Monday, 30 March 2020

Superstition and idolatry are alive and well in Argentina

As reported by Chris Jewers of the London Daily Mail, March 27, 2020 (links in original):

(photo)

Netizens in Argentina have thanked the Virgin Mary for protecting them after claiming this image of her appeared in the sky amid the Coronavirus outbreak.

The 'figure' was taken at around 5pm on Wednesday in the city of San Carlos, in the northeastern Argentine province of Corrientes and was later spread on social media and messaging services.

An unnamed resident whose daughter took the picture said 'in the sky, a rainbow started to be seen, and then some drops started to create the figure (of the Virgin) in the sky surrounding the sun'.

Local media reported that some residents compared the figure seen in the sky with the Virgin of Itati, the patron saint of the province of Corrientes.

While netizen Susy Jimenez seemingly saw the figure as the Virgin Mary, writing: 'Thanks Mother for protecting us, for interceding for God, and for your mercy for the people.'

Reports state the figure was also seen from the nearby town of Candelaria. San Carlos is said to be one of the oldest Jesuit towns in the province.

Nancy Cervantes Saez commented 'and there are a lot of stories… I do know we are very sensitive, aren't we asking for a bit of hope?', connecting the incident with coronavirus pandemic and the beginning of the quarantine in Argentina.

But 'Ricardo Busto' added: 'My cousin says she sees a penis'.

Argentina has had 589 confirmed cases of Covid-19, with 12 deaths, according to the Johns Hopkins coronavirus tracker.

Thursday, 26 March 2020

Former U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown calls for "One World Government"

It comes as no surprise to this blogger to see politicians and others who support the agenda of Antichrist using the Covid-19 situation as an opportunity to advance their plans; as longtime U.S. Democratic Party politician Rahm Emmanuel famously said in 2008, "Never let a good crisis go to waste." More evidence for the truth of biblical end-time prophecy, and the increasing closeness of the return of the Lord Jesus Christ, as reported by Larry Elliott of the British newspaper The Guardian, March 26, 2020 (links in original):

Gordon Brown has urged world leaders to create a temporary form of global government to tackle the twin medical and economic crises caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The former Labour prime minister, who was at the centre of the international efforts to tackle the impact of the near-meltdown of the banks in 2008, said there was a need for a taskforce involving world leaders, health experts and the heads of the international organisations that would have executive powers to coordinate the response.

A virtual meeting of the G20 group of developed and developing countries, chaired by Saudi Arabia, will be held on Thursday, but Brown said it would have been preferable to have also included the UN security council.

“This is not something that can be dealt with in one country,” he said. “There has to be a coordinated global response.”

Brown said the current crisis was different to the one he was involved in. “That was an economic problem that had economic causes and had an economic solution.

“This is first and foremost a medical emergency and there has to be joint action to deal with that. But the more you intervene to deal with the medical emergency, the more you put economies at risk.”

During the financial crisis, Brown persuaded other global leaders of the need to bail out the banks and then hosted a meeting of the G20 in London, which came up with a $1.1tn rescue package.

Despite Donald Trump’s “America first” policy, he said it was still possible to get support for an emergency body with executive powers.

Brown said his proposed global taskforce would fight the crisis on two fronts. There would need to be a coordinated effort to find a vaccine, and to organise production, purchasing and prevent profiteering.

Many countries have announced economic packages in the past two weeks but Brown said a taskforce could: make sure the efforts of central banks were coordinated; take steps to prevent the record flight of capital from emerging market economies; and agree a joint approach to the use of government spending to boost growth.

Brown said there had been resistance in 2008 to using the G20 as a vehicle for tackling the financial crisis, but that it should be clear to world leaders that there was no possibility of a go-it-alone approach working.

“We need some sort of working executive,” Brown said. “If I were doing it again, I would make the G20 a broader organisation because in the current circumstances you need to listen to the countries that are most affected, the countries that are making a difference and countries where there is the potential for a massive number of people to be affected - such as those in Africa.”

The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund needed an increase in their financial firepower to cope with the impact of the crisis on low- and middle-income countries, he said.

Hindu idolaters in India drink cow urine in an attempt to fight coronavirus

I think I'd rather take my chances with the virus. As reported by David Sidman of Breaking Israel News, March 25, 2020:

Hundreds of Hindus across India are holding cow urine ceremonies in New Delhi to protect and cure themselves from the coronavirus.

Most forms of Hinduism are henotheistic. This means that they worship a single deity called “Brahman,” but still believe in other gods and goddesses. Or, as Hindu writer Shuba Swaminathan puts it: “Hindus do not worship idols” but rather “the power vested in the idols.”

Many in India, a nation of 1.3 billion whose majority is Hindu, consider cows to be sacred. Some of them have recently claimed that cow urine is an elixir.

In their ceremonies, the Hindus can be seen making an “offering” to the coronavirus and while praying that “mother cow” helps them.

Hindu activist Om Prakash claims that the coronavirus is a bacteria (even though it has the word ‘virus’ in its name). He adds that “cow urine is effective against all forms of bacteria” and that he and his fellow Hindus use it “to cleanse their souls and bodies.” Prakash adds that he is “sure cow urine will destroy the bacteria.”

Please don’t try this at home kids.


Sunday, 22 March 2020

Superstition and charlatanry are alive and well in Dalton, Georgia

And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: II Peter 2:3a

Despite coming from a site with a notoriously liberal bias, this story, too lengthy to reproduce here, is familiar to those who've come across such things many times before. Click on the link and read The Bible That Oozed Oil by Ruth Graham in Slate, February 27, 2020.

Saturday, 21 March 2020

Plague of locusts set to hit Africa and Middle East--but not Israel--for Passover

Plagues of locusts go back as far as Exodus 10; man can predict and monitor them, but still seems unable to prevent them. It seems that similar to the original Passover in Exodus 12, this year's Passover will see the latest plague miss Israel. As reported by Amanda Borschel-Dan of The Times of Israel, March 16, 2020 (link in original):

A plague of locusts the likes of which have been unseen for over 30 years is about to hit Africa and the Middle East. Adding to the perfect biblical storm, the current coronavirus pandemic is affecting travel of international experts and in-country gatherings for training to combat the locust threat, said Rome-based Senior Locust Forecasting Officer Keith Cressman on Monday.

Cressman works at Locust Watch, a division of the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization, which gives emergency assistance to countries facing desert locust invasions and constantly monitors the status of potential infestations. According to the organization’s most recent forecast report, there are new “extremely alarming” swarms forming in Horn of Africa.

Cressman, who has worked with the organization for over three decades, told The Times of Israel on Monday that the previous time the region has been in such danger was during the plague of 1987-1989.

The Desert Locust (Schistocerca gregaria) “is the most destructive migratory pest in the world,” according to the Locust Watch website. As depicted in the Book of Exodus, when the highly mobile swarms of Desert Locust form, “they are ravenous eaters who consume their own weight per day, targeting food crops and forage.”

While one locust may not seem a major fresser (eater, Yiddish), the swarms can grow to millions of individuals, “with the capacity to consume the same amount of food in one day as 35,000 people.”

The current widespread breeding in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Somalia represents “an unprecedented threat to food security and livelihoods at the beginning of the upcoming cropping season,” writes the Locust Watch website.

Locust Watch works in collaboration with affected countries to assess field data, information and reports in real time, said Cressman. The information, he said, “is combined with analysis of remote sensing (satellite) imagery, weather data and forecasts, and historical data in our geographic information system and database that go back to the 1930s.”

Institutional memory, as well as Cressman’s experience, points to a very difficult year on the horizon: “Starting in early 2020, the global Desert Locust situation deteriorated, as favorable climatic conditions allowed widespread breeding of the pest in East Africa, Southwest Asia, and the area around the Red Sea,” writes the website.

It appears that the hardest hit countries will include Kenya, Ethiopia, Somalia, Iran, Pakistan, and Sudan, the last of which will likely be affected later this summer, said Cressman.

“It is always very difficult to find and treat all infestations, and this is the nature and challenge of managing Desert Locust,” he said in an email to The Times of Israel. The inability to travel due to coronavirus restrictions may prevent proper, timely treatment.

Not all regions of the Middle East will be affected, however. Despite the proximity to the Jewish holiday of Passover, according to the useful forecast maps on the site — and confirmed by Cressman — it appears that the swarms will not hit Israel or the country’s crops.

Wednesday, 18 March 2020

Pope Francis issues law to reform Vatican City judicial system

As reported by Catholic News Agency, March 16, 2020:

The Holy See announced a new law governing the judicial system of the Vatican City state Monday. The motu proprio provides enhanced safeguards for the independence of judges and prosecutors in Vatican City to better address economic, financial and criminal cases in the sovereign territory.

Law CCCLI was signed by Pope Francis on Friday, March 13.

“Administering justice,” the pope said in the preamble of the new law, “is not just a necessity of a temporal order.”

“The cardinal virtue of justice, in fact, illuminates and summarizes the very purpose of the judicial power proper to each State, which is essential above all to cultivate the personal, generous, and responsible commitment of those who are vested with the judicial function,” Francis said.

In the legal text, the pope explained that the law is part of an ongoing process of legal renewal to replace the original 1929 laws of Vatican City, which began with the adoption of a new fundamental law for the city state in 2000.

Francis said the changes are aimed at adapting the Vatican courts to better enforce the law, and to ensure the city state’s compliance with international commitments.

“In the last decades, the Vatican legal system has undergone a season of regulatory reforms in economic, financial and criminal matters, also as a consequence of the adhesion to important international conventions,” the pope wrote, making the changes necessary to keep the wheels of justice turning in the Vatican.

“In continuity with this work of progressive legislative updating and institutional reorganization, I would now like to introduce some changes to the structure of the judiciary, aimed at increasing its efficiency,” he said.

The law provides for new measures to protect the independence of judges and prosecutors in the city state, making explicit that Vatican magistrates are, subject to the law, answerable to the pope directly and to no other office or authority.

Article 2 of the new law states that judges “are hierarchically dependent on the Supreme Pontiff” and “in the exercise of their functions, they are subject only to the law.”

The new norms also codify the ability of prosecutors to deploy the judicial police of the Vatican courts, and grants the law enforcement agency enhanced budgetary independence, explaining that they are not required to account for spending to any other body within the curia.

“The judicial authority has direct use of the judicial police, which it can also use for the notification activities,” the law says. “The judicial bodies enjoy autonomy of expenditure for their operation, on the basis and within the limits of the accounting provisions in force in the State. The relative charges are borne by the Governor’s budget [of the Vatican City state].”

The judicial police, which are a separate section of the Vatican City Gendarmes, are under the direction of the Promoter of Justice, the courts’ chief prosecutor, who is to have two assistants, one of whom “carries out his duties on a full-time basis, without having subordinate employment relationships or carrying out freelance professional activities on an ongoing basis.

Judicial independence is further protected by article 8, which says that judges should be chosen from “tenured or retired university professors, and in any case from well-known jurists who have gained proven experience in judicial or forensic, civil, criminal or administrative matters.”

While recommendations for judicial appointments are still to be made by the Secretary of State, who has overall responsibility for the governance of Vatican City, the article prevents the appointment of curial civil servants to serve as judges, pointing out the necessary conflict of interest.

The pope’s reform, which repeals and replaces the 1987 Law CXIX of St. John Paul II, also underlines the supremacy of canon law in the Vatican’s civil legal system.

The new Law CCLI grounds Vatican City civil law in the Church’s canonical legal system, making the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the curia’s highest canonical appeals court, as the final court of cassation for the civil judicial system, charged with hearing appeals related to legal procedure and judicial competence.

Citing 2008 Vatican City state legislation issued by Pope Benedict XVI, which states that “the Vatican legal system recognizes in the canonical order the first normative source and the first criterion of interpretative reference,” Pope Francis said that canonical principles are essential to understanding and applying Vatican City laws.

“This is a founding and precious link that I hope can be increasingly explored by the judicial bodies of this state, in order to express its underlying potential and that the juridical norm puts to the work of the interpreter,” the pope wrote in the legislation’s preamble.

Saturday, 14 March 2020

Synagogue in U.S. Virgin Islands rewrites Beatles songs for Purim

The worldliness and buffoonery that afflicts so much of professing evangelical Christianity can also be found elsewhere; as reported in the St. Thomas Source, March 4, 2020 (link in original):

The Jewish holiday of Purim (Lots) falls this year on Monday evening, March 9, and Tuesday, March 10. However, it will be observed a day early at The Hebrew Congregation of St. Thomas with a wild and off-beat retelling of the Biblical story of Esther, using artfully re-written lyrics of Beatles songs.

All are welcome to “A Magical Mystical Megillah: A Very Beatles Purim,” at 10 a.m., Sunday, March 8, at The St. Thomas Synagogue, 2116 Crystal Gade. Costumes are welcome, and the service is raucous (one is supposed to loudly “drown out” the name of the villain as the story is read).

The hour-plus observance in the sanctuary is followed, at around 11 a.m., with a magic and comedy show with Jungle Josh Weinstein, a costume parade, and pastry and drinks, at Lilienfeld Community House, across the street from the synagogue.

For more information, call 774-4312 or write info@synagogue.vi.

Monday, 9 March 2020

Secular and religious commentators offer contradictory theories about coronavirus

I wasn't going to post anything about coronavirus, but I've seen a few items that are too good to pass on. Whenever a plague makes the news, it's only a matter of time before conspiracy theories spring up, and the current coronavirus outbreak is no exception. The explanations, unsurprisingly, are in line with the biases of those offering them.

Cliff Kincaid, a conservative Roman Catholic columnist with News with Views, believes that the coronavirus outbreak is a Chinese government plot against U.S. President Donald Trump:

Chinese Reds Set a Trap for Trump

February 29th, 2020

President Trump is in a difficult situation. If he were to disclose circumstantial evidence that the coronavirus virus is a Chinese bioweapon, there would be calls for retaliation against the Communist regime. Such a declaration could lead to more fear, the threat of war, and perhaps a global economic collapse. As it is, the virus is causing a market meltdown. He does not want to contribute to a panic and further collapse.

Politically, his reelection hangs in the balance...
Trump Has Been Sabotaged by the Medical Deep State

March 9th, 2020

The Chinese virus has been treated as just a natural occurrence or unfortunate incident that necessitates that we have to cede more power over our lives to what critics have long called the Medical Deep State. Under pressure from a foreign threat, President Trump has relied on these health care “professionals.” But the result has been stories from the Washington Post about “How the Trump administration lost control of the coronavirus crisis” and the New York Times about how “The Coronavirus Is Coming for Trump’s Presidency.” This is the new narrative designed to bring down Trump.

The President has another option: put the military in charge of the coronavirus response and move quickly to a war footing with Communist China, the source of the outbreak...
Meanwhile, Iranian authorities are claiming that the coronavirus outbreak is a plot by Mr. Trump against Iran, as reported by Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz of Breaking Israel News, March 8, 2020 (links in original):

Fatemah Rahbar, a member of Iran’s parliament representing the capital city of Tehran, died on Saturday from Covid-19. Rahbar, age 55, was the second member of parliament and the seventh Iranian leader to die from the coronavirus.

The Iranian leadership has been hard-hit by the coronavirus. Rahbar, age 55, was the second member of parliament and the seventh Iranian leader to die from the coronavirus.At least 23 members of Iran’s 290-member “Majlis” or parliament have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, according to Iran’s Deputy Parliament Speaker Abdul Reza Misri. This includes the deputy health minister and one of the vice presidents. This figure represents about 8% of Iran’s government. One week after elections for the parliament, the government suspended open parliamentary sessions indefinitely.

On Saturday, health ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour announced on a televised news conference that there had been 21 new deaths and 1,076 new cases of coronavirus over the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 145 dead and 5,823 infected in Iran. He emphasized that 1,669 of the confirmed cases recovered from the illness.

“More than 16,000 people are currently hospitalized as suspect cases,” Jahanpour said during a televised news conference.

The government has taken serious measures to combat the spread of the pandemic. Iran temporarily released 54,000 prisoners from overcrowded jails. Mohammad Ja’far Montazeri, Iran’s prosecutor general, said on Sunday that hoarding or disrupting the supply of healthcare items could entail punishments as severe as the death penalty. Hassan Norouzi, the spokesman for the parliament’s legal and judicial committee, told the Tehran Times that the government had instituted a 3-year jail sentence for those who spread fake news or rumors about coronavirus in the country.

China, the epicenter of the outbreak, has so far reported 80,651 cases, of which 3,070 were fatal.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif blamed U.S. economic sanctions for the toll the pandemic is taking on his country. President Trump “is maliciously tightening US’ illegal sanctions with the aim of draining Iran’s resources needed in the fight against #COVID-19 — while our citizens are dying from it” Zarif tweeted on Saturday.

The Iranian Student’s News Agency (ISNA) reported that Gen. Hossein Salami, the commander-in-chief of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), said that the coronavirus may be the product of an “American biological invasion.”

“Today the country is engaged in a biological battle,” Salami said. “[The coronavirus] is American biological invasion that first spread to China and then to Iran and other parts of the world, and the United States knows that it did that.”

“America should know that this virus will return to it if it was behind it,” said Salami.

Iranian civil defense chief Gholam Reza Jalali echoed this accusation. Without naming the United States as the culprit, Reza said, that a “biological attack has been launched against China and Iran with economic goals.”
Religious commentators are also offering contradictory explanations of the reason for the plague. An Israeli Rabbi blames sodomite pride parades, as reported by Mr. Berkowitz in Breaking Israel News, March 9, 2020:

At a speech at his yeshiva (Torah learning institution) on Saturday night, Rabbi Meir Mazuz, a leading Sephardic Haredi rabbi in Israel, blamed the spread of the coronavirus to Israel on the gay “pride” parades in Israel.

“This pride parade is a parade against nature, and anyone who does something against nature, the one who created nature takes revenge on him. When you do things against nature, you place your hand in fire and pray that the fire doesn’t burn you, it burns you! Here they are doing [something] against nature in impertinence, the pride parade, what are you proud of?” Mazuz was quoted as saying by Israel HaYom.

Israel has reported 39 cases of the novel coronavirus in the country as of Monday morning.

The rabbi also claimed that the Arab countries have not been hit by the coronavirus because they are strictly against homosexuality.

He addressed the outbreak of the virus in Iran, the hardest-hit country outside of China. Though not an Arab country, Iran is strictly Shia Muslim and criminalizes homosexual activity. In his speech, Rabbi Mazuz blamed Iran’s outbreak on their “hatred of Israel.”

Rabbi Mazuz has blamed other tragedies on Israel’s acceptance of homosexuality. In November 2015 he claimed gay pride parades and other forms of “sinful behavior” were the reason terrorists murdered Eitam and Naama Henkin the previous month.

It should also be noted that the rabbi inaccurately predicted last month that the coronavirus would infect every country in the world but would not arrive in Israel.

In his recent speech, Rabbi Mazuz suggested that the holiday of Purim contained a cure for the coronavirus.

“If you pray for rain, the harsh judgment of the corona will also be cancelled. It is recommended that on the eve of Purim you also read the sections of the Torah describing the Temple service of the incense while praying for the plague to be dispersed.”
Laura Densmore of Hebraic Heritage Ministries and Bridge Connector Ministries, however, blames the outbreak on President Trump's Middle East peace plan, which proposes to divide Israel. As she states in Breaking Israel News, March 9, 2020 (bold, links in original):

I open this article with a question and then I want to examine the facts on the ground with you. Then you can come to your own conclusions.

The question I pose is this: Are we experiencing consequences from the God of Israel (the Corona pestilence and the Nashville tornado) due to America’s push for the “Deal of the Century” proposal to divide the land of Israel?

Now let’s look at the evidence and the facts on the ground together.

Here is a general principle in the bible. The God of Israel would often bring judgment upon the children of Israel through natural disasters, plagues, wars, and famines. These events don’t happen “serendipity” by chance or coincidence. Instead, these events are often associated to sin. There is sin in the camp and so the God of Israel gives “push back” in the form of a judgment. There are consequences to the sin. There is a “measure for measure” dynamic going on here. In other words, when the people “sew” sin, they reap judgment from God.

Bill Koenig of Watch.org has done a masterful job of tracking these consequences for attempting to divide the land of Israel in his book, Eye to Eye: Facing the Consequences of Dividing Israel.

Keep this in mind: the purpose of the judgment from God is that He wants to see His people repent, turn away from their sin and return to HIM and to His word.

Now, let me be clear. I am a strong Trump supporter. He has done a lot of good for our nation in rebooting our economy, in bringing jobs back to America and getting America back to work. He has done a lot of good in recalibrating our international trade deals in America’s favor. He has done a lot of good for Israel in moving the US embassy back to Jerusalem and in declaring that Jerusalem is the eternal capital of the state of Israel. I strongly support Trump and I am one of his biggest fans!

But in this one area, the “Deal of the Century”, I believe our President and Jared Kushner have missed the mark. They are looking at the problem from a pragmatic, reason and logic based perspective. But they have missed the spiritual perspective.

The Trump team took time to ask for everyone’s input on the peace plan: the Saudis, the Jordanians, the Palestinians, the Israelis, the Egyptians, the EU and the US. But they forgot to consult with the God of Israel to see what HE says about dividing the land of Israel:

For behold, in those days and at that time,
When I bring back the captives of Judah and Jerusalem,
I will also gather all nations,
And bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat;
And I will enter into judgment with them there
On account of My people, My heritage Israel,
Whom they have scattered among the nations;
They have also divided up My land. Joel 3:1-2

The covenant that the God of Israel made with Abraham and his descendants to give them the land of Israel is eternal and everlasting. To go against that covenant is sure to bring down judgment upon any nation that “wields the knife” to cut/divide Israel.
Sadly, I believe that is what we are now seeing with the spread of the Corona virus.

I believe that the Corona virus is something that God has allowed as a judgment.
It came upon us in a BIG WAY just days after the Trump Peace plan (to divide the land of Israel) was announced.

Trump’s Peace plan to divide the land of Israel to make a Palestinian state was unveiled on 1.28.20:

Revealed: Trump’s “Deal of the Century” map for a future Palestine, Israel

Within three days, on Feb 2, 2020, Trump had to shut USA borders to travelers from China due to Corona virus:

Trump: US has shut down Corona virus from coming in from China

DO YOU NEED MORE EVIDENCE THAT THE GOD OF ISRAEL IS BRINGING DOWN JUDGMENT UPON THE USA FOR THE “DEAL OF THE CENTURY” PEACE PLAN?

Let’s connect two more data points of cause and effect that appear to be strongly connected to each other (kudos to Sara Ballenger for pointing this one out to me). On March 3, 2020, we read this headline:

At AIPAC, Trump’s Israel envoy Friedman pushes the peace plan.

And I quote from the article:

“US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman gave a scathing and highly partisan speech at the AIPAC Policy Conference on Monday night, castigating the American left for opposing US President Donald Trump’s Israel policies and Mideast peace plan.”

How did the God of Israel feel about this “push” for the “Deal of the Century” plan to divide HIS land? While David Friedman was promoting the Deal of the Century plan at AIPAC, here is what happened in Nashville TN on the SAME DAY, March 3, 2020:

Nashville tornado damage includes destroyed airport, collapsed homes as death toll climbs.

I don’t think the God of Israel was very happy to hear more news about the dividing of His land!

However there is GOOD NEWS! Intercession and prayer can change the course of a judgment from the God of Israel!

Here are some scriptures on pestilence and how intercession and action can change the course of pestilence:

In Exodus 32: 31-35, we see a plague came upon the children of people after the sin of the golden calf. After swift action is taken by the Levites to deal with the sin in the camp, the plague/pestilence stops.

In Numbers 14:11-20 , the children of Israel hear a the negative report coming from the 10 spies about the Promised land. They lifted up their voices against God and Moses, and walking in fear, doubt and unbelief. God threatens to send a pestilence, but Moses intercedes on their behalf. God does not wipe them out, but instead, they wander in the wilderness for 40 years.

In 2 Samuel 24: 12-16, David recognizes he has sinned greatly in numbering all the people and asks for God’s mercy. God’s response is that he gives David a choice:
David can have 7 years of famine, 3 months of enemy attacks , or 3 days of pestilence. David chose 3 days of pestilence. In the end, God had mercy and ended the plague.

In Numbers 25:1-9, we see a pestilence/plague that was rapidly spreading throughout the camp in the wilderness. The children of Israel had sinned by joining themselves to Baal, which was spiritual adultery and treachery to the God of Israel. To Israel’s shame and disgrace, an Israelite man was having sexual relations with Cozbi, a Midianite woman. The plague was rapidly spreading through the camp, claiming 25,000 lives. Phinehas speared them through… and immediately the pestilence stopped.

A CALL TO ACTION

This is a call to action for President Trump and Jared Kushner. It is time that they “walk back” on the “Deal of the Century” and retract it.

This is also a call to action to the people of God to pray and intercede, to seek the God of Israel and to ask for his mercy, asking that HE stop this pestilence, this cursed Corona virus.

As the people of the God of Israel, we need to plead and stand in the gap and ask for God’s FORGIVENESS for the release of the Trump peace plan to divide Israel and ask for His MERCY upon the USA, upon Israel and the upon all the nations of the world.

We can also pray into this as a prayer of protection:

He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”
Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.
A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.
Psalm 91:1-7

And, to be prudent and practical we can also stay at home if sick, wash our hands frequently with soap and water, follow the guidelines of our local officials for preventing community spread.
In contrast to the view expressed by Ms. Densmore, a charismaniac "prophet" claims that the U.S.A. will be protected from coronavirus because of President Trump's pro-life stand. As reported by Christina Zhao of Newsweek, February 16, 2020 (links in original):

Conservative pastor Hank Kunneman recently claimed that God will save Americans from the new coronavirus because President Donald Trump's administration has "aligned themselves" with the right side of life.

Speaking to the Lord of Hosts church during a service in Omaha, Nebraska last Sunday, Kunneman prophesied that citizens in the U.S. will not have to fear the coronavirus because God will "give mercy."

"Listen to the words that I speak to you at this moment, says the living God. Why do you fear, United States? For I have spoken to you before and I will speak to you again, I have extended and opened a window of mercy to this nation at this time. Therefore, the virus that they speak of, the bright prognostication, the diagnosis, the fear, my mercy is the quarantine that shall be greater than what they have spoken to you, United States," the pastor said, before crediting the Trump administration for God's "mercy."

"And because of the administration that stands in this land, who honor me, who honour the covenants of your forefathers and of the Constitution. And because they have aligned themselves with Israel and because they have sided on the right side of life—life in the womb, life given outside of the womb—there I give life to this nation and I give mercy," Kunneman added. "Do not fear. This virus is the spirit of God."

Newsweek reached out to Kunneman via phone for further comment, but was unable to speak to the pastor before publication.

Chinese officials on Saturday confirmed 2,641 new cases of coronavirus, bringing the total number of diagnosed to roughly 66,000 across the mainland, with the death toll at 1,523.

There have been 15 cases of coronavirus in the United States. One American citizen has died from the virus in China...
As is so often the case, the report is erroneous, or at least, imprecise, in describing the pastor as "conservative." A quick glance at the website of Lord of Hosts Church shows that Lord of Hosts is in fact a charismaniac church that's part of the New Apostolic Reformation, with the "conservative" pastor's wife listed with him as senior pastor, and the church promoting "prophetic words" and the prosperity gospel, with "apostle" Mike Keyes speaking in both services on March 15, 2020.

Quoth the "prophet":

Here's the "powerful word about what God is saying regarding the Coronavirus! This prophecy was declared on February 9, 2020.



It comes as no surprise to this blogger to see that veteran fraud and con man Jim Bakker isn't about to let the opportunity to cash in on the outbreak to pass him by; as reported by Hunter Moyler of Newsweek, February 12, 2020 (updated February 13, 2020) (links in original):

A guest on televangelist Jim Bakker's show suggested on Wednesday that a product sold on Bakker's website might be effective at protecting against and killing the novel coronavirus.

The guest, naturopathic Dr. Sherrill Sellman, said that Silver Solution—a product that can be purchased on Bakker's web store—has been found to be effective on viruses related to the one from Wuhan. Further, she said Silver Solution could bolster a person's immune system and potentially make their bodies less susceptible to the virus.

"Well, let's say [Silver Solution] hasn't been tested on this strain of the coronavirus, but it's been tested on other strains of the coronavirus and has been able to eliminate it within 12 hours," she said. "Totally eliminate it. Kills it, deactivates it. And then it boosts your immune system so then you can support the recovery, because when you kill the virus, then the immune system comes into action to clear it out. So you want a vibrant immune system as well as an ability to deactivate these viruses."

Newsweek contacted Sellman via her website for further comment and clarification but did not receive a reply before publication.

The novel coronavirus emerged from the Chinese city in late 2019. The virus has since spread to 24 other countries, including the United States, though the majority of those infected remain in China. As of Wednesday, the virus has infected over 45,000 people and killed at least 1,100, according to the World Health Organization.

According to its page on Bakker's website, Silver Solution is a product that "works faster, longer and more efficiently than other silvers to support your immune system." Information on the website does not state how the product is to be used. It currently sells on Bakker's website in a variety of packages with a 16-ounce bottle costing 40, but shoppers can purchase bundles of the product that cost up to $300. The label states that the solution contains deionized water, but no other ingredients.

However, similarly marketed products also include colloidal silver which according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) provides no known health benefits. Ingesting it can cause side effects including argyria, or discoloration of the skin or other tissue, and poor absorption of other medications by the body.

Newsweek could not verify the claim that Silver Solution supports the immune system or kills the coronavirus, nor confirm that colloidal silver is used in Bakker's solution.

Further, Silver Solution's page on Bakker's site contains a link to a warning specifically for residents of California. Under a California law, the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (also known as Proposition 65), the store is required to warn that Silver Solution "contains chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm."

Sellman is a naturopathic doctor—a designation distinct from a mainstream medical doctor. Naturopathy, according to information from the alternative medicine university Bastyr University, is a "system of primary health care that emphasizes prevention and the self-healing process through the use of natural therapies."

Naturopathy's legitimacy is contested. Some professionals consider it to be based in pseudoscience, but 22 U.S. states and Washington, D.C. offer licenses to naturopathic doctors, according to the Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges (AANMC).

However, Dr. JoAnn Yanez, the executive director of the Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges, clarified to Newsweek that Sellman has not met the educational standards that the organization requires.

Sellman "is neither a graduate of an accredited naturopathic medical program, nor has [she] obtained a doctoral level degree from a program recognized by the US Department of Education," Yanez wrote in a statement to Newsweek. "[Her] online profile mentions graduating from the Trinity School of Natural Healing (AKA Health), which is not accredited and confers 'degrees' not recognized by any governmental institution. 'Graduates' of these programs are not considered licenseable [sic] medical practitioners."

Yanez further requested that Newsweek reiterate that Sellman is not a graduate of any institution accredited by AANMC.

The Twitter account of Right Wing Watch shared a clip of the show on its Twitter account Wednesday afternoon. The full episode of The Jim Bakker Show, "A Close Look At What's Not Being Said About The Coronavirus (Day 1)" can be viewed on the program's website.

Bakker is an evangelist who has made headlines in the past for his involvement in a scandal in which he paid a church secretary "hush money" to keep quiet about a sexual encounter. He is also noted for his ardent support for President Donald Trump. He has repeatedly defended the president against criticism, and, as The Hill reported, stated in 2017 that there would be a second American Civil War if Trump were to be impeached.
The various views of the coronavirus outbreak expressed above can't possibly all be right, but they might all be wrong. A major weakness of the explanations offered above is that they're geocentric, as if the epidemic were affecting just a particular people or area, when in fact it's spreading throughout the world. I don't believe that the pandemic is itself an emergency, but I do believe that there are those who have been waiting for such a situation in order to use it as an opportunity to advance an evil agenda; George Soros and his puppet Justin Traitor Trudeau come to mind. One thing that is definitely right is the following prophecy from the Lord Jesus Christ concerning the end times just before His return to Earth:

For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. Matthew 24:7

This blogger recommends sticking to the Bible as the only authority for faith and practice, rather than extrabiblical revelations allegedly given to those masquerading as "prophets" and "apostles."

Sunday, 8 March 2020

United Methodist Church in Nebraska offers courses in New Age practices

Unfortunately, what is reported in the following article is no longer novel, but is more evidence that apostasy is everywhere. As reported by the Lincoln Journal-Star, February 28, 2020 (links in original):

St. Paul United Methodist Church, 1144 M St. in downtown Lincoln, is hosting a new wholistic wellness center in the church. The center is called Òran Mór and will provide a unique opportunity for community members to explore their spiritual journeys in a variety of ways.

Òran Mór is located on the top floor of St. Paul Church and will feature classes, meditation groups and other spiritual disciplines designed to create space for Lincoln residents to expand or explore their inter-spirituality. While the Center will be hosted at Saint Paul, the Òran Mór Wholistic Center will constitute its own identity.

Dr. Jane Florence, senior pastor at St. Paul Church, said of the opening, “Our goal is to live in peace and harmony with ourselves and one another. We are to transform into the fullness of compassion, which comes in growing awareness of our connectedness to all creation and creatures. Spiritual growth goes by many names: awakening, enlightenment, conversion, transformation. The Òran Mór Center allows us to do this with the Lincoln community we call home.”

She continued, “The Spirit Center’s goal is to create space for individuals to share in practices that encourage growth, connection and movement for the journey. It is a place to ‘find your tribe’ of others who are open to growth and learning wisdom practices in many ways.”

Amy Williams, the Center's director, says, “I am delighted to be a part of the creation of Òran Mór. So many people I know have envisioned something of this nature in Lincoln. It feels like we are on the cusp of great possibilities that come from the “care and feeding” of people from not just in body or mind, but also heart and spirit.”

The Center officially opened Feb. 24 with classes, dream work groups, mystic arts and healing energy sessions. This summer, the Center will host internationally recognized spirituality leader Russill Paul July 25-26. Registration for the weekend program, “Find Your Center with Russill Paul,” can be found at saintpaulumc.org or oranmor.eventbrite.com. Registration for classes, including introductory pricing, is available at oranmorcenter.org.
It comes as no surprise to this blogger that the church's website reveals that this church supports the alphabet pervert agenda and other antichrist causes, while opposing the denomination's official position; in other words, it's a Christian in name only, and opposes the doctrines of St. Paul himself.

Saturday, 7 March 2020

Assemblies of God Church Nigeria fires General Superintendent Chidi Okoroafor for alleged sexual immorality

As reported by Seun Opejobi in the Lagos Daily Post, March 7, 2020 (link in original):

The Assemblies of God Church Nigeria has suspended and dismissed its General Superintendent, Rev. Dr Chidi Okoroafor.

Okoroafor was dismissed as a Minister after the leadership of the church considered a report of his alleged immoral relationship with a United States, US, based woman, Mrs Maurrissal Nwosu.

His dismissal was announced during the church’s General Committee emergency sitting yesterday.

The Panel which Investigated Okoroafor was headed by a former Lagos District Superintendent, Rev Isaac Mpamugo.

The Mpamugo-led panel was said to have established an immoral relationship between Okoroafor and Nwosu which it said was contrary to Biblical principles and the Constitution and Bye-Laws of Assemblies of God Nigeria.

The Executive Committee of the church also ordered him to hand over all Assemblies of God properties in his possession.

A top member of the church who confirmed the development to DAILY POST, however, claimed that Okoroafor was not given a fair hearing.

“Yes, our boss, the GS has been suspended, though he was not given fair hearing, even the woman at the centre of it all was not invited. But he has accepted it, he has handed everything to God,” he said in confidence.

Following Okoroafor’s dismissal, the church has empowered Rev Ejikeme EJim to take over as Acting General Superintendent.

Recall that the church has been under crisis for many years now, during which a former General Superintendent, Rev. Prof. Paul Emeka was chased out of its national secretariat in Enugu State.
There's a possibility that the allegations may be false, as was the case mentioned in my post Nigerian "Apostle" Johnson Suleman is embroiled in a sex scandal--and then his accuser admits that she lied (April 4, 2017).


Wednesday, 4 March 2020

Utah Senate votes unanimously to decriminalize polygamy

It comes as no surprise to this blogger to read of this development; I've been predicting such a thing for years. When objective standards are jettisoned--in the case of marriage, one man and one woman--then everything becomes a matter of preference. There is then no logical basis on which to say that one preference is superior or more moral than another.

While there are examples in the Old Testament of Israelite leaders having more than one wife, these are examples of God's mercy in not striking them down; nowhere is polygamy or polyandry approved of in the Bible. The New Testament standard was laid down by the Lord Jesus Christ in Mark 10:7:

For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife;

Secular British scientist Jacob Bronowski, in The Ascent of Man, made a secular case against polygamy, arguing that the practice was outlawed in various societies in order to prevent older men from taking advantage of younger women. Indeed, the typical polygamous arrangement found among fundamentalist Mormons doesn't seem to be a 25-year-old man with a few women in their early 20s as wives, but rather a dirty middle-aged man in his 50s with a harem of teenagers. And, of course, if one man has a large number of wives, there must therefore be a large number of men without a wife. Although there are more women than men, the discrepancy isn't large enough to be evened out by polygamy. Historically, when large numbers of men have been unable to find enough women, they've invaded other lands in order to get them. Which is to say, this never ends well.

As reported by Nate Carlisle of the Salt Lake Tribune, February 28, 2020 (updated February 29, 2020) (links in original):

Utah polygamists can party like it’s 1889.

The Utah Senate on Friday gave final approval 27-0 to a bill that would reduce polygamy among consenting adults to an infraction — an offense below some traffic tickets — essentially decriminalizing the practice.

Gov. Gary Herbert has indicated he will sign the measure. If he does not, there appear to be enough votes in the Legislature to override a veto.

The bill, SB102, represents a historical shift in how Utah has regarded polygamy, which has been a felony (even for willing participants) for most of the state’s history. The current law makes polygamy punishable by up to five years in prison. It can be up to 15 years if the polygamists are found to have committed fraud, domestic violence, sexual abuse or human smuggling.

The new measure would do nothing to change the stiffer category. And while polygamy among consenting adults still would officially be a crime in Utah, the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Deidre Henderson, R-Spanish Fork, has said her intent was to lessen the penalties to dissuade law enforcement from pursuing charges against people who are breaking no other laws.

Sarah M.S. Pearsall, professor of American history at Cambridge University, said SB102 represents a big change for wives, husbands and children in polygamous households in Utah, especially since the practice has been viewed as “barbaric and unacceptable” since the earliest American colonies.

“It [also] is a significant change in the history of American marriage,” Pearsall wrote in an email to The Salt Lake Tribune, “since it enshrines the principle that consenting adults should not be treated as criminals for choosing to live in plural marriages.”

Henderson framed the legislative discussion in terms of keeping women and children safe from people who commit crimes within polygamy.

“In these isolated, insular communities, that’s where a lot of the problems can really escalate,” Henderson told reporters earlier this month. “And that’s where the bad people can really — and have — weaponized the law in order to keep their victims silent and isolated in their control.”

Ryan Fisher of Sound Choices Coalition, which tries to educate the public on what it sees as the harm of polygamy, issued a statement in anticipation of SB102’s passage. Fisher said the Legislature has not listened to victims from polygamous abusers.

“Senator Henderson and those that pushed this bill,” the statement said, “are recklessly trying to change history before they understand the consequences of the decriminalization and subsequent spreading of polygamy and the harms to men, women and children that are inherent in this social system.”

Polygamy was a common practice among followers of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, who settled Utah in the mid-19th century. It expanded greatly under the faith’s second prophet-president, Brigham Young, perhaps the Western world’s most famous polygamist.

The church officially began to abandon plural marriage in 1890 as a condition of statehood. The Utah Constitution still says “polygamous or plural marriages are forever prohibited.”

The LDS Church excommunicates members found practicing polygamy. Most of Utah’s modern polygamists still trace their beliefs to the teachings of Mormon founder Joseph Smith.

Brielle Decker, the 65th wife of Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints leader Warren Jeffs, is ambivalent about the bill. She acknowledges plural families are afraid to report crimes to police and doesn’t expect that to change.

“They’re not going to just uphold the law all the sudden,” Decker said. “Polygamists always think they’re above the law.”

Jeffs is serving a sentence of life plus 20 years in a Texas prison for crimes related to sexually assaulting two girls he married as plural wives. He is one of the bad polygamists both sides used in arguments for and against SB102.

Some of Jeffs’ former followers, including Hildale Mayor Donia Jessop, said people who did not participate in his sex crimes were afraid to leave the FLDS and seek social services for fear it would expose their family to prosecution and having children removed from homes. Other former FLDS followers, including a Jeffs nephew, Ian Jeffs, said any lessening of the penalties would only embolden abusive polygamous leaders.

The bill passed the Senate the first time with zero no votes and won in the House, 70-3. The House made one amendment — clarifying that sexual battery within polygamy is punishable by 15 years in prison, too — that required another approval from the Senate on Friday.

Herbert made mention of the bill’s broad support on Capitol Hill during his monthly news conference Thursday.

“With marriage laws being what they are today,” the governor said, “and the liberalization of and more broadening of it, eliminating [polygamy] from being a felony to a lesser offense is probably warranted.”