As I see it, the dear folks in USA have only two stark choices in November. You either vote for a very flawed and imperfect man, but who is at least least trying to stand for life issues, and religious freedom, and who is opposed to globalism and Marxism, (which is why his opponents have been feverishly and zealously pulling every trick in the book, by fair means, but more usually by foul, to get him unseated), and reverse everything that he does, or you vote for a man, who will be a complete puppet of the globalists and Marxists, and because of his own lack of capacity will have a strong VP and far left Marxist cabinet, who can take over at a momentâs notice, under the influence of your former President, the UN, George Soros, Bill Gates, and others with a radical pro-abortion, pro-LGBT, environmentalist, anti-Christian Marxist programme. Donât forget also, there are governors, congressmen, senators and so on you are also voting for!! If we had the same attitude in Britain last December, as these false Republicans, we would have been enduring the Marxist tyranny of Comrade Corbyn in No 10 to take us through Covid 19 into the arms of the UN and EU!!
It seems that these authoritarian dictatorial leftist governors and mayors such as Lori Lightfoot, Andrew Cuomo, Bill deBlasio, Gavin Newsom, Pritzker, (forgotten his first name), Gretchen Whitmer, and Dr Northam amongst others have completely decided, while supporting BLM riotous protests which defy âsocial distancingâ and all the arbitrary rules they themselves have put in place against COVID 19 spread, demanding the disbandment of the police, and established law and order, while at the same time releasing criminals from prisons, filling them again with ordinary citizens who operate their businesses to make a living, and who are not wearing a mask when outside their home, bankrupting their economy with extensive lockdowns and shutdowns by executive orders, that churches are a special target of their venom, and similarly to their Communist Marxist friends in China, Venezuela, and even in Europe, they must be marked out, closed down and persecuted at all costs. Even in the rare cases that churches can meet, they must be totally humiliated with strict provisions, extreme physical distancing, disinfecting, masks for all, no singing, no communion, no baptisms, no weddings, no social fellowship at all. Welcome to the USSR in the West, to China in the West, etc.
Unfortunately, part of the submission that many churches in many countries have now, is that they must wear masks during services, but despite having to wear them, in many cases, singing, a vital part of public worship is banned as well. In England (though compulsory on public transport since June 15, and now in shops from July 23, they are only recommended but not mandatory in churches), many church authorities have made them mandatory for in person services, whilst yet at the same time by government order singing is banned, (slightly revised that a choir or âprofessional singersâ, but not a whole congregation, may sing outside, or a single cantor, soloist or singer inside behind a flexible-glass plastic screen!! ).
This has reached ridiculous proportions with the famous church whose live-streams I listen to with two âliveâ congregations, an at present masked congregation forbidden to sing, who can only read the hymns mentally in paper hymn sheets to take away, and an invisible ârecorded congregationâ from pre-Covid19 days, that sings the recorded hymns at the same time!! I am glad I cannot see the humiliated masked congregation, but only hear the âinvisibleâ one!
Dear ladybug, I was involved in older and newer style Pentecostal churches for a number of years. I did come out of that movement for a number of reasons, and am now attending Reformed churches, the theology of which I rediscovered from my college days.
However, it is very wrong to say that Pentecostals are not saved. I had the privilege during my Pentecostal years of meeting and associating with some of the dear âold Pentecostalâ brothers and sisters, who rejected aberrations such as the Prosperity Gospel, âNew Apostolic Reformationâ, (which is not new, apostolic or a reformation!!), CCM and the âEntertainment Gospelâ and of course the now modern and popular Social Justice Movement. They were, despite faults in their theology, and overemphasis on spiritual gifts, men and women of the Bible, who believed in Holy living, purity of life, and preached a hard and strong gospel message. They cannot be tarred with the same brush as the very modern Pentecostals, and Charismatics.
These Rumanian pastors fled Communism in Rumania some 30 or 40 years ago. Now they have come full face to it in the city of Chicago, as the lesbian mayor, who had a hairdo when she had banned hairdressers from opening, and who no doubt openly supported non-âsocial distancingâ BLM marches and protests, and her Board of Health threatens them with closure and demolition because they want to assert their freedom and liberty to worship the Lord.
4 priceless gems from two recent live-streamed services, but with a live congregation (masked of course, as required by the church elders, not compulsory by the government though strongly recommended).
The opening prayer by the pastor âGod, thou seest our facesâ. This is very true, even if the congregation is masked, but it seems very sad that the congregation have to worship wearing masks. In the main pastoral prayer, âLord we thank Thee for the liberty that we have to meet and worship Theeâ, but actually liberty with many restrictions. Before a hymn, âWe will now sing hymn xxx, oh, we canât sing, let us contemplate the words of hymn xxxâ. But pastor, the congregation is masked!! Finally, the deputy pastor before a last hymn, lost the plot altogether, completely forgot â We will now sing hymn xxxâ. How strange, how dystopian, how sad!! Have things come to such a pass as this? May the Lord guide us in these strange times.
The Traditionalist Catholics are horrified by this and have exposed the shenanigans of these bishops, who actually literally bankrupt their own dioceses, and cover up and in some notorious cases actually practice sexual abuse,
I sometimes look at Traditionalist Catholic websites for research purposes. These are the real Catholics, whom we as evangelicals oppose on the lines that we did at the Reformation. These folks, however, have the integrity of actually believing and practicing Catholic doctrine. They hate Pope Francis with a passion, and the modern Catholic Church since Vatican 2 in the 1960âs, and they have exposed this duplicity by their modernist bishops, who believe exactly the same as the liberal modernist mainline Protestant church leaders. The majority of Catholic bishops in places like the USA, Canada, UK, and many European countries, actually reject many of the traditional Catholic doctrines, and led by people lke the now disgraced and laicised former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, (formerly Cardinal Archbishop of Washington DC, a known homosexual who abused seminarians), openly defy many of the doctrines of their own church, approve of or even practice LGBT, wink at abortion and divorce with remarriage, espouse environmentalism and interfaith, and along with liberal feminist nuns, Marxist rhetoric and âgoddessâ worship, (and I am not talking here about the traditional Marian worship, rightly opposed by evangelical Protestants, but also the full blown New Age pagan version).
Sorry the article didnât mention the government involved, but from the context it is the main British Government, under PM Boris Johnson, based in Whitehall and Westminster, which regulates these issues in England. These regulations only apply to England, and Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have devolved governments, that make up their own regulations. As far as I know, any concessions on singing are not likely to be extended in a hurry to these three other devolved countries, as the governments there tend to a more leftist position than that of the main U.K. government, and tend to be stricter than England in such matters.
Sadly, pastors here, even in the evangelical world have been very silent on these issues. We also have had the complications of a local lockdown in the city of Leicester, and possible future lockdowns in certain other cities in the North and Midlands where COVID 19 cases have risen.
Thanks, for all who comment here, including, Jim, the excellent verses from Psalm 95, 1-4. Yes, Quiet Christian and John UK, sadly, âmodernâ Christianity does lack the solid doctrine and the courage of past Christian believers, and the CCM model which uses âprofessionalâ, but not very professional sounding musicians and worship leaders singing their emotional, often poo
This is a little crack perhaps in the perverse interference of Christian worship carried out by governments even in âfree democraticâ countries.
Singing by âprofessionalâ singers outside may seem to be welcome; or even allowing a cantor behind a screen to sing inside. However, many churches do not use choirs or âprofessionalâ singers, but only congregational worship, like mine, (not having live in church services at present), the Met Tab, and those of our unaccompanied Psalm singing friends, so these churches have to continue with the indignity of either eliminating sung worship altogether or sitting in masked silence while recorded hymns are played!!
I notice the Church of England authorities as per usual have exceeded the government restrictions by banning outdoor services except in land directly owned or managed by them!!
When will this unwarranted intrusion by government in Christian worship on the excuse of âhealth energencyâ end? C H Spurgeon, and may I I say, the 19th century Reformed Bishop of Liverpool, J C Ryle, would be shocked by all this. During pandemics in the 16th to 18th centuries, churches were open, and ministers, often at the risk of their lives, and their church members were witnessing and ministering to the sick people, and to healthy people alik
It seems to me a concentrated effort to close down churches. It seems that if there is a COVID 19 case at one of the secular establishments, there is a passing reference in the media, (here some pubs closed down again having just reopened on July 4th, because someone had a positive test for COVID 19), but if a church which is meeting has a couple of COVID 19 cases, all panic and alarm is let loose in the press.
Here in Britain, most churches obeyed all the rules about online only, and in the cases of some of the Catholic, Anglican and Free Churches like the Methodists, did not even allow online services from the churches, but from private addresses only, like the pastorâs house or vicarage, or in the case of some churches with a pastor living in the premises, from some side chapel.
Now online services are possible, the restrictions are so onerous and difficult, with pastors adding even stricter restrictions like compulsory mask wearing, and of course the complete ban on live singing, etc., that many churches have not opened up. One very large church I know where the elderly pastor recently retired, and had elders and visiting pastors before the lockdown, still has not reopened, and was not even doing online services, but just devotionals and old recorded sermons on its we
I have just listened with great sadness to a wonderful old recording on You Tube with congregation and organ, of the beautiful hymn, Glorious Things of Thee are Spoken, from Westminster Chapel in central London, in June 1955, featuring the baritone voice of the famous pastor there, Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones.
What would he make of his old church today, where until the Covid 19 lockdown, they had gone over to the modern worship band, and 7/11 choruses, and according to their website are still only doing online services, despite the permission for churches to resume live public worship albeit under very strict conditions, including no singing.
What would he, (remember he was a medical doctor before he became a pastor), make of the fact that another famous reformed evangelical congregation in London, have to sit in the church, wearing masks, mandated by the church elders, (recommended but not required by the government),listening to recorded hymns, and yet they still are forbidden to sing. Droplets in masks surely are trapped by the masks. The whole thing is completely out of all proportion , and particularly when loud, noisy, non âsocial distancingâ, protests are permitted beforehand. It sounds very suspicious to me!! Thankfully in Britain, the government is now dealing with prot
At present, sadly, this discussion about good solid devotional and doctrinal hymns versus the repetitive vacuous doctrinally empty 7/11 rock style choruses popular in most professed evangelical churches today, is rather academic since any singing in churches is illegal in many places at present, even if they are wearing masks!!
I watched two lovely services yesterday, which had a present congregation, which were totally live, for the spoken parts and had recorded hymns with congregation and organ, from pre-COVID 19 lockdown services. The cameraman in this church never films the congregation anyway, but only the pastor. This is just as well, as the fully masked congregation, (mandated by the church, not the government, though they recommend it), are still not allowed to sing, (that is a government order), and are given a paper hymn sheet, which they read silently, while the recorded hymns are being sung, and then take hone with them afterwards!!!
Unfortunately, compulsory mask wearing by everyone in every public place, is now an almost permanent feature of the new orthodoxy.
I am aware that Chinese, Koreans and Japanese have often long worn masks outside, not so much because of disease, but pollution in their cities. Now it is to be imported globally.
I actually have an over active sinus condition (non infective),and wearing a mask is unpleasant and uncomfortable. Now the orthodox doctors are saying that there are virtually no grounds for medical exemption. Any other medical voices that go against this are quickly silenced.
At present, in England mask wearing is compulsory on public transport, and recommended elsewhere, in Scotland on public transport and shops, in Wales and N Ireland, merely recommended, (though no doubt compulsory very soon). Many regathered churches now also make it mandatory, though here it is not a condition of their meeting.
I am not sure that continuous breathing in of your own recycled CO2 can be all that healthy. I actually see it as a sign of subjugation and conformity, not as a necessary health issue.
I can remember as a boy, when apart from nurses, administrators, communications, and other background operations, generally women did not serve in the military.
There were three nursing corps or regiments, one each for Army, Royal Navy / Marines, and Royal Air Force, and then one general corps or regiment for each service, and they all had their own separate uniforms and barracks, and they never went in front line service.
Now all that has gone, and the new political correctness has stated that some can serve anywhere and everywhere!!
Now, of course, it is but only women, but LGBTQ and even the Transgender. All this is a recipe for disaster, and the various Communist and Islamic armies that might oppose us, are very happy at this state of affairs. We do not have conscription in Britain, but if we did, presumably women would be conscripted as well.
Thank you brother or sister B McCausland, (sorry I am not sure which), that is indeed a lovely hymn, and very appropriate for these days.
This morning I read Psalm 137 about the Babylonians mocking the exiled and captive Israelites to sing a song of Zion, the city that they (the Babylonians), had sacked and destroyed.
I really feel that the global authorities are really mocking the church. The pubs and bars here (which have all reopened here in England, albeit with restrictions, and the stores, too), are flourishing and busy, except in Leicester, the unfortunate city with a local lockdown still in force.
But churches like Met Tab, are open with a fully masked congregation, all spaced out, and yet still they cannot sing!!! This is iniquitous. Masks are not actually mandatory, it is the church authorities that have made them so, yet despite the face being completely covered, the congregation still cannot sing Godâs praises, and must sit and listen to recorded hymns instead. Sorry, folks, something very wrong here!!
This is a very old tactic used by both Communists and Nazis. In Nazi Germany, the main Protestant Lutheran and Reformed Churches were grouped together in a kind of âProtestant German Churchâ which had to display Nazi flags, sermons were taken from a sermon outline paper printed by the Nazis, and regular affirmations of support for the regime were regularly encouraged for pastors and church members. A Nazi âReichsbischoffâ ( State Bishop - sorry about the dodgy German!) was in charge of all this. The Catholics were also similarly arranged.
The Soviet Union had a few Orthodox churches, and one or two Potestant churches in principle cities that could be shown to tourists, âshowâ churches, and their state appointed leaders were active members of the Communistic World Council of Churches. They were a mouthpiece of Soviet state propaganda.
Even North Korea, where Christianity is completely illegal, does have three state âshowâ churches, I believe, in Pyongyang, one Protestant, one Catholic, and one Korean speaking Russian-style Eastern Orthodox, which have occasional services as and when tourists or important foreign visitors show up.
I have just read the Met Tab requirements for live services. They will continue with the recorded hymns, and the congregation must wear masks, but are still not allowed to sing as the hymns are played, but remain seated. Everyone will have a paper hymn sheet, which they will merely read silently as the recorded hymns are played, and take away with them. Services will be kept down to about I hour maximum, and there is a whole host of rules, and spacing out, and of course, places must be booked in advance, with names and phone numbers given.
People under 14 and over 70, and âvulnerableâ people with health conditions are not allowed to attend.
I wonder what C H Spurgeon would have done!! Communist China certainly must be cock a hoop. Not only suppressing their own church at home, but now the Christian Church banned or strictly controlled in all the world!! This makes a total mockery of Christian worship. Thankfully the cameramen do not film the congregation, only the pastor, so I can continue with the illusion of a âliveâ unmasked congregation during the hymn singing!!
About one third of Hong Kong citizens, also hold a kind of very limited British passport, called British Overseas citizenship, which is a hangover from the days when the British ruled the colony up to 1997, when it was handed over by treaty to China. It gives them no right of residence in Britain, though I think they can visit Britain without a visa, however.
As China has broken her side of the âOne Nation, Two Systemsâ agreement by finally imposing its full blown direct Communist rule on Hong Kong, our PM has now infuriated the Chinese Communists by offering all British Overseas citizens in Hong Kong, the right to British residence, and eventually full British citizenship, after using the residence for a number of years.
I would think that any who wishes to take advantage of this needs to leave now, as I suspect that Communist China will bring in their own security police, customs and immigration, also slapping an exit visa requirement on the Hong Kong citizens and basically forbidding most of them to leave. The churches also need to get ready for the persecution the Chinese Communist authorities have already inflicted on the mainland.