Brian McLaren’s Palestinian Justice Speech

LTRP Note: This is part 2 of this series. To read part 1, click here.

By Menno-lite

In the last half of his plenary talk at a FOSNA conference this April in Portland, Oregon, in his case to prove that Christians are responsible for creating the injustice that currently exists in Palestine, Brian McLaren went into further detail about his problem with all the accounts in the Bible where God said to wipe out the surrounding nations, people and even animals, in what he calls the ‘texts of genocide.’

“Through its appropriation of “texts of terror” and especially through the application of those texts to the Jews, the Christian religion created the conditions for the oppression of Palestinians.” -Brian McLaren, Seeds of Hope and Justice for Palestinians and Israelis [1]

McLaren then talked about the holocaust being one of many world wide genocidal atrocities which the church has been behind, saying that “The lament that Christians should have is that Israel is treating Palestinians exactly the way Christians treated Jews, and we now lament that past.”

But is it true that the Christian religion created the conditions for oppression of Palestine? While many atrocities in the world have been done in the name of Christ, is it true for McLaren to say that Israel is treating Palestinians the way Jews were treated in the Holocaust?

First of all, it was Hitler and the Unholy Alliance who were behind the annihilation of the Jews. Secondly, Israel today treats the Palestinians better than they are treated by their own leaders. Where is the genocide happening in Israel? Just this week Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu showed to the world “the true Israel, the advanced, modern and tolerant Israel, in effect, the only country in the Middle East that ensures complete freedom of worship to those of all faiths, guards the holy places and ensures the rights of all – Jews, Muslims, Christians, everybody.”[2] Click here to continue reading.

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Southern Baptist Convention To Take “Softer Tone” on Homosexuality?

LTRP Note: The following news story is posted for informational and research purposes only and not as an endorsement for the content or the source.

By National Public Radio

Fewer jokes and check your facts – those are two of the tips on handling homosexuality shared with Southern Baptist pastors gathered in Nashville [in April 2014].

The country’s largest protestant denomination is holding a first-ever summit on human sexuality this week. The Southern Baptist Convention typically avoids handing down dictates. But on homosexuality, the denomination is starting to get very specific.

“I just think we have to reject redneck theology in all of its forms,” pastor Jimmy Scroggins of West Palm Beach told ministers Monday night. “Let’s stop telling Adam and Steve jokes.”

A panel of five church leaders also told preachers to stop spreading falsehoods, like gay people were abused as children.

Overall, Greg Belser of Clinton, Miss., said pastors have to take particular care on this hot button topic. Click here to continue reading.

Related News:

Southern Baptist ‘Church’ Votes to Keep Pro-Homosexual Minister, Go ‘Third Way’

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New Ager Marianne Williamson’s Political Campaign Treasury Grows to $1.2 Million

LTRP Note: To understand the significance behind New Ager Marianne Williamson, read Warren B. Smith’s book False Christ Coming: Does Anybody Care?

By Jean Merl
Los Angeles Times

Spiritual teacher and best-selling author Marianne Williamson has raised more than $1.2 million for her campaign for an open congressional district seat, her report showed Thursday.

The Williamson campaign’s report to the Federal Election Commission showed that $267,654 of her total came during the period between April 1 and May 14.  She reported having $314,663 cash on hand at the end of the period.

All of the money came from individual donors. Besides contributions, Williamson lent her campaign an additional $300,000, bringing her total investment in her race to $392,824. Click here to continue reading.

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Kenya Water Program

From Understand the Times

While visiting our Bryce Homes in Kenya in March of 2014, it became apparent that one of the greatest needs for our widows and their families was water—both uncontaminated drinking water and water for other basic needs (bathing, washing clothing, etc.). Where our families live in a remote area, they are required to walk long distances to get water from streams, ponds, or community boreholes and then carry the water in five-gallon pails back to their houses. Not only is there the problem of the water source being a long distance away, such water also contains many pathogens that are the cause of serious life-threatening diseases.

It was also obvious to me that there was a very doable solution to this problem. When I returned from Kenya, we reported on the need to collect water from the roofs of the newly constructed houses that our donors have helped to build. Since then, in these past three months, we have been able to construct three water-collecting systems that cost approximately $500 each. Eve troughs collect water runoff when it rains that is then drained into large clean plastic tanks that store the water. The tanks are situated at the corner of each house, and the water can be obtained by opening a valve whenever needed.

Below are the photographs of the three widows and the water-collecting systems that have been constructed so far. Click here to continue reading.


 

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Dream Catchers – Those Popular Spidery “Sacred Hoops”

By Nanci Des Gerlaise
(author of Muddy Waters: an insider’s view of North American Native Spirituality)

Beautiful dream catcher on green backgroundDream catchers—those spidery “sacred hoops” with feathers. They originated with the Ojibwa tribe during the ’60s and ’70s, supposedly to protect a sleeper by “catching” bad dreams or evil spirits. Then they caught on with other tribes and spread through the New Age movement into popular culture. Today, it is not uncommon to see dream catchers in gift and variety stores.  Dream catchers are even used in some public school settings, as the following describes:

Every classroom displayed at least one dreamcatcher—a magical spider web inside a sacred circle. The students explained that dreamcatchers protect them from evil spirits and nightmares by catching the bad dreams but permitting good dreams to pass though the center. According to fourth grade teacher Ms. Preston, the amber crystal in the center of her dreamcatcher meant proper spiritual alignment with the energy of the universe.1

But you can be sure, most of the general public has no idea of the meaning and purpose of dream catchers.

Basically, using a dream catcher in its intended purpose is nothing more than a form of practicing occultism. How can an inanimate object “catch” evil spirits, much less bad dreams? And why attempt to “catch” evil spirits or nightmares when you cannot fight them physically?

Although Native people can sometimes see into the spiritual world of darkness, dream catchers, or anything having to do with the occult, merely attract evil spirits and demonic activity and provide no means of protection from them. Using dream catchers is an open invitation for more spiritual works of darkness.

If you are a born-again Christian, you have a Protector—God Almighty—Who stands between us and the evil realm. We need nothing more than Jesus Christ Himself who overcame all works and powers of darkness by His death and resurrection. If we pay attention to God’s Word and not to seducing spirits, we can walk in His freedom from fear.

Ephesians 6:12 says that our battle is not against “flesh and blood,” but is against “principalities,” “powers,” “the rulers of the darkness” and “spiritual wickedness in high places.” And in Hebrews, we read:

Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. (Hebrews 2:14–15)

(To understand more about Native Spirituality, read Muddy Waters, by Nanci Des Gerlaise).

Notes:
1. Berit Kjos, Brave New Schools (Kjos Ministries, http://www.crossroad.to/Books/BraveNewSchools/1-globalvillage.html), ch. 1.

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Sudanese Woman Sentenced to Hang for Refusing to Convert to Islam to be Freed – Maybe . . .

June 2nd: Update on this story from a different news source.

By Heather Clark
Christian News Network

Ibrahim Credit Daniel WaniKHARTOUM, Sudan – A Sudanese woman who was sentenced to death by hanging for refusing to convert to Islam will soon be freed, reports state.

As previously reported, Meriam Ibrahim, 27, was officially sentenced on May 15th after she was convicted of apostasy against Islam for professing to be an Orthodox Christian. Ibrahim was born to a Muslim father, but was raised by an Ethiopian Orthodox Christian mother as the father left the home when Ibrahim was a child. In Sudan, children are expected to follow the religion of their fathers, and her father’s family had reportedly turned her into authorities for rejecting Islam.

Ibrahim was also sentenced to 100 lashes for allegedly committing “zena”—that is, having illegitimate sex by marrying a non-Muslim. The expectant mother married a professing Christian man, Daniel Wani, in 2011, and the two have an 18-month old son together, along with the child in Ibrahim’s womb. Sudanese law prohibits women from marrying non-Muslims, although men can marry whomever they wish without penalty.

Ibrahim was convicted of apostasy on May 11th for rejecting Islam and was given four days to recant, which would have saved her life. Unlike others who have faced similar sentences in Sudan, she refused to convert.

“I am a Christian,” she declared before the court, “and I will remain a Christian.”

“We gave you three days to recant, but you insist on not returning to Islam,” Judge Abbas Khalifa told Ibrahim, as reported by the AFP. “I sentence you to be hanged to death.” Click here to continue reading.

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The New Age/New Spirituality’s Alternative to Armageddon – The Selection Process

By Warren B. Smith

For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.—2 Peter 1:16

Self-described “futurist” and “conscious evolutionist” Barbara Marx Hubbard writes that in 1966 she heard an “inner voice” that came in response to a question she had asked aloud and directed to God—“What is our story? What in our age is comparable to the birth of Christ?” After asking the question she said she fell into a dreamlike state and was given an intense vision of the future.1

In the vision, Hubbard saw the earth from a distance. She was made to understand that the earth was a living body and that she was a cell in its body. Feeling her “oneness” with the earth, she experienced its pain and confusion. When her vision abruptly fast-forwarded into the future, she could see the earth and its people were now surrounded by a radiant light. She watched as the whole planet was “aligned” in “a magnetic field of love” and lifted up by the brilliant light. Widespread healings took place as individuals experienced the merging of their own “inner light” with the bright light that was surrounding them. A tremendous “force” emanating from the light sent powerful currents of joyful energy “rippling” through the body of humanity. The world celebrated as all the earth was “born again.” The pain and confusion were gone. Love had prevailed. The “inner voice” told her to spread the message of the vision. It said:

Our story is a birth. It is the birth of humankind as one body. What Christ and all great beings came to Earth to reveal is true. We are one body, born into this universe. GO TELL THE STORY OF OUR BIRTH. . . Barbara!2

In 1977 Hubbard began to hear this “inner voice” regularly. At one point she was told:

Have utter faith in my design. Achieve deep peace. Be prepared for a great force to enter your life to do this work. It cannot enter till you have achieved deep peace. Your reward for peace, which can only be achieved by faith, is contact with the great force and the other forces waiting in the wings.3

On Christmas Day in 1979, she had a revelation that the presence in her 1966 vision had been “Christ.”4 Then in February of 1980, at an Episcopalian monastery in Santa Barbara, California, she describes how in the midst of “an electrifying presence of light” her higher self “voice” transformed into the “Christ voice.”5 Over the coming months the “Christ voice” gave her more information and insight about the vision she had in 1966 and more first-hand detail about what will one day be taking place in the world. Hubbard understood that it was her mission to continue telling the story of humanity’s “birth.”

Since 1966, Hubbard has fulfilled her commission from “Christ” to tell his New Age/New Gospel story. From NASA to the former USSR, from the Georgia State Legislature to the United Nations, she has spoken to thousands of people and hundreds of groups and organizations about the “planetary birth experience” she had been shown in her vision. In the process, she has become a respected “world citizen,” known and loved by many for her insights about “God” and “Christ” and the future of humanity.

Hubbard is a co-founding board member of the World Future Society.6 In 1976 she seriously contemplated a run for the U.S. presidency.7 In 1984, her name was placed in nomination for Vice-President at the Democratic National Convention in San Francisco.8 Her speech, based on her “Campaign for a Positive Future,” was carried live on C-Span.9 Today she is on a first name basis with many world leaders and proudly describes herself as part of the “New Order of the Future.”10 At least three of her books were funded by her benefactor, the late Laurance S. Rockefeller, through his Fund for the Enhancement of the Human Spirit. She thanks Rockefeller in her books for his generous support over the years. And she specifically thanks him for his “intuition about the ‘Christ of the 21st Century.’”11

The Alternative to Armageddon
Through the years Hubbard has received voluminous information from her “Christ.” In her 1993 book, The Revelation: Our Crisis Is a Birth (later renamed The Revelation: A Message of Hope for the New Millennium), Hubbard and “Christ” “rewrite” the Bible’s Book of Revelation. In The Revelation, Hubbard’s “Christ” provides specific instructions on how a united humanity, purposefully partnering with God, can literally re-create the future. This “Christ” teaches that the “violent” Armageddon script described in the Bible does not have to happen, that it is only a “possible” future, emphasizing that a more “positive” future can and will manifest when humanity—without exception—openly declares its “oneness” with him and all creation. This positive scenario and the means to attaining it is called “the alternative to Armageddon.”12

Hubbard’s “Christ” describes how planet earth is at an evolutionary crossroads. He states that the world is about to make an evolutionary leap that will take all creation to a new level. Those who awaken to their own divinity, by aligning themselves as one with God and one with each other, will evolve. Those who continue to believe in “fear” and “separation,” rather than in “love” and “oneness,” will not evolve. Hubbard’s “Christ” claims that with his help most of mankind will choose to evolve, calling this evolutionary leap “the Planetary Birth Experience.”13 He refers to it as the coming time of “Planetary Pentecost.”14 The “birth experience” is a shared event in the future, an “Instant of Co-operation,”15 when everyone on the planet will be mysteriously changed in “the twinkling of an eye,” as humanity is collectively born again into a new creation. Those who evolve will actually become a new species as Homo sapiens is collectively transformed into Homo universalis, or the “Universal Humanity.”16 The “Universal Humanity” will live together as a community of “natural Christs” in the “New Heaven” on the “New Earth” that is the “New Jerusalem.”17

The “Selection Process”
But Hubbard’s “Christ,” while describing the “birth experience” and professing his love for all mankind, nevertheless warns that there will be no place in the “New Jerusalem” for those who refuse to see themselves and others as a part of God. He describes, therefore, the necessity of a “selection process” that will select out resistant individuals who “choose” not to evolve. This “selection process” is a “purification” that will be accomplished through “the shock of a fire.”18

“Christ” states that those who see themselves as “separate” and not “divine” hinder humanity’s ability to spiritually evolve. Those who deny their own “divinity” are “cancer cells” in the body of God.19 “Christ” warns that a healthy body must have no cancer cells. Cancer cells must be healed or completely removed from the body. He describes the means of removal as the “selection process.” The “selection process” results in the deaths of those who refuse to see themselves as a part of God.

After the “selection process,” the spirit bodies of the departed individuals will continue to be “purified” in the spirit realm. Hubbard’s “Christ” emphasizes that they will not be given another physical body and they will not be able to rejoin humanity until they rid themselves of all “self-centeredness.” He defines “self-centeredness” as “the illusion” that one is “separate” from God. The self-centered temptation to see oneself as “separate,” and not as a part of God, is “evil” and must be “overcome.” He also refers to self-centeredness, or this illusion of separateness, as “Satan.”

In this future described by Hubbard’s “Christ,” anyone who refuses to see themselves and others as “God” and “Christ” will be removed by the “selection process.” Those professing Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior would be subject to this process.

 

Direct quotes from Hubbard’s “Christ” in The RevelationAbout the Selection Process

Dearly beloved, I approached the crucifixion far more easily than I approach the selection. The crucifixion was done unto my body. The selection will be done unto yours. (p. 197)

The decisive moment of selection has almost come. The judgment of the quick and the dead is about to be made. The end of this phase of evolution is nearly complete. (p. 189)

By your acts you shall be judged as to whether you can evolve, or must be “cast into the lake of fire,” which is the second death. (p. 254)

The “second death” is for those of you who cannot evolve by choice, due to some deeply seated error in your understanding of the nature of reality. (p. 267)

It is to open your mind that you will undergo the second death. (p. 267)

[T]he fundamental regression is self-centeredness, or the illusion that you are separate from God. I “make war” on self-centeredness. It shall surely be overcome. The child must become the adult. Human must become Divine. That is the law. (p. 233)

At the co-creative stage of evolution, one self-centered soul is like a lethal cancer cell in a body: deadly to itself and to the whole. (p. 255)

The surgeon dare leave no cancer in the body when he closes up the wound after a delicate operation. We dare leave no self-centeredness on Earth after the selection process. For when we complete the process of the transformation, all who live on will be empowered to be godlike. (p. 240)

The selection process will exclude all who are exclusive. The selection process assures that only the loving will evolve to the stage of co-creator. (p. 303)

After the selection process, you will be born to the next stage of  evolution. There will be a New Heaven, a New Earth, a new body and a new consciousness for all who survive. (p. 261)

Your triumph over Satan, that is, over the illusion of separation, will be a victory for the universal community. (p. 193)

If you do not choose to have a new body to co-create with me, you will not have one. You may choose an impersonal future rather than the transpersonal future. The impersonal future is bodiless. You divest yourself of your personal memory and your DNA, and become an undifferentiated aspect of God.
(p. 196)

Cynics, disbelievers, those who fear and cannot love: know that the mercy of God almighty is with you now. The second death, for you, is a purification, an erasing of the memory of fear, through the shock of a fire. It will burn out the imprint upon your soul that is blocking you from seeing the glory which shall be revealed in you. (p. 267)

Those who are not sufficiently educated to align with the design, experience God’s purification process as long as necessary, until they learn how to know God or the Intention of Creation experientially. They cannot return to the new Earth or the new Heaven, in a self-centered state. (p. 255)

Remember, Satan is either consumed by fire or by love. In the New Jerusalem, there is no illusion of separation. (p. 297)

The end is near. The old play is almost over. Suffice it to say, that if you do not choose to evolve into a wholesome, co-creative human, then you shall not. (p. 195)

The only punishment is your self-exclusion from the joy of new life. The only pity is that you are missing the mark and choosing to die unfulfilled.
(p. 195)

There need be no greater punishment. There need be no threats. There is only choice. That is the purpose of freedom. Only those who choose to evolve, do.
(p. 195)

The stakes are high, dearly beloved. Choose well.
(p. 290)

(This article is an excerpt from Warren B. Smith’s book, False Christ Coming: Does Anybody Care?)

Endnotes:

1. Barbara Marx Hubbard, The Revelation: A Message of Hope for the New Millennium (Novato, CA: Nataraj Publishing, 1995), pp. 40–43; Hubbard, The Hunger of Eve: One Woman’s Odyssey toward the Future (Eastsound, WA: Island Pacific NW, 1989), pp. 66–68.
2. Ibid., p. 42.
3. Ibid., p. 55.
4. Ibid., p. 59.
5. Ibid., p. 64.
6. Barbara Marx Hubbard, Conscious Evolution: Awakening the Power of Our Social Potential (Novato, CA: New World Library, 1998), p. 279.
7. Hubbard, The Hunger of Eve, p. 150.
8. Ibid., p. 196.
9. Hubbard, Conscious Evolution, op. cit. p. 116.
10. Hubbard, The Revelation, op. cit., pp. 67–69.
11. Ibid., p. 350.
12. Ibid., pp. 264–265.
13. Ibid., p. 298.
14. Ibid., p. 157.
15. Ibid., pp. 243–245.
16. Ibid., pp. 44 and 78–79.
17. Ibid., p. 258.
18. Ibid., pp. 240 and 267.
19. Ibid., p. 255.

 

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