Monday, July 6, 2009
TORTURED for CHRIST ~ by Richard Wurmbrand, Founder of The Voice of the Martyrs, is knocking me for a loop lately as I sat on the picnic table in our back yard this afternoon for 3 hours getting some Sun rays and my Vitamin "D" with the hound dog laying in the shade. I was convicted but also could identify with that saint who was imprisoned and tortured for Christ, first by the Germans in WW-2,and then he said the Russian Communists were even more brutal. No-- I was not jailed nor tortured but the author taught me some powerful things about HIS PTSD that correlated to my own brand of combat PTSD, that's all. Because of my heath concerns and heart-- I know that I would not last long in prison, and that would [or will] be a blessing from God. Our Lord in Heaven allows many of His Saints to endure-- also a few to survive to tell the world what is going on in Gulag and persecuted pagan countries who refuse to know God. The Christian church in the USA is just starting to see some persecution in mild form-- but all could change with just the stroke of a pen in the WH... and now Rick Warren wants to water down the Gospel message --big time! I can see that he is 'enjoying life' $$$ and popularity too these days.. LOL, as he buddies up to Obama.
I am telling you all about this because I was cut to the heart just reading about the tamer portions of our Christian Brothers and Sisters who suffer horrible beatings and torture for Christ, while we Americans in the West have it so much better [yet they pray for US as we are greatly tempted with immorality and riches/ compromise!]. Like I said before: Christian missionaries come to the USA [from China, etc] to preach and teach US who wallow in self pity, fat, lazy, laid back and weighed down with all sorts of baloney and trivial things!! I may be "beating a dead horse" when I keep telling you all about how combat Vets' experiences give them a whole different outlook on life and death issues and how they perceive the more important issues and contingencies as they can compare REAL abstract poverty in 3rd world/ war torn nations compared to fast jets, $20K cars, trucks, A/C and plenty to eat in the USA. Is America ready for a severe "Culture Shock" and eating rice and beans 6 days a week, losing their possessions, etc ?? Hey! I love my comfort zone too, even as I worked hard all my life to get to where I am now...
There is such a difference in 'churches' even where I live in Wisconsin [and I have been to churches all over the world, Europe and Asia]. For some reason I enjoyed a more regimented, conservative, structured type of worship even from childhood, but even the Baptists vary greatly from one church to another [no offense intended-- I love them]. I like the old style Hymns that are more scriptural with more meaning than the modern so-called, 'Jesus Rock.' I sure remember 'visiting' a close friend's Baptist Tab. place in Kenosha, WI, that had great modern music, but that church had "Purpose Driven Church" banners all throughout that church and even studied [as a congregation] Rick Warren's book, "Purpose Driven Life" !! The place had no A/C in the high Summer heat--and smelled like a high school locker room, dirty, and I got the idea/ notion that the Gospel of Jesus Christ was 'dumbed down' and watered down, sorry to say. That was the first red flag that went up in my head, after I came down to earth from the cool, music [and I love good worship music!!]. That's my personal opinion. There were other things about that place that I am not at liberty to write about...like in-fighting, but it's mostly the Rick Warren issue that surprised me, and how that church defended it. On the other hand, I enjoyed all the preaching, etc., at Victory B.C. and miss those fine people a lot. I am sure that I will lose a few 'followers/ readers' for posting this observation, but our 'bible trained conscience' has to be kept SHARP enough to cut thru the subtle machinations and snares of the devil, IMHO.
Finally, Christian Pastors and Bible teachers are held in high account to preach the correct, true, un-watered down, un-diluted, un-adulterated Gospel of Jesus Christ, even when it is not popular, convenient or 'entertaining.' God has not changed and God cannot tell a lie. Guess what?! I get very tired of this constant struggle and fight against the dark powers of Satan's organizations too, but I am afraid to drop my guard even for one minute! Every time I do that-- I get punched in the nose-- or worse. Richard Wurmbrand, spoke before the U.S. Congress and took of his shirt to show the scars of atheistic Communist torture and imprisonment, and it most certainly goes on RIGHT NOW, EVERY DAY IN THE WORLD! Pray and help these Christians -- if you dare/ if you can.
The devil is doing a terrific job of constricting our lives right now with the tough economy that is being manipulated by humans at the top-- on purpose, just like a pressure cooker. Ignorant people are putting their trust in the wrong 'messiah' who is leading them like a piped piper to their destruction. More so-called Christian churches are caving in--even supporting the "piped piper" in the WH, weather he is the 'anti-Christ' or not, so the prophecy of: "strike the Shepard-- and the sheep will scatter" is coming true. I urge my friends in Christ to hunker down, pray harder, get closer to Jesus by studying, memorizing the Word-- the bible while we still have it. 'Every soul won for Christ must be made to be a soul-winner.' Remember that this book, TORTURED for CHRIST is considered to be the 'Survival Guide' for the near future when the West and the USA finally lose their most important freedoms of Speech, right to Bear Arms and Worship! If you thought you needed to get one thing right in your life-- this is it, dear friends, brothers and sisters.
WASHINGTON, DC – Defying some of his fellow conservative Christian critics, one of the most prominent religious leaders in the country told several thousand American Muslims on Saturday that "the two largest faiths on the planet" must work together to combat stereotypes and solve global problems.
"Some problems are so big you have to team tackle them," evangelical megachurch pastor Rick Warren addressed the annual convention of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA).
Warren said Muslims and Christians should be partners in working to end what he calls "the five global giants" of war, poverty, corruption, disease, and illiteracy.
Warren, founder of Saddleback Community Church in Orange County, California, is the author of The Purpose Driven Life, which has sold more than 30 million copies worldwide. His willingness to show support for U.S. Muslims is a huge gain for the community, which has endured intense scrutiny since 9/11.
A Southern Baptist, Warren has a record of upsetting fellow Christian conservatives by calling old-guard evangelical activists too partisan and narrowly focused. Ahead of his speech Saturday, bloggers who follow Warren had already denounced his appearance at the convention as cozying up to extremists.
Warren acknowledged the controversy during his 20-minute speech.
"It's easier to be an extremist of any kind because then you only have one group of people mad at you," he said. "But if you actually try to build relationships — like invite an evangelical pastor to your gathering — you'll get criticized for it. So will I."
In his speech, Warren also urged Muslims and Christians to speak out against stereotyping of any group and to respect each other even while disagreeing. Addressing Muslims who "have been in America for many generations now," he urged them to help "the newcomers learn what it means to be American."
Based in Plainfield, Indiana, ISNA is an umbrella organization for Muslim groups across the country. The annual convention, now in its 46th year, regularly draws more than 30,000 people for lectures, prayer, and socializing.
Many in the crowd were drawn to the session by prominent Muslim scholars such as Sheik Hamza Yusuf of the Zaytuna Institute in Berkeley, California.
Ann Zahra, 42, said she had never heard of Warren before Saturday but agreed with much of his speech. "The basics are the same," said Zahra, of McLean, Va. "No religion teaches cruelty or disrespect or hatred."
Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God?
AP Religion Writer Rachel Zoll contributed to this report.
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