Monday, October 31, 2005

What Halloween Is Really All About!

"There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or daughter to pass through fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord ..." Deuteronomy 18:10-12 (KJV)
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The First Article we have to share with you is written by Ben Alexander. Ben was as Spiritualist for many years until he bacame a Christian. If anyone would know about the power of darkness it would be Ben and the group he used to be involved with - the Spiritualists. How much more ought we to listen to him as he is no longer captive to Satan's power, but now a Christian researcher and speaker, he is exposing Satan's power. I had the priveledge of meeting Ben a few years ago in Atlanta. Georgia at a discernment conference and I am blessed to hear recently that he is still traveling and speaking for Jesus at the age of 83. He loves Jesus!
HALLOWEEN
by Ben Alexander
THE ORIGIN OF HALLOWEEN
"The name of the festival in early days (and it is still found in Ireland) meant "Satan's Watch." It was the night given over to Satan and his demons to work all the evil they wanted in the hope they would leave people unmolested the rest of the year. A fire was commonly kept burning on that night. The ghosts of the dead were dreaded and feared and men were thought to be restless in their graves because of something that happened in their life on earth. They were supposed to come back from the dead to take vengeance on those who were descended from people who had wronged them. People commonly locked themselves in their houses and spent the night in terror, letting the devil have his fling and do his worst.
Spiritualism and witchcraft is very real and we should not be providing our children with this opportunity for involvement. Many, if not all of our Halloween customs have their roots in these ancient beliefs. The witch on the broomstick and the jack-o-lantern are the symbols of Halloween. The witch, of course, is the personification of evil which is a substitute for Satan. The jack-o-lantern symbolizes the fire that was kept burning in the houses of those who feared Satan's worst. In fact the jack-o-lantern is always lit up (there is a fire there) so as to frighten away the devil. "
Read the rest of Ben's Halloween article at Exposing Satan's Power
See Ben Alexander's website: Exposing Satan's Power
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The Second article we have to share with you is by Jim Tetlow from The Harpazo Network.
Jim Tetlow has done extensive research on the world of Apparitions and occult phenomena. He has produced several videos and has two amazing websites, The Harpazo Network and Eternal Productions. . Jim also is someone who ought to be listened to as he has thoroughly investigated the world of the supernatural. Here is his article on Halloween.
HALLOWEEN: Harmless or Hazardous?
by Jim Tetlow
"Halloween is a very controversial subject to many.

Many Christians tend to avoid it ... yet they do not even seem to know why. There are others who just go along with it ... and claim it is harmless. Is it?

Here are some very interesting facts about Halloween & it's Pagan background ...Which we hope will make you think twice about ... Trick or Treat!

THE CELTS
The Celts were the first Aryan people who came from Asia to settle in Europe. Settling in northern France and the British Isles, the Celtic people engaged in occultic arts, worshipping nature and giving it supernatural, animistic qualities.

In ancient Britain & Ireland, the Celtic festival of Samhain was observed on October 31, the end of summer. November 1 was the new year for both Celtic and Anglo-Saxon calendars, and the date was connected with the return of herds from pasture and laws and land tenures being renewed. It was one of the most important, yet sinister calendar festivals of the Celtic Year.
THE ANCIENT DRUIDS
The Druids were the priestly class of the Celtic religion. Many of their beliefs and practices were similar to those of Hinduism, such as reincarnation and the transmigration of the soul-which teaches that people may be reborn as animals. The Druids believed that on October 31, the night before their New Year and the last day of the old year, Samhain, the Lord of Death, gathered the souls of the evil dead who had been condemned to enter the bodies of animals. It was believed that he would then decide what animal form they would take for the next year..."
To read the rest of Jim article at The Harpazo Network, click here.
Check out the new resources too...
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The Third article we have to share with you is by Rick Branch and James Walker from Watchman Fellowship.


Watchman Fellowship has done an amazing service to the body of Christ by the many hours they have spent researching and providing good balanced Christian responses to the cults and the occult. The following is a
Halloween Profile that can be found at the Watchman Fellowship Website on the Profile page. This Profile was written by Rick Branch and James Walker and begins like this:
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Halloween
By Rick Branch and James Walker

Founder: Celtic Priests of Druidism

Founding Date: circa 1000 B.C.

Other Names: Samhain (pronounced Sah-ween) is the Celtic name for the holiday Americans call Halloween. Other names include All Souls Day, All Saints Day, November Eve, Hallowe'en.
HISTORY
Every October 31st, hundreds-of-thousands of children dress in costumes which range from the cute and sweet to the macabre and Satanic. This custom is ritually repeated because, well, because its always been done. That is what makes it a ritual. After all, it is a great way for children to get candy, have harmless fun and pretend they are someone else.
But where did the rituals come from? Why do people carve jack-o-lanterns? Why do children dress in costumes? Where did the tradition of bobbing for apples at parties originate? Why when children approach a strangers door do they enthusiastically exclaim, "trick or treat?" How did the custom of orange and black as the colors of Halloween get started? Where did these rituals originate?

Druidism
Michael Judge, writing for the
New Age periodical Common Boundary explains Halloween probably began between..."
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Sadly, the world of the occult is not just going to go away. In fact, the increase in Neo-paganism, Wicca (Witchcraft) and mystery religions is growing exponentially across the globe. Different forms of superbaturla mysticism are also being embraced on a large scale within the professing Christian church.
It would be wise for us as believers to examine what the worlds is going after and be able to give a reasoned and Biblical response.
For more links to Halloween articles check these out:

BRIEFING PACKAGE:
"Halloween: Invitation to the Occult?" Chuck Missler

ARTICLES & NEWS: ... halloween, occultism, witchcraft etc.
Halloween...An Invitation to the Occult? Chuck Missler
Consulting the Witch at Endor Chuck Missler
A Milestone in History: A Halloween Tale Carol Loeffler
The Real Halloween Hal Lindsey
VIDEOS:
Harry Potter - Witchcraft Repackaged Caryl Matrisciana
BOOKS:
"Occult Invasion" 'The Subtle Seduction of the World & the Church' by Dave Hunt
Occult Invasion is not about Halloween ... But it is an insightful look at how Occultic practices have crept in - unaware - to life as we know it ... even in "the church" through compromise ... This book is sure to offend many who put their stock in "superstars" and "super ministries" ... but not those who pursue Truth at all costs - Truth which is only found in God's Word!

This book can be purchased through
the Berean Call store.
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LASTLY, AS GOD'S WORD ALWAYS HAS THE FINAL SAY...
GOD'S WORD HAS MUCH TO SAY AND WARN ABOUT THE WORLD OF THE OCCULT.
"Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God." Leviticus 19:31 (KJV)

"And the soul that turneth after such as have familiar spirits, and after wizards, to go a whoring after them, I will even set my face against that soul, and will cut him off from among his people. Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God." Leviticus 20:6-7 (KJV)

"There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or daughter to pass through fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord ..." Deuteronomy 18:10-12 (KJV)

"And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead? To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them." Isaiah 8:19-20 (KJV)

"And he made his son pass through the fire, and observed times, and used enchantments, and dealt with familiar spirits and wizards: he wrought much wickedness in the sight of the LORD, to provoke him to anger."2 Kings 21:6 (KJV)

"Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good." Romans 12:9 (KJV)

"Abstain from all appearance of evil." 1 Thessalonians 5:22 (KJV)

"Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty." 2 Corinthians 6:14-18 (KJV)

"Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." Ephesians 6:10 - 12 (KJV)

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Thy Words vs. "Word-Faith" words

"Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O LORD God of hosts. " —Jeremiah 15:16
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There is nothing like the Word of God to nourish our soul and spirit!! God's Word is much better indeed than the False "words" of the Word-Faith movement. The folllowing words God spoke to Jeremiah are very much like what we see today in the church.

God spoke through Jeremiah to the people...
"My people have committed two evils. They have forsaken me, the fountain of living waters to hew out for themselves cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water." (Jeremiah 2:13 )

Jeremiah had pleaded with them:
Wash your heart from evil, O Jerusalem that you may be delivered. How long will your wicked thoughts lodge within you? (Jeremiah 4:14)

And he had warned them:
I will make Jerusalem a heap of ruins, a haunt of jackals. And I will make the cities of Judah a desolation without inhabitant.

And people will ask, "Why is this land ruined, laid waste like a desert?" And the Lord will say, "Because they have forsaken my law which I gave them, they have not obeyed my voice...but have walked after the stubbornness of their heart...Call the mourners that they may come and wail, "Death has come upon us." (Jeremiah 9:11-13)

Sadly, even today in the Church (which did not replace Israel), people are hewing out for themselves the broken cisterns of the Word Faith movement.
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Although there are countles pages that deal with the Word Faith heresies, here is a small list of links to some of the best reosurces I have found.

The Audio/Video clips are a must see/hear.

Deception in the Church (DITC) - Main Page
Word of Faith Teachers - DITC
Quotes: Third Wave/Word Faith Leaders - DITC
General Articles Page - DITC
Article Archive: Word Faith - DITC
Online Audio/Video Clips - DITC
Heresy Audio Clips: Word Faith Teachers - Bible.Org
Directory of Articles - Let Us Reason
Articles: Word Faith Movement - Apologetics Index
Heresies: Word of Faith - My Fortress
The Word of Faith Movement - Gary Gilley
Video/Audio Clips - Paw Creek Ministries
Online Video: Mrs. Benny Hinn Loses Control - Belief Net
Dateline's Benny Hinn Investigation - Online Video Clip
Positive Confession Heresy - Apologetics Index
Word Faith Movement - Apologetics Index
Atonement and Word Faith Theology - Watchman Fellowship
Word Faith Theology/Mormonism - Watchman Fellowship
Ten Reasons to Reject Word-of-Faith Teachings - Tricia Tillin

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Psuedo-Christian Cults At Your Door

Test all things, hold fast to what is good.
(1 Thes. 5:21)
SiReN
TEST EVERYTHING!

Countless people flee when they hear the local cultists knocking on their front door. If they do not flee they mock and make rude remarks to the people who have arrived. I have a friend who is an ex-Jehovah's Witness who went door to door for over 30 years. He does not remember one Christian who ever shared the Gospel with him. Sad indeed!

When people, especially Christians mock those trapped in the cults, this only reinforces the individuals "persecution" mindset and deepens their commitment to "God's organization".
We don't run. We speak to these people for whom Christ died. We share the Gospel of the Real

Jesus Christ with them - no matter how inconvenient the timing is.
Only after we have scaled the foreign language barrier of cultism can we make any sense of what they are saying. We define every term that has "spiritual" overtones - all of them. Otherwise we will follow them down the cultic road of a redefined Jesus, redefined salvation, redefined Christianity, etc.

My heart breaks for those who have been duped by religionists. People who instist on working for their salvation when Christ has already finished the work of redepmtion on the cross. "It is finished", Jesus cried out. The Lamb of God shed His sinless blood. Payment for sin has been made. God's own Eternal Son suffered divine wrath in our place - so we can go to heaven.

People need to repent of dead works and be born of the Holy Spirit. Reincarnation is lie. Being made spirituallly alive in and through Christ is what Christianity is about. Being a NEW creation in Christ and having true fellowship with God through His Son and by His Spirit.

What are us Christians doing about the biggest unmet mission field in the Western world - the Kingdom of the Cults and the Occult? Do we love them enough to be educated ourselves so we can tell them of Christ's love?

What do YOU DO when they come to your door? Because they will come if they have not already!!! Are you going to run, flee and not answer the door? How about getting some answers so that you are able to UNDERSTAND them. Then, and only then, can you share the REAL JESUS with them.

People, if Christians don't take the time with these folks, they will end up in hell after they have believed and lived a lie - in the name of "Christianity".
Here are some links so that you don't have to go out and buy a bunch of books - although a small library of discernment books can always be of value.

DO YOU KNOW ABOUT THE OTHER JESUS'S'S'S'S'S ???
Print out the following article and keep it handy for when the local finrge groups show up.

ARTICLE:
Another Jesus - by Mike Oppenheimer at Let Us Reason
The Jesus of the Cults and Religions - Let Us Reason
Here are some good links for your favorites folder. AND you can print these out and make a folder that you can refer to. Just reading through these articles will equip you for evangelism like never before. As we say er in bonnie Scotland - "Give ii a shot!"

REMEMBER:
A counterfeit always proves there is a non-counterfeit. Christian cults counterfeit Christianty.
Merriam-Webster Online: Definition of CounterfeitWikipedia: Definition of CounterfeitEncyclopedia Britannica: Definition of Counterfeiting

Find out how counterfeit money is tested.
U.S. Secret Service: How To Detect Counterfeit Money
Counterfeit Detection (Currency): Spotting a Counterfeit
Now you know how to test counterfeit money.

How about using your Bible to test counterfeit Gospels. Know the truth so well that you recognize error when you see it.

PROPER BIBLE INTERPRETATION:
Proper Biblical Interpretation always exposes counterfeit forms of Christianity.
Eight Rules of Interpretation (Used by legal experts for more than 2500 years)
20 Scripture Twisting Methods of Cults

WHAT IS A CULT?
Merriam-Webster Online
Deception in the Church - Defining Terms
Handbook of Today's Religions
Watchman Fellowship - Patterns in the Cults
CARM - About Cults
The Centers For Apologetic Research - Cults
Apologetics Index - Cult of Christianity
Watchman Fellowship - Cult or Cultic?
Handbook of Today's Religions - Characteristics of a Cult

NEED MORE INFO ON SPECIFIC GROUPS?

Check it out: Spiritual Research Network
Go to the NETWORK PAGE

Here are some websites who are helping impact Scotland for Christ
Check it out: The Centers For Apologetic Research (Thanks Paul and Associates)
Check it out: Deception in the Church (Thanks Sandy)
Check it out: The Discernment Bomb Search Engine (Thanks Sandy for setting this up)
Check it Out: Let Us Reason (Thanks Mike)

PS:
Our upgraded and much more extensive SRN site will be uploading in the future but it is a slow process. Many good things keep us occupied day in and day out and many days I end up working late in our office here. I can now practically do some html on the websites and this is helping speed things up a bit. Well, a little.

Please pray for us:

1. Grace, widsom, strength and the fulness of God's love.
2. Love for the lost.
3. Clarity when shring the truth with anyone and everyone.
4. The most important thing - for the salvation of souls.

Thank you for praying with us!
Loving one another,
Chris Lawson in Scotland

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Reflecting on God's Rainbow

God's Rainbow over Portobello and Joppa, Edinburgh, Scotland.

This last month was filled with good things. We had several visitors from the U.S.A. as well as some wonderful family outings and days of rest. Upon attempting to finish up my two year Institute of Biblical Studies course here in Edinburgh, I contracted a strange virus that put my head spinning with a vertigo type affect. Two weeks of physical weakness and lots of head spins have kept me off the computer and made me quite spaced out.

Although I did not graduate with the other students at the IBS this term, I did manage to see an absolutely incredible SUNSET RAINBOW and the next morning see a mind blowing SUNRISE that came up over the Eastern seaboard.

OK, I did not tweek these photos. These are originals and the photos do not do justice to how intense the light really was. God's handiwork reveals His glory.

The rainbow above is over our house and was literally blasting with color and light. I have never seen any rainbow so bright in my whole life - and it arched 100% up and over me and came down miles out to see. The entire thing was lit up like a giant torch across the sky.
I was overwhelmed with God's goodness as I saw this rainbow and thought of God's words to Noah after the flood...

Genesis 9:8-17
“And God spake unto Noah, and to his sons with him, saying, And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you; And with every living creature that [is] with you, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth.
And I will establish my covenant with you; neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.
And God said, This [is] the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that [is] with you, for perpetual generations: I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth. And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud: And I will remember my covenant, which [is] between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.
And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that [is] upon the earth.
And God said unto Noah, This [is] the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that [is] upon the earth.”
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...and the next morning!!!

At about 6:45am the next morning, there was an incredible orange glow that I could see through the skylight above our bed. I knew immediately that I had only a couple minutes as the orange glow is usually the a sure sign of an increidble East Lothian sunrise. I jumped out of bed, ran downstairs and grabbed my camera, and out the door I went. My head was fully spinning from my sickness but when I got to the seas edge I was overwhelmed with the glory of God's creation - all my sickness seemed to vanish away for several minutes.
I immediately forgot about all of life's trials and I was filled with an insexpressible joy! I was immediately taken up with what what it will be like when I see Christ in all His glory, splendour, and majesty.

East Lothian's Lammamuir hills, with their beautiful and unspoiled rolling glens were a sight to behold in the morning sunlight. The countryside and villages along the waters edge were glistening with brilliant golden brown sun beams. I was afraid I was going to burn out more pixels in my camera but I went for it anyway. I started taking as many photos as I could as I jimmied with the camera light settings. Here is what I got. Thank you LORD!
Although I was sad that my beautiful bride and most of Edinburgh missed out on seeing this one, I rejoiced that my God in heaven shared it with me.
This indeed was a gift from the LORD. It was a special time for me to reflect on His glory and goodness and take a break from work and the computer for almost two weeks.
God knows what we need and when. I feel refreshed and ready to get back to work!

Back to work we go!