extreme festivities, entertainment and expensive gifts. No longer is it “the thought that counts”, rather the value of the gift which apparently demonstrates the level of affection one has for the recipient. Rarely is the birth of our Saviour brought into the picture on Christmas, except in some churches and, of course those are quite empty over the holidays. Almost half of the congregation has gone to the beaches and leisure resorts of the world and the other half are in the shopping malls. The vast majority of children in the world will never know the true meaning of Christmas or experience the love which can surround the day.
Additionally there is a war being waged on the traditional Christmas by the secular world, atheists and falsely religious. “Merry Christmas” is being replaced with “Seasons Greetings” or “Happy Holidays”. This, of course, is being done in an attempt to promote a religiously tolerant society and an acceptance of a secular world religion. The battle for your bucks in the countdown of shopping days to Christmas has also become a major spiritual battle.
That brings me back to the controversial issue among many Christians, which is the celebrating of Christmas in the traditional way. The debate as to whether or not Christians should celebrate Christmas on December 25, or any other date for that matter, has been raging for centuries. There are sincere Christians on either side of the debate, and many reasons as to why or why not Christmas should be celebrated by Christians.
One argument against Christmas is that the traditions have origins in paganism. Another argument is that the Bible forbids Christmas trees, and the passage in Jeremiah 10:1-16 is cited as biblical disapproval, even though that passage has no relevance to Christmas or Christians. Some regard the fact that the Bible gives no indication as to the birth date of Jesus as reason enough not to celebrate the day on December 25. Others, on the other hand, regard the fact that the Bible is silent on the issue as tacit approval by God over the celebration issue. Some say that because the world celebrates Christmas, Christians should avoid it. And so, on and on the arguments pro- and anti-Christmas are cited.
As in all things we should prayerfully seek guidance over the matter of Christmas, particularly if it is a divisive issue for the Christian family. Please tell us what you think about Christmas in our poll below.
God bless all those who, like myself, will be ever so slightly traumatized by the upcoming rush toward the end of the year and the fake celebrations of a Christ-less Christmas, and God also bless those who will enjoy every moment of celebrating the birth of our Saviour on December 25.
Particularly, I pray for God’s blessing on those who will not have a morsel of food, a drop of water or who will have to fight for their very life on the day that the rest of the world goes shopping and tolerates spoilt grandchildren demanding more expensive toys.
The world of 1993 was another time in many significant ways. That was a unique year, strikingly different from the rest of the 20th century—but also nothing at all like the Internet era, which was just about to begin.
History will no doubt always remember the early 1990s as a pivotal time in human history. In 1992, conservative op-ed commentator George Will published a compilation of his newspaper columns written over the prior three years. He titled the anthology Suddenly, which perfectly captured the spirit of the day. Suddenly, confusingly, everything was in flux. Worldly fads and philosophies were changing faster than ever. The changes were global and profound, affecting everything from art to zoology. Ideological changes, societal changes, political changes, and moral changes were the order of the day. The shifting of so many opinions and boundaries all at once was both drastic and disorienting.