Author Archives: Michael

-Independence Day 2019: Freedom Comes from God

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Happy Independence Day 2019.

The following is our traditional message for the 4th of July:

Flags are flying, parades are moving, drinks are flowing, and politicians are speaking today in America.

243 years ago a message was confirmed by representatives of 13 colonies proclaiming their freedom, a freedom that was considered to be derived from God:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Much has been made of the variety of beliefs held by the founders of this country but their words and convictions remain not only on paper but also in the hearts of the people.

Declaration of Independence: The Emphasis Upon God

When it comes to the Declaration of Independence, the words- “by their Creator” were a major part of the message, the subject, and the emphasis.

Many secularists and atheists today want to de-emphasize the role of faith in the founding of this country to the point that many are attempting to actually rewrite history itself. For them, God could have easily been left out of the document with little or no effect.

But in the context of 1776, those words were the whole linchpin of the document and appealed to as the ultimate authority and source for the rights of the Americans to rebel against the King of England.

In the context of the 18th century the Europeans believed that their Kings reigned and ruled ‘by Divine right’ under the authority of God and were His direct representatives. In fact, the King of England was also the head of the church and was supposed to defend the Christian faith against heresy and all enemies. In that cultural context, to rebel against the King was tantamount to rebelling against God the Creator himself.

In the Declaration the founders made it clear that they were not rebelling against God but that the Creator was actually the ultimate authority they were appealing to saying that their ‘rights’ were derived directly from the Creator and not given to them by the King of England or some parchment or Parliament.

It was a radical document at the time and changed the whole course of human history and ‘the Creator’ was part and parcel of the Declaration of Independence and the ultimate authority appealed to in the whole process.            *Top

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-Brazil: 3 Million Evangelicals March For Jesus

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Last week over 3 million Evangelical Christians marched in Sao Paulo, Brazil proclaiming their nation for Jesus. From Fox News:

Millions marched in the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil last week as part of one of the largest Christian gatherings in the world.

The March for Jesus in Brazil organizers report there were three million attendees with more than 10 hours of praise and worship, led by 28 Brazillian gospel bands and singers, and dozens of evangelical pastors and leaders, Evangelical Focus reported.

<Read the while article>

Response: Revival and an awakening has been going on in Brazil for some time now. Close to 30% of brazil’s population are now evangelical Christians and they have become a real force in the country.  Note that Brazil’s president, Jair Bolsonaro, showed up and participated in the event.                *Top

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-Love These and Pray for Them

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The Holy Spirit found me in a Presbyterian church in New York on Mother’s Day. We are visiting our daughter and her family so we were worshipping at their home church in Yorktown, New York.

My mind wandered during the service, thinking about my next preaching assignment. The incomprehensible love of God came to mind along with the teaching of Jesus in Matthew 5:44:

“…love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…”

Suddenly I had a vision of the radical Muslims beheading 21 Christians in 2015 on the seashore in Libya. Then the Lord said:

     “Love These. Pray for them.”

I replied: I love the persecuted Christians and pray for them every day.

     “No, Love these and pray for them.”

Then I knew he was talking about the terrorists-my response: That is hard Lord and I can’t do it without your help.

Then the vision faded away- that was the lesson; we really can’t love or pray for our enemies without His help.                *Top

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-Ramadan: A Great time to Pray for Muslims

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This is a great time to pray for Muslims. More Muslims have come to Christ in the last ten years than ever before.

Many of the converts have testified that the real Jesus appeared to them and a large number of these experiences with the risen Lord have happened during the month of Ramadan (This year: May 5- June 4) when faithful Muslims fast during the day seeking to be closer to God.

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-National Day of Prayer, 2019

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A good time to pray for our nation and leaders. Pray for revival, we need it.

 

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Link to the official website: National Day of Prayer

 

President Trump’s proclamation is well worth reading this year.

Presidential Proclamation:

Americans have always found power and unity through prayer.  In 1988, the Congress, by Public Law 100-307, called on the President to issue each year a proclamation designating the first Thursday in May as a “National Day of Prayer.”  Today, on this National Day of Prayer, we once again come together to give thanks to Almighty God for the bountiful blessings He has bestowed on our great Nation and to ask for His unfailing counsel.  We also acknowledge our dependence on God’s love to guide our families, communities, and our country away from harm and toward abundance and peace.

Our Nation acknowledges that religious liberty is a natural right, given to us by our Creator, not a courtesy that government extends to us.  The First Amendment recognizes the freedom of religion and safeguards this right against government infringement.  The United States’ steadfast commitment to upholding religious freedom has ensured that people of different faiths can pray together and live in peace as fellow American citizens.  We have no tolerance for those who disrupt this peace, and we condemn all hate and violence, particularly in our places of worship.

Throughout our Nation’s history, Americans have consistently turned to God for guidance at pivotal moments.  In 1775, the Continental Congress first declared a day of prayer, asking American patriots throughout the colonies to pray in earnest for divine help in forming our Republic.  Seventy-five years ago this June, President Franklin D. Roosevelt led the Nation in prayer as courageous Americans stormed the beaches of Normandy on D-Day.  He prayed:  “Almighty God:  Our sons, pride of our Nation, this day have set upon a mighty endeavor . . . Lead them straight and true; give strength to their arms, stoutness to their hearts, steadfastness in their faith.”  Today, we also pray for strength for our Nation and our Armed Forces as we face new challenges at home and abroad.

Our Nation’s honored tradition of prayer has sustained us and strengthened our trust that God will continue to watch over and accompany us through the best of times and the darkest hours.  May we as Americans never forget the power of prayer and the greatness of our Creator.  On this National Day of Prayer, let each of us, according to our own faiths, call upon God for His guidance and express our gratitude for the love and grace He bestows on us and our country.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim May 2, 2019, as a National Day of Prayer.  I invite the citizens of our Nation to pray, in accordance with their own faiths and consciences, in thanksgiving for the freedoms and blessings we have received, and for God’s guidance and continued protection as we meet the challenges before us.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this
thirtieth day of April, in the year of our Lord two thousand nineteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-third.

DONALD J. TRUMP

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