LIGHTHOUSE TRAILS RESEARCH           June 6, 2017     LIGHTHOUSE TRAILS PUBLISHING
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Buried in Unmarked Graves

By Roger Oakland

Credit: Bigstockphoto.com

Vast are the burial grounds resulting from man-centered Christianity. When men follow men rather than the Good Shepherd, they seek after wealth, kingdoms, power, and illicit sexual relationships—anything to feed the flesh, which we know is never satisfied. When this happens, it is no longer Christianity but rather another “Christianity,” a dead and harmful religion (which is man’s invention) promoting another Jesus. Religion robs the innocent from true freedom in Jesus. The temples, the cathedrals, the shrines, and the modern day megachurches often testify to the accomplishments of man more than they speak of the wonders of God, who sent His Son to redeem us from our sins.

Further, study the hierarchies that humans construct—the popes, the cardinals, the bishops, and the priests. Or replace the “Holy Catholic Church” with the “Protestant” counterparts, and you find the same thing. While there may be a different configuration, the end results are the same. Followers are abused and misused by the power brokers that control them.

Many are those who have been beaten and hurt. They are buried in unmarked graves without tombstones covered over by time. Those responsible for their demise continue from generation to generation. They are abusive powerful despots who boldly proclaim “how dare you touch God’s anointed” as they bury more and more. They believe their threats have a scriptural basis.

Such is the case for many in a fellowship of pastors I was once involved with. For this reason, two Norwegian brothers (myself being one of them) felt led to warn these men, many of whom got their focus off the Good Shepherd.1 Sadly, they started out right but ended up wrong. As the Bible states, it is not how you start but how you finish that counts.

This group lost their moorings. Many of them were so encapsulated by power, success, and church growth, they did not realize they had become lukewarm and then cold. While the Good Shepherd warns them in His Word, they chose to ignore the warnings. Just like the Bible proclaims, Ichabod (meaning God’s glory departed) became a reality and an era of struggle that should have been laden with victories for Christ ended with the death of this group’s heart-broken founder.2 Isn’t it interesting how history repeats itself? Whatever has happened before can and does happen again.

The Word of God is light. The Word of God shines into the darkness, and the darkness hates the light. Often those in darkness think they are in light and do not see the light when the light shines.

Nevertheless, the God of the Bible always wins. Sometimes the scenario plays out with a very unhappy ending. God is a God of justice, and justice always prevails. The good news for the deceivers is that God is also a God of mercy, and He gives man the opportunity to repent until the day he takes his last breath. God does not desire that any should perish but wants all to come to repentance.

Endnote:

  1. http://www.understandthetimes.org/commentary/c190finalwakeupcall.shtml.
  2. You can read about Roger Oakland’s years in the Calvary Chapel churches in his biography Let There Be Light, 2nd ed.

(This is an excerpt from Roger Oakland’s book, The Good Shepherd Calls)

Related Video:

(From Roger Oakland’s emerging church lecture series)

Signs of the Times in Song with Trevor Baker, Part 1

trevor bakerLTRP Note: The following is part 1 of a recent interview that our Canadian friend and co-laborer in Christ Trevor Baker had with The Berean Call. Trevor will be singing at The Berean Call’s 2017 conference this year. We met Trevor, who is from Saskatchewan, through Roger Oakland a few years ago. After listening to his music the first time, we realized he was singing about the things that Lighthouse Trails and other ministries were writing about. His passion for truth and love for the lost shines through in his songs.

Interview by The Berean Call with singer/songwriter Trevor Baker (You’ll hear a few of his songs in this 2-part interview.) Trevor’s website is www.trevorbaker.ca.

Gary: Welcome to Search the Scriptures 24/7, with T.A. McMahon, a radio ministry of The Berean Call. I’m Gary Carmichael. Thanks for tuning in! In today’s program, Tom is joined by his guest, Trevor Baker, as they discuss the topic: Signs of the Times in Song.  And now, here’s Tom.

Tom: Thanks, Gary. For this and next week’s program, we’re going to listen to and have conversation with a man who ministers in song. And by ministering, I’m not talking about music that necessarily puts a person into an enjoyable mood, or entertains – although that could happen or not happen. My guest is Trevor Baker. He’s a singer, songwriter, and musician. Trevor, welcome to Search the Scriptures 24/7.

Trevor: Well, thank you for having me. I appreciate it.

Tom: Trevor – the reason I said that Trevor’s music may not always be enjoyable is because his lyrics – well, sometimes they bring conviction as well as point out false teachings in the church, which doesn’t go down well in some cases. And that’s the effect that truth – the truth – can have on a person or fellowship. When I read the psalms, for example, sometimes it’s pure bliss, and other times I’m so convicted by what I’ve read that my flesh is not happy with it. So, Trevor, give our listeners your background, and tell us how the writing that you do – how it came about.

Trevor: Okay, well, I group up on a small farm and wasn’t a church-going person. My dad stuttered really bad from nerves – he’d been beat up and locked in rooms and what not. I had three uncles who were alcoholics, and so I didn’t have a lot of hope in my life. And then my best friend took his life when he was 20, and I almost followed him.

I met a preacher at a small wedding. He touched my heart. I was twenty-two, and he was just a soft-hearted man. I went to see him, and (making this short and sweet here), but I cried all the way home on my steering wheel, saying, “God, who are you? I want what that man has.”

Five years later, in my late twenties – I probably cried more in my late twenties than any time in my life. I wanted to tell people about the Lord, but I thought I was a failure.  And I was sure I’d turn people from God, and I said, I’ll just be quiet. I’ll go away. And through that time, I guess God gave me a gift. He gave me a way to communicate. I wasn’t asking for it. I was twenty-seven, I picked up a guitar, I took three guitar lessons, and it was just to put the kids to bed at night.

At twenty-nine, I had laryngitis for four days. I had never had it my life before or since. But my voice changed after that. My wife could sing. I never could sing before that. I was always off tune. And she noticed that my voice changed. So I guess God “fixed” something during those four days.

A year later, God started to give me songs, and I just wouldn’t stop after that. The beginning years, my songs were mostly outreach songs that boiled down to “God helped me. He can help you.” And I sang at a lot of fairs. I worked as a relief milker on farms; I gave out my CDs to farmers all over the place, and I sang at local fairs, and they put me in the beer tent, and I’d sing gospel music.

And then God told me to leave that – it was seven years later, and I was thirty-eight years old – and go on the road! And I began singing songs somewhat to do with our country at that point. You know, our country has lost its way. And after about five years of that, in 2000 – well, four years or so – 2003-2004, I started to notice things in the church. One example, I guess, would be…I was in a small church one day, and I was walking around praying, nervous, as I always am before I singing, and as I went by the front of the church each time, I noticed the pastor’s briefcase. And then I glanced down at it and looked at it once, as I passed by. And in the middle, almost framed, like a trophy, was a book called The Purpose Driven Life. And so I started…I was noticing these things everywhere, but I didn’t know who to talk to. I felt like I had no one to talk to. And so I had no songs…the Lord never gave me any songs from 2004-2007, which had never happened before. I was always getting songs! It was like the well went dry, and I guess…my thought was, “that’s all I’ll need.”

And then in 2007, I got enough songs in two months for two CDs, and it was all about what’s happening in the church, and them leaving, I guess, the roots of the simple faith and following a lot of new angles, I guess you’d call it. If that answers your question? Click here to continue reading the transcript of this interview.

To listen to part 2, click here.

Related Articles and Songs:

Trevor Baker Singing About the “North American Christian”

The Music of Trevor Baker: Telling it Like it Is to a Troubled Church

Trevor Baker: America – Only the Words Remain

 

 

Few Americans Believe The Bible Is The Literal Word Of God

In The News From Understand the Times

 
Comment from UTT:
 
The percentage of people who believe that the Bible is the Word of God declines every year. The Bible states that faith comes by believing in the Word. Jesus made it clear that before He returned there would only be a remnant who would have faith.
 

Few Americans Believe The Bible Is The Literal Word Of God 

Huffington Post

Fewer than one in four Americans ¯ just 24 percent ¯ believe the Bible is “the actual word of God, and is to be taken literally, word for word,” according to a new survey by Gallup. 
 

Amid the stories of love and redemption in the Bible, there are a number of passages condoning rape, murder, and the procuring of slaves. There are intricate rules about dress and diet, prohibitions to certain professions and quite a few discussed practices that would make a modern person blush. But Gallup found that just about a quarter of the American populous believe God literally decreed that women shouldn’t be allowed to ever teach or have any authority over men and that people who worship other gods should be put to death. Read Full Article .....

Related Articles:

 Book Review – The New Christians by Tony Jones

The New Missiology – Doing Missions Without the Gospel

Andy Stanley and “New” Christianity’s “Bibliolatry”

 

 

 

Buried in Unmarked Graves
Signs of the Times in Song with Trevor Baker
Few Americans Believe The Bible Is The Literal Word Of God
What Your Church Needs to Know Before Doing a Priscilla Shirer Study
Saddleback Youth Worker Ruben Meulenberg Charged With 5 Felony Counts – Saddleback Remaining Tight Lipped on Staff Issue

Taizé Community – A Lifelong Commitment to Celibacy

A Note From Warren B. Smith
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58 Organizations That Have Helped Bring Contemplative Spirituality into the Church
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What Your Church Needs to Know Before Doing a Priscilla Shirer Study

The repetition [of a word or phrase] can in fact be soothing and very freeing, helping us, as Nouwen says, “to empty out our crowded interior life and create the quiet space where we can dwell with God.”—Jan Johnson, When the Soul Listens, p. 93

Years ago, I got a chance to meet Jan Johnson. . . . I was encouraged and redirected in so many ways. As a young woman trying to navigate the ins and outs of my relationship with the Lord, Ms. Jan spoke wisdom into my life that was extremely pivotal in my life—personally and in ministry.—Priscilla Shirer (emphasis added; http://www.goingbeyond.com/blog/wisbits; quoted in 2010 and still up on Shirer’s website)

priscilla shirer

Priscilla Shirer

This week, our office received a call from a woman who was concerned that her church is going to be doing a study using material by Priscilla Shirer. Our caller wanted to get some information she can show her pastor as to why her church should not be doing a Priscilla Shirer study. Because Priscilla Shirer is a contemplative proponent, we concur with our caller’s concerns. In John Lanagan’s booklet,  Beth Moore & Priscilla Shirer – Their History of Contemplative Prayer,Lanagan shows how both Moore and Shirer have been advocates of contemplative spirituality for quite some time. In that booklet, and this is what we want to focus on in this article, Lanagan discusses a woman named Jan Johnson. Because Priscilla Shirer embraces and has gleaned spiritually from Johnson, we need to take a closer look at what Johnson believes.

We first heard about Jan Johnson in Ray Yungen’s book A Time of Departing where Yungen explains:

Spiritual director Jan Johnson, in her book When the Soul Listens: Finding Rest and Direction in Contemplative Prayer, is a perfect example of an evangelical Christian who endorses and promotes this practice [contemplative prayer]. She leaves no doubt about what this type of prayer entails:

“Contemplative prayer, in its simplest form, is a prayer in which you still your thoughts and emotions and focus on God Himself. This puts you in a better state to be aware of God’s presence, and it makes you better able to hear God’s voice, correcting, guiding, and directing you.” [emphasis added]

Johnson’s explanation of the initial stages of contemplative prayer leaves no doubt that “stilling” your thoughts means only one thing; she explains:

“In the beginning, it is usual to feel nothing but a cloud of unknowing. . . . If you’re a person who has relied on yourself a great deal to know what’s going on, this unknowing will be unnerving. [emphasis added] (Ray Yungen, A Time of Departing, 2nd ed., p. 82.)

When Johnson talks about stilling the mind in order to experience God’s presence and hear His voice, she is referring to something that is universal with mystics—putting the mind into a neutral, altered state where one is not aware of the distractions around him. This inner stillness cannot only be achieved through some type of meditative practice (see Johnson’s quote at top of this article), which in the case of “Christian” mystics is contemplative prayer. For those of you unfamiliar with contemplative jargon, the “cloud of unknowing” is taken from a small book of the same name, written by an anonymous monk several hundred years ago. The book is a primer on contemplative prayer and in it instructs:

Take just a little word, of one syllable rather than of two . . .  With this word you are to strike down every kind of thought under the cloud of forgetting. (The Cloud of Unknowing)

This is describing a mantra-style practice, no different than that used in eastern meditation. It is interesting that Jan Johnson says the effect of this type of prayer is “unnerving.” Webster’s Dictionary defines unnerving as “inspiring fear.” This reminds us of another contemplative teacher, Richard Foster, who suggested that people pray prayers of protection before practicing contemplative prayer in order to avoid an evil encounter. But where in Scripture is prayer to God described as inspiring fear or something that needs prayers of protection first? Nowhere. That’s not how God’s Word defines prayer.

priscilla shirer

Jan Johnson

In Jan Johnson’s book, Invitation to the Jesus Life: Experiments in Christlikeness, Johnson shows her resonance with a number of contemplative figures with quotes by and references to them.  One particular name that jumps out is New Age sympathizer Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. Read a few quotes by Chardin and then ask yourself, why would a Christian author (Johnson) be drawn to someone with these views:

What I am proposing to do is to narrow that gap between pantheism and Christianity by bringing out what one might call the Christian soul of pantheism or the pantheist aspect of Christianity.—Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, Christianity and Evolution, p. 56

Now I realize that, on the model of the incarnate God whom Christianity reveals to me, I can be saved only by becoming one with the universe. Thereby, too, my deepest ‘pantheist’ aspirations are satisfied.—Chardin, Christianity and Evolution, p. 128.

I believe that the Messiah whom we await, whom we all without any doubt await, is the universal Christ; that is to say, the Christ of evolution.—Chardin, Christianity and Evolution, p. 95.

Johnson’s 2016 book Meeting God in Scripture: A Hands-On Guide to Lectio Divina leads readers in lectio divina meditations. Lectio Divina is used today as a gateway practice into contemplative mystical prayer. In her book, Johnson provides a section titled  “Relax and Refocus (silencio)”  which is instruction to readers on how to get rid of mental distractions when trying to practice lectio divina:

Each exercise begins with brief guidance to slow down, quiet your inner self and let go of distracting thoughts. . . . focusing on God. A way to interrupt this [mental] traffic is to focus on being present in the moment by breathing in and out deeply— even overbreathing. It also helps to relax our body parts one by one: bending the neck, letting the arms go limp, relaxing the legs and ankles. Loosen each part from the inside out. This doesn’t mean you’re setting aside your mind— you’re redirecting your mind away from the busyness that often consumes you. Being present in the moment prepares you to wait on the still, small voice of God. If you are distracted, you may want to try the palms up, palms down method. Rest your hands in your lap, placing your hands palms down as a symbol of turning over any concerns you have. If a nagging thought arises, turn your hands palms up as a “symbol of your desire to receive from the Lord.” [Foster] If you become distracted at any time during meditation, repeat the exercise. (Meeting God in Scripture, Kindle version, Kindle location 102)

To back up her teaching on practicing contemplative meditation and finding that inner stillness of the mind, Johnson turns to several contemplative teachers in Meeting God in Scripture. Sadly, God and Scripture are not the only things readers are going to meet when they read this book by Johnson. They will also meet Richard Foster, Dallas Willard, Henri Nouwen, and David Benner. Other books Johnson has written have the same caliber.  A few of those titles are:  Spiritual Disciplines Companion: Bible Studies and Practices to Transform Your Soul, Enjoying the Presence of God: Discovering Intimacy with God in the Daily Rhythms of Life, Abundant Simplicity: Discovering the Unhurried Rhythms of Grace, and Renovation of the Heart in Daily Practice: Experiments in Spiritual Transformation (Willard and Johnson). She has written several others books which carry the same message: you’ve got to have the inner mental silence to really know God (something Beth Moore has said too—in the Be Still DVD).

We could give several more examples of Johnson’s embracing contemplative spirituality. You won’t find much that she has written that doesn’t include this element. In one article on her website titled “What Is Solitude & Why Do I Need It? or . . . Turn Up the Quiet,” she quotes panentheist Thomas Merton from his book New Seeds of Contemplation. Why does Jan Johnson keep referring to contemplative mystics in her writings? There can only be one answer to that question—because she resonates with them.

Conclusion

As noted at the beginning of this article, Priscilla Shirer “was encouraged and redirected in so many ways” when she met Jan Johnson. She added that Johnson “spoke wisdom into [Priscilla’s] life that was extremely pivotal in [her] life—personally and in ministry.” Shirer said these words in 2010 and has left them up on her website to this day. Obviously, she still feels this way about Johnson. In Shirer’s popular book 2006/2012 Discerning the Voice of God, she favorably quotes Jan Johnson twice from When the Soul Listens. Shirer also quotes contemplatives Joyce Huggett and Phil Yancey in Discerning the Voice of God. Shirer clearly has been influenced by Jan Johnson as she admits herself.

We’ll close with this: On Priscilla Shirer’s website, where she talks about meeting Jan Johnson , she also includes an article by Johnson who is quoting panentheist Catholic priest Richard Rohr (founder of the Center for Action and Contemplation) from his book Everything Belongs (meaning everything and everyone is part of God). Rohr’s spirituality would be in the same camp as someone like Episcopalian panentheist Matthew Fox (author of The Coming of the Cosmic Christ). Rohr wrote the foreword to a book called How Big is Your God? by Jesuit priest (from India) Paul Coutinho. In Coutinho’s book, he describes an interspiritual community where people of all religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, and Christianity) worship the same God. For Rohr to write the foreword to such a book, he would have to agree with Coutinho’s views. On Rohr’s website, he has an article titled “Cosmic Christ.” One need not look too far into Rohr’s teachings and website to see he is indeed promoting the same Cosmic Christ as Matthew Fox – this is the “christ” whose being they say lives in every human—this, of course, would nullify the need for atonement by a savior. Lighthouse Trails has written numerous times about Rohr as he is aggressively pushing his panentheistic mystical spirituality into the evangelical church. If everything you have read in this article has not persuaded you to steer clear of Shirer’s studies, then this should do it, hands down. The fact that she keeps the post about Rohr on her website should alarm all Bible-believing Christians and illustrates the spiritual affinity Priscilla Shirer is drawn to.

Before your church does a Priscilla Shirer study, please keep in mind the things you have read in this article. Contemplative prayer has roots in panentheism  (God is in all) and interspirituality (all paths lead to God) as you can read in Ray Yungen’s article “The Final Outcome of Practicing Contemplative Prayer: Interspirituality.” Do you really want your church influenced in any way by a spirituality that is so against the Cross? Are we saying Priscilla Shirer is necessarily against the Cross? No, but for someone who wrote a book on how to discern the voice of God, she sure isn’t showing any discernment in the voices that she herself is listening to and being persuaded by.

 

Saddleback Youth Worker Ruben Meulenberg Charged With 5 Felony Counts – Saddleback Remaining Tight Lipped on Staff Issue

Ruben Meulenberg - Saddleback ChurchThe following is an update from two recent Lighthouse Trails articles: "Saddleback Church Youth Worker Arrested for Molesting 14-Year-Boys Brings Issue to Surface"  and "Saddleback Church Statement Appears to Downplay Role of Alleged Molester Ruben Meulenberg."

Ruben Meulenberg, the youth worker at Saddleback Church who was arrested for allegedly molesting two 14-year-old boys at Saddleback, has been charged with 5 felonies related to the molestation of the boys. At least one of the boys was 13 when the abuse began.

Click here to see public information on the case has been released by the Orange County District Attorney's office:

After Lighthouse Trails released its May 29th article questioning whether Saddleback was downplaying the role in which Ruben Meulenberg had at Saddleback, the Christian Post ( which calls itself "the nation's most comprehensive Christian news website") wrote an article titled "Was Saddleback Church Youth Mentor Who Was Charged With Molesting Boys a Volunteer?" in which they referenced the Lighthouse Trails article questioning Saddleback's recent statement on Meulenberg being just a a volunteer. Interestingly, the Christian Post article revealed that as of yet Saddleback has not answered the question as to whether Ruben Meulenberg was on staff at Saddleback. While it may be true that he was a youth volunteer, certain indicators, as we pointed out in our previous article, suggest that Meulenberg may also have been on staff (see Appendix below), a claim that Saddleback has not yet denied or admitted.

The Christian Post article said that Rick Warren has not yet made a public statement about the case. According to the Christian Post's website search engine, the online paper has featured Saddleback Church and/or Rick Warren in over one thousand articles since 2004, and most, if not all, praise and promote the work of the Purpose Driven pastor and his church.

While in the bigger picture of Ruben Meulenberg and his victims, it may not matter at all whether he was truly on staff at Saddleback or not; but if Saddleback Church is refusing to admit that he has been paid for any of his services, either as a contractor or a staff member, this should certainly raise questions as to how much can the mega-church be trusted to protect the children under its care. If facts about abuse at Saddleback are being kept in the dark, this will not produce the kind of environment where healing can take place for victims or where parents can feel secure about their children's safety.

Appendix:

LinkedIn has the following information about Ruben Meulenberg:

Ruben Meulenberg

Saddleback Church | TornadoTwins | Age of Edge (game development)

Age of Edge, Corp

Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences

Orange County, California Area

Media producer operating in 5 areas: videogames, film, books, music & curriculum.

Companies founded:
- TheGameBible.com: in-house project, turning the Bible into a full videogame (www.TheGameBible.com).
- TornadoTwins.com: became the world's largest game development youtube channel in 3 months.
- FPSControl.com: tool to help midsize game studios create multi-platform games
- GamePrefabs.com: game development store [sold to Unity Tech; world's #1 game tech corp]
- more

Projects:
- Feature film: wrote, directed and co-produced Saddleback Kids' first feature film with production staff & volunteers. Used by 700+ churches and given out to 3000 children at Saddleback Lake Forest.
- Curriculum: co-founded fastest growing children's church curriculum organization in Holland. Trained Saddleback Church's children's production staff to use this format.
- Music: founded world's largest youtube channel on dubstep development (reached in 2 weeks), reached most-votes in Newsboys remix competition, created dance album for Saddleback Church, scored Triumph motorcycle commercial (engine sounds as bass).
- Game Development: developed YouVersion's Kid-Bible-App prototype in under two weeks. Co-organized web's largest gamedevelopment competition with cgsociety.org, trained thousands of game developers worldwide (including Disney's "where's my water" app developers), developing "The Game Bible" (see above).
- Writing: Oversaw writing of 3 years worth of narrative video series for Saddleback Church Childrens'. Wrote "The Unplugged", a book to help software developers create quickly and on as low a budget as possible.
- Marketing: helped triple attendance count on the annual online conference "The Twelve", resulting in 10,000+ attendees. Redesigned Saddleback Kids' summer outreach program, helping it rise from 4% new visitors in previous years to over 30% new visitors.

Appendix 2:

YouTube Comment from Lighthouse Trails author Gregory Reid -

I had an associate that went to Saddleback to look for cool church ideas and loved the idea that the sign over the youth building said, "No adults allowed." I was mortified. Creating an isolated youth subculture is deadly and creates a breeding ground for predators. I wrote a book called The Color of Pain that includes a checklist for identifying pedophiles, I think it's a crucial book in this vulnerable time for youth. When I was a youth pastor I did extreme vetting on every single volunteer or person who showed interest in our youth ministry, even the older college volunteers, and I watched them like hawks. Had to remove two adults who were predators looking for a kill. (source)

Gregory Reid is a child sexual abuse survivor. He wrote about his childhood in his book Nobody's Angel. His later book, The Color of Pain (published by LT) is a tribute to men who were sexually abused as boys.

Taizé Community – A Lifelong Commitment to Celibacy

By Chris Lawson

Photo: Alamy.com; used with permission; under copyright.

(From Chris Lawson’s 2017 book Taizé—A Community and Worship: Ecumenical Reconciliation or an Interfaith Delusion?)

One of the primary characteristics of the all-male Taizé Community is the vow of celibacy that each Taizé Community monk commits to—for life. The Taizé website has published the complete vow, beginning with the following text:

After a time of preparation, a new brother in the Taizé Community makes his lifelong commitment. Here are the words used to express this commitment. . . .

Will you, in order to be more available to serve with your brothers, and in order to give yourself in undivided love to Christ, remain celibate?

I will.1

This vow of celibacy required of the “brothers” in the Taizé Community is the same type of commitment required by Buddhist, Hindu, and Roman Catholic priests and nuns. While the vow of celibacy that these community members commit themselves to may appear pious and spiritual, the Bible does not require one to remain single and “celibate” in order to serve God and receive His blessings. Not only that, it can put one into a harmful snare that can lead to much destruction as the Bible warns.

Researcher and author Mike Oppenheimer presents one serious concern with this requirement of celibacy:

Why is there sexual immorality in a church? Very often it is because someone who burns with passion needs to be married. Paul answers this in 1 Corinthians 7:2-3: “Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.”

Look at what has happened when priests are frustrated in something God commands is good. Because they have forbidden the priests to marry, the Catholic Church has a high percentage of improper sexual conduct, including sexual molestation of children. This is not to impugn specifically the Roman Catholic Church. There are other churches and groups as well that forbid people to marry and make men or women remain single when they are unable to successfully do so.

In the Bible, the qualifications of a priest or bishop do not forbid being married. The Greek word for bishop is episkopos and is translated in different Bibles using the same word as elder, presbyter, bishop, [or] priest. Titus 1:5-6 instructs these men to be married and to raise godly children.2

This is not to say that sexual molestation (especially of children) only takes place in groups that do not allow/encourage heterosexual marriage. We know that allowing heterosexual marriage does not per se solve the issue of abuse. For example, Frank Houston (a leader of the predecessor group to Hillsong in Australia) was married but was known to have sexually molested children.3

Sadly, the brothers of Taizé willingly restrict themselves from a lifetime of marital intimacy, blessing, and pro-creation. God’s Word speaks very clearly about the origin and practice of “the forbidding of marriage”:

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils [demons]; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer. (1 Timothy 4:1-5; emphasis added)

Further implications of Taizé’s vow of celibacy can include the hundreds of thousands of young people who come to the community and witness this unbiblical practice. How many have desired to follow in the Taizé brothers’ footsteps only later to find themselves in situations that bring them shame and disgrace because they could not live a life where God had never called them?

Endnotes:

1. “A Life Long Commitment” (http://www.taize.fr/en_article6.html).
2. Mike Oppenheimer, “Marriage and the Priesthood” (http://www.letusreason.org/rc20.htm).
3. Australian Government’s Royal Commission on Child Abuse (see several documents regarding Frank Houston’s sexual abuse activities: http://childabuseroyalcommission.gov.au/search?searchtext=frank+houston+&searchmode=anyword). Also see http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2785983/You-never-forget-moment-dad-s-paedophile-Hillsong-s-Brian-Houston-tells-devastating-10-seconds-realised-father-Frank-paedophile.html.

A Note From Warren B. Smith

Dear Lighthouse Trails readers:

I have been out of the hospital almost two weeks and am very grateful to be alive. I was told that my heart almost stopped beating while on the operating table. My nursing team told me that I had one of the hospital's best cardiologists for my surgeon. Recovery is a gradual process, and I am having some really good days and some challenging days. I am praying that the Lord will perfect His strength in my weakness. 

A huge thanks to everyone for their prayers and cards and gifts. Joy and I could literally feel how we were carried through this whole experience.

Please pray for a complete recovery. May God bless and keep all of you.

Gratefully Yours,
Warren B. Smith
June 6, 2017

LTRP Note: You may visit Warren's website at www.warrenbsmith.com.

Check Out Our Discontinued and Seconds Items

You may wish to check out our "Discontinued Items" page on our website for extra low prices on items we are indefinitely discontinuing to carry (there are no books or DVDs in this section - it is most certain gift items).

Also, our "Seconds and Surplus" collection offers low-priced books, booklets, and DVDs at 50% off of retail. Most of these seconds have slight imperfections so it's a great way to get some products.

58 Organizations That Have Helped Bring Contemplative Spirituality into the Church

In 2012, Lighthouse Trails posted the "50 Top Organizations With a Significant Role in Bringing Contemplative Spirituality to the Church." We are reposting this list for those who may not have seen it then, and we are including 8 others that we added in 2014 to the list (see bottom of post). From 15 years of research at Lighthouse Trails, we have found these organizations to have had a significant role in bringing contemplative spirituality into the evangelical/Protestant church. If you do not know or understand the implications of this, we urge you to educate yourself as soon as possible.

Note: We have not listed any colleges or seminaries in this list. To see our list of contemplative promoting schools, click here. Plus, you may also want to read Chris Lawson's A Directory of Authors: Three NOT Recommended Lists.

1.  Acts 29 Network

2. American Association of Christian Counselors

3.  American Bible Society

4.  Association for Biblical Higher Learning

5.  Association of Theological Schools (ATS)

6.  Baker Books (Emersion)

7.  Bible.org

8. Boundless Webzine (FOF)

9.  Breakforth (Canada)

10.  Center for Action and Contemplation

11.  Christian Classics Ethereal Library (CCEL)

12.  Christian Missionary Alliance

13.  Christianity Today

14. Emergent Village

15. Evangelical Lutheran Church of America

16.  Focus on the Family

17.  Group Magazine

18. Henri Nouwen Society

19.  IHOP-KC

20.  Intervarsity Press

21.  Kairos School of Spiritual Formation

22.  Conversations Journal

23. Leadership Network

24.  Lifeway Resources

25.  Mennonite Brethren

26.  Mennonite Church, USA

27.  Metamorpha

28.  National Worship Conference

29. NavPress

30.  New Church Specialties

31. Presbyterian Church USA

32.  Relevant Magazine

33.  Renovare

34. Robert E. Webber Institute for Spiritual Studies

35. Saddleback Church

36.  Sojourners

37.  Spiritual Directors International

38.  Teen Mania

39.  The Church of the Nazarene

40. The Ooze

41. The Purpose Driven Movement

42.  The Upper Room

43. Thomas Nelson Publishers

44.  Transforming Center

45.  Wesleyan Church

46.  Willow Creek Association

47.  Worship Leader Magazine

48.  Youth Ministry & Spirituality Project

49. Youth Specialties

50. Zondervan

8 More Added in 2014

1. Biblegateway.com

2.  Compassion International

3. World Vision

4. Radio Bible Class

5. In Touch Magazine

6. Moody Bible Institute/Moody Radio

7. ACSI (Association of Christian Schools International)

8. Assemblies of God

Note: You can get information on any of these organizations using our search engines on both our blog and research site.

NEW BOOKLET: Fighting Fear in a Fearful Day

NEW BOOKLET:Fighting Fear in a Fearful Day by Maria Kneas is our newest Lighthouse Trails Booklet. The Booklet is 14 pages long and sells for $1.95 for single copies. Quantity discounts are as much as 50% off retail. Our Booklets are designed to give away to others or for your own personal use. Below is the content of the booklet. To order copies of Fighting Fear in a Fearful Day, click here.

Fighting Fear in a Fearful Day

By Maria Kneas

And the Lord, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed. (Deuteronomy 31:8)

I know something about fighting fear because I’ve had a problem with fear all of my life. My dad was sent home from World War II in a hospital ship after attempting suicide, and my Mom was always afraid he would try it again.

Fear is contagious. Children pick up what their parents are feeling. Every night, I had a nightmare about being chased by something horrible, but I didn’t know what it was.

When I was fifteen years old, Mom told me to let Dad know that dinner was ready. I found him lying in bed unconscious from an attempt to commit suicide. Mercifully, we discovered him soon enough, and he recovered at the hospital.

I married a strong, healthy young man, and three years into our marriage, he had a massive heart attack. He needed a quadruple bypass but wasn’t strong enough to get the surgery because of the damage done to his heart. After a year of living with painful and debilitating heart problems, he died. During that year, every day when I was at work, I never knew if I would find him dead on the floor when I came home.

There have been other fearful things in my life, including cancer. The point is, even without persecution, we have to deal with fear. Drastic things can happen suddenly, without warning.

I had to overcome some fear in order to write my book How to Prepare for Hard Times & Persecution because the people who hate Christianity would not appreciate seeing it published. Some of those people work in our government. According to official government documents, I would be classified as an “extremist” and a “potential terrorist” because I am an evangelical Christian; I take what the Bible says about the end times seriously, and I believe that unborn babies should not be killed.1

The Bible says love is an antidote to fear. Therefore, anything we can do to increase our love for God and for one another will help get rid of fear. The Bible says:

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. (1 John 4:18)

Our natural human love is inadequate. However, we can ask the Lord to give us His love, to enable us to love the way He does. The Bible says He can do that:

And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. (Romans 5:5, emphasis added)

God can enable us to do things we would never be able to do in our own strength. We are weak, but He is strong. And He is faithful to help His own. The Bible says:

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. (Philippians 4:13)

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? (Psalm 27:1)

My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever. (Psalm 73:26)

A good antidote to the fear of what men can do to us is the “fear of the Lord.” This involves more than just reverence. It also includes the fear of God’s punishment. If our love isn’t strong enough to enable us to do what is right, then the fear of the Lord can give us the strength to do it.

According to the Bible, the fear of the Lord also gives us wisdom and understanding. It enables us to be rightly related to God.

It’s good when we can do the right thing because we love God. But when we are unable to do that, then we can recognize God’s power and authority, salute Him, and say, “Yes, Sir!”

After my dad became a Christian, he used to talk about the importance of “taking God seriously.” That includes the fear of the Lord. The Bible talks about how important it is:

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. (Proverbs 9:10)

Behold, the eye of the Lord is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy. (Psalm 33:18)

The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him, and delivereth them. (Psalm 34:7)

There is a song based on that last Scripture about the angel of the Lord protecting those who fear Him. One night I had to walk through a dangerous neighborhood, and I was afraid. As I walked, I quietly sang that song. I started out feeling afraid, but as I kept singing, the fear decreased. And God protected me.

Another antidote to fear is keeping the big picture in mind—eternity. This world is not really our home. We are citizens of the kingdom of God. Our true home is Heaven, and our true king is Almighty God.
The apostle Paul said we are “ambassadors” for Jesus Christ:

Now then we are ambassadors for Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:20)

Think about what it means to be an ambassador. You have to leave your native land and live in another country, surrounded by people whose customs and values are different from yours. They may even be cruel and barbaric. (Can you imagine what it would be like to be an ambassador in a place like North Korea or Saudi Arabia?) You are only there temporarily, representing the government of your own country. At some point, your ruler will call you back to your native land.

The book Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan describes us as being pilgrims on a journey through this world, on our way to Heaven. An old spiritual hymn has the same theme. Sometimes I sing this song when I read distressing news about what is going on in the world:

POOR WAYFARING STRANGER
(19th century)

I am a poor wayfaring stranger
Traveling through this world of woe
But there’s no trouble, toil or danger
In that bright land to which I go.

It helps to remember that our time here on earth is only temporary and that this world is passing away. Here are two Scripture passages that give us the eternal perspective. I often think about this. The one from the book of Revelation is one of my favorite passages in the Bible:

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. (Revelation 21:4 5)

Sometimes worship can dispel fear. About twenty years ago, a mammogram showed signs of possible cancer in both of my breasts, and I had to get a biopsy done. I asked my surgeon to use a local anesthesia because that is less stressful to the body, and he agreed to do so. I wound up with two doctors cutting on me at the same time (one working on each breast). Evidently, they forgot I was awake because they were talking about seeing things that looked like cancer.

That was a frightening situation. The more they talked, the greater my fear became. Then I remembered a Scripture passage:

I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth. (Psalm 34:1)

They were playing music in the operating room. I asked them to turn it off, which they did. Then I began to sing a worship song based on Scripture. By the time I finished singing the first line of that song, the fear just drained away.

All during that procedure, I kept on singing. One of the nurses knew the songs, and she sang along with me. I was at peace, focused on God instead of my ailing body. I was thinking about God’s love and faithfulness instead of worrying about my future. (As a result of that biopsy, I had a double radical mastectomy, followed by chemotherapy. The hardships I went through brought me closer to God. Being faced with your mortality changes your priorities, and it makes you know that you need God.)

No matter what happens to us, God is always worthy of our praise. The Bible says:

O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together. (Psalm 34:3)

When we “magnify” the Lord, we don’t make Him bigger. He is already much greater than we can possibly comprehend. What we do is make ourselves more capable of recognizing His greatness. When we do that, God seems larger to us, which makes our problems seem smaller by comparison. Here are some Scriptures that remind us of how great and mighty our God is:

Thus saith the Lord, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool. (Isaiah 66:1)

I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure. (Isaiah 46:9-10)

The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. (Psalm 19:1)

One thing that can cause fear is sins we have not dealt with. That puts a barrier between us and God, which makes it more difficult for us to turn to Him and to trust Him. Therefore, it is good to habitually invite God to search our hearts and show us if there is anything we need to repent of. King David said:

Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults. Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression. Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer. (Psalm 19:12-14)

Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. (Psalm 51:10)

America has become a sex-saturated society. As a result, much of our entertainment contains things intended to incite lust. So do many commercials. Jesus warned us:

But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. (Matthew 5:28)

Obviously, that principle applies to women as well as to men. Our society takes such things lightly, but God takes them very seriously:

Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness [lustful], Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance [contentions], emulations [jealousy], wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:19-21)

We know that nobody is going to be perfect this side of Heaven. We will sin. The point is, when we sin, are we distressed about it? Do we repent? Do we make a serious effort to stop doing it? Do we keep asking God to help us overcome it? Are we doing it more and more and getting hardened to it? Or are we doing it less and less? What direction are we moving in?

When it comes to repenting from sins, abortion can be a real stumbling block because the world keeps telling us that what a pregnant woman has inside her is not a baby. The problem is, how can you repent for something you think is not a sin?

This is a strange double standard because the world will put Americans in jail for destroying an eagle’s egg. They know there is a baby eagle in there. Everybody knows that a pregnant cat has kittens inside her, and a pregnant dog has puppies inside her.

The world tells us that what a pregnant woman has inside her is only a “fetus.” Well, the word “fetus” is just a Latin word that means “child.” Doctors like using Latin terms for things.

There are many photos of babies in the womb who are sucking their thumbs. They are obviously babies and not blobs of tissue. Even sonograms can be clear enough to show that.

The Bible makes it obvious that what a woman carries inside her is a baby. In the Gospel of Luke, we are told that Mary became pregnant supernaturally when the Holy Spirit came upon her. Then she went to visit her cousin Elizabeth, who was six months pregnant with John the Baptist.

As soon as Mary walked into the room, carrying her recently conceived baby in her womb, the baby inside Elizabeth’s womb recognized Jesus and leaped for joy. We are also told that John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit while he was still inside his mother’s womb:

And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy. (Luke 1:41-44, emphasis added)

For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb. (Luke 1:15, emphasis added)

God can call a person to ministry before they are born. We see this with the prophet Jeremiah. God told him:

Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations. (Jeremiah 1:5)

If you have had an abortion or have encouraged anybody else to have one, then please repent. God will forgive you. He loves you.

You might find it helpful to read Psalm 51. David wrote it after the prophet Nathan confronted him about committing adultery with Bathsheba and setting up her husband Uriah to be killed, which in essence was murdering him. The Bible says that David had a heart for God, and he repented (1 Kings 11:4). In the Gospels, Jesus is called the “son of David” (Matthew 9:27, 15:22; Mark 10:47-48).

One thing that can cause fear is the fact that occultism is becoming mainstream. Satanists and witches desire to put spells and curses on Christians. In case you think such things are not real, the Bible says they are:

And Moses and Aaron went in unto Pharaoh, and they did so as the Lord had commanded: and Aaron cast down his rod before Pharaoh, and before his servants, and it became a serpent. Then Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers: now the magicians of Egypt, they also did in like manner with their enchantments. For they cast down every man his rod, and they became serpents: but Aaron’s rod swallowed up their rods. (Exodus 7:10-12)

Notice that Aaron did something supernatural in the power of God, and then Pharoah’s sorcerers did the same kind of thing, using “enchantments” (spells). However, Pharoah’s sorcerers were not able to harm Moses or Aaron because Aaron’s serpent ate (“swallowed”) the serpents of the sorcerers.

The bad news is that occult power is very real. The good news is that God is infinitely greater, and He takes care of His own. He is willing and able to protect us.

When you drive down a country road, you can go off that road on either side and wind up in a ditch. When it comes to the occult, we can fall into two ditches.

One ditch is to deny the existence and power of the devil and his demons. This means denying the Bible because Jesus is often shown casting out demons. And according to Mark 16:17, Jesus gave those who believe in Him the power to cast out demons. We see a number of examples of this in the Book of Acts.

The other ditch is to “see a demon behind every bush,” as the saying goes. Here’s an example from my life. I’m overweight. One day, I was eating a candy bar, and a woman who claimed to have a deliverance ministry tried to cast a “demon of chocolate” out of me. That kind of nonsense gives Christians a bad name.

When God confronts the devil, it is not like a wrestling match. It is more like squashing a bug with your finger, or flicking a fly off your shoulder. Almighty God has absolute power over the devil. God allows him to do some things, but the devil is on a leash, and eventually he will be thrown into the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:10). Look at what Jesus said:

But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you. (Luke 11:20, emphasis added)

Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you. (Luke 10:19, emphasis added)

We see a physical example of this when the apostle Paul was bitten by a poisonous snake. The natives knew this snake was deadly, and they expected Paul to die, but it didn’t harm him at all:

And when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks, and laid them on the fire, there came a viper out of the heat, and fastened on his hand. And when the barbarians saw the venomous beast hang on his hand, they said among themselves, No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he hath escaped the sea, yet vengeance suffereth not to live. And he shook off the beast into the fire, and felt no harm. Howbeit they looked when he should have swollen, or fallen down dead suddenly: but after they had looked a great while, and saw no harm come to him, they changed their minds, and said that he was a god. (Acts 28:3-6, emphasis added)

What happened to Paul demonstrates God’s protection from deadly physical things. However, the “power of the enemy” means spiritual dangers as well as physical ones. God is able to protect us from curses and spells.

God protects us. However, the Bible also tells us we should protect ourselves by putting on the “armor of God.” We are to be active, not passive:

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. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints. (Ephesians 6:10-18)

According to this passage, we are not to be passive. God expects us to love the truth, have faith, get the Word of God in us (develop a working knowledge of the Bible by reading it and studying it), and pray “always.” Obviously, we can’t be on our knees praying all day long, but we can have a spirit of prayer. We can be aware of God and stay in communication with Him throughout the day.

Before my husband died, we could be in the same room, doing different things, and not talking to one another. However, we felt one another’s presence. We were aware of the other person even when we were intensely focused on something else. There was an awareness of the one we love, and it was easy to talk from time to time.

We can be the same way with God. We can have times of intense prayer, but we can also talk with Him as we go about our daily routines—when we are cooking, or walking somewhere, or driving, or eating a meal.
God has ways of communicating with us. One of them is bringing Scriptures to mind. Another is nudging us, like a sheep dog nudges the sheep to get them to go where they need to be:

But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. (John 14:26)

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. (John 10:27)

A good example of God leading us (or nudging us) is the Christian mother whose son is a soldier in Afghanistan. One night she wakes up, feeling an urgent need to pray for her boy, so she prays her heart out for him. Then several weeks later, she gets a letter from her son, saying that his unit was ambushed. Some men were killed, and others were wounded, but he was not harmed. The mother looks at the date when the ambush occurred, and she realizes it happened during the time she was praying for her boy.

For an excellent study of the armor of God, I recommend the website by Berit Kjos, The Shepherd’s Way. Look at the section titled “The Armor of God” (www.shepherd.to).

In addition to this article, under the section titled “Bible Studies” there is a more in-depth study of this called “A Wardrobe from the King.” This is a series of studies (one for each piece of the armor).

The Bible tells us to “cast” our cares (fears, anxieties, worries, and concerns) on God because He cares for us (loves us and takes good care of us). That means giving our cares to God, and leaving them with Him—not taking them back again:

Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. (1 Peter 5:7)

This is easier said than done. We have to learn how to do it. Like many things in life, it takes practice. We can ask God to enable us to do it, to give us the grace for it, and to help us appropriate and work with the grace He gives us.

This morning, a prayer came to me. I would like to share it with you. The prayer is based on some Scripture passages, so I’ll give them first:

And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. (Colossians 3:15, emphasis added)

For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. (Philippians 2:13, emphasis added)

O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand. (Isaiah 64:8)

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. (1 John 4:18, emphasis added)

Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. (Matthew 5:14, emphasis added)

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. (Matthew 5:16, emphasis added)

That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world. (Philippians 2:15, emphasis added)

PRAYER: Lord, how do I let Your peace rule in my heart? You told me to do it, which means it is possible to do it, and You expect me to do it. However, I have fear and anxiety in my heart, which means that Your peace is not ruling in me. Please forgive me for not doing what You told me to do.

Lord, I don’t know how to do it. Please show me how. Teach me. You are the Creator. I’m just a creature. You are my Father. I’m just a child. You are the potter. I’m just the clay. Please change me. Make me into a person who does it as a way of life.

Lord, please give me the grace to do it. Deal with anything in me that hinders Your peace, that blocks it in any way. Be glorified in my life. Fill me with Your peace and Your love in a way that gives You glory.
You said that perfect love casts out fear. But I have fear in my heart. That means I don’t have enough love for You or for others. My love isn’t good enough. It isn’t strong enough. Please put Your love in my heart. Let Your love be shed abroad in my heart.

You told us to be lights in the darkness. Showing Your peace and Your love in the midst of trials and tribulations is one way of doing that.

I want to bear good fruit for Your Kingdom, and this fear and worry are getting in the way. Please set me free from them. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

To order copies of Fighting Fear in a Fearful Day, click here.

Endnote
1. Jack Minor, “Military Warned ‘Evangelicals’ No. 1 Threat: Christians Targeted Ahead of Muslim Brotherhood, Al-Quaida, KKK” (WorldNetDaily, April 5, 2013, www.wnd.com/2014/04/military-warned-evangelicals-no-1-threat); Steve Ahle, “Colorado State Police and Homeland Security Target Christians As Anti-Patriots” (April 6, 2013, http://beforeitsnews.com/economics-and-politics/2013/04/breaking-news-colorado-state-police-and-homeland-security-target-christians-as-anti-patriots-2451594.html); Leigh Jones, “Army Reserve Presentation Calls Christians ‘Extremists’” (World Magazine, April 5, 2013, www.worldmag.com/2013/04/army_reserve_presentation_calls_christians_extremists); “Pro-Lifers Should Be Concerned About Obama Assassination List: Judge Napolitano” (February 6, 2013, Life Site News, www.lifesitenews.com/news/will-pro-life-errorists-be-names-to-obamas-assassination-list); Michael Snyder, “72 Types Of Americans That Are Considered ‘Potential Terrorists’ In Official Government Documents” (The Truth, August 26, 2013.http://thetruthwins.com/archives/72-types-of-americans-that-are-considered-potential-terrorists-in-official-government-documents).

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LIGHTHOUSE TRAILS PRINTABLE BOOKLET LIST

Lighthouse Trails has put together a list in various categories of all the titles in our Topical Booklets collection. We began publishing these booklets four years ago and currently have 115 titles. You may scroll down to see the complete list, or click here to view a printable PDF list with every booklet title.

To read the content of any of these booklets, copy and paste the title of a booklet into our blog search engine (do not copy the code or the dash). Or if you want to buy any of these low-priced high quality booklets ($1.95 each or see quantity discounts below), visit our webstore and type the title name into that search engine. These booklets have been designed to hand out to others. We have received countless testimonies of how friends, family members, and pastors are reading the booklets and understanding them.

CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER & THE SPIRITUAL FORMATION MOVEMENT
CP—5 Things You Should Know About Contemplative Prayer by Ray Yungen
LBRT—The Labyrinth Journey by Carl Teichrib
LC-DV—Lectio Divina—What it is, What it is Not, and Should Christians Practice it? (LT Editors)
CD-MN—Brennan Manning’s “New Monks” & Their Contemplative Monasticism by John Caddock
LP-CP—So You Want to Practice “Good” Contemplative Prayer? by Lynn Pratt
JL-WR—Beth Moore & Priscilla Shirer: Their History of Contemplative Prayer by John Lanagan
FOSTER—A Serious Look at Richard Foster’s “School” of Contemplative Prayer by Ray Yungen
LP-NG—Big Noisy God! by Lynn Lusby Pratt
SF—Is Your Church Doing Spiritual Formation? (LT Editors)
EPIC—An Epidemic of Apostasy in the Christian Colleges (LT Editors)
BE-STILL—Be Still and Know That You Are Not God! by Warren B. Smith
AVILA—Teresa of Avila: An Ancient Mystic Who Helped Shape Today's SF Movement by Carolyn Greene
CREATION/EVOLUTION
MK-EVOL—Creation Versus Evolution: Things They Never Told You by Maria Kneas
CT-EARTH—Earth Day: A Total Transformation in a Post-Christian World by Carl Teichrib
EMERGING CHURCH & THE “NEW” CHRISTIANITY
EMG—How to Know When the Emerging Church Shows Signs of Emerging into Your Church - Oakland
NW-MS—The New Missiology: Doing Missions Without the Gospel by Roger Oakland
NS-EMG—Native Spirituality “Renewal” & the Emerging Church by Nanci des Gerlaise
CLTR—Can Cultures be Redeemed? by Nanci des Gerlaise
MR-HL—Understanding Paul’s Appeal at Mars Hill by Mike Oppenheimer
MD-JW—What You Need to Know about Jim Wallis and Social-Justice Gospel by Mary Danielsen
IF—IF it is of God: Answering the Questions of IF:Gathering by Cedric Fisher
HC-LJ—They Hate Christianity But Love (Another) Jesus (LT Editors)
CT-RLG—Is Religion to Blame?: War, Religion, & Interfaith Global Peace Agenda by Carl Teichrib
CL-DIR—A Directory of Authors (Three NOT Recommended Lists) by Chris Lawson
KR-DEC—D is for Deception: The Language of the “New” Christianity by Kevin Reeves & LT Editors
MD-ALPHA—Alpha Course, an Evangelical Contradiction by Mary Danielsen and Chris Lawson
SWEET—Leonard Sweet—A More Magnificent Way of Seeing Christ? by Warren B. Smith
RO-ATN—Atonement Rejected! by Roger Oakland
GR-DCP—Progression to Deception by Gregory Reid
THROUGH IT ALL SERIES BY WARREN B. SMITH
WS-TRUTH—Truth or Consequences
REJOICE—Rejoicing Through it All
WS-PRZ—Praising God Through it All WS-TF—Being Thankful Through it All
WS-STF—Standing Fast Through it All
WS-BLESS—Blessings Through it All
WS-HOPE—Remaining Hopeful Through it All
WS-FTH—Remaining Faithful Through it All
WS-TR—Trusting God Through it All
WS-DCN—Sound Doctrine Through it All
HOMOSEXUALITY
JL-MB—The Message “Bible”—A Breach of Truth by John Lanagan
MC-6Q—6 Questions Every Gay Person Should Ask by Michael Carter
HYPER-CHARISMATIC/NAR/FALSE SIGNS & WONDERS
VIS—“I Just Had a Vision!” by Kevin Reeves
JL-BTH—The New Age Propensities of Bethel Church’s Bill John by John Lanagan
WS-HL—False Revival Coming? Part 1: Holy Laughter or Strong Delusion? by Warren B. Smith
WCG—10 ? for those who claim “Supreme Beings” of Nations Are True God by S. Simpson
MD-KCP—The Perfect Storm of Apostasy: The Kansas City Prophets by Mary Danielsen
KR-SL—Slain in the Spirit: Is it a Biblical Practice? by Kevin Reeves
DF-WF—Ten Word of Faith Doctrines Weighed Against Scripture by Danny Frigulti
BR-BB—Beware of Bethel by Bill Randles
DD-SW—Signs and Wonders: Five Things You Should Consider by David Dombrowski
JESUS CALLING
WS-NA-JC—The New Age Implications of Jesus Calling by Warren B. Smith
WS-JC—Changing Jesus Calling by Warren B. Smith
WS-10-RS—10 Scriptural Reasons Why Jesus Calling is a Dangerous Book by Warren B. Smith
ISRAEL & THE JEWS
ISRL—Israel—Replacing What God Has Not by Mike Oppenheimer
HH—When Hitler Was in Power by Anita Dittman
TP-KJ—Who Really Killed Jesus? by Tony Pearce
CHSLM—Chrislam: The Blending Together of Islam & Christianity by Mike Oppenheimer
EM—Christians in Holland in 1941: “Should We Help Save the Jews?” by Diet Eman
NEW AGE/NEW SPIRITUALITY & ITS PRACTICES
NA—Understanding the New Age, Meditation, and the Higher Self by Ray Yungen
RKI—The Truth About Energy Healing by Ray Yungen
AA—The “Spiritual” Truth About Alcoholics Anonymous by John Lanagan
GR-RD—Confused by an Angel: The Dilemma of Roma Downey’s New Age Beliefs by Gregory Reid
WS-OPR—Oprah Winfrey’s New Age Christianity by Warren B. Smith
WS-OPW—Oprah Winfrey’s New Age “Christianity” Part 2 by Warren B. Smith
SHACK—The Shack & Its New Age Leaven by Warren B. Smith
INDIA—A Trip to India—to Learn the Truth About Hinduism and Yoga by Caryl Matrisciana
RY-MR—The Mystical Revolution by Ray Yungen
RY-YGA—Yoga: Exercise or Religion—Does it Matter? by Ray Yungen
CL-YAC—Yoga & Christianity: Are They Compatible? by Chris Lawson
RY-MEDI—Meditation! Pathway to God or Doorway to the Occult by Ray Yungen
RY-BAILEY—Alice Bailey, “Mother” of the New Age Movement by Ray Yungen
MK-JL—Goddess Worship in America by Maria Kneas and John Lanagan
LP-COLOR—Mandala Color Books: Relaxing Fun or A Tools for New Age Meditation? by L. Putnam
CT-FM—Freemasonry: A Revealing Look at the Spiritual Side by Carl Teichrib
PROTECTING CHILDREN
PTC—5 Things You Can Do to Protect Your Kids From Sexual Predators by Patrick Crough
GR-8—8 Things You Should Know About Sexually Abused Boys by Gregory Reid
BK-OC—Popular Books That Introduce Children to the Occult by Berit Kjos
BK-CC—A “Common Core” for a Global Community by Berit Kjos
LN-MA—The Dangers & Deception of the Martial Arts by Linda Nathan
LP-POK—A Christian Parent’s Guide to Pokémon by Lois Putnam
HLWN—Halloween: A Warning to Christian Parents by Johanna Michaelsen
BK-CHILD—10 Vital Things Parents Can Do to Help Children Keep Their Faith by Berit Kjos
PURPOSE DRIVEN/SEEKER FRIENDLY
RW-DP—Rick Warren’s Daniel Plan by Warren B. Smith
PCE—The Peace of God versus the P.E.A.C.E. of Man by David Dombrowski
RO-RW—Rick Warren’s Dangerous Ecumenical Path to Rome by Roger Oakland
ROAD TO ROME (CATHOLICISM)
JC—My Journey Out of Catholicism by David Dombrowski
JA—The Jesuit Agenda by Roger Oakland
NW-EZ—The New Evangelization of the Catholic Ch. & Finding the True Christ by Roger Oakland
RY-PF—Pope Francis and the Thomas Merton Connection by Ray Yungen
RO-CM—The Catholic Mary & Her Eucharistic Christ by Roger Oakland
AM-FN—A Former Nun Speaks Candidly About Pope Francis, Deception, and Mind Control
KR-CATH—C is for Catholicism by Kevin Reeves
 
SALVATION, THE GOSPEL & THE WORD OF GOD
IR-RDM—Redemption by Harry A. Ironside
IR-RGN—Regeneration: “Ye Must Be Born Again.” by Harry A. Ironside
IR-GOSPEL—What is the Gospel? by Harry A. Ironside
WHO—For God So Loved the World That . . . Whosoever! by Harry Ironside
ST-GP—Setting Aside the Power of the Gospel for a Powerless Substitute by David Dombrowski
IR-JST—What Does it Mean to Be Justified by God? by Harry A. Ironside
MO-DC—Did Jesus Identify Himself as God? by Mike Oppenheimer
WS-WG—The Awesome Wonder of God’s Word
IR-SUBT—Substitution: He Took Our Place! by Harry Ironside
FAITH & THE CHURCH
MK-TR—Overcoming Obstacles to Trusting the Lord by Maria Kneas
LT—The Story Behind Lighthouse Trails (LT Editors)
DD-PRT—Preparing for Perilous Times & Finding God’s Peace in Midst of Them by D. Dombrowski
CF-AW—The Unacknowledged War and the Wearing Down of the Saints by Cedric Fisher
DD-CLR—Dear Pastor and Christian Leader: Have You Grown Careless About Gospel? by D. Dombrowski
BK-AMR—The Unseen Force Behind Rising Evil and Putting on the Armor of God by Berit Kjos
RO-ENV—A Christian Perspective on the Environment by Roger Oakland
CL-SA—How to Know if You Are Being Spiritually Abused or Deceived by Chris Lawson
EX-ER—Three Vital Questions on Navigating Discernment by Harry Ironside & Paul Proctor
IR-EXP—The Expectation of His Return by Harry Ironside
RY-TRIBUTE—Ray Yungen: A Life Set Apart for God
SM-PC—Remembering the Persecuted Church (And Why We Need to Pray) by Susan Moore
CF-FAITH—Faith Under Fire: Are You Growing in It or Fleeing From it? by Cedric Fisher
IR-BRK—Broken Vessels for Christ by Harry Ironside
Quantity Discounts
* These are for quantities of the same title
1-5 - $1.95 each
6-25 - $1.66 each
26-50 - $1.46 each
51-100 - $1.28 each
101-150 - $1.07 each
151+ - $.98 each

 

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