September 26, 2008

Cult leader Tony Alamo interviewed by Julie Bandares on Fox News. . . . .

Cult leader, Tony Alamo, of the Tony Alamo Christian Ministries (formerly Alamo Christian Foundation) has been in the news quite a bit lately. In fact, he was just arrested this week. Like fellow cult leader, Warren Jeffs, of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS), Alamo’s arrest is allegedly related to charges of sexual misconduct with minors.

Captured in this must see YouTube video, Julie Banderas of the Fox News Channel did a great job interviewing Alamo:

Alamo is notorious for among other things having kept his wife “on ice” for quite a while after her death in 1982. Interestingly, according to the Washington Times, Bill Clinton alludes to this incident about Alamo in his auto-biography, My Life:

“A couple of years later, he got involved with a younger woman. Lo and behold, God spoke to him again and told him Susan wasn't coming back after all, so he took her out of the glass box and buried her."

Cults expert, James Walker, President of Watchman Fellowship, gives this brief synopsis of Alamo’s beliefs in his recently published book, The Concise Guide to Today’s Religions and Spirituality:

“Tony Alamo, leader of this group, has been imprisoned by authorities for alleged illegal activities. Teaches traditional Christianity is dead. Former followers have reported deplorable living conditions, mind control, and slave labor. Operates Music Square Church in TN, Holiness Tabernacle in Dyer, AR, and End Times Book is the publishing arm.”

September 15, 2008

Church of England to apologize to Charles Darwin . . . . . . .

The UK Telegraph reported on September 14 that the Church of England will offer an apology to Charles Darwin for their rejection of Darwinian Evolution. Of course this is not too surprising given that the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, has stated that Christian doctrine, specifically the doctrine of the Trinity, is offensive to Muslims, Islamic Sharia Law should be instituted in England, Creationism should not be taught in schools and that homosexuality is comparable to marriage. Given the compromise shown by the leadership of the church it is not surprising that there is a rift in the denomination.

According to the Telegraph, the statement from the Church of England will read,

“Charles Darwin: 200 years from your birth, the Church of England owes you an apology for misunderstanding you and, by getting our first reaction wrong, encouraging others to misunderstand you still. We try to practise the old virtues of 'faith seeking understanding' and hope that makes some amends.”

In addition to the apology to Darwin, the Church of England launched a website to promote Darwin’s views.

Evidently the leadership of the Church of England values political correctness more than doctrinal fidelity.

September 12, 2008

3rd Jewish Temple planned - furnishings, clothing, sacrificial lambs in place

A group of well-funded orthodox rabbis of The Temple Institute are already making plans to rebuild a third temple in Jerusalem right now. Many of the furnishings, the priestly garments, and sacrificial lambs are already in place – recreated to exact biblical specifications. For the first time in almost 2000 years, in 2008 they actually practiced slaughtering a lamb exactly as they planned to do once the temple is rebuilt. The Temple Institute says this about their purpose and the current Temple furnishings:

“The Institute is dedicated to every aspect of the Biblical commandment to build the Holy Temple of G-d on Mount Moriah in Jerusalem…. Our long-term goal is to do all in our limited power to bring about the building of the Holy Temple in our time…. The major focus of the Institute is its efforts towards the beginning of the actual rebuilding of the Holy Temple. Towards this end, the Institute has begun to restore and construct the sacred vessels for the service of the Holy Temple. These vessels, which G-d commanded Israel to create, can be seen today at our headquarters in Jerusalem. They are made according to the exact specifications of the Bible, and have been constructed from the original source materials, such as gold, copper, silver and wood. These are authentic, accurate vessels, not merely replicas or models. All of these items are fit and ready for use in the service of the Holy Temple.”

The Temple Institute has posted in its website gallery of pictures of many of the furnishings including:

Israel National News reported on April 6, 2008

“The Jerusalem Magistrate's court ruled Friday that the Jewish Temple movement may, under state law, slaughter a sheep on Sunday as a “general rehearsal” for the renewal of the Pesach (Passover) sacrifice. The judge even called the effort "proper," but organizers have been summoned to appear at 1 PM in the District Court after an animal rights groups filed another last-minute suit.”

The Temple Institute says this of the sacrifice rehearsal:

“(2008) This year, for the first time in nearly two thousand years, the Temple Institute [reports that]... a one year old, flawless lamb was ritually prepared, slaughtered and tended to according to halachah (Jewish law), and the specific instructions concerning how such an offering would be made at the Holy Temple.”

As you can imagine, the Temple Institute is considered very controversial and their plans are upsetting to many Muslims who fear that the mosque at the Dome of the Rock is in danger. And news of the third Temple is very exciting to Jews and to Evangelicals!

September 10, 2008

32% of British Muslims say it’s acceptable to kill in the name of Islam. . . . .

On July 27 the UK Mail reported on the Islam on Campus survey by researchers of the Centre for Social Cohesion. The survey consisted of 1,400 students, 600 of them Muslims, at 12 universities with influential Islamic societies.

According to the survey:

  • 32% justified killing in the name of religion if the religion was under attack
  • 60% of students active in Islamic societies said killing in the name of religion can be justified
  • 4% thought killing to promote religion was permissible
  • 33% of Muslim students polled supported the introduction of a worldwide Caliphate based on Sharia law
  • 58% of active members of campus Islamic Societies supported the idea of a worldwide Caliphate based on Islamic Sharia Law

The author of the report, Hannah Stuart, said: “These findings are deeply alarming. Students in higher education are the future leaders of their communities, yet significant numbers of them appear to hold beliefs which contravene liberal, democratic values. These results are deeply embarrassing for those who have said that there is no extremism in British universities.” Stuart also noted that government authorities should be wary about treating university Islamic societies as representative because their members appeared to be more extreme than other Muslim students.

Interestingly, on August 21 the UK Telegraph reported that the British intelligence service, MI5, leaked the results of a study done by its behavioral science unit. According to the Telegraph, MI5’s general conclusion from its study is two-fold:

  1. The most pressing threat to the UK is Islamic extremists.
  2. It is impossible to profile a “typical” British terrorist.

According to the Telegraph, MI5 also found these specific aspects of British terrorists:

  • Diverse collection of individuals, fitting no single demographic profile, nor do they all follow a typical pathway to violent extremism.
  • They are mostly British nationals, not illegal immigrants, and most are religious novices. Those over 30 are just as likely to have a wife and children as to be loners with no ties, the research shows.
  • They were no more likely to have mental illness and come from diverse ethnic backgrounds.
  • While most are male, women are often aware of their husband's and sons activities but do nothing to stop them.
  • Most over-30s have steady relationships and children, challenging the idea that terrorists are young men driven by sexual frustration and lured to ‘martyrdom’ by the promise of beautiful virgins waiting for them in paradise.

Interestingly, MI5 concluded that the most pressing British threat is Islamic extremists and the Centre for Social Cohesion found that British college students were alarmingly more extreme in their views than previously thought.

September 3, 2008

2,100-year-old wall around Jerusalem discovered

A fascinating archaeological discovery was made in Jerusalem recently! Israeli archaeologists unearthed a Jerusalem perimeter wall dating back to 70 AD. Apparently this is the wall that the Romans went through when they sacked Israel and destroyed the Temple. The 10.5 foot tall wall is one mile larger in circumference than the present wall around Jerusalem’s old city.

Full story: Jerusalem dig uncovers 2,100-year-old city wall