Thursday, December 10, 2015

He was called Jesus - December 5th, 2015

Saturday Outreach

For being just a few weeks away from Christmas, it was a peaceful, even drowsy evening down by the mall last Saturday.  We had two boxes (across the street from one-another) as the men took turns proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ to the few people passing by.

This week, instead of a normal update and in celebration of our glorious Savior and His birth, we are instead "re-printing" a part of a letter written nearly 2,000 years ago...

Luke 2

In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all went to be registered, each to his own town. And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.

And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,

“Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!”

When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.

And at the end of eight days, when he was circumcised, he was called Jesus, the name given by the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

And when the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every male who first opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”) and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the Law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.” Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came in the Spirit into the temple, and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the Law, he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said,

“Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace,
according to your word;
for my eyes have seen your salvation
 that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples,
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and for glory to your people Israel.”

And his father and his mother marveled at what was said about him. And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is appointed for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is opposed (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), so that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.”

And there was a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was advanced in years, having lived with her husband seven years from when she was a virgin, and then as a widow until she was eighty-four. She did not depart from the temple, worshiping with fasting and prayer night and day. And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to God and to speak of him to all who were waiting for the redemption of Jerusalem.

And when they had performed everything according to the Law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own town of Nazareth. And the child grew and became strong, filled with wisdom. And the favor of God was upon him.

Now his parents went to Jerusalem every year at the Feast of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up according to custom. And when the feast was ended, as they were returning, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents did not know it, but supposing him to be in the group they went a day’s journey, but then they began to search for him among their relatives and acquaintances, and when they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem, searching for him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. And when his parents saw him, they were astonished. And his mother said to him, “Son, why have you treated us so? Behold, your father and I have been searching for you in great distress.” And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” And they did not understand the saying that he spoke to them. And he went down with them and came to Nazareth and was submissive to them. And his mother treasured up all these things in her heart.

And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.

Come Join Us - 6-9 pm
See the calendar on the upper, right-side of this page for our location each week...

Tracts and Bibles supplied!

Abortion Clinic
Mission Hills

Don waiting while the abortionist parks underground before pleading with him to repent while there is still time.

This was an interesting case where this man was wandering around outside with his kids.  Joe spoke with him and found out that he had brought his ex-wife for what she had told him was just an “appointment”.  He didn’t know this was an abortion clinic.

While we don’t know what all transpired between this man and his ex-wife, but about 30 minutes later he had pulled her out of the clinic and they drove away!

That was just 1 of 4 couples that came and then left.  Most didn't stop to talk with us when they left, and we don't know the complete reason why they left, but it’s always exciting when people don’t go through with the abortion!

Another interesting event was the arrival of the police.  This happens once in awhile (they have to come whenever a complaint is made), but what made this interesting was that at first the police asked us to not say anything because someone might be offended.  He quickly backed off that, though, when Don pushed back, reminding them that free speech doesn’t end at the point someone is offended (he also took the opportunity to throw in 1 Corinthians 1:18 to speak some Scripture since he had the police’s attention).

The police officer then clarified that whoever had called had said that someone in our group had brought up the recent event in Colorado, and that bringing that up was the type of speech he was asking us to stop.

Of course even talking about that, as distasteful as we agree it would be, would have still been protected speech (presuming it is not used to threaten).  However, no one on the team had said anything about it, whether among ourselves or to people passing by, so we were as confused as the officer seemed as he looked around our group before admitting that the person who was accused of saying it wasn’t there anymore.

We were pretty much the only ones who had been there, though, so that comment just added to an already odd encounter.

We have no proof, but it feels very much like a false complaint was made for the purpose of harassment or distraction, using the recent events as the trigger.  Whatever the reason, the police were polite and professional, and the encounter lasted no more than a couple minutes.

Every Wednesday and Saturday at 8-10 am
10200 Sepulveda Blvd
Mission Hills, CA  91345

No Experience Needed and no need to say anything if you are not ready - come hold a sign, pray, and bring encouragement to those who are standing for the innocent.

Articles and Media

Several links provided this week.  Scroll down for topics such as Morality, Abortion, Apologetics, and even a little peek into man-kind's growing hope of eternal life outside of Christ in Trans-Humanism.


Arlene of Arlene's Flowers, a story of workers fired for refusing to call a 6-yo girl a boy, then some general thoughts by Albert Mohler.

The Seattle Times
Why a friend is suing me: the Arlene’s Flowers story
MOST people, seeing that headline, might think: “Shouldn’t it be ‘My Ex-Friend Is Suing Me?’ ” But Rob Ingersoll will always be my friend.

Workers fired for raising concerns about transgender student
Two school staff members say they were fired for voicing concern after being told to begin calling a 6-year-old girl by a new name and referring to her as a boy.

Albert Mohler
Why Can’t Christians Just Join the Revolution?
Why not just join the revolution? This question seems obvious to many people who look at conservative Christians and honestly wonder why we cannot just change our views on homosexuality, same-sex marriage and the entire LGBT constellation of issues.


There are times when there's some very good, hopeful news about abortion.  This is one of those times.


BTW: If you haven't yet seen the various previews, this new series by WRETCHED equipping viewers to stand up for unborn babies looks to be excellent: Life is Best.

Albert Mohler
Effectiveness of crisis pregnancy centers alarming abortion supporters
(Daily Briefing 11/13/2015 - 3rd audio link)


Another look at Seventh-Day Adventism as a couple of authors first wrestle with the topic, then find themselves wrestling with commenters.

After that is an article on Biblical transmission and the false idea out there that modern Bibles are merely translations of translations of translations...

Seventh Day Adventism
A few weeks ago we briefly referenced confusion found even within our local church as to whether or not Seventh Day Adventism is a cult.

Recently Nathan Busenitz stepped into this touchy topic with a blog post on TMI.  After more than a little furor over the article, he posted a clarification on Cripplegate.

Tim Challies summarized those articles: "Nathan Busenitz is finding out what I learned a little while ago: That critiquing Seventh Day Adventism brings about some harsh responses."

Here is the SECOND article (he links to his first at the beginning): 10 Questions about Adventism
While unfounded name-calling doesn’t bother me, especially on Facebook, a few of the critics complained that I had misrepresented Seventh-day Adventist beliefs. Some accused me of violating the ninth commandment, and intentionally bearing false witness about what Seventh-day Adventists believe.
Since my desire is not to bear false witness, I decided to write one more article regarding SDA doctrine. While I doubt it will appease my critics, I hope it will bring additional clarity to my previous post. 

The first article on TMI had an excellent comment by Mike Riccardi in reply to another comment saying that SDAs merely have a bad understanding of Biblical doctrine and that we need to be a bit more inclusive.  At the prompting of other posters, Mike turned his comment into an article that is highly recommended reading:

Bad Doctrine vs. Heresy: An Exercise in Theological Triage
All biblical doctrine is important. I would go so far as to say all biblical doctrine is essential. It’s difficult to put any doctrine into a second or third tier, because it somehow feels as if to do so is to say it’s not important. But employing theological triage doesn’t mean that everything that’s not first-order is unimportant, any more than a doctor’s prioritizing a gunshot wound necessarily thinks a sprained ankle is unimportant. But the fact remains: genuine Christians can disagree on things like the mode and recipients of baptism; but if two people disagree on the triunity of God, one is a Christian and the other isn’t.

Debunking Stupid Statements about the Bible: An Exercise in Biblical Transmission
Let’s think for a moment about the question of transmission—that is, can we be confident that the original text of the Bible was transmitted accurately to us through the centuries? As we begin to consider that question, we should just right off the bat acknowledge the gigantic glittering elephant standing here in the room: We don’t have the originals.


and Genetic Manipulation

The sad, dark area outside of Christ where the world struggles to be like God.

Serious Wonder
Humai, a company founded in Los Angeles, California by entrepreneur Josh Bocanegra, doesn’t just want to help engineer strong A.I., but wishes to use their developments in the technology to someday bring people back from the dead

You’re Only Human, But Your Kids Could Be So Much More
While you might not be able to fundamentally transform yourself or your existing children, in the near future, you just might be able to play God with your own new, little creations. Think of it as a very personal kind of experiment. Technology that is already available today may well make this experimentation possible for anyone who can pay the price to make a new person, only one that is hoped to be “better.”

* All Scriptures from the ESV unless otherwise noted

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